With more and more of our generating working remotely, people are starting to realize that they aren’t tied down to a physical location anymore - they are free to wander and work from all corners of the Earth. How many people actually bite the bullet and travel themselves, however, it up for speculation. If you’re on the fence about wanting to get out and adventure more, here’s a list of tools and gadgets I use to help my explore.
The apps I use on my excursions have proven to be just as important as the physical tools I use. They help me plot trails, find campsites, locate cheap gas/food, and call for help if needed. Here’s the most essential I use when on the road:
This app helps you plot out long trips by giving you the option to add/remove cities, calculate cost of gas, see nearby POIs, and more. Not something I use just for a quick weekend adventure, but it definitely comes in useful when I’m driving for a week or more.
If you’re going off the grid, this one’s a must-have. Pocket Earth allows you to not only download road maps but also trails, topography, and more. Catalog campsites, paths, and pull-offs for easy access. This app has saved my butt a few times in Colorado when I’ve lost reception and I’m miles in a dense forest. After you download maps, Pocket Earth relies on your GPS to determine location/heading, keeping you on track.
Looking for the best local trails can be such a hassle. Googling “best trails near me” is unhelpful at best and local guides are often outdated or just simply hard to find. AllTrails allows you to filter tons of trails near you by popularity, length, permitted activities, and more. Definitely an app to download for anyone looking to take their exploration to the next level.
This app does pretty much what the name implies. It helps find cheap gas near you so you’re always paying the lowest amount, which can truly add up over thousands of miles. I’ve been in locations where the total difference in gas just by driving an extra mile is $0.50/gallon! Just think of all the Starbucks you can buy with that saved cash.
Weather always is a factor when traveling. It can make or break your trip in an instant and can make the difference between what you want to pack and what you have to pack. Dark Sky is an amazing app that allows you to see minute-by-minute plays for rainfall, temperature, and more. It’s hyper-local and even notifies you before rain starts so you can stay dry.
There’s a fine line between gadgets helping you get the most out of your travels and gadgets over-stimulating you so you forget to enjoy the trip itself. My list here is fairly sparse and lightweight and that’s defiantly intentional.
This little beauty is basically that battery bank you use to charge your phone, but a hundred times bigger. Though it’s pretty hefty and weights a ton, it can really save your life on the road. Not only does it have two USB ports but it also has a car-style port and an AC plug, allowing you to charge your phone 25 times or your laptop twice from a single charge of the unit. And once you’ve drained the Yeti, simply plug it into the wall or connect it to a solar panel bank to charge it in just a few hours!
Bose Mini Soundlink II
I carry this speaker with my everywhere. Camping alone, ever for the most seasoned outdoorsman, can get bit spooky, and nothing helps me get to sleep than some music. The quality you’ll get out of this is much better than out of your phone speaker, and the charge holds for over 12 hours.
Black Diamond Headlamp
There are tons of models of these, so you’ll need to pick which is the best option for you, but the various brightness modes along with the red light really sell this headlamp for me. It has an astounding battery life and is solidly built. I never hit the road without it.
I hope you found at least one new tool to add to your traveling arsenal in this list! Feel free to comment your favorites down below!