Wherever you’re travelling to follow the snow this year, your smartphone is certain to be going with you, and before you head off, there’s a good chance you’ll be downloading one or two apps to enhance your winter skiing or boarding experience.
With so many snowsports related apps on the market, the choice can seem almost overwhelming, so to help make the task of selecting a little less daunting, we’ve done some of the hard work for you. The 6 useful apps we’ve found will help you with things as diverse as tracking your activity, connecting with friends, staying safe, keeping updated on conditions – even getting technical tips while you’re skiing!
iOS / Android. Cost: £0.79p
If you’re the kind of skier or boarder who likes to analyse every aspect of your runs, you’ll love Ski Tracks. This mobile GPS tracking app will record and log all your vital statistics including routes, elevation, degree of descent and top speed. You can share and compare your performance with friends, and upload data onto your PC if you want to keep it for posterity.
Super-efficient battery technology allows all day recording, and you don’t even need to have a data or phone signal to capture every minute of your mountain adventures, making Ski Tracks ideal if you’re likely to be out of range, or in an area where expensive data roaming charges apply.
iOS / Android. Cost: Free
Experiences in the snow are best when they’re shared, and SNOCRU is a nifty app that combines powerful tracking technology with social media, allowing you to connect with fellow skiers and snowboarders in real time through ‘Near Me’ functionality. Set up a DAYCRU group with friends to pinpoint where everyone is on the resort map, chat, share photos and challenge each other to competitions.
You don’t even have to have an internet connection to access SNOCRU’s best in class tracking technology, and you can also use the app to check on resort snow conditions and forecasts around the world.
iOS / Android. Cost: Annual subscription
Staying safe when you’re in the mountains is a priority, and it’s especially important if you like to go off piste or explore the more isolated trails. Alert5 lets you set up personalised alerts so that if you do get into trouble you can send an instant notification to up to five chosen contacts. With just the touch of a button, your emergency contacts will get an alert together with a map showing them your exact location.
You can also set up alerts to automatically send after a given period of time has elapsed – or if you move outside of a given radius from your starting position.
The app is free to download, but you’ll need to pay a small annual subscription to use the alert service.
Ski & Snow Report
iOS / Android. Cost: Free
The Ski & Snow Report app helps you make the most of your day on the slopes by keeping you fully updated on weather and snow conditions. Covering more than 2,000 resorts around the world, the app uses GPS to tell you which is the piste closest to your location that has the best conditions, lets you compare snow reports for your favourite resorts, view and upload first-hand reports and photos, and check out live webcams and weather forecasts. You can even set a powder alert so you’ll receive a notification when your favourite resorts get fresh snow.
Android. Cost: Free Android
Time on the slopes is precious, and you will want to make the most of it – without unwanted interruptions. The last thing you want is your phone buzzing while you’re in the zone and making your best run of the day. There’s always the option to switch it off of course, but what if someone really important needs to get hold of you urgently, or you’re expecting a crucial call but don’t know when it will come in?
The solution is OFFGRID: Simply activate the app with one touch to set up an instant firewall that will block incoming calls – apart from those coming from anyone you set up as an exception.
While OFFGRID is turned on, unwanted callers will get a message letting them know you’re temporarily unavailable (you can select the default message, or record your own), and as soon as you come back online, OFFGRID will give you a report of anything you missed – and you can join in with the real world again!
Wearable technology. Cost: From $250 (approx. £197*)
Now, bringing us right up to date meet Carv – wearable technology that means you can have your own personal ski coach with you wherever you go, giving you feedback on your technique while you are actually skiing.
Using a smart boot insert and a clip on tracking device, Carv measures motion and pressure distribution and relays feedback through to earphones in real-time. The device connects wirelessly to a smartphone, providing information and analysis ranging from simple, actionable feedback for casual skiers to detailed metrics and analysis for advanced and professional users.
Carv doesn’t come cheap; 2 sensors and trackers cost $250, but some of the more in-depth training features offered by the app require an annual subscription of $100 (approx. £97*), but it could transform the way you ski!
This technology has been crowd funded through Kickstarter. Products are available to pre order now and are due to start shipping in January 2017 in time for the current season.
* Based on exchange rate at 15.12.2016).
Do You Have A Favourite Snowsports App? Share It with Us
There are loads of specialist apps out there for winter sports enthusiasts, and we’ve only scratched the surface here. Do you have an app you wouldn’t go skiing or boarding without? Tell us about your favourite app so we can share it with other Skiplex blog readers!