THE app for backcountry touring 5/5
Downloadable caltopo slope-angle analysis makes this app indispensible as a safety tool when skiing in the backcountry, this premium feature is worth every penny. Phone GPS is reliable even when there is no cell service, and this app allows you to pin-point your relation to potentially dangerous slopes when far from cell range. Layer in satellite imagery on a nat geo topo map and you really can truth whats around you. Amazing tool
Great app. 5/5
Use it on backcountry trails every time. Really helped us from getting lost on the Mojave trail.
Not reliable 2/5
This supposedly is supposed to work without cell service but I’m doubting it. I did a short 3 mile hike today and tried to track using this app, it dropped the gps signal over a dozen times so I suspect the tracking is off. Glad I got this subscription as a gift and didn’t have to pay for it.
Lol best gps I used - better than dedicated gps devices 5/5
By Down river girl
Been using this app for several years. I pay for the annual subscription and it’s worth every penny. I use this app for trail running and backpacking mainly. I have and iPhone and when out in spotty cell service areas I turn my phone on airplane mode and this app works great as long as you have the maps downloaded earlier. Having the gps app on the phone gives you the modern touch screen and convince that the other dedicated devices (garmin) are still struggling to replicate. The phone is something I already have and the battery in my iPhone last a long time. I also like being able to use the app on my computer and plot/estimate plan hikes and runs. It will give you distance and elevation which are things I like to know before going out on long runs in areas I never been. I can’t say enough great things about this app, it’s great!
Gaia Professional 4/5
By Love Gaia
You need to create a Gaia professional program so people that do this for a living can print large high resolution custom maps. What I can print off my screen is worthless even for a day trip. Don’t get me wrong, I love Gaia but I would pay more for a better computer software.
Very handy 5/5
Great for keeping track of hiking routes. Also helpful for marking locations such as property corners and determining the Lat-Long coordinates for those points.
Perfect for hiking in US and Europe. 5/5
Everywhere I go it seems the maps include every little road and trail with very accurate tracking of my position.
Tremendous App! 5/5
Have been using gaia gps for about a week or so and really enjoy the program. There’s a learning curve . . . but it’s well worth the time spent. I’m actually planning day trips for both motorcycling & hiking for this spring & summer.
Having the maps on my phone & available to use do what you want or need is huge! The ease of plotting waypoints & linking them with photos and notes is very helpful too. This app does a lot of things that google maps & Waze can not.
Definitely looking forward to using this more after winter rolls by.
Great alternative to Rever!
Subscription fees for downloading free maps 2/5
By Imagination to reality
Regardless of which pay option you choose Gaia is charging you to download free maps like OpenStreetMap. Not all maps are free of course and software maintenance and updates needs to be paid for. Gaia needs to better describe what they are charging for.
I like this app! 5/5
This is a very good app. What would make it great would be more and older historical maps!
Love this app 5/5
Especially love the property ownership and mountain tops. I just wish the property ownership also provided the parcel number with the property owner information.
Simply the best 5/5
By Jarred Sutherland
Gaia has been with me on every hike and backpacking adventure. I wouldn’t go without it in the back country.
Saved my life 5/5
By Flicker Penny
I have been using Gaia gps since March 2015 and it has saved my life several times. I hike and ride in rugged backcountry terrain and it’s sometimes difficult to figure out how to get up and down cliffs. Gaia GPS has kept me from making some serious blunders! But equally I love it when I am traveling in foreign countries and unfamiliar cities. I use it in lieu of a map to wander large old cities. Also rely on it when kayaking in marshy areas...... so many applications for outdoor enthusiasts.
It’s so perfect to being able to find the best location.
My go to activity tracking app 5/5
This app is very good
These are the things I like most about it:
1. It is extremely stable. This is important in an activity tracking app. When you’re hiking in the winter and the windchill is -40 you don’t want to have to take your hands out to check on the app to see if it is still recording. With Gaia I know it’s still tracking. It has never crashed on me. I have never lost a recording in about 500 miles of hiking.
