You know where we are going with this…
Mobile apps that help you get outdoors are great – and that should be the benchmark to start from. Anyone who develops a mobile app for this purpose, should be applauded.
But not all apps are created equal. Some apps are highly-technical GPS tools. Others are for tracking your fitness. And others that take elements from both, to equip all levels in the outdoors.
Here is our list of mobile apps that will give you confidence in the outdoors.
1. HiiKER (Of course)
HiiKER is one of the fastest growing hiking tools on the market. With just over 3,000 trails mapped all over the world, it is sure to have the trail you are looking for.
But it’s more than just trails, HiiKER provides you with a whole range of features to help you plan and navigate your way on a hiking trail.
While some hikers may want to track their hikes to either plot a route or look at their own stats, HiiKER steps away from that. Tracking is the enemy of battery life and we all know that when we are out in the wild, we do need to conserve our phone battery, just in case of an emergency. All maps are available to users offline, which will further boost the life of your battery and allow you to truly connect with nature
Instead, HiiKER shows you exactly where you are on a trail and allows you to measure the distance and elevation gain you have ahead of you on the trail. It will also show you all the available spots along the trail to fil up on water, get some food or catch public transport!
HiiKER is committed to quality and customer satisfaction. While the team are busy adding trails every single day, they are on-hand with customer support to ensure you get the best experience.
If fitness is your game, then Strava has you covered.
You won’t find trails on Strava, but it is an excellent tool to track your hikes. The integration with wearables is a handy feature and means you won’t have to use your phone battery while tracking yourself.
There is a great community aspect to Strava, which other fitness apps tend to miss. There are hiking groups that you can join to go on local adventures with like minded folk.
what3words is not a hiking app (per se), but it can be useful when you are in a tricky situation and need to call for help.
It can also be useful for letting family and friends know where you are before you head into a risky part of a trail.
The idea is that they have mapped the world in to grids, with each box containing 3 unique identifying words.
If you want to know where the HiiKER office is, use w3w to search for “adjust.taxi.badge”
I love getting to know the mountains around me. With peaklens, you can use AR (Augmented reality) to see the names of certain mountain peaks around you.
Using your camera, you simply point at a mountain and it lets you know what you are looking at.
This is a huge drain on your battery, so I wouldn’t really use it on longer trails. It’s also not very reliable, so it wouldn’t be a tool for navigating. It is much more of a fun app to have to help you get a better look at the peaks around you.
I find it particularly useful when i’m trying to show off to my girlfriend that I know the mountain peaks around me while on a hike.
5. Viewranger / Outdoor active
Viewranger (now known as Outdoor active), is a great tool for navigating your own path.
While the user interface is not as slick as Strava, or HiiKER, it does allow users to plot their own routes and share with friends.
The list of available trails can be tricky to navigate, but the maps are very detailed and will help you along the trail.