PDA

View Full Version : What Smartphone apps do you use while on the trail?



Virginia Archer
09-25-2012, 20:04
Just wondering what Smartphone apps do you use on the trail if you have coverage. To see how far till the next stop, next creek, shelter, elevation Gains? I have a few but wondering what ya'll like? I carry a Few Extra Cell phone Batteries (1oz. ea) just for safety or to call home and talk to the kids.

johnnybgood
09-25-2012, 20:28
I don't use a smartphone with apps but If I did the weather one would have me addicted. I'm old school still...

thebrewguy
09-25-2012, 21:12
I only turn my phone on long enough to call home and check the weather. For day hikes I like NeoTreksGPS to track distance, but it destroys battery life so I'd never try it for a multi day. Star Walk or similar would be cool to check out the constellations.

1azarus
09-25-2012, 21:23
I like to use maprika. Great ap for creating your own GPS synced maps.

Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk 2

Rocket Jones
09-25-2012, 21:24
Old School (http://www.skymaps.com/downloads.html), in a new-fangled way. ;)

Deacon
09-25-2012, 21:56
The only app I use is "Pages" (for iPhone). Since there is usually no cell service, I write my journal one page per day then copy/paste into Trailjournals.com once I get to town and have a Wifi.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Waterbuffalo
09-27-2012, 16:08
I only use mine for weather info using the weatherbug app or NOAA

Starchild
09-27-2012, 16:28
As I stated in other threads I use ATTrails and TopoUSA, both do not require a cell signal to use and both can be used with location info off so the battery is conserved. If I know I have the battery to spare I will use the compass as the phone is usually easier to access then the magnetic mechanical one & The flashlight app as a easy to get nightlight. I also use Nightsky to ID stars and the like.

If a cell signal is available Maps or Around me to find out what places are nearby and Weatherbug to get the weather and radar.

Fredt4
09-30-2012, 01:53
Backcountry Navigator is the best offline map app. Google maps on town. Flashlight app. Google sky.
Skype, email, QuickOffice, text (SMS), Dropbox.

If you're interested in a beta AT Trail guide app send me a private post.

10-K
09-30-2012, 06:46
MyRadarPro, NeoTrekGPS, Flashlight, Tapatalk, Vanguard, CNN, Facebook, Ally.

Barbarosa
09-30-2012, 07:46
I used Backcountry Navigator Pro on my last section and imported the AT centerline and shelter gps coordinates from the ATC website. It was a nice luxury to have while "perplexed" a few times in New Hampshire. It was slow to load a few times but otherwise ok.

Virginia Archer
09-30-2012, 21:39
I used Backcountry Navigator Pro on my last section and imported the AT centerline and shelter gps coordinates from the ATC website. It was a nice luxury to have while "perplexed" a few times in New Hampshire. It was slow to load a few times but otherwise ok.
How did you import centerline? I guess you just entered the coordinates for the shelters.

Tipi Walter
09-30-2012, 21:51
You guys are speaking sanskrit. Is a smartphone a satellite phone? If not reception will be tricky. I say just keep a journal using a pen and paper and carry a tiny radio for the weather and keep the phone shut off except for logistics (placating the women back home) and emergencies. Anyone remember paper maps??

Zipper
09-30-2012, 22:00
I checked the weather occasionally. I updated Facebook from the woods sometimes, just because it was fun, and often I was alone, and it was neat to get some encouragement from friends. I'd usually do this when I knew I was going to town the next day and didn't have to worry about battery life at that point. I also had some kind of location app that I would sometimes look at just to see that I was in the middle of nowhere. I didn't use it for navigation or anything. Just kind of entertaining to see myself as a little dot surrounded by nothing. Mostly no apps at all. I'm pretty old school.