2. It is extremely energy efficient. I’ve used a lot of tracking apps. Some will drain your battery too quickly. Gaia has always amazed me. I’ve used it to track 5 hours straight and my phone battery only drops by a few percentage points. Of course if you are constantly checking the map then it will drain faster but that is just the display, out of their control. When the screen is locked it is so efficient it’s amazing. Use airplane mode and offline maps for the best battery life. GPS is passive and works in airplane mode.
3. So many map sources. When hiking in the mountains it is very useful to have different maps at your disposal such as satellite maps and topo or contour maps from multiple sources as different sources sometimes have different trails. Gaia provides so many maps, and they are downloadable for offline use.
4. Very good meaningful updates with release notes! Gaia constantly improves and takes advantage of new frameworks and hardware when apple releases them. Continuous improvements are important with software on mobile platforms to maintain stability and Gaia is always on their game.
For years the elevation graph for hikes uphill, for example the base of the mountain is 1200 feet and the summit is 4100 feet, the elevation graph does not work. Sometimes it shows no elevation incline at all, sometimes half of it is filled in, sometimes most of it is filled in. I always create a separate track for my hikes downhill and the downhill hikes always show a perfect elevation profile for the downhill hike. This is a strange bug and I don’t know how it has existed for so many years without being fixed. The elevation graph for these uphill hikes look just fine on the Gaia website. It is only the app that has the problem. Gaia is aware of it, I have emailed them about it and they responded. I don’t think it’ll get fixed until they do their next major redesign (they didn’t say that, it is just my feeling).
You can configure the app to verbally announce distance every .25 miles, .5 miles, or every mile. The app often repeats the notification multiple times. It’ll say “1.25 miles” and then 20 seconds later it might say “1.25 miles” again. Sometimes 3 or 4 times.
Something that I think can be better:
Speed and elevation graphs that can be interacted with/manipulated. Like a way pinch to zoom in on the graphs, swiping to scrub forward and backward in time, and maybe a tap and hold gesture on the data line to show the ‘Y’ value at position ‘X’ as you drag your finger along the line so you can really analyze your data later. There are other apps that do this well such as segment effort analysis on Strava and the graphs on the app called “Trails”. I’d love to see Gaia do this.
Amazing map service 5/5
I have the privilege of using this full version on the search and rescue team I am on, and it is fantastic. We can download the entire state and have access to it at all times. We can track our individual paths and send it to IC and they can get a very accurate idea of what has been searched. You can have countless overlays including different search patterns. This is an awesome tool and it works great for the recreational user too, I always look at the topo map of the area I go to hike/climb/camp first. Would highly recommend.
I would love it more if!! 5/5
I would like it, if the app could be use with apple car play in for my car head unit. For easy use in car in motion. Thanks great app!
No cell service = no problem 5/5
By Trackin' Alaska
I use this app for all of our hiking trips and love it. Being able to pre-download maps and use the app with no cell service of any kind while far into the mountains is awesome.
Best maps app 5/5
For hiking, off-roaring, exploring. Well worth the money.
Does not have all Nat Geo maps 3/5
Except for the part where you pay, and they claim to give you access to the E-maps from Nat Geo. The problem is NOT all Nat Geo e-maps are there. They are missing about a dozen or more maps. Example, Big Bend National Park is not included. As well as many others.
These Nat Geo maps are available on other Map apps
Impossible to use. No help on how to use 1/5
This app is horrible it is impossible to use or to figure out I have even watched a video on it and still does not make sense! Needs to be more user-friendly I wish I would not of paid for this app it was a huge waste of money
New Adventures Awaits 5/5
Love this app to find trails and to track my own trails. Love the photo option that takes a picture and marks it on the exact location of the trail. Love, love, love this app. A must for Jeepers and Geocachers.
Gaia is love 5/5
Gaia is life
By Front Range Nate
The map layers make Gaia an invaluable tool during Backcountry adventures and I love seeing all my saved routes on the map!
Fantastic supplemental navigation 5/5
By Daniel G H
I’ve used this app for several trips now though so far only for vehicle navigation and track recording and I think it’s a great supplemental app for navigation. The variety of map overlays is impressive and I’ve found several I feel are quite useful.
