Top 12 Canadian Camping Apps

camping apps Canada

Just in time to plan your vacation to Canada, I made up a list of my favourite 12 Canadian camping apps for your smart phone or tablet.

I’m a strong believer in getting away from phone and computers when you’re on holiday. But, there are times when the iPhone or Samsung can come in really handy when you’re on the road.

These are camping apps that I actually use myself, and have found useful when travelling or planning my trips. Where available, I have included both the IOS and Android versions.

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1. Learn to Camp

Park Camping AppNever been camping? Not sure where to get started?

You are dreaming about a camping trip to Canada’s national parks, then this app is for you!

You will find tips, advice and all the information you need to plan and enjoy your first camping trip. And if you are already an experienced camper, you’ll love the recipes, checklists and insider tips too.

Download the FREE app!

2. Wikicamps – one of the ‘Must Have’ camping apps

Camping apps wikicampThis is an excellent app and really useful when travelling to new places. It is one of the camping apps you don’t want to be without.

Wikicamps is a user generated camping app for Canada. This means, people who use the app can enter campsites and other useful information and pictures.

Wikicamps also works offline with the ability to download all site and user content, as well as a high quality offline maps.

You’ll find information about RV parks, road side rest areas, free and paid campsites (like those in national parks), points of interest and how well the  campsites are accessible.

The database is constantly growing and always being updated with the latest information about sites from all over Canada.

There’s also an active user’s forum, where you can ask questions and share experiences with other people who use the app.

The downside of the app is that some people may add incorrect information and co-ordinates. This happens with many other guides, which is why it pays to have more than one source of information if something doesn’t quite seem right.

Download the app!

3. Canadian Red Cross First Aid

Camping Apps First Aid Not sure what do do in an emergency? Can’t remember whether you should bandage or splint a suspected fracture?

Then THIS app is for you.

The Canadian Red Cross’s First Aid app will supplement your first aid kit, and tell you what to do if someone is injured out in the backcountry.

It’s one of the suggested camping apps which is very easy to use, and comes with step-by-step instructions for all common first aid situations. There’s information on  CPR, treating breaks, bites, and stings, burns, allergies, blisters and more.

As it’s FREE, there’s really no excuse for not having it on your smart phone.

4. Google SkyMap

Sky Map Camping AppWith the  SkyMap app you can point your phone into the night sky to identify stars, planets, constellations, and even meteor showers. The app uses your phones GPS and compass data to identify the stars you are looking at. Or, if you want to find a particular star or planet, you can do a search for it, and SkyMap will show you where to move your phone to locate it. You will see, this is pretty cool stuff!

Download the FREE app!

5. Audubon Birds

Camping app Audubon BirdsIf you are interested in birds you MUST get this app. I guess if you are a bird lover you probably already have it.

No more carrying field guides around when you’re out on a short walk or if you’re just wondering what bird is calling in the trees above your camp.

The Audubon birds app has pictures, notes on the appearance, habits and where the birds are found. It has maps showing the living range and BEST OF ALL: playable bird calls.

The app allows you to search by the physical features of the bird -which is great if you don’t know a Stellar from a House Sparrow. You can also search by name and by taxonomy if you’re a real bird nerd.

The app also allows you to save your sightings to a list, with the date, location and room for notes.

I even use this app when I’m at home and watch the birds at my feeders. That this app is free surprises me.

Download the FREE app!

6. Audubon Wildflowers

Audubon Wildflower appLike the Audubon Bird app, this is another app that will save you space in your backpack.

This is the ultimate field guide to wildflowers for people on the go! On a nature hike in the wild, the Audubon Wildflowers app is a must have.

It’s easy to use and describes every specie. You can search for a flower by by species shape, habitat, region, zip code, colour, size, and/or flowering month. Each flower features a full colour photograph and detailed field notes.

You can join the online field guide community of nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts at AudubonGuides.com.

Interact, post and share sightings, photos, tips, opinions and more.

The app can be used anywhere, anytime. No internet connection is necessary.

8% of every sale goes directly to Audubon to support its mission to conserve and protect nature’s at-risk birds and wildlife.

If you are interested in wildflowers, this is a MUST have camping app for wild flower lovers.

7. My Nature Animal Tracks

My Nature Animal TracksI’m always excited when I discover animal tracks out in the woods. Unless you studied track reading before, you’re left to guessing what tracks you are looking at.

