Mobile Phones and Hiking

Not very long ago it seemed ubiquitous to suggest a mobile phone might be a welcome addition to a confident hiker’s backpack. For most walkers, part of the charm of spending time close to nature was to leave behind all the trappings of the daily grind, and an iphone symbolised most of the very things hikers were hoping to escape from. These days, however, phones are not only helpful but smartphone technology in the best iphone deals has enabled mobiles to shift up a gear and become fundamental to making the most of hiking at all levels.

Safety First

One point upon which both modern and conventional hikers tend to agree is the unparalleled role mobiles can play in terms of safety. From a geographical point of view, even the most detailed and recent maps might fail to cover every aspect a nature trail could include. Thanks to GPS technology and satellite imaging, iphone maps can provide visual data of every element of the chosen path in most parts of the world meaning conventional OS map reading skills are no longer compulsory. While some avid map readers might lament the death of this important skill, none can challenge how effectively a smartphone map enables users to pinpoint their exact location at any given time. This can be vital from a safety aspect as even the best maps are no use if you don’t know where you are in the first place. Crucially, should an accident occur and emergency services are needed then a signal from a mobile phone can offer an invaluable method of ensuring help is sent to the right place as quickly as possible. The best iphone deals might save more than just your money when used on a hike.

Similarly, the role of mobile phones in terms of safety cannot be undermined even if emergency services are not needed. Lesser accidents can be remedied more quickly if the right course of action is taken immediately though this is not always possible if participants aren’t all fully knowledgeable about the finer points of first aid. Help is on hand, or in your pocket, thanks to a mobile phone. A range of apps can store a plethora of information that you can access when needed and even if you don’t have the necessary support on your iphone when needed, a basic online search can provide the answers you need. For instance, one of the party suffers an uncomfortable nettle sting – will a dock leaf provide relief? A quick search online might provide vital help. Someone suffers a snake or spider bite? The internet can help you identify the type of venom inflicted to help you know how best to deal with the incident immediately. Sprained ankle? A quick phone call and use of GPS maps a helper with a car can be directed quickly and safely to the injured party without prolonging the discomfort.

How Phones Add to the Beauty

Indeed, some nature trails have developed strategies to make the best use of a mobile phone to enhance the walking experience. Occasionally, walkers will find QR codes along the trail or alongside areas of special interest. A quick scan can open up interesting historical or geographical information akin to walking alongside your own specialist guide. Information about route choices can be accessed easily which can make some parts of the trail more accessible, for example, for visitors with particular needs.

Record the Best Features

All smartphone users are aware the pixel quality of smartphone cameras is now able to compete with even high-end cameras which is why so many opt to reduce their hand luggage by using their phone’s camera instead of carrying heavy extras. Panoramic shots and video can be recorded to immortalise some of the best parts of nature for visitors to continue to enjoy when they get home. In addition, some apps can track the distance and speed walked and even record heart rate again adding to the safety qualities if needed.

Reduce Your Baggage

As well as negating the need for an additional camera, phones can cut down on some other vital equipment from your list. As daylight diminishes, the torch function on most phones is bright enough to replace bulky alternatives and a separate compass has now become a thing of the past. Any necessary reading material, lists or itineraries can be stored on the phone’s memory meaning the computer in your pocket now becomes a multi-tasker keeping numerous jobs under control. One disadvantage though might be battery life. If you are intent on using your phone to fulfil a number of roles then it is likely to eat into your battery life. Additional power packs are now available in small sizes to help give you an extra boost before your day is done.

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