Virginia Archer
09-30-2012, 22:28
You guys are speaking sanskrit. Is a smartphone a satellite phone? If not reception will be tricky. I say just keep a journal using a pen and paper and carry a tiny radio for the weather and keep the phone shut off except for logistics (placating the women back home) and emergencies. Anyone remember paper maps??
I use a smartphone...I kow the reception in areas won't be there but with some of these apps your don't need reception to look at the topo's and few other things. And yes I remember Paper maps....Being a Land Nav instructor in the USMC its always fun to play with these types of apps and how easy it is in today's world of High Tech Gadgets to find yourself or off the beaten path areas with just the touch of a few buttons.

TNjed
09-30-2012, 22:38
Come on man, apps on the trail? Is nothing sacred? Use a map or a guide book dude.

TNjed
09-30-2012, 22:45
Maps are these big pieces of paper with colors and lines and words on them. They can tell whatever you need to know. You can use them when they get wet AND when it's freezing cold out AND they don't use batteries or a charger. Most camping shops have stacks of them. It makes me wonder what people did before apps, I mean how did The Crazy One make it to Maine?

Mountain Mike
09-30-2012, 23:34
My favorite app is the off button.

Wombat Farm
10-01-2012, 03:17
Wow...have times changed! I'm gonna have to say when I'm out hiking anywhere, I'd prefer to leave it at home or turn it on only occassionally to try to make a call home to say I'm alive. Use a map! :confused:

Gillum
10-01-2012, 05:41
I've had a smart phone for years and hiking much much longer. As much as I like the APPS of the smartphone in my day-to-day life, I don't use it on the trail. I enjoy preparing (reading about towns etc) for each hike, reading maps and using my compass. In my "book" using a phone with APPS is a nice-to-have not a have-to-have. Maybe when I am on the trail I'm old fashioned but that's just the way I like it.

joshuasdad
10-01-2012, 05:44
Not apps per se, but I use my ALDHA guide pdf file, as well as an AT profile map. I will also download or cache maps of sections that I am doing (for example, from cnyhiking). Generally keep the phone in sleep mode to save battery, then at breaks I take pictures, check the trail profile, and send out a text of my location.

I have used the flashlight app (when changing batteries on headlamp), and just downloaded a compass app.

stumpknocker
10-01-2012, 09:22
Just wondering what Smartphone apps do you use on the trail if you have coverage. To see how far till the next stop, next creek, shelter, elevation Gains? I have a few but wondering what ya'll like? I carry a Few Extra Cell phone Batteries (1oz. ea) just for safety or to call home and talk to the kids.

It absolutely amazes me how many people on this site tell you what or how you should do things because it's the way they do it. You ask a simple question and get told to shut your phone down or leave it at home.

Here is how I use my iPhone while I'm out walking a trail;

I use it as my camera and mirror. I take lots of pictures and find my iPhone adequate for the way I use my photos. I put the camera mode on reverse and use it as a mirror to see how bad I look or if I have any food stuck in my teeth. :)

I use animated radar lots to see what weather is coming my way. That works especially well for me when I'm in my tent in the morning and it's raining. There have been many times when I would just roll over and go back to sleep for another hour because I could see from the animated radar that the rain would soon push through.

I use text messages to stay in contact with close friends and I check my email several times a day.

I use the GPS sometimes when I'm on trails that aren't completely finished. I have bushwacked successfully a number of times using this method.

I use a moon phase app and have learned quite a bit more than I ever knew about the phases. It even tells me moon rise and moon set.

I use a flashlight app on it at times...mostly when I'm inside my tent.

I use my music occasionally when it's very windy or raining hard at night. I don't sleep well in high winds or heavy rain, but fall sound asleep if I drown those noises out with music.

I do all my bill paying and banking with my iPhone.

I am a collector of a certain item, so I check daily to see if an item I collect is available.

I use a New Trent charger that gives me 5 1/2 full charges so I don't worry about finding an outlet for a week.

I spend lots of time on trails, so this is how I live. I can understand some people wanting to get away from their phones (I did when I was still working), but I DO NOT understand someone telling you to hike their way. I could care less if someone leaves their phone at home, brings it with them, or doesn't own one.

Oh yeah....I journaled on one thru hike early on with pencil and paper and didn't like that at all. I changed to a voice recorder to remember certain things about the day and would type it up at night on my phone while laying inside my tent, then uploaded that to whatever I was using at the time. I would now use the voice recorder app on the iPhone to remember details of each day and I would then dictate those into a daily journal....if I still kept a journal.

