We are smack dab in the middle of summer and it's time to hit the beach, the campground, the mountains, the ocean, and every park in between. From finding trails and campgrounds no matter where you're headed to tools for identifying animal tracks, tying knots, and the most beautiful compass we've ever seen, here are 16 mobile apps to add to your outdoor survival kit.
1. AllTrails (Free): AllTrails is our mobile and web go-to for finding nearby hiking and mountain biking trails. With over 40,000 high-quality trail guides, you're sure to find something fun to do no matter what city you're in. If you find a hike that's not on the app, track your hike using the AllTrails GPS tracker and add the trail for others to try out.
2. Park Maps ($0.99): Looking for a National Park to visit on your cross-country road trip? There's a map app for that! This app features over 250 U.S. National Parks, Monuments, and Recreational Areas and includes trails, facilities, rates, etc. Best of all, maps are downloaded to your phone so no internet connection is needed after you've selected the maps you need for that day's adventure.
3. Knots ($1.99): Any avid sailor, camper or climber will tell you that knots are most definitely an outdoorsman's best friend. This app teaches you the steps for 101 knots and categorizes them based on when you might need them.
4. Trip Journal ($2.99): Exactly what it sounds like, Trip Journal is a way for you to jot down thoughts, helpful information, and add photos of your trip in a journalistic format. Think of it as a sweet combination of dropped pins, photos, notes, and directions.
5. Weathermob (Free): There are about a million weather apps out there but this one happens to be beautiful and social, two characteristics that we absolutely love here at Brit & Co. It combines real time reports from people like us with official reports, and has a fun social networking aspect for folks that are really into talking about the weather.
6. Backpacker Checklist ($0.99): This app helps you plan ahead based on what adventure you're embarking on. Simply create a list based on an upcoming trip, add things one by one (as well as scroll through suggested items), calculate how much your pack will weigh, and locate local spots for getting any gear you don't have. It's especially great for getting rid of unnecessary things that may be lingering in your pack.
7. Strava Cycling (Free): This app is great for bicyclists who want to take their biking skills to the next level. In addition to finding local trails and rides, Strava tracks your rides in terms of distance, speed, elevation and calories burned, collects all of your status into personal progress reports and lets you earn honors on specific sections of road or trail. As you might have guessed, this one has a social aspect as well, allowing you to compete with friends, compare yourself with pros, and more.
8. Peaks ($2.99): This might be our favorite app on the list. Say you're out for a hike and you see a range of beautiful mountains ahead of you… but you don't know what they are. Open up Peaks, point your iPhone at a mountain, and the app will tell you everything you need to know! It covers just about every major and minor peak in the world and works without an internet connection. Magic!
9. GotoAID First Aid ($4.99): A digital first aid kit can be just as usual as a physical one. Billed as a kit for the non-professional responder, GotoAID's easy-to-follow instructions and illustrations walk you through the appropriate responses for everything from bee stings to weather-related emergencies to sudden cardiac arrest.
10. UV Safe Timer (Free): One of the "Hot Summer Apps" featured by Brit over on KatieCouric.com, the UV Safe Timer lets you specify the type of sunscreen you're using and will notify you when it's time to reapply. The alert is based on your personal skin profile and, using GPS technology, the current UV index at your location. Less aloe vera for all!
11. MyNature Animal Tracks ($6.99): At almost $7, this is definitely designed for the would-be animal tracking professional. It shows you photos and illustrations of just about any track you might come across.
12. Dog Park Finder Plus ($0.99): That's right. We've come to the animal portion of today's tech roundup. ;) Dog Park Finder helps you find local dog-friendly parks wherever you are, and also has listings for dog-friendly restaurants. Your dog will thank you with unconditional love for many road trips to come.
13. The Great Outdoors ($4.99): Powered by Active.com, The Great Outdoors allows you to find campsites anywhere in the United States. Working from your current location, the app will show you all campsites in your vicinity. It is also possible to search for specific locations for camping facilities. Kind of like Hotel Tonight for the camping set. ;)
14. SAS Survival Guide ($5.99): Written by former SAS soldier and instructor, John "Lofty" Wiseman, this app brings you training technique's of Britain's toughest fighting force in a super accessible format.
15. Spyglass ($3.99): Like Peaks, we love that Spyglass uses your phone's camera to create augmented reality navigation. In addition to a hi-tech viewfinder, Spyglass boasts a gyrocompass, maps, GPS tracker, speedometer, sniper's rangefinder, inclinometer, 5x zoom camera, and more. A must-have for the bold adventurer.
16. Surfline (Free): Finally, surf's up brah. Channel your inner Bodhi and Johnny Utah (if you don't get this reference, please add Point Break to your Netflix queue right…now!) and master the waves. Surfline provides accurate surf reports and forecasts up to 5 days in advance for thousands of surf spots worldwide. Plus it includes live streaming surf games for over 90 locations in the US and Hawaii.
What apps do you use when you're exploring the great outdoors? Any we should add to our list? Let us know in the comments below or send links our way on Twitter. Now get outside! :)