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Rafael Requena

The Best App Combination For Outsmarting Your Self Guided Hike

Improve your planning and automate your decisions

"Breathtaking, Stunning, Fantastic!" Those are the magical words that automatically come out of your mouth when you crest that faraway hill overlooking a valley, or turn the hillside rocky corner only to spot the stunning Mont Blanc at sunset, or even when you first set foot in Praza do Obradoiro at the doorstep of Santiago de Compostela Cathedral. But none of that would go so well if it wasn't for the right tools to pave your way to these locations with safety and best use of time. 

Whether you're a maps person or a technology enthusiast, the truth is that we all need ways to know where we are and where to go while hiking. And we need even more support when it comes to bad weather or blizzard conditions.

That's why we came up with our app list: so you can hike with peace of mind next time.

1. Peakvisor



For those who are not hiking to beat the chronometer, this app will definitely make your short pause or detour more efficient. It's been a decade since the early mountain- and star-identifying apps first made their appearance on phones, and apps like PeakVisor have taken those concepts and expanded upon them, including features like a 3D overview, so no flat mountains anymore!

PeakVisor is an offline-ready app for mountain identification with a peak database comprising more than a million named summits and tons of additional information about mountains all over the world. Through augmented reality, it creates a camera 3D panorama overlay, showing you all the info on your surroundings from not only the nearest mountain but also castles, huts and waterfalls. It identifies mountain elevation, class, and provides lots of additional information. If there's a Wikipedia article about the mountain, PeakVisor will link to it for reference. PeakVisor is the Mountain Encyclopedia in your pocket, available even offline.


2. Gaia gps



Some people are just good at memorizing specific objects, information and topographical maps. But what if you are not as good at those skills, or maybe you don't want to turn your vacation hike into a big question mark when it comes to navigation? If you're looking for a relaxed mountain hike, Gaia GPS is definitely something you can consider adding to your hiking app mix.

This is easily the handiest maps and GPS program that won't break the bank. Download and use offline topography and imagery, set waypoints, track your progress, and find your location even if you don't have service — all from your phone. Its free version can record your hike and store and pin waypoints with photographs on your map. Using your desktop, you are able to trace and plan your hike, creating your desired route right over a map.


3. cairn



Small details — nobody can keep track of all of them by memory alone. They are some of the obstacles that might delay your hike if they remain uncalculated or unaccounted. Cairn will help you to easily share your trip plans with loved ones in case of dangerous situations, download offline topographic maps, see stats on your route, record your hiking trail, and find exact spots in the wilderness with cell coverage , water availability, shelter and other details that really make a difference when you're hiking in a remote area.


4. OpenTable


No hike is complete if you don't have your next meal planned. OpenTable brings you a complete list of all sorts of restaurants all over the world; you just need to type in the area where you are and you're done. You can also check the reviews and reserve a table, when available. On their website, the menu, location, address and cuisine are all displayed so customers can get detailed information on what they are going to eat.


Rafael Requena

Passionately pursuing my dreams while discovering the world for Pygmy Elephant, after decades of creativity and fun inside the huge universe of brazilian advertising industry.

Talk to our Adventure Expert

Our Managing Director, Andrew, has been to over 40 countries in his quest for the perfect adventure. He has biked the death road in Bolivia, trekked 500 miles across northern Spain on the Camino de Santiago, cycled from Brussels to Florence and hiked the five sacred mountains of China. Pygmy Elephant is how he spreads his love for adventure and self discovery in the world.