Bear Cables
10-01-2012, 10:35
Weather App RadarNow. Maps for everything else. I have learned through hiking with my slower sister that "I am where I am on the trail"

Ladytrekker
10-01-2012, 10:48
I have the Whiteblaze.net app on my phone

Starchild
10-01-2012, 11:55
I use a New Trent charger that gives me 5 1/2 full charges so I don't worry about finding an outlet for a week.

I have some questions about this as I have a different model which is rates at 5000 mAh (over 3 times the iPhone's capacity) and lucky if I can get a single 0% to 100% charge out of it.

Which one do you have of the New Trent chargers as there are several models? Have you confirmed you can get 5.5 full charges And what do you consider a full charge (0% to 100%)?

Thanks

Sly
10-01-2012, 12:31
App etite, works great on the trail.

stumpknocker
10-01-2012, 12:38
I have some questions about this as I have a different model which is rates at 5000 mAh (over 3 times the iPhone's capacity) and lucky if I can get a single 0% to 100% charge out of it.

Which one do you have of the New Trent chargers as there are several models? Have you confirmed you can get 5.5 full charges And what do you consider a full charge (0% to 100%)?

Thanks

The model # is IMP1000. I know there were a few models of the New Trents. I bought this one after reading reviews. It is heavy at 13oz, but between this and my iPhone, it helped me replace my older cell phone with extra external back-up batteries, my camera, my voice recorder and my mp3 player...so I'm probably about the same weight-wise.

I have fully charged my iPhone with it from under 20% charge to full charge 5 1/2 times. I only got it the first of this year and have run it completely out of power half a dozen times on the trail.

It keeps me from HAVING to go into town to recharge the phone. I like that. The only thing I really don't like is the blue recharging light is bright at night, so I bury it under clothes or something until morning.

I keep my iPhone on airplane mode most of the time so it's not constantly searching, but I keep it powered on all the time. Like I said earlier....I take lots of pictures. :)

Deacon
10-01-2012, 12:53
You first need to decide how often you will be heading to town. Typically, an AT hiker will hostel/resupply every 3 or 4 days. If that's the case then you wouldn't need a 13 oz charger.

I use the Trent IMP5200, capable of 3 full charges (they say 3.5 but that's pushing it). This one is only 4.7 oz. and is plenty for me every 5 days.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Deadeye
10-01-2012, 17:02
The "off" button.

StubbleJumper
10-01-2012, 18:36
Wow, lots of hate for smartphones! I will confess that I used one EVERY day on my long trek this summer because most of the route that I was following was unmarked and about 10% of the time I was walking in mist with 100 feet or less visibility. Additionally, I had only 1:50,000 maps, so there often was inadequate detail on the maps to navigate without some sort of GPS. I guess that I could have bought 1:25,000 maps, but I already had 1.5 pounds of maps at 1:50,000, so I'd be up to about 3 pounds! Much easier to use the less detailed maps, but supplement it with GPS when the route is unclear.

I could have taken a single-purpose GPS, but it would have cost more than $100. Instead I paid about $5 for the AlpineQuest app for Android and downloaded my zoomable topo maps for free. In addition to GPS functionality, I had e-mail and surfing in town, and telephone capability to phone home. I couldn't use a weather app, e-mail or telephone on the trail because I was too remote and service was not typically available. But the GPS was damned handy on a regular basis.

two isles
10-02-2012, 10:53
One day, a trail angel picked up 4 of us. She asked us what was our most valued piece of equipment. I blurted out, "my i-phone." The entire SUV looked at me like "are you seriously a hiker?"
I used the Weather Channel app, I had the AT in sections , I checked the radar for for, I paid my bills, I used EverNote for my journal entries, I used i-movie to make a video montage of my hike, i used the camera and downloaded then when in wi-fi areas, I used a Mophie battery back up as well as a Power Monkey, I have Motion GPS that I used with the compass, I used the calculator (nearing the end and finding an avg of miles), I used the calendar because I could never remember what day it was, I used my e-mail when I could on top of mountains, and I used my phone when I had serious panic attacks. Texting other hiking friends was a plus as well so we could meet up in town.
I love my i-phone!!