I was up on a mountain with a friend a couple of years ago when we saw cougar tracks in the snow, and deer tracks just next to it. I even got a picture.

The My Nature Animal Tracks let’s you easily identify the tracks you come across. Search by track size and shape in seven different illustrated categories to identify over 46 animals across North America.

View actual tracks in the wilderness, reference illustrated gait patterns, range maps, digital images  and great photos of each animal featured.

You don’t need wireless connection once you downloaded the app.

Download the app!

 8. Weather Network

wheather networkCamping can be fun in any weather, rain or shine. It’s all part of the experience. To know what to expect and to be prepared in case of a change in weather is important.

This is why I suggest the Weather Network app. It also provides you with a long range forecast.

You can track weather for different areas which is handy when you are on the move.

Download the FREE app!

9. Geocaching

Geocaching AppIf you don’t know what Geocaching is all about, then start by reading my geocaching guide to this addictive high tech treasure hunting game that kids and adults love.

You load the GPS coordinates for a geocache onto your handheld GPS or smartphone. Using the provided hints you look for the hidden treasures which are usually hidden in the woods or on a trail. The caches might be in a small box or tupperware container, packed with souvenirs and a log book.

You sign the log book and register that you have found the cache using the app .And off you go to the next one. Over two million geocaches are hidden all over the world, so finding a few should be fairly easy..

There is a free ‘intro’ version of the app but you can only find four geocaches before you need to download the full version of the app.

I suggest to skip the free intro version of the app and download the full version. This game is lots of fun, not only when you go camping.

Download the app!

10. Canada Topo Maps

Canada Topo MapsA list of camping apps wouldn’t be complete without without a navigation app.

Although you should not rely on your phone’s GPS for backcountry navigation, this is a good app to have. The app gives you similar mapping options as you might know from Garmin or Magellan GPS handhelds.

Use this navigation app for outdoor activities like hiking, biking, camping, climbing, riding, skiing, canoeing or offroad 4WD tours.
You can preload FREE map data for areas without cell service.

Toporama Maps Canada are are the most recent topographic maps of Canada and contain many small trails and 4WD tracks that are missing on other maps.

The free app has various limitations but there is a paid PRO Version available.

Also check out my blog about the Avenza PDF Maps Apps for free maps.

Download the FREE app!

11. Knot Guide

Knot guide camping appsNeed to tie a knot? The knot guide will teach you how!

I have always found knots fascinating and used to teach some essential once during horse camps at my dude ranch.

This app might become your most practical app on your phone.

The knots are categorized and it is easy to find the knot you need. Whether you are looking for the bowline, the barrel hitch or the butterfly, this app will show you how to do it.

Download the FREE app!

12. Flashlight

flashlight camping appFlashlight does exactly what the name describes: it converts your phone into a luminous white screen, which you can use as a flash light.

It’s real simple to use, and I’ve found it very handy on a number of occasions when a flashlight just hasn’t been within my reach.

You can change the colour of the screen and you can set it as a strobe light if you like that.

Download  one of the FREE MUST HAVE camping apps!


Before you go two quick things:

  1. You can help me out by sharing this post on Google+, Facebook or Twitter.
  2. In the comments below let me know about your favourite camping apps.

Yrene Dee

Yrene lives in Lumby British Columbia, Canada, and is the founder of BackcountryCanadaTravel.com. She was born in Switzerland, lived and worked on three different continents and has travelled the world. Yes, that's me, an Entrepreneur, wilderness nut and animal lover. I write about things I love. Mostely.

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3 Responses

  1. roller says:

    I would also recommend Spyglass – it’s a great navigational toolkit. It’s crammed with all that necessary data like gps coordinates, current azimuth, altitude, speed, potential arrival time to your target and much more. It can read pre-opened maps later when offline and provides you with extremely precise information. Here it is, if interested https://itunes.apple.com/app/spyglass/id332639548?mt=8&at=11lLc7&ct=c

  2. William says:

    There exists an iOS app called “The Ultimate Canadian Public Campground Project” and it shows over 4080 campgrounds throughout Canada:
    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ultimate-canadian-public-campground/id974998633?mt=8

    • Yrene says:

      Thanks for your tip William. I just looked at the app and it looks great. I will try it out myself when I’m on the road again. Thanks again and best wishes to you!

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