What is it?
Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder, Free, iPhone. Oh, Ranger! has curated a list of parks where you can partake in twenty different outdoor activities. It's your virtual guide to the outdoors—you fire up the app, plug in your location (or let it locate you) and either see which parks are near you or find an activity you want to do to filter out the parks that let you do it. It's awesome. You can't run out of things to do or places to go with this app.
Once you find the park you want, the app will give you a brief history about the place, activity descriptions, a phone number to call and directions courtesy of Google Maps. There's thousands of different types of public land that offer 20 different activities, from the normal like biking and camping to the extreme like caving and hunting. Water sports, winter sports, fishing, picnicking, hell even bird watching—it's all here for free. It's a massive outdoor database that's easily filterable. I'm going to own you Ma Nature.
Who's it good for?
People who love the outdoors. People who like to be active. People who like to try new things. People who aren't afraid of sun, sky and nature.
Why's it better than alternatives?
For a city slicker like me, who has no idea where to start on caving or climbing or wildlife viewing, it's like Outdoors for Dummies. I can either venture out to the vast wasteland that is Google and find untrustworthy sources who think a beer garden in Brooklyn is 'the outdoors' or I can tap the fishing icon and go to Fort Tilden or Jacob Riis Park. It's deeply informative, the descriptions spell out exactly what the park allows for the activity you want to do. Also, learning about the park itself makes you feel like you're more connected to the Earth's earth. In a nutshell, it's the easiest way to be active.
How could it be even better?
I wish they listed dog parks as an activity. I wish I could save parks in some sort of favorites list. More social network integration wouldn't be a bad thing either. Would be really great if you could download maps to the app too (since some parks might not have great service). Also! Letting people review each spot would be a goldmine.
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