Starchild
10-02-2012, 12:38
You first need to decide how often you will be heading to town. Typically, an AT hiker will hostel/resupply every 3 or 4 days. If that's the case then you wouldn't need a 13 oz charger.

I use the Trent IMP5200, capable of 3 full charges (they say 3.5 but that's pushing it). This one is only 4.7 oz. and is plenty for me every 5 days.


I did a second test on my 5000mAh "Powerbank" and got better results. The first test I did was when it was new and got a dismal 1 full charge out of it (100%). The second time I got 1.8 'full' charges on it (180%), which is much better and more practical given it's weight at 4.5oz.

How I tested was in airplane mode started recharging around 20% and stopped around 60-80%, repeated till it gave out, added up all the percents and got 180%
So using your standard of charging from 20% to 100%, I would have to say I got 2 full charges + 25% on the 3rd.

What I found also nice about the Powerbank is I can charge the iPhone and the Powerbank at the same time off of one plug as the cable they give me splits into a iPhone charger + Powerbank charger.

Virginia Archer
10-02-2012, 21:01
Thanks guys. well since I don't have the time away from work and the family I'm only gonna be doing a few days at a time....maybe sometimes a week or something!

Theosus
10-04-2012, 06:58
I might use radarscope, and maybe the camera. Sometimes watch a bit of a movie or play a game at "night" when I'm stuck in the tent and not sleepy yet. I have a real gps for travel and Geocaching, and a paper map.

snifur
10-04-2012, 07:56
No APPS used. did not carry a smartphone. still dont carry one. the ringing and beeping of these phones in the shelters was a constant battle the entire length of the AT. i believe there is a silence button, but people dont silence them. why? my ol'woman knew where i was because when we talked i said i was going to be there. i did not have to update every step along the way. she trusted and believed in me. i mailed home letters with my experiances on them. i went with the more personal and intimate approach to thru hiking for the solidarity. is there an app for that?

quilteresq
10-04-2012, 08:48
What? Not one mention of Kindle? I have a collection of hundreds of books. I ALWAYS read before I go to sleep at night.

Virginia Archer
10-04-2012, 20:33
What? Not one mention of Kindle? I have a collection of hundreds of books. I ALWAYS read before I go to sleep at night.
True....I do like the Kindle app on there....don't read as much as I should but I'll try that nightly ritual!

Tipi Walter
10-04-2012, 20:43
True....I do like the Kindle app on there....don't read as much as I should but I'll try that nightly ritual!

I hear the Kindle practically disintegrates at anything around 20F or below. Same with the smartphone? Any real-world field test in subzero conditions?

Wise Old Owl
10-04-2012, 21:06
Wow, lots of hate for smartphones! I will confess that I used one EVERY day ....

I could have taken a single-purpose GPS, but it would have cost more than $100. Instead I paid about $5 for the AlpineQuest app for Android and downloaded my zoomable topo maps for free. In addition to GPS functionality, I had e-mail and surfing in town, and telephone capability to phone home. I couldn't use a weather app, e-mail or telephone on the trail because I was too remote and service was not typically available. But the GPS was damned handy on a regular basis.

America went thru the same emotional discorse with the Devil.... Edison's electric light bulb... Folks have a huge problem with change..... a 3-4 oz platform with a large screen and voice activated or touch screen with Google software that's the bomb....whiners & cyber hikers need to move on... in short, grow up. It is the information age... folks have a choice and you are not going to change public opinion here. Ya like it or ya don't

HYOH.

Barbarosa
10-05-2012, 06:40
The centerline is massive amount of gps coordinates with some smoothing between them, you can download and import it from the mapping and gis section of the ATC website. It looks just like the google earth centerline if you have ever seen that.

quilteresq
10-05-2012, 10:11
I hear the Kindle practically disintegrates at anything around 20F or below. Same with the smartphone? Any real-world field test in subzero conditions?

