The blueprint of collaboration between Hiking apps and Trail organisations
No one could deny that the past year or so has been a difficult and rather challenging time, not the bone weary, legs aching, blistered feet, soaked through, wanna give up and go home type of challenge but more of a retrospective, reflective and mental trial, due to the many restrictions imposed upon our daily lives along with a lack of social and outdoor interactions. Hopefully though, we are now on the path to recovery and with spring here, now is the time to dust the cobwebs off your hiking boots, grab your backpack and get out there! What better way to celebrate the Great Outdoors and living it, than a new partnership, the first of its kind for both parties, between Hiiker and the beautiful South West Coast Path!
An Iconic Trail
England’s longest and many would say finest long distance trail, stretches for over 630 glorious miles, from Minehead in Somerset to Poole in Dorset, with nearly half the trail being in Cornwall. Known for its dramatic scenery; rugged cliffs, hidden bays and coves along with the sound of crashing waves and breathtaking views far out over the everchanging sea, this trail has the wow factor by the spadeful. In fact, 450 miles of the path are through areas with special protection status, all the more reason why this partnership needs to be celebrated! The trail, which can be walked in sections, is sure to appeal to anyone who loves to be outdoors and near the sea, far from the maddening crowds and surrounded by nature. A worthy trail indeed to partner with and spread the word about! As head of fundraising for this iconic trail, Genevieve Hinchcliff stated “we are excited to partner with Hiiker. Their technology will allow people to discover more about the SWCP and their support as a Coast Path Friendly App giving £1 per download to the Trail will improve the experience for all present and future users of the Path”
The Hiiker App
Hiiker, the brainchild of Paul Finlay, an avid long distance hiker and techno savvy, is a mobile application which connects hikers to an ever-growing network of long-distance trails from all over the world. It allows you to explore different trails, on a laptop, PC or mobile device, using an incredibly detailed map with six different layers and has all the information needed for you to start planning your next challenge, be it a thru hike or a section. The app is able to be used remotely on the trail, for example, it can show you where the nearest accommodation to your exact trail position is, can show you alternative paths and give accurate elevation changes. Think of it as like having a third eye; it can definitely be a game changer on a long, challenging hike, such as the SWCP. With different levels of subscription, there is a plan to suit all needs and thanks to this exciting partnership, from now on, every time the SWCP interactive map is purchased through Hiiker, a donation of £1 is made to the SWCP Association.
Supporting the Trail
The donated funds will go towards supporting the on going and fantastic work the association does with regards to building, promoting and perhaps most importantly, maintaining the path. Encouraging people to get out there and use it is undoubtedly a very good thing and it is encouraging to see increasing numbers of people waking up to the fact that being out and about in nature is good for our health, both mentally and physically, but increased footfall and activity however, often in ecologically fragile areas, ultimately brings about the trail’s degradation or destruction, something this partnership will help stop in its tracks. It is not only the path itself will benefit, but also the surrounding areas, communities and wildlife. Never has there been a more important time to appreciate and give back to nature than now; the harsh fact is Mother Nature is struggling at the moment and needs us more than ever. Eoin Hamilton, the Director of Marketing and Community at Hiiker, who has made this great idea a reality says, ‘We believe this will be the first of many partnerships with trail organisations we will have which feeds into our vision of ensuring that we are responsible for the accessibility we give to all to explore these amazing trails’.
To find out more about the fantastic work that the Southwest Coast Path Association do, head over to https://www.southwestcoastpath.org.uk/#