Spring has sprung and the smell of summer barbeques is so close we can almost taste them. Meanwhile, thoughts of springtime adventures stir in our minds. Whether your spirit of adventure leads you to explore new local parks or faraway destinations, we have a few tips and tricks for adventuring safer and smarter with your smartphone. For better or worse, smartphones and technology have generally changed the way we explore and experience the world around us. Rather than packing up maps, a camera, a video camera, a GPS, and relying on the kindness of strangers to lend directions, we bring along one trusty, compact smartphone. So, here are a few ways we recommend keeping your device protected and accessible on your next adventure, as well as a few ways your phone can keep you safe and enhance the experience.
MAKE IT SNUG WITH A LITTLE STEELIE HUG
If your next adventure starts with hitting the road, make sure you’ve got Steelie as your co-pilot. Steelie is a strong magnetic device holder that secures your phone at easy viewing angles in the car so you can view what’s really important: the road. I personally like the Steelie Squeeze Windshield Kit because it seriously suctions to your windshield, and the Squeeze bracket can hold your phone or anyone else’s who may be riding shotgun on your adventure. (And, it kind of looks like it’s giving your phone a snug little hug, and that makes me smile!)
If your road trip happens to end at an amazing biking destination, you can move your phone from the Steelie Squeeze Mount in your car, to the Squeeze Smartphone Bar Mount on your bike and hit the trail without missing a beat (or dropping a phone).
PROTECT FROM THE BIG THREE: WATER, SAND, AND DROPS
Every generation of smartphone seems to get a little more durable and water-resistant, but they haven’t reached perfection yet. There is very little that drops your stomach as quickly as watching your favorite device dropping to the bottom of a river, and nothing more frustrating than trying to pick granules of sand out of the charging port. Pack your phone and other small essentials in a RunOff Waterproof Travel Pouch, and clip on an S-Biner to instantly make it waterproof, dirt-proof, and drop-proof.
APPS TO HELP YOU ADVENTURE SMARTER
You know that tagline, “there’s an app for that”? Well, it really does apply to just about everything these days. Research what will be most helpful to your specific activities before you leave, since you may not have service for downloads where you’re headed. Here are a few of my favorites for outdoor exploration and travel:
FEMA – In general, I recommend that everyone have the FEMA app downloaded and set to send notifications for your area. If you plan to travel outside your hometown, update your notifications so you will be pinged if any major storms or other emergencies occur in the area so you can prepare/react appropriately.
Red Cross First Aid App – If your adventures take you more than an hour away from medical facilities, it’s a good idea to have some medical knowhow yourself. This app provides step by step instructions on how to identify and treat many common injuries and ailments. And always be sure to bring along a first aid kit too.
The Dyrt – This site is amazing for finding and getting in depth info on camp sites all over the U.S.
SEEK iNaturalist – Identify and keep track of plants, animals, and insects as you go. It’s fun to learn more about the world around you, and it could be useful if you find yourself in a survival situation (but hopefully just for fun!).
Where will your next adventure take you? We’d love to hear about your explorations with any Nite Ize products you bring along. Drop us a line in the comments section below, or share your photos on social media with the tag #NiteIze – you just might win a SurprIZE gift! For more products that keep you mobile, check out our April MobilIZE collection, full of top-rated gear for your phone and beyond.