No real world tests so far, but if that's so, I'll sleep with it under my quilt with me. I'm not bringing my Kindle, just the Kindle app on the iPhone. I have the same books loaded on both. Saving Ken Follett's two books of his Century Trilogy for the trail. I'm really thinking of bringing a small battery back up so I can read at night.

Sly
10-05-2012, 14:17
No real world tests so far, but if that's so, I'll sleep with it under my quilt with me. I'm not bringing my Kindle, just the Kindle app on the iPhone. I have the same books loaded on both. Saving Ken Follett's two books of his Century Trilogy for the trail. I'm really thinking of bringing a small battery back up so I can read at night.

If you're hiking during thru-hiker season chances are there'll be few nights with temps below 20*. A google inquiry says normal operating temps for most phones are 32-95. Lower than that and the phone becomes progressively sluggish, but some worked until 40* below. No reports of any disintegrating.

Tipi Walter
10-05-2012, 14:44
If you're hiking during thru-hiker season chances are there'll be few nights with temps below 20*. A google inquiry says normal operating temps for most phones are 32-95. Lower than that and the phone becomes progressively sluggish, but some worked until 40* below. No reports of any disintegrating.

Disintegrating to me means electronics not working, you still have to hump it, and you can't burn it.

Doc Mike
10-07-2012, 20:19
ATTrail app works even without phone recption since just uses GPS. When hepping the rangers in maryland locate an individual this summer i was able to pinpoint the exact location for them. including how far from each shelter, road crossing and water source.

LDog
10-07-2012, 20:51
I carried a droid and used it regularly. I have a lot of apps mentioned in this thread, but really only used a handful.

Even tho I carried a dedicated camera, I often took snapshots with the droid that could be easily uploaded to Facebook or to my blog. I used an Eye-Fi card in my camera to transfer photos to my Droid using the Eye-fi app for uploading as well. I have Photoshop and used it a few times to tweak exposure, crop, etc.

Calendar was loaded with both personal calendar, and events happening along the trail.

The Facebook app to stay in touch with friends and family. That was a battery sink unless I had full 3G ...

Blogger app to update my blog. Could do that w/o a signal and upload when I had one.

Tapatalk to check in here.

Evernote to keep track of all my notes.

Radar Now! The Weather Channel and NOAA Weather.

At Bat Lite to keep track of the Tigers

Adobe reader to read pdfs I had including the Companion

Web MD

Kindle with both reference and recreational reading. The former I used a bit, the latter rarely

GMail to check email

I used the provided Messages app to text buddies on the trail occasionally

Google Sky to id heavenly bodies

My Tracks to upload waypoints to the map on my blog

I have a bunch of land-nav programs, but never really used them. Ditto for stuff like netflix, youtube, music, NPR, Reuters ... Mostly I hiked, ate, took photographs, talked with other hikers and slept with no need or desire for other diversions.

I carried an extra battery, and a small New Trent battery/storage unit that would give me 2 charges. Left it on in airplane mode when not in use. Still had power after 10 days in the 100 mile wilderness.

88BlueGT
10-08-2012, 21:31
I couldn't have said it better myself.

Its funny when the same people who are the first to throw out HYOH are the first to argue or bash someone for not doing things "their" way.

HighCloud
10-11-2012, 02:50
I have a Smartphone, but I donít use on trips like this because it can be damaged easily. The only effective equipment I carry is a compass.

Tramp
10-11-2012, 06:20
You guys are speaking sanskrit. Is a smartphone a satellite phone? If not reception will be tricky. I say just keep a journal using a pen and paper and carry a tiny radio for the weather and keep the phone shut off except for logistics (placating the women back home) and emergencies. Anyone remember paper maps??
Hey tipi, I talk to c.crane co. About making a small light weight pocket radio for backpackers that would have am fm sw & weather channels. If a lot more people would call or email them thay might make it for us. The c.c.sw is close but no wx. Sw is kinda cool to listen to sometime .

