iPads and iPhones can be great companions to take into the great outdoors, whether you’re beyond your network service area or not.
In fact, there are literally hundreds of apps that are specially designed to augment your outdoor experience, encompassing a number of outdoor pursuits and necessities, from navigational to photo-sharing to astronomy to flora and fauna identification.
The Apple App store has compiled many of these apps in a featured list called Apps for the Great Outdoors. To get to it on your iPhone or iPad simply click “featured” and scroll down to the bottom, where you will see a large button that says: Apps for the Great Outdoors.
Of those on the list, here are 10 of our favorite iPhone and iPad apps for the great outdoors.
- Maplets – 4.5 stars. This app describes itself as a comprehensive offline maps app for iPhones and iPads. Over one million people have downloaded it, and it offers more than 7,000 maps of the U.S. and worldwide, including Yosemite, Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, State Parks, the New York Subway, the London Tube, and more. $2.99 for iPhone.
- SAS Survival Guide – 5 stars. While a bit expensive at $5.99, this app brings the SAS Survival Guide–the definitive guide on how to survive any situation, anywhere in the world–to your pocket on the iPhone (or your bivvy, on the iPad!). Not only does the app include an optimized version of the entire 400-page survival book, but it also contains videos from the author, photo galleries of animal tracks; knots; edible, medicinal and poisonous plants; a Morse Code signaling device; sun compass; survival checklist and more.
- 360 Panorama – 4.5 stars. This 360 panorama app does just that–allows you to pan the camera 360 degrees, and the app stitches your photos into a seamless whole. You can later easily post the photos to online media such as Facebook, Twitter or email. All photos are automatically geo-tagged, so you never forget where you took them. Cost: $0.99.
- iHandy Flashlight Free – 4.5 stars. So simple, yet a complete game-changer, the free flashlight app emits a stunningly powerful light from your phone. Fires up quick. Perfect for camping. Also features an SOS blinking setting and a compass.
- Project Noah – 4.5 stars. Named for the ark, this app turns citizens into scientist whilst building a social network around the identification of plant and animal species. Anyone can take a photograph and upload it to the app, which corresponds with a site at projectnoah.com, and others will identify, name, and provide information on that plant, animal, mushroom, etc. It doubles as a searchable resource for identifying plants and animals on the fly, whether or not you have a picture.
- Ski Tracks – GPS Track Recorder – 4.5 stars. This application tracks the performance of skiers and snowboarders on the mountain. Simply fire up the app and zip your iPhone into one of you pockets, and go about your ski day. It will track your location, top speed, geo-tag photos, distance, and more. It will even plot your runs on a map or Google Earth. It’s not just for skiers or borders either: you could use it for mountain biking, hiking, etc. Show off your top speed by posting to Facebook or Twitter. Cost: $0.99 or free for Ski Tracks Lite.
- GoSkyWatch Planetarium – 5 stars. Using the gyroscope of your phone, this app lets you point your camera at any portion of the night sky to identify and locate stars, planets, constellations, and galaxies. You can simply point and explore, or, if you are looking for a particular celestial body, like Mars, for example, you can type it in and the arrows will guide the way. Cost: $3.99.
- Coton – 5 stars. This one is for the weather buffs and cloud watchers. Using the International Cloud Atlas, Coton allows you to brows pictures of clouds and helps you identify them. You can learn all about cloud types and their corresponding weather forecasts. Perhaps in using this app, you’ll soon be able to predict the weather just by looking at the clouds in the sky. Cost: $1.99.
- Google Earth – 4.5 stars. An obvious choice, Google Earth is the free app that lets you hold the world in your lap or the palm of your hand. Simply swipe you finger to pan through the world. Search for cities, addresses, monuments, and the like. It also includes geo-located Wiki articles. And you can swipe with two fingers to get 360 degree angles on mountainous terrain.
- EveryTrail Pro is an online community that travelers connect to through iPhones, iPads, Androids and browsers in order to share tips, photos, and routes on trips. The GPS will track you as you go along, plotting your trip on a map. Whenever you take a photo, it will geotag that photo and plot it on the map. You can browse from 400,000 other trips, shared by other travelers on the social network. Upload your trips to Facebook, Twitter, and EveryTrail.com, the online GPS travel community. You can even update your own personal blog or website with the map you make from Everytrail.com. The Pro version costs $3.99 and lets you upload videos and download maps–useful when you don’t have signal. Free version is here.
So here are your 10 great app for the great outdoors. Now you can use the best technology has to offer when you go exploring.
Photo Credit: http://cotonapp.com/