It’s so much easier with Gaia to build a route and plan a trip than it is with Google but when it comes to straight up getting directions to or detailed information about an area google is supreme. This is why I say it’s a great supplement. I use google to navigate me with turn by turn directions to the start of my Gaia route and then use Gaia to guide me and record my track.
No good for SoCal trails 1/5
By just want trail map
App is such a let down that this is the first review I have ever done. First off you search places that are on every other app and they don’t come up. Then once you find them all the trails around them are not there. I was looking in Ocatillo Wells and Glamis north. Good luck hope this helps. Only plus is there is a lot of buttons and instructions that you can waste an hour on if you just want to get very angry.
Best maps app 5/5
I used to be a paid subscriber for the other big maps app, which is a great app, but has slightly more basic functionality. This year I decided to try Gaia and I purchased the higher level subscription. It has exceeded all expectations. The features, interface, and user friendliness are amazing. I will continue to use Gaia for all my Jeep, backpacking and camping needs!
If you backpack, don’t leave home without it! 5/5
By Kern Canyon Camper
Simply stated, the absolutely best backpacking mapping app of all.
The BEST Offline Mapping App on the Market! 5/5
I have been using this app (paired with a backup paper map and compass) for many years as my primary navigation tool. I hike, hunt, gather, and adventure occasionally on trail but primarily off trail, in places where there is little to no cell service for miles.
I always make sure that I bring extra battery packs & charging cords and have a paper back up, just in case. For the record: This Gaia GPS app has saved so much time, effort, confusion, and paper! My favorite features,bin no particular order are; the layering capabilities, the MANY excellent map data sets (thanks CalTopo!), the ability to share your Geolocated custom data (tracks/waypoints/attached photos/etc.) with other people via email, text, and AirDrop, among others. I appreciate the great customer support, the free year of the Pro version as a trial for first responders, and most importantly - the ease of use with the User Interface.
• I HIGHLY recommend the Pro Version of Gaia GPS to the many “woods enthusiasts,” first responders, LEOs, USFS folks, random people that I meet on the trail, the search dog training community, all the search & rescue folks I interact with, and I recommend it most importantly to you! the person who has taken the time to read this review. I will say that:
•YES it is worth the cost
•YES it is very accurate (often more so than a handheld GPS)
•NO it will not eat your battery too fast, and
•YES you can navigate well while the phone is on Airplane Mode
__BOTTOM_LINE__ If you need reliable, offline maps, buy this App.
Go for Pro 5/5
I use this app daily for work and personal adventures. Best all-around GPS app there is. I use it as a true replacement for my GPS, and it performs better on multi-day ultralight trips than my old Garmin. The pro membership is a steal if you download multiple types of maps. I have several GBs downloaded.
My only complaint is the Apple Watch app doesn’t display watch or phone GPS coordinates. A major flaw I’m SURE they’ll soon correct... 🤨
One of the best gps apps. Needs a compass only towards waypoints and quick gps coordinate conversion on the fly between formats. Also better Apple Watch functionality.
Success with GAIA 5/5
Recently downloaded GAIA and paid for a premium membership. The App is well designed and the amount of map data available is incredible. I went through the online tutorials which were clear and provided a quick education.
Utilized the App during a recent hunting trip In a tricky area due to property boundaries. The GAIA app was perfect and showed our recorded tracks in real time to keep us out of federal lands.
I am hooked on GAIA and it sure does beat some of the similar competitors..
Best app ever 5/5
I never write reviews for anything, but I love this app so much I went out of my way to write this one. It does everything I want out of a GPS mountaineering app. I used to use a Garmin dedicated handheld GPS when I was out in the woods, but now I just bring my phone with this app (along with a map and a compass). Great job, keep it up.
Great app!! 4/5
I really like this app for hunting and hiking! I like the option to use it off-line, and it also works on my Apple Watch. I would give it five stars, but the Apple Watch app should be developed a little more.
Works like a champ 5/5
By Dog scratcher
I’ve been using Gaia for a couple of years now, both professionally and for recreation and as long as I download the correct maps it works great. In other words, the only problems I have had are my fault. I have a small GPS enabled tablet that I use it on and even with the larger screen the maps look great. I also find the ability to download my tracks and points as .kmz files very useful.
