How Much Should Hikers Rely On GPS, Or Smartphones?

Jun 1, 2016

GPS and emergency beacons are becoming more popular on the trail. But experienced hikers say people on long hikes should know how to read a map and use a compass in case the location technology they’ve brought along fails.

Outside Magazine’s Axie Navas evaluates the technology with Here & Now‘s Robin Young, and they discuss hiker Geraldine Largay, the Tennessee woman who got lost on the Appalachian Trail in 2013. The official file on her disappearance and death, released last month, indicates that she did not know how to use a compass and was out of range of cellphone towers when she tried to text for help.

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