Whether they want to attempt the Three Peaks Challenge – summiting Pen-y-ghent, Ingleborough and Whernside in 12 hours – or they fancy a more leisurely stroll up each one individually, they can now carry useful information about the route in a new smartphone app.
The app has been developed by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA) and contains information to plan a trip as well as 1:50,000 OS maps of the Challenge and alternative routes for each peak.
Mountain bikers haven’t been forgotten either – there are OS maps and links to route descriptions for rides too.
The inbuilt GPS shows users’ progress along their chosen route on an OS Map. In addition, the app is packed with geolocated places of interest that range from geological and archaeological sites through to nature reserves. There are also stunning 360° panoramas from the summits and an augmented reality ‘toposcope’ showing the names of the hills surrounding each of the three peaks.
The app is only currently available for use with iPhones, although an Android version will follow soon. It costs £1.99 and all money from the sales will be spent on maintaining the rights of way network as part of the Three Peaks Project. The network copes with around 100,000 visitors every year.
Karen Griffiths, the YDNPA’s Interpretation Officer, said: “We have created the app with the aim of helping people to make the most of their visit to this iconic part of the National Park and also to raise vital funds for the Three Peaks Project to help look after the area.
“It’s frontloaded with all the maps and most of the other information so people will be able to use it wherever they are. It also lists details about local businesses including places to stay, where to eat and drink and those offering free WiFi, as well as information about car parking, toilets and access for people with limited mobility.”
Nick Thwaite, the YDNPA’s Member Champion for Recreation Management, said: “Maintaining the rights of way network around the Three Peaks is never-ending – and costly.
“It’s great that so many people come to enjoy this fabulous scenery but their visits do take their toll on the fragile landscape. By buying the app, people can find out more about the Three Peaks, at the same time giving something back.”
The Three Peaks Yorkshire app can be downloaded from www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/y3peaksapp and is available from iTunes.
This is the second smartphone app developed by the National Park Authority. The other covers Malham, Hawes, Dent and Reeth.
The development of the Three Peaks Yorkshire app was made possible through the generous funding of the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) – a group of businesses in the European outdoor industry that grant-aids conservation projects worldwide. The grant was secured by the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust on behalf of the YDNPA.
Don Gamble, the Trust’s Projects Development Officer, said: “We were delighted to secure the €30,000 grant from EOCA which has played a vital role in not only developing this app, but also in providing dramatic improvements to the route itself and facilitating restoration of peatland areas damaged through heavy use of the old footpath route. Thanks to EOCA’s support, the Three Peaks Project has made important improvements to enhance people’s enjoyment of this iconic route.”
Link to more detail about the project EOCA funded here.