Wise Old Owl
03-03-2013, 18:21
Old School (http://www.skymaps.com/downloads.html), in a new-fangled way. ;)


By the time they were in stores they were three years old and 15-40 degrees out and somewhat frustrating... I would rip the cover off and use the wheel by itself..

capehiker
03-03-2013, 18:32
I have the Whiteblaze.net app on my phone

Is this a stand alone app or are you referring to the Tapatalk app? I couldn't find a whiteblaze app in the istore but I do have the tapatalk app with whiteblaze on it.

Wise Old Owl
03-03-2013, 18:53
Weather App RadarNow. Maps for everything else. I have learned through hiking with my slower sister that "I am where I am on the trail"

OK I am in - it carrys a 5 day free trial then switches to $5 for 2 years... for almost all features.

SCRUB HIKER
03-03-2013, 22:57
I haven't seen Google Drive suggested so far.

I'm using a Google spreadsheet this year on the PCT as a maildrop guide for friends and family. Any place I'm planning to receive mail I have listed: the ETA, the address written out in full, any special requests, what guidebook pages/maps I need for the next section, and anything else I might want. I keep the access limited to my girlfriend and parents, basically, but can add on other viewers as needed. I update it with the Drive app for my phone. Believe it or not, this is easier and cheaper than finding a pay phone to give my coordinator hurried instructions on what to send me.

I also scanned the dozen pages or so of condensed resupply info from Yogi's book, combined the images into a single PDF, and put that PDF on Drive for limited access by friends and family (and me, in case I lose the paper form).

As for the cold temperatures thing, I used my smartphone in its capacity as an mp3 player all the time when I worked at a ski resort a year ago. Never noticed a problem, temps down to 20 or so.

Anyone who chooses not to bring a cellphone into the woods is fine with me. Anyone who chooses not to bring one and then tells me that I shouldn't have one either should be summarily gutted with their own trekking pole.

BrianLe
03-04-2013, 01:32
Fredt4 said:

"Backcountry Navigator is the best offline map app."

I'm curious if this is based on any sort of comparison (either personal or done by someone else) --- or is more along the line of "Well, I use it and like it". I've been happy with GaiaGPS --- if there really is something out there that's better, I'd appreciate a pointer to some sort of objective comparison or just to specific features that are superior. Thanks!

Highcloud said:

"I have a Smartphone, but I donít use on trips like this because it can be damaged easily"

Each to their own of course, but FWIW I carried a smartphone in a neoprene shoulder strap case on three thru-hikes, in total something on the order of 9000 miles of backpacking that way and have never damaged one. When I replaced my first smartphone (changed carrier, wanted updated tech) it was a bit "loose" (it was one of those with the slide-out keyboard units) but it still functioned.

To be clear, I'm not saying that "you're wrong", just that carrying a smart phone so it's always handy (as camera, gps, voice recorder) IS "right" for me. I've also carried a folding bluetooth keyboard *in the external mesh of my pack* on most of my backpacking miles and haven't had any problem with it working either. Well, other than in cold weather, took a while to figure that one out, but that had nothing to do with damaging it.

Another Kevin
03-04-2013, 08:59
Hmm, what apps have I used on the trail?

Backcountry Navigator - it's the best I've tried for untethered 'airplane mode' operation. It doesn't need a network connection while you're hiking, if you plan a little when you have signal.

PeakFinder USA East - Answers the "what mountain is that?" question.

TxtPad - For making notes. There are forty-'leven apps that are comparable. I settled with this one for no good reason.

GPS Status and Tools - If you understand GPS, this gives you the information you need about how much accuracy to expect.

AndFTP - For transferring photos and notes back to HQ.

FBReader - Handles several ebook formats.

DanKam - Assistive app for colour blindness. I need it to read certain paper maps.

OI Flashlight - I've used this once on the trail, when changing out my headlamp batteries in the dark.

