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Started by mkt2745, September 14, 2017, 07:31:05 AM

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Is there anyone that knows of an app that can be downloaded via iPhone or iPad, and can be used for updloading or making UTV off-road trail maps? My specific trail region I am looking to get would be for West Virginia Trail Systems.  I have ease of access to Apple products and it would keep me from buying new equipment.  Any advice would be appreciated.  Thanks



Just to be clear: you want to make maps yourself and then share them with other people as opposed to using maps that someone else made?

There are many iOS apps that could be used in either scenario. I make maps on a Windows computer but then distribute them in a format that can be used on iOS, Android, MacOS, Windows and Linux. I do this with Mobile Atlas Creator, a free open source platform for exporting maps to all kinds of devices.

Here's an example of a map I created in this format, the download includes full documentation:

Of course, you will need a computer and software for making this kind of map. qGIS is one program that could do this, it runs on Macs and PCs and I think there is even an Android version:

Now you might be able to accomplish this solely on iOS, there are a couple apps I have used that have a lot of capabilities. iGIS is one of them, it keeps getting new features with each update. I have a copy but don't really use it anymore. But it would be a good way to gather data in the field and export in popular formats such as shapefiles.

Then there's CaroMobile: It is rather expensive IIRC, but when I contacted them they enrolled me in the free beta test program, so I used it for awhile. It has similar capabilities to iGIS

Another one I have is called Map Plus.

It's kind of an odd one from a Chinese company but they keep adding more functions to it for creating maps. It's a bit different in that it is more like a handheld GPS than the others.

For me, I am just not a huge fan of touchscreens for precise work like makig maps. I really prefer a mouse and keyboard, not to mention the additional power of a "real" computer plus the connectivity for big disk drives, scanners, etc.

Now if you don't actually want to make your own maps, but just download maps that others have made, there are really too many iOS programs to list. Just do a search for GPS in the app store. You would probably want to base your choice on whichever software offers the most coverage for your area of choice. Many (if not most) apps have free trials. Personally, I have settled on Galileo because it works well with the maps I make myself, but there are many, many others.

TwoNav is another interesting one, it also integrates with CompeGPS Land which is a more powerful program that runs on PC's and Macs.


I am actually interested in doing both.  Within the next couple of weeks we will be riding on the outlaw trails and the hatfield McCoy trails.  I am more interested in maps I can use for that ride via an iOS app... And download the maps.

Thanks for the reply


I believe BobT has maps in a format that can be used on a variety of devices, so you might start by checking those out and seeing which apps are compatible. .gpx files are a common way to provide tracks, and should be compatible with quite a few iOS apps.

But realize this is a Garmin-centric site and there are no ios apps capable of using maps in Garmin's proprietary format (.img files). So 95% of the maps on this site can't be used on iOS.


Should have also mentioned GISpro and GISKit. The pro version looks nice but is quite expensive. When I looked at this a couple years ago, it had not been updated for a long time and the reviews were very negative so I didn't think it was worth the high cost. I wrote the developer and got a quick answer, complaining that the company had limitied resources and they were not likely to update it soon. I see it has finally been updated now however.


I am quite happy with an app called Map Plus.  It take many different vector and raster data formats for maps.  The free version does most of what you will need with only a small nag frame for adds.  The developer updates it regularly and is responsive to questions on the web site forum. 

IIRC, the only common raster format it does not accept is geopdf.


I mentioned Map Plus above and I like it - I purchased the version that allows me to use the maps I make myself and this works well. But I want to use it in my car while driving and it has a major problem. It does not offer a standard "track up" mode. Instead, it has an odd mode that orients the map based on the direction you are facing. Evidently it uses the iPhone compass for this.

But it's almost always wrong and doesn't orient the map in the direction that I'm driving. I wish they would add a standard track-up mode based on your direction of travel like every other GPS app.

It's a real shame because otherwise I would use it all the time. But instead I ended up removing it from my phone.


Quote from: Boyd on September 18, 2017, 06:28:21 PM
It does not offer a standard "track up" mode.
I never use it for driving, so the "in-car" compass offset isn't an issue for me. 


Another combination that might be useful is the Vectorial Map app and downloadable OpenAndroMaps (which work on iOS)

There's no reason why you should not run more than one app at the same time to get the result you want.


I got the vectorial map app and it seemed more like a "proof of concept" than something I would want to actually use for navigation. Deleted it from my phone so I don't know if it has improved, but it was very bare-bones when I tried it.