The StarRank is a number from 1 to 5 that represents the overall quality of a location in normal conditions.
- = 4.5* - 5* -- Among the best : an outstanding location, definitely one of the best in the region
- = 4* - 4.5* -- Great : a great location, gifted with remarkable beauty or great interest
- = 3* - 4* -- Worthwhile : a good location, of notable beauty and interest
- = 2* - 3* -- Ok : a mediocre location but still worth mentioning
- = 1* - 2* -- Not worth doing : a location with a low payoff for the effort
- = 0* -- Unknown : a location that has not been rated yet
StarRank is a weighted average of:
- User Ratings: stars given by users or imported from other sites are given normal weight
- VIP Star Ratings: ratings from users who have rated over 100 canyons, guide books, and reputable authorities have 2x the normal weight
- Condition Reports: only favorable condition reports are taken into account, and they have 1/4 the normal weight
The more users provide feedback on a location, the more reliable the StarRank will become.
To calculate the average user ratings, Ropewiki uses a winsorized mean with a setting of 15%. This means that after a location has 7 or more user ratings, the highest and lowest values will be shifted to the nearest percentile value. This is similar to what other large-scale rating sites such as IMDb do to reduce the affect of user ratings that are far off from the rest of the group.
Once a user attains VIP status, their ratings will have twice the normal weight. However, any rating they gave prior to VIP status will still have the normal weight, under the assumption that they were not as experienced at the time. The user can always re-cast their rating for these older locations to have the new VIP weight used.
The number of ratings is the 'popularity' of a location. More popular locations will usually get more ratings and/or more condition reports.
A combined Rating & Popularity value is computed using an advanced formula. The results of this are not displayed, but it is used as the default sorting of items in the table. The goal of this formula is to give more weight to canyons that have more ratings. For example, to not sort a canyon with a single rating of '5 stars' higher than a canyon that has 50 ratings averaging '4.7 stars'. You can also sort by unadjusted raw user rating or by popularity by clicking on the triangles of the 'Quality' column header.