As the world opened back up in 2023, the Gaia GPS community adventured further, deeper, and higher than ever. As you climbed new peaks, skied new trails, and camped in new spots, our team back at home worked tirelessly to make Gaia GPS even better for your adventures.
From shiny new features to the invisible work behind the scenes that keeps Gaia GPS running smoothly and reliably while you’re out in the backcountry, here are the top new features and maps from 2023. Thank you for being part of our community, and cheers to another year outside!
Get the Best Off-Pavement Routes with BDR Integration
Sometimes, it’s a relief—even a delight—to follow a trusted off-pavement route you know will go. Especially when you know it will go past breathtaking views, across challenging terrain, and to memorable watering holes. That’s why we partnered with Backcountry Discovery Routes to bring you premier long-distance off-pavement routes with a leading navigation experience.
Thanks to this partnership, you can take any iconic long-distance Backcountry Discovery Route offline in the Gaia GPS app with just one click. We’re also honored to promote BDR’s mission of promoting responsible travel and fostering sustainable adventuring and economic growth.
Spy Points of Interest Easier Than Ever with New Map Spotlight
Our proprietary Gaia Topo, Gaia Overland, and Gaia Winter maps equip backcountry travelers on foot, wheels, and skis with the information they need to adventure safely and confidently From trails color-coded by activity type to lands shaded by ownership, to amenities to points of interest, these maps have a lot of information packed in them. Honestly, it’s a lot to take in. (In the best way.) That’s where the map legend comes in. The map legend cracks the code. And now the map legend is even easier to find, decipher, and use.
Meet our brand new interactive map spotlight on gaiagps.com. Simply click on a symbol and the map lights up, showing you the trails, amenities, or points of interest you’re looking for. Whether you’re searching for a waterfall, an ice cream shop, or a horseback riding trail, the spotlight puts the world at your fingertips.
Draw Routes in Android
In addition to our gold-standard snap-to-trail route planning, which is available across iOS, Android, and gaiagps.com, this year we unveiled route drawing on the Android version of our app.
Simply click the finger icon on the bottom of the screen and draw on the map to create your route. This route planning mode is particularly useful when you’re going off-trail, where snap-to-trail route planning isn’t available. iOS users: Don’t worry we’re coming for you too!
See the World More Clearly with Gaia Black and White Map
Move over technicolor, black and white is back in style. Meet Gaia Black and White, our very first all-black-and-white topo map. Whether you’re color vision deficient or want a crystal-clear paper map printout on hand, Gaia Black and White is for you.
Styled in the same manner as our other proprietary topo maps designed in-house, Gaia Black and White brings you industry-leading clarity, accuracy, and file-efficiency. Like our other Gaia Series maps, Gaia Black and White provides world-wide coverage. Download the map to use offline for your entire state so you can always find your way—even without cell service.
Reap the Rewards of Our Type 2 Engineering™
As our software has increased in complexity, our number of users has grown, and the app is utilized in unexpected ways (we’re looking at you, users who record their flights in the app), the proclivity of systems to fail in remarkable fashion skyrockets.
Our engineers bushwhacked through the code base in an endeavor they called type 2 engineering. Like type 2 fun, it was hard but rewarding work that we enjoyed…once we were done. Along the way, we squashed bugs, improved our design, and cleaned up shared folders. And the outcome is that moving forward, we’ll be able to bring you new features and improvements faster than ever.
Adventure Intuitively with Our Redesigned App
We take your feedback seriously over here at Gaia GPS, and that’s why we’ve worked tirelessly to make our iOS and Android apps more intuitive and easier to use. This year, we simplified the top five features in the app so you can spend less time looking at your phone and more time exploring. Waypoints, locating yourself on the map, taking a geotagged photo, recording an activity, and downloading maps for offline use are easier to access than ever.
Think of this update like reorganizing the gear shed. All the tools you know and love are still there. We’ve simply moved them to more convenient locations and gave them a fresh coat of paint.