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GPS phone app?


Original Post
Derrick Keene · · Kentucky · Joined Apr 2017 · Points: 95

Hello community,

Just thought I would check and see if anyone uses any GPS apps on their phone to help locate crags. Any recommendations are welcome. Thanks!

Arlo F Niederer · · Colorado Springs, CO · Joined Mar 2009 · Points: 460

The problem with most GPS apps is that they want to link to Google maps, and so you need to have cell phone coverage, which many crags don't have.

I wanted a GPS app to use in the Wind Rivers last summer (where there is no cell phone coverage) and found one that works pretty well. It's called GPS STATUS.   This is for Android phones.

Can't tell you what is available for Apple.

I  printed out a few paper maps with UTM coordinates to use because I like seeing more area than you can see on a small screen. I also had the very beautiful maps published by Beartooth publishing.

Chris Haines · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2015 · Points: 5

I use Gaia GPS. It gives you the ability to download maps beforehand, so you don't need cell service. I usually run my phone in airplane mode while using the gps to conserve battery. So far, I like it better than any other gps because I don't have to bring an extra device with me.

Chris Haines · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2015 · Points: 5

I should say that Gaia is available for Apple and Android

Blakevan · · Dallas, TX · Joined Sep 2015 · Points: 55

How good is Gaia?  I have read about it but for an app it seemed kind of pricey?

Micah Klesick · · Vancouver, WA · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 3,964

I use MotionX. It's great and only a couple dollars. You can view a bunch of different map styles and looks, record tracks, waypoints etc. well worth it

Chris Haines · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2015 · Points: 5

I paid $10 for Gaia. There's a better version, but the basic one works just fine for what I've been doing.

Gavin W · · Surrey, BC · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 183

Gaia also has the ability to import GPX files, so you can create a route on Google Earth and then send it to your phone. Great for planning bigger trips. 

Blakevan · · Dallas, TX · Joined Sep 2015 · Points: 55

Cool, the version I saw was like $20 but $10 is more in line with what I would expect.

Matt Simon · · Boulder, CO · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 0

Gaia is amazing and worth $20 (IMO)

Derrick Keene · · Kentucky · Joined Apr 2017 · Points: 95

Thanks for all the replies! I appreciate it and forgot to mention I use Android.

Jason Halladay · · Los Alamos, NM · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 10,695

For Android, I'm a huge fan of Locus Map. There's a free version but I love it so much I paid for the pro version. It's very easy to download maps (USGS topo maps, for example) for offline use and the app has so many features I'm continually learning new things in it. 

Brady3 · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2014 · Points: 15

Google maps allows you to download maps for use offline as well, then you can still use the GPS while in airplane mode.  You can still measure distances, set points, and such while in airplane mode.

Jim Lawyer · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 3,324

I use Topo Maps by Phil Endecott. Works well for me. Offline use, free USGS downloaded maps, wayoints...all the typical features.

Jared Murray · · Oakland, CA · Joined Sep 2015 · Points: 70

BackCountry Navigator TOPO GPS on Android.

It has offline availability for a big library of topo and satellite imagery layers.

Supports import and creation of waypoints, routes, etc. Geotag photos, search capabilities.

It's the most fully featured app I have found for climbing & hiking, and is great for when you are out of cell range.

There is a learning curve to get the most out of the app. Some people may prefer a simpler option.

Travis Senor · · Mailing Address in NC · Joined Feb 2013 · Points: 60
JMurray wrote:

BackCountry Navigator TOPO GPS on Android.

It has offline availability for a big library of topo and satellite imagery layers.

Supports import and creation of waypoints, routes, etc. Geotag photos, search capabilities.

It's the most fully featured app I have found for climbing & hiking, and is great for when you are out of cell range.

There is a learning curve to get the most out of the app. Some people may prefer a simpler option.

Second this. Really powerful app and a great price (I got the pro version for $12), if you're on Android.

Worth checking this out:

https://www.google.com/amp/gizmodo.com/how-to-turn-your-android-phone-into-the-ultimate-gps-na-1592832379/amp

Idaho Ian · · Pocatello, ID · Joined Jan 2014 · Points: 5
Travis Senor wrote:

Second this. Really powerful app and a great price (I got the pro version for $12), if you're on Android.

Worth checking this out:

https://www.google.com/amp/gizmodo.com/how-to-turn-your-android-phone-into-the-ultimate-gps-na-1592832379/amp

3rd this. I payed for the full version and it is worth it. Use it often for work, climbing, and backpacking. You can highlight sections of the map you wish to download for offline use and have access to well over 20+ different map options including topos, imagery, and land ownership boundaries (helpful in my area for not trespassing while you seek out crags)

Charlie Jonas · · Jackson, Wyoming · Joined Nov 2012 · Points: 15

Viewranger is the best app hands-down.  Allows Topo & Sat imagery to be downloaded to phone.  Has a huge collection of topo maps (pretty sure you have to buy the maps)  Supports POI marking, waypoint navigation, path planning, etc.  Also has some other interesting features like buddy finder & augmented peak labels which require service (haven't really used them very much).

Best of all, all your markers & routes are synced online so you can view them there.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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