Ever since I started my 2017 challenge of traveling to 52 different places to hike and take photos I’ve been using the AllTrails app on my phone. The app was free on the iTunes store. I discovered this app long before I took on this challenge though. First, let me say that I am not getting paid to review this app. I just thought I’d share with my readers what I’ve been using to find the places that I’ve been going so far.
The AllTrails app is made by All Trails in California. It features over 50,000 trails across the United States. The app helps outdoor enthusiasts, like myself, find their next outdoor adventure. Detailed maps, trailheads, photos and reviews are all on the app. A place to create and update your personal profile is also available. I haven’t filled out much other than my name. Beside your name, I have a number that indicates your reputation score which goes up the more you review trails, share photos etc.
On their website, you can find out about the company and download their media kit. I read the media kit and found out more information that I didn’t know such as how many people have downloaded the app, where they’re primarily located, their ages and what activities people are mostly using the app for. Some stuff I didn’t find so helpful: salary range and education level. In real life, I haven’t met anyone that cared if the person hiking next to them was more or less educated or had more or less money, the outdoor experience trumped all of that.
Two features that I like most about this app: the directions feature and the plan feature. I’d say I have a pretty good sense of direction but there have been a few occasions when looking for trails, that I haven’t been able to find them. To use the directions feature, click on the trail that you have chosen to walk and there’s an arrow under the trail title where icons for directions, check-in, record and download are located. Click on the directions icon and Google Maps will open showing you where you currently are and how to get to where you’re going. This was particularly helpful when I went to the Riverwalk Greenway in Rock Hill. We got turned around somehow and so I opened up the AllTrails app and used the directions go get us back on track.
I think I use the Plan feature the most. I can create a list of places to go and they’re added to my list. Also, while I’m on a trail and I don’t particularly like the trail, I can search the map to see what else is nearby. To plan a hike, enter your city or the name of the park you want to visit click the heart on the side of the screen. To see a list of planned hikes, click the heart at the bottom of the first screen titled “Plan.” This will open up all of the destinations that you have selected by tapping the heart. Tapping the heart is similar to “liking” a photo on social media. I love this feature because I see places that I want to go all the time and so I just search it and hit the heart on the side. You can delete them once you’ve been or leave them there.
There are a few features I don’t use. I haven’t used the Record feature and don’t really know if I”d ever use it unless on a solo hike. I don’t really know what the History button does so I can’t report on that at all.
Overall, I’d give this app a 4 out of 5 stars. It has become a go to app for me when I’m out walking trails or just wanting to plan my next trip. The photos that people upload have sometimes been a deciding factor of whether the place is interesting or not. I don’t really read the reviews of the trails ahead of time because some people are there for biking some just dog walking and some are hikers. Each person’s experience is different and each person’s purpose for going to that particular trail is different. Having the reviews might help some but I mainly choose my places based off of interesting features and distance to cover. Some of these trails that have a high star rating, to me, have been worthy of a lower rating just because I wasn’t there to experience what they did. In the past, I have noticed that some of the directions haven’t been as accurate as they could have been but an alternative GPS or using your maps on your phone alleviated that issue quickly. If you’re really into outdoor adventuring, I’d say it’s worth a download to check it out. If you already have it, let me know what you think.