Gaia Keeps Getting Better 5/5
In addition to using this app on hikes in my local area and abroad internationally ( 2X Camino walks/ England’s C2C ), I have used it on several volunteer projects including test site mapping locations for salmon restoration and water quality testing in WA. state. The app never fails, is consistently accurate, and new features added by the development team continue to make this my favorite hiking app.
Great App with a couple minor issues 5/5
By The Strawman
Let me start by saying I use a Premium Subscription and absolutely love this app and use it nearly daily for both work and recreation. I does so much that it has become a must for use with my fieldwork. My only complaints are the randomized coloring when importing tracks and the was area shapes are created. Using this app professionally, I often need all of my shapes to be specific colors or all one color. Often I can just quickly adjust them in the app, but when I have projects with hundreds of shapes this is no longer a viable option and is very frustrating. Simply allowing bulk adjustment would solve this problem for me. The second issue regarding creating areas is that often when I try to move the dots that adjust the area, it grabs the screen and tries to move it instead... sensitivity issue maybe? In any case, these issues are not deal breakers... I love this app and will continue to use it, but hope that these two simple things will be addressed in the future. I know I’m not the only one that would like to see this! Thanks for a great app!!!
Great hiking app 5/5
I love that it has all the hiking trails already and it tracks my location perfectly. If I had one complaint, its that it doesn't do exercise tracking with apple watch.
Amazing app & even more amazing staff 5/5
By Search Sepp
This is just a great all around app. I volunteer for a search and rescue organization and I run this app as well as my garmin when I go on searches. I contacted the support team a couple times inquiring on certain things and they responded almost immediately. I love being able to download sections of the map, because a lot of times the places I go have little to no service. It’s nice to be able to overlay the maps to get exactly what I want (satellite over a topo). Can’t say enough about the app and the staff.
Great app for over landing and off-roading. Especially in new areas
Great maps 5/5
Show federal forest boundaries
Best map app 5/5
Fantastic app. Ability to download maps for hikes that are off the grid is really great.
Gaia GPS is so good I bought an iPad solely for it! 5/5
I’ve tried a lot of GPS apps for off-road navigation and none of them impressed me. I really wanted one for detailed topo, public lands, and MVUM maps (where no cell service is available of course). I bought an iPad 9.7 for the sole purpose of using Gaia GPS Premium. I’ve downloaded all of the lower 48 states at max zoom with those three layers and it’s so nice to see all of the details of any area with airplane mode enabled. The app is well laid out, has all the options you’d want, and is a real pleasure to use on iOS. I absolutely love it.
iPhone Gaia GPS vs Garmin eTrex 5/5
By Roman Voyd
I've been collecting track data with Garmin GPS units since 2000. Until a few years ago I was reluctant to use my iPhone for this purpose, but then tried the Gaia GPS app. Although pricy, the app is great, and makes ab great alternative for track acquisition and storage. Tracks can be easily exported to Garmin mapping software. All base maps can be downloaded ahead of time when traveling in areas of low or no cell signal allowing the use of the Gaia app in these onditions. The maps on the phone are gorgeous and superior to those on my Garmin eTrex. I still use both, but not how much longer? The Gaia app is an excellent product, well worth the price.
The best! 5/5
This app and my phone replaced my garmin gps, downloading maps is easy and with the larger screen I can actually see what I want to.
I’ve had no problems and the customer service was awesome when I switched from android to apple.
Now the best application for hunting 5/5
For many years I used Gaia for backpacking but also had to purchase onX for hunting. Recently, with all of the hunting related overlays offered, I moved all of my old onX waypoints to Gaia.
Gaia offers access to higher quality maps, more comprehensive information organization, faster response, and all of the required public/private overlays. In addition it is still without equal for backpacking.
A Gaia Premium membership is required for hunting but it provides national information versus a single state’s information for a price comparable to an onX license.
Pre planning for maximum benefit! 5/5
Download the Area you are going to be hiking or off-roading at the detail level you need for the activity you are doing. That way if you don’t have cell service you can still use the map.
Best GPS app I’ve ever used 5/5
I no longer take topos on most hikes and climbs. Gaia lets me download a wide range of maps offline and makes navigation simple.