With the leaves changing and the weather cooling down, Fall is the perfect time to be outdoors. Autumn can make the best season for hiking and other outdoor activities. While outdoor activities can mean unplugging from technology, a select few websites and apps can help add to your outdoor enjoyment. We’ve compiled a few tools to use through your Internet connection to help make the most of fall. Check out these apps that can help enhance (and not distract) from your favorite Autumn outdoor activities.
If you’re looking for a hiking trail near you, look no further than AllTrails, a website and mobile app that shows hiking trails close to you and sort by difficulty, kid friendliness, and hiker rating. Planning on hiking somewhere far from home? The app can also give you driving directions to the trailhead along with other helpful information about what to expect on the trail. If you’re looking for a park to hike, fish, hunt or simply enjoy with your family, you can use the Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder app. This app alerts you of National and State parks, wildlife refuges, and more public green spaces and lets you choose from 20 different activity categories to make sure you are travelling to the park that fits your needs.
Check out Chimani if you are heading to a national park this fall. This app provides maps, historical information, guides and natural feature identification for many national parks. In some parks, you can use your phone’s viewport to label prominent park features in real time.
Fall is a great time to spend extended periods outdoors, and the Camp Finder app can help you do just that. Filter campsites by amenities offered, activities, or camp policies. This app lists over 19,000 campgrounds and RV parks, so you can be sure to find the one that’s right for you. While you’re camping out, look up! Stargazers can use free apps SkyMap for Android and Star Walk for IOS to identify stars and planets and map their movements.
Bird watching is a fall favorite activity. If you’re stumped by a bird that you see or hear, use the Merlin Bird ID app to identify it and learn more. You can answer five simple questions about the bird you want to identify or snap a picture. The app will do the rest! If your wildlife watching extends past birds, check out Insect Orders for insect identification or Pocket Tracker to identify different sets of animal tracks. Those looking for animals with fins rather than fur should check out fishing apps such as Fishidy and Navionics Boating. Both provide insight on fishing holes, allow you to map and share your catches.
The changing leaf colors are a huge part of what makes Autumn so beautiful. The peak season for leaf peeping, however, varies each year due to factors such as temperature and rainfall. Find out when your desired area will be at its peak leaf peeping season by checking out the American Fall Foliage Prediction Map on Smokeymountains.com.
Can’t figure out what type of trees or plants are your favorites? Just take a picture and upload it to the LeafSnap app. Developed by researchers from Columbia University, the University of Maryland and the Smithsonian Institution, this app uses visual recognition software to help identify tree species from photographs of their leaves. Download the PlantNet app to record your leaf peeping experiences. With it, you can report the best colors of the season, share photos, and find others’ recommendations for the best leaf peeping spots.
Whether your ideal fall includes a space by a campfire or a simple walk through the park, your Internet connection can help connect you with the season’s best features. Take advantage of these apps to help you get the most out of this autumn. After all, it won’t last for very long!