We've been contacted by the developer of a new hiking app, that might be of interest to club members. We are not officially endorsing this or any other app – but thought we’d let you know that it exists.
The "Diverge - Trail Maps and GPS Tracker" system only runs on Apple iPhones right now, though they plan to release it on Android soon. I asked them some key questions about how it works etc. See below for the description of the app, and scroll further down for their answers to my questions.
- If you’re planning a hike – it may already have your trail, in which case you can use that as a planning tool.
- If it doesn’t have your trail – then your trail will be added to their list after you complete your hike. I.e. the list of trails grows organically.
- Either way – it records cool stats about your hike.
Per the vendor:
It is an interactive trail map and activity tracker for outdoor enthusiasts. Explorers like you are using Diverge to record awesome hikes, mountain bike rides, trail runs and other adventures to see where they've gone and to collect stats such as time, distance and elevation gain.
When you use Diverge on your next outing, it will overlay your progress on the trail map so you'll always know where you are and you'll never miss an important turn.
You can also compete with friends to be the first to record a trail that isn't already on the trail map. The new trail will automatically be added to the map and the first person will be awarded the First Ascent, which means that their name will be listed in the trail details.
By recording your activities with Diverge, you'll be contributing useful trail information to the outdoor community. As the trail map grows, it will become easier to explore new areas without the fear of getting lost.
(See full details here : https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/diverge-trail-maps-and-gps-tracker/id1049437208?mt=8 )
How does it work?
When you want to go hiking or do another outdoor activity, you open the app and press the start button to activate the tracker. The tracker records your route and other stats such as elevation, speed, etc. When you save the track, you can name it, label the activity and give it a rating. The track will save to your history so you can see what you did later.
How many trails (especially in the Mid-Atlantic region and the Appalachian Trail) have been plotted?
Right now there are only a few sections of the Appalachian Trail but it is just getting started. There are a some new users hiking on the trail this summer. Right now people are recording trails and they're getting added to the map, so the map is growing.
How does it compare with similar apps – such as Strava, AllTrails, MapMyHike, Garmin Connect, and others? (E.g. – I hike with a Garmin eTrex, and load my hikes onto Strava. How would your functionality differ from that?)
A couple advantages: the tracker is in the app so you don't need a separate GPS tracker, and it uploads automatically when you finish. Then your route will get added to the accumulated list of trail maps, along with the trails other hikers are doing.
Does it work when hikers are out of range of any cell tower?
You don't need cell service for it to work. When you get home if you didn't have good service, if you open the app again it will upload automatically
What plans do you have for releasing it on the Android platform?
Android will be coming in the future