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Trailblazr80

What do you think of smartphone topo maps?

May have been asked before, just wondering what everyone thinks about smartphone offline topo map apps. Anyone ever tried any? I would assume they are ok for day hikes, nothing too extended. I've seen a few advertised and was curious on their productivity. My friend used hers when we did Mt. Lawlor, and it seemed pretty good.
hvydrt

I use Backcountry navigator on android . I have stopped using my garmin. I have learned to manage the battery and make it last all day. ( in airplane mode, and not recording a track) You can use the usgs, usfs, google sat images, caltopo maps etc. It was free to try and 9.99 to buy. Only app i ever bought, best $10 ever spent.
davantalus

I use "TopoMaps" and "Gaia" on my iphone. They rock. Hard.
rck

The only bad thing in using Apps is eating the batteries. Like HVYDRT mention they do seem to drain them. I have to try the airplane mode to see if that works for me. I was going to carry a Morphie to charge the battery once it gets low. Took a hike the other day and the other hikers phone was drained and he was tracking our trail I used my GPS. Currently use the All Trails app on short hikes but thinking on changing once I get the battery issue figured out. Thanks for the tip hvydrt.

Rick
Bobcat22

My iPhone goes through power like crazy when I use something like Map my Run but I just bought a small solar charger, so it can keep it going as long as I need to.

Thanks for the app suggestions. I don't want to buy a GPS at the moment and as I usually buy and carry a map with me of the area I am at, I think I am fine for now. However something like an app for my phone would be nice.
missy

I use an app called "PDF maps" on my iPhone. I just get the topo map I need (sometimes free in their store), then download the KMZ file and its perfect! I have gotten through overnighters with that app. Haven't invested in a solar powered electronic charger yet, but its been very good for medium-advanced adventures. I keep my phone on airplane mode and only use it if I really need to see if I'm on track. Even without cell reception, it can detect pretty accurately where I am.
Hikin_Jim

I've got an Android based phone.  Seems like Backcountry Navigator is the recommended app; it's what I use anyway.  Works well but the battery gets eaten quickly if I'm recording tracks.  

I also have a Garmin eTrex 20 that I use to record tracks.  I really like recording tracks so I can refer to them later.  

My most recent:  Mt. Williamson and Peak 8160+ done with my daughter, age 5.


HJ
dima

missy wrote:
Even without cell reception, it can detect pretty accurately where I am.


Cell service is only useful to speed up the initial fix. Past that it gets you nothing.
missy

dima wrote:


Cell service is only useful to speed up the initial fix. Past that it gets you nothing.


Location Services on the Iphone use information from cellular, Wi-Fi, and GPS networks to determine approximate location. So even minimal reception, its able to tell me where I am, which is pretty amazing!
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