With the exception of AndFTP, none of these have need of the network.

jjchgo
03-04-2013, 10:12
i just got back from a week long camping trip in the midwest (indiana). i brought my android, i used it to send a couple texts just to check in but besides that it was useless, there was no internet signal. i did play a couple hands of spades on my phone and listen to some music. temps didnt seem to effect it, i didnt see any temps above 35 and temps as low as the low teens.

hth

robertblake60
03-04-2013, 13:15
I hear the Kindle practically disintegrates at anything around 20F or below. Same with the smartphone? Any real-world field test in subzero conditions?

Please.

If this were true then the entire city of Chicago would be without cell phones for days at a time. And there are plenty of colder climates where magically this stuff still works.

pinkiwong
03-15-2013, 02:10
compass, weather, camera apps mostly. make sure to bring your favorite portable charger (newtrent.com, mophie.com, etc) as any gps app will kill your battery life fast.

Gambit
03-19-2013, 11:05
perfect idea:turn your phone off, your in the wilderness sooooo, look at a rock! is it wet? its raining! is it hot? wear a tshirt! issssss it white? better put on a coat!

Lets go to gps now..."we have 10 miles to hike today"....4 hours later..."are we there? nnope!" keep walking, 15 hours later, "are we there? no? prolly past it" :/
lmao

Another Kevin
03-19-2013, 11:24
i just got back from a week long camping trip in the midwest (indiana). i brought my android, i used it to send a couple texts just to check in but besides that it was useless, there was no internet signal.

None of the apps I mentioned above requires an internet connection. In fact, I specifically mentioned leaving the phone in 'airplane mode' so that it doesn't run down the battery trying to get an internet connection.

Lyle
03-19-2013, 11:25
No smartphone at home, certainly none on the trail. My phone is a $5 Tracfone, off 99.9% of the time. I feel like a wimp carrying that, and am embarrassed if I use it.

aficion
03-19-2013, 11:45
No smartphone at home, certainly none on the trail.

Same here. If/when I move outdoors for long term, I will get one.:)

fredmugs
03-19-2013, 13:16
Untappd If there's good beer or a good bar in a trail town I want to know where it is.

Weasleymum
03-22-2013, 13:29
I can't believe not a single person has mentioned the Starbucks App. Helllooo, next cup of non-instant java!

(Just kidding, of course, for anybody who can't get that on his own. Also, that App doesn't work well.)

Seriously, I find it interesting that the anti-cellphone/smartphone crowd are so pushy and adamant, while the techno-philes seem to have a "using a smartphone works for me, but I am not trying to push it on you" attitude. You are ALL using ultra-modern technology, even if it's not in the form of an electronic device. Heck, in studying this brave new world, I need a few vocabulary lessons just to keep up with the fibers, metals, plastics. There is something a touch hypocritical about carrying an ultra-lite nylon backpack, wearing a poly-whatever shirt, having a tent/hammock that only weighs two pounds because it's made out of moonbeams or something-- but then adopting a woodsier-than-thou attitude towards those who might want to check the radar to see whether the rain might clear by noon. It's not like any of you are wearing Levi's and a army-issue canvas rucksack...

To TNJed-- you can use paper maps when it's raining? I'll take your word on that, so far, but it seems like they'd start disintegrating when they get wet... or are they laminated/ plastic coated or something? (Serious question, not sarcastic.)


Snifur-- sounds like you had a system that worked for you (i.e. mailing letters), but that's no reason to run down someone else's system. Checking in to Facebook/ WB/ email/ etc-- in an adventure in which some 80% drop out, I would think that any form of encouragement or support would be invaluable. Maybe getting those "you can do it!" comments from friends and family back home (and knowing that they're following your journey), or communicating daily with a much-missed spouse or partner, might be the difference between giving up and going on, for some people. I'm new to this whole community (and to hiking, and to backpacking) but I keep hearing, "hike your own hike". How does running down anybody with a different philosophy or system support that ideal?

I don't have a smartphone, don't know if I'll have one by the time I attempt the Trail (prolly 2017) but I'll do whatever feels right for me, either way. (And I'll sure as heck bring my e-reader-- weighs less than a paperback but has HUNDREDS of books on it!)

Swordpen
04-06-2013, 01:36
I use a smartphone, & I dont care if anyone else uses it.

but I WILL SAY: TURN OFF THE RINGER!!! That is so rude, crude & vulgar!

People are trying to sleep in the shelters, want to enjoy nature, etc. If you want to walk, camp, & have some excitement, go sleep on the street in a ghetto. No one will hear your phone over the racket.

Groomez
04-06-2013, 08:58
America went thru the same emotional discorse with the Devil.... Edison's electric light bulb... Folks have a huge problem with change..... a 3-4 oz platform with a large screen and voice activated or touch screen with Google software that's the bomb....whiners & cyber hikers need to move on... in short, grow up. It is the information age... folks have a choice and you are not going to change public opinion here. Ya like it or ya don't

HYOH.

HIGH FIVE!! I think it's hilarious when people are like, "gah I'm old school! I ain't taking no dang smartphone in the woods" and yet use the latest tech in lightweight outdoor gear

AllenIsbell
04-06-2013, 10:48
HIGH FIVE!! I think it's hilarious when people are like, "gah I'm old school! I ain't taking no dang smartphone in the woods" and yet use the latest tech in lightweight outdoor gear

Exactly.

I haven't read the thread, but another thing for the people calling phones "useless...."

30 years ago if you were hiking alone and received an injury that left you immobile, you would sit there and wait on someone to find you... You had an absolute 0.00% chance of reaching out to help.

My ankles are very prone to injury due to sports in teenage years. If I roll an ankle while walking on a skinny trail, or on the rocks around Blood Mountain, you bet your ass that I am going down hard, and not moving from whatever spot I end up landing.

If I didn't have a phone, I would simply sit there and blow my whistle and hope I was found. If my whistle was broken off, bent, or busted while I was falling, I am SOL at that point, and must rely on my voice--Which won't last long while screaming, and doesn't project nearly as far as a whistle.

Wait! But I do have a phone in my pocket. I use AT&T, and have 4G service for the majority of the GA section of the AT. So, I call for help. Bad reception? Since text messages hardly require any service to send/receive it is very likely that I can still send a text message to someone explaining where I am, and what happened.

Like everyone else on here, I love the purity of nature, but the human race would not be where it is today if everyone was so stubborn to not accept a change.

Groomez
04-06-2013, 12:01
But to add to the thread, I just installed Eye-Fi. Its a memory card that goes into your camera and allows you to wirelessly transfer vids and pics to your phone and upload/edit/do whatever. That way you can free up your camera and not have to rely on mailing home a memory card or buying one all the time.

AAAND you dont have to take along a cable to connect your camera to your phone.

Another Kevin
04-06-2013, 12:34
To TNJed-- you can use paper maps when it's raining? I'll take your word on that, so far, but it seems like they'd start disintegrating when they get wet... or are they laminated/ plastic coated or something? (Serious question, not sarcastic.)

The NY/NJ Trail Conference maps are printed on Tyvek for that very reason - and you can get waterproof paper for printing your own off a computer. I often have a piece of map and some notes packed flat in a gallon Ziploc, particularly on bushwhacks, so that I can read them in wet weather without opening the bag.

jcheil
04-08-2013, 14:51
But to add to the thread, I just installed Eye-Fi. Its a memory card that goes into your camera and allows you to wirelessly transfer vids and pics to your phone and upload/edit/do whatever. That way you can free up your camera and not have to rely on mailing home a memory card or buying one all the time.

AAAND you dont have to take along a cable to connect your camera to your phone.

I just got one of these also after spending days trying to figure out how I was going to get pictures off the camera (unfortunately it is one that requires a special Sony cable or I would have needed a card reader).
The Eye-Fi card is amazing. The moment I snap a picture it is on my phone ready to be uploaded to wherever.

Theosus
04-10-2013, 00:06
Usually the OFF button during the day.
At night? Radarscope, the Weather Channel, maybe GeoCaching if I got lucky. I'll probably set it for 30 minutes of music to help me sleep, or maybe even watch some movie I converted to phone size, for a little while.