If your smartphone is in your pocket during your adventures this summer, then you’ll want to download these amazing adventure apps.
While we respect Adrenalists who choose to leave home without their phone and only the outdoors to guide them, these adventure apps can maximize your journey or help you avert disaster in a crunch. A mobile phone can be the difference between life or death, and not just because phones can call for help. In some parts of the wilderness, most smartphones won’t have the reception needed to make that emergency call. You don’t need cell service, however, to access certain survival apps. Before you embark upon your next adventure, consider downloading these.
Never get lost and forgotten again. Bugle is a high-tech extension of an age old idea: the “gone fishing” sticky note. Download this free app before your next summer excursion, upload your trip route and expected time of return into the cloud and type in an emergency contact. If you don’t make it back in time, your loved ones will know, and they’ll know where to find you. This is a simple adventure app that could have saved thousands of lost adventurers born before the mobile era.
This app is fun, practical, and an awesome demonstration of how far adventure tech has come since the advent of crampons and carabiners. Peaks is basically a pair of alpine genius goggles. Fire up the app and instantly know every mountain crest in the area. Powered by GPS and preloaded with nearly half a million mountains, Peaks works even when you have no 3G or Wi-Fi. Real alpine geniuses wouldn’t have it any other way. Don’t be fooled by the snow-covered mountains in the screenshot above. This adventure app can be fired up this summer on sun-drenched mountains all around the world.
BackCountry Navigator PRO GPS
Bushwackers will have trouble finding a better way to spend $10 than BackCountry Navigator PRO GPS. This summer app provides an extensive suite of full topographic maps for backcountry locations across the globe. It’s a backpacker’s, hunter’s, equestrian’s, snowmobiler’s, fisherman’s and geocacher’s best friend. This mapping app runs on GPS and doesn’t require Wi-Fi or 3G .
BackCountry Navigator PRO may be one of the top GPS apps on the market, but you won’t be able to access it unless you’ve got an Android. For iOS outdoor enthusiasts, the best alternative is MotionX GPS. It was rated the best iPhone app by Backpacker Magazine. On top of that, Digital Trends recently crowned it the go-to GPS app for iOS. One piece of advice: this adventure app gives users a limited number of waypoints. To add more, you’ll have to find cell service and make an in-app purchase. As always, when venturing out into the wild, it’s best to plan ahead.
SAS Survival Guide
Price: $4, $5, $6
Platform: Windows Phone, iPhone, Android
For more than half a century, the Special Air Service, a regiment of the British Army, set the standard for surviving and excelling behind enemy lines. In 1986, that experience was poured into a 400 page book, a guide that has since been updated and ported into the digital age. The SAS Survival Guide includes a vast array of survival reference tools, from knot tying how-to’s to photo galleries of animal tracks and medicinal plants. The adventure app also comes equipped with a morse code signaling device, compass, and in-depth first aid section, so keep this one ready to go for all your summer excursions.
Looking for more summer gear? Check out our list must-have outdoor gear for 2013.