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More info for dog owners

For dog owners, we've added to the website:
a list of walks where stiles have been reported to us as OK for larger dogsa list of walks with a low chance of encountering livestock


These are also linked from the dogs page - http://www.iwalkcornwall.co.uk/dogs.html

The "dogs" section of each walk also contains more information about stiles, livestock and any dog restrictions affecting the walk or beaches that it visits.

We'll gradually add more walks over time and keep them updated based on feedback so let us know how you find the stiles if you take a large dog on one of our walks that currently doesn't have any info about stiles in the "dogs" box.
Recent posts

Snapping photos on a walk

If you see something on your walk and want to snap a quick photo, rather than firing up the phone's camera app, within the iWalk app you can simply tap on "..." and then "Camera" to take a quick photo.


This uses functionality built into iOS and Android but it's worth noting that for some unfathomable reason, Apple and Google have chosen to make this work very slightly differently to the camera app that they also supply on the phone, bless them.

On iPhones, you need to press "Use Photo" after you have taken your photo:


On Android, you need to press "OK" or the tick icon, depending on your phone - some form of confirmation anyway!  NB. If you press the phone's back button, the photo will NOT be saved!!!

Note that on old versions of Android (5 and below) the photos are stored in a subfolder within the gallery.

Earn money when doing iWalks

If you haven't heard of sweatcoin, it's a digital currency unit (a bit like a bitcoin) created by a British company and is generated via an app which counts steps when you are outside (doesn't work inside).

https://www.digitaltrends.com/outdoors/sweatcoin-fitness-app/
The sweatcoin app pays a rough rate of one sweatcoin for each half mile walked (0.95 sweatcoins per 1000 verified steps).  These can then be spent on products and services through their app/website.



Like bitcoin this is a "cryptocurrency" and can also be converted to cash.  Currently 1 sweatcoin is only worth 5p if you cash in 20,000 of them via Paypal!  However there are plans to trade it on currency exchanges and as with bitcoin, it's quite possible that sweatcoins could appreciate in value so it's no bad thing to be an early adopter.  The sweatcoin company have just landed £4 million in investment so it all looks fairly promising.

You can run the sweatcoin app in the background whilst doi…

Starting a walk part-way round

A question we often get asked is whether it's possible to start a walk from a location part-way round the route with the app.

The answer is yes with the couple of things to keep in mind:the main one is that you need to remember where to finish!



When you first reach a direction point on the route, the app will offer to navigate from here. You can then follow the walk until you reach what is normally the end of the route.


Once you reach the normal end of the walk, use "Restart Walk" on the Summary screen to continue from what is normally the start of the walk until you reach the point where you joined the walk.


Note that because the app doesn't know where you are planning to finish the walk, the distance and estimated time remaining won't be useful to you as the app calculates these assuming you will finish at the normal end location.

Battery tips

An obvious concern with using any electronic device for satellite navigation is the lifetime of the battery, particularly given the high amplification levels needed to use weak GPS signals from space.

For mobile phones, there is a cheap solution:  USB "power bank" (external batteries) can be purchased for as little as £5 and are small enough to slip in a pocket.

Even the cheapest ones should last a walk but for around £20 you can get something that has many times the capacity of the phone's internal battery (over ten times that of the iPhone 6 battery, for example) so with those you really can walk all day long and probably all night (some include a torch!).   The flat ones are convenient as a phone can sit on the top and be secured by a couple of elastic bands! Amazon category: portable power banks



Battery monitoring in the iWalk app During the walk, the iWalk app will monitor how fast your battery is draining and estimate how quickly you are likely to finish the walk b…

Staying on track

Whilst we try to make the directions as clear and unambiguous as we possibly can, there are times (especially when chatting) when everyone takes a wrong turn.



There are a number of things in the app you can keep an eye on to ensure that you're on the right path.  The easiest way to check is via the map screen:



Another thing to watch out for on the summary screen is if the distance to the next direction is INCREASING!!

...   

Where it can, the app will attempt to warn you if you are wandering off-route:



However there are certain directions where it won't do this when a legitimate divergence from the route is anticipated as "likely", for example to explore the beach (where being nagged would be annoying):



A quick glance at the map or the distance to the next direction is the guaranteed way to avoid any long backtracks.

Distance and speed tracking in the app

When you're walking, it's often handy to have an idea how far it is to the next direction so you know whether you need to pay attention or you have a few minutes to natter to your friend before worrying about navigating.

Therefore as well as the displaying the text for the current direction, the summary screen of the app provides a real-time countdown of distance to the next direction as you are walking along.


There's also a distance remaining for the whole walk to deal with any "are we nearly there yet?" although feel free to use artistic interpretation!  The distance is based on a (flat) map.  In reality it will be a fraction longer due to the extra (height) going up and down hills but because Cornwall is not the Himalayas then that's pretty small.

The app calculates your average walking speed over the last couple of minutes to estimate how long the rest of the walk is likely to take.  We do this rather than averaging over the whole walk because your speed…