OnX Hunt Maps and smart phones...a word of causion.

dannyb278

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Aug 4, 2015
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542
I used this product on my Android phone to research hunting areas as well as in the field during a Wyoming pronghorn hunt.

The product itself is really cool. My problem came in using it on my phone. The satellite signal of my android phone in that part of Wyoming near Gillette was just SO bad. Many times layers wouldn't load, especially the land ownership lines over a topo base layer. Was quite a pain in the butt in a unit with very little, yet highly fragmented public land. Battery power drained very fast and it was all we could do to keep the phone charged via the truck charger on the way to and from hunting areas.

I would highly recommend using this product with a GPS. The phone itself was the failure. Luckily I also carried map and compass along and we were able to navigate pretty well.

I know Big Fin mentioned on trying the smart phone application out in the near future and just wanted to forward my experience. I think the phone ap works great for pre field work and will work in a pinch in the field, but wont compare to the dedicated GPS unit.
 

Big Fin

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Dec 27, 2000
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Bozeman, MT
I would strongly suggest downloading your maps and layers to your phone when hunting anywhere in the west. Coverage sucks in the west, so having it downloaded to your phone solves that issue.
 

dannyb278

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Aug 4, 2015
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542
I would strongly suggest downloading your maps and layers to your phone when hunting anywhere in the west. Coverage sucks in the west, so having it downloaded to your phone solves that issue.

Will do! Wyoming posted its elk draw results today. Failed once again, but that only means I get to come out to WY for a pronghorn hunt instead. Not exactly a bad proposition. I'll make sure to download all the data first. Thanks.
 

Blueniner9

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Jul 10, 2014
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115
Location
Bozeman
Downloading with the phone works great. Been doing it for two years now in a at and it opens up a lot of opportunities. Great option for someone who cannot afford a gps.
 

onX Hunt

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Jul 22, 2013
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Saving the maps of the area you are hunting will not only work much better, It will also help save battery tremendously. Placing your phone on airplane mode and turning WiFi off will also help save your batter.
 

swmt

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Dec 15, 2012
Messages
55
I used the map system on my phone pretty extensively last season in areas that have little to no coverage and thought it worked great. It took a little planning ahead of time to make sure I had all of the maps downloaded in the right format and scale, but once the maps are downloaded it worked pretty flawlessly, The downloaded maps load quicker and require less battery than even using the phone when I have strong WI FI signal.
I used the phone based maps for a three day backcountry hunt were I had absolutely no coverage at all and had no problems. I use a small external battery for my phone that gives three charges and if my phone and external battery are fully charged I would have enough juice for four to five days. Given that my phone screen is so much better than any GPS screen and I carry it with my anyway for pictures, I cant imagine ever using a stand alone GPS again.
 

dannyb278

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Aug 4, 2015
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Saving the maps of the area you are hunting will not only work much better, It will also help save battery tremendously. Placing your phone on airplane mode and turning WiFi off will also help save your batter.

Thanks for the advice I didn't realize you could place your phone on airplane mode still receive A GPS signal
 

MT_Wyatt

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Jan 6, 2013
Messages
86
Location
Great Falls, MT
It works great and is very fast at acquiring signal, no iskies gerring 5 days out of mine on one charge. The subject app and a phone are game changers to me, and the new update to 3.0 really adds to the features. I use my phone with a Delorme InReach, perfect pair.
 

dannyb278

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Aug 4, 2015
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Thanks all, I just wanted to reaffirm that I had absolutely no complaints about the product, just with my phones operation (and user error, apparently). I've been working in the GIS field as a cartographer and field technician for nearly a decade and the OnXmap product is as good as I've seen.
 

wyosage10

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Joined
Oct 9, 2015
Messages
9
Location
Dubois, WY
Saving the maps of the area you are hunting will not only work much better, It will also help save battery tremendously. Placing your phone on airplane mode and turning WiFi off will also help save your batter.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe using airplane mode isn't an option with the iPhone (at least the 5) because it shuts down the GPS as well.
 

Cooperd0g

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Feb 8, 2016
Messages
50
Location
Yuma, AZ
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe using airplane mode isn't an option with the iPhone (at least the 5) because it shuts down the GPS as well.

As of a iOS 8.2 (I think it is that one) the airplane mode no longer shuts off gps. But it used to. Previously you had to individually shut off wifi, Bluetooth and cell service to get the gps to still work and you could easily forget something and drain your battery. Now it is much simpler.
 

dannyb278

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Aug 4, 2015
Messages
542
Great podcast guys, I really enjoyed it, though it was a real "why didn't I think of that moment" since I graduated from grad school in Geography/GIS back in 2009. Keep up the good work, I'm from Minnesota and I've used your product extensively to map out our first western antelope hunts.
 

Jmerch

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May 8, 2016
Messages
1
Location
San Antonio, TX
Just finished listening to the podcast and I'm happy to hear that my iPhone might be able to become my go-to mapping device, however I'm a little worried about the reliability of my iPhone on very cold late season hunts. Just like when an iPhone gets too hot it shuts down, the same happens when it gets too cold. The battery seems to drain more quickly as well.
Has anyone experienced that problem? I'm sure the trick is to either bury it deep in your pack, or somewhere close to your body for heat.
 

Yellowstoner

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Joined
Aug 14, 2015
Messages
168
Just finished listening to the podcast and I'm happy to hear that my iPhone might be able to become my go-to mapping device, however I'm a little worried about the reliability of my iPhone on very cold late season hunts. Just like when an iPhone gets too hot it shuts down, the same happens when it gets too cold. The battery seems to drain more quickly as well.
Has anyone experienced that problem? I'm sure the trick is to either bury it deep in your pack, or somewhere close to your body for heat.

Yes I have absolutely had that issue on pretty much every hunt I go on. Even when it's 20 outside, if you're operating your phone with such a battery/processor-intense software, the phone shuts off after a minute or so. I try to keep it in my flannel pocket which is usually under 2 layers of jackets. This will keep the battery working for a while as long as you don't pull it out for too long. This is definitely worse on the iPhone 6s than it was o. The 4s for some reason (I have no experience with the models in between those 2 phones.)
 

wllm1313

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Dec 9, 2015
Messages
10,972
Location
Manetheren
Yes I have absolutely had that issue on pretty much every hunt I go on. Even when it's 20 outside, if you're operating your phone with such a battery/processor-intense software, the phone shuts off after a minute or so. I try to keep it in my flannel pocket which is usually under 2 layers of jackets. This will keep the battery working for a while as long as you don't pull it out for too long. This is definitely worse on the iPhone 6s than it was o. The 4s for some reason (I have no experience with the models in between those 2 phones.)

I have an Iphone 6 with onxmaps during my late season hunts I tape a body-hand warmer to my phone and put it in my chest pocket keeps my phone working great.
 

Vik

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May 23, 2016
Messages
14
Are there any HuntTalk discount codes for onxmaps?

Listen to podcast episode 30, which was just released. It has a promo code for onX if my memory serves.

Alternatively, join RMEF for $35 and get a one year onX subscription for no extra cost! Thats what I did...and I am getting a set of knives out of the deal as well. Win, win, win.

ETA: thanks Randy...that was what I remembered hearing on the podcast but wasn't positive.
 

OutdoORegon

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Jun 8, 2016
Messages
12
I'm late to this party, but this is a great thread! My wife, Angela, will build a map for us with as many layers as we'd like for a particular area that we're going into, and then save it to her iPhone.

What we have found is that a lot of folks do not yet understand the functionality and the features of OnXmaps, and they really should because it's a legitimate game changer!

She will include the usual things that you would expect, like public lands and the access to them, but that's just the beginning. She will save the map she customizes to her iPhone, and as you read in the posts above, once we lose cell service, we still have FULL FUNCTIONALITY of that particular map. Without draining your battery quickly. She tracks our routes that we have hiked. She marks the spots where we see promising sign like rubs, scrapes and trails. She marks the spots where we have hung our trail cameras. She tracks the routes and the distance that we have hiked just like you would on your GPS.

There is so much you can do with this app on your smart phone, and it is so easy to learn that even a knuckle dragger like me can figure it out. :)

In full disclosure, my wife is OnXmaps pro-staff, and I am the co-chair of the Oregon chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, so I am completely biased here, but I would be remiss if I did not mention to you that OnXmaps is a very strong and valued partner of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. Did you know that if you use this link:

www.backcountryhunters.org/join

and join BHA, OnXmaps is going to give you your first year of OnXmaps for FREE? Not an abbreviated or limited version of OnXmaps. I mean the whole enchilada. For free. If you join now, you'll get your OnXmaps code with your Backcountry Hunters and Anglers welcome packet in time for this coming hunting season, and you will be completely squared away. That's impressive. That's OnXmaps giving back WAY more than anyone would ever have expected them to. The product is great. It will exceed your expectations. The company is legit. The kind of company that you feel good about spending your hard earned money with. And if you're not yet a member of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, we want you on the winning team with us. We want your help to keep public lands in public hands, for generations to come. Call me, PM me on here, DM me