[Cdt-l] iPhone GPS/2012 thru hike

Brett blisterfree at yahoo.com
Wed Dec 7 23:08:29 CST 2011

>>And my GPS isn't a touch-screen, so it worked equally
well if I was wearing gloves.  Particularly when it's raining and cold out,
it can be a total PITA to try to use a touch-screen driven GPS app on a cell
phone that's inside a ziplock.  While you're either wearing gloves or
freezing your hands in order to manipulate the touch screen.<<

An iPhone's touch screen can also be manipulated by nose. Inconvenient, but a revelation, and clearly the stuff of science fiction just a few years ago.

Under good conditions, when the sun's out and your not wearing gloves and life is good - a touch screen interface is unbelievably terrific. All GPS units need to go in this direction, at least supplementally. Thumb wheels and joysticks are like chisel and stone tablet by comparison (except when you need to employ your nose). Waterproof touch screen devices must be right around the corner, too.

I don't know. With Jonathan's maps and a good night's sleep, a GPS is pretty recreational out there. There's the geek angle to pursue, of course, (been there, always tempting) and any OCD tendencies to massage, but for the most part, as a portion of one's hiking day, it's stowable technology. Same as the phone, the iPod, eBook reader, Pocketmail, and all the rest. I'm more than happy these days to have all of this stuff under one hood, in a sandwich bag, in a pack pocket, for 5 ounces. Of course, the solar charger I'm forced to carry weighs more than that, but I have to admit feeling better charging everything by USB off the sun than paying for and throwing away batteries up and down the trail. That's gotta be the bright future before us, I figure. For now, at least, it still requires your nose as a third hand tool to make it all work right.

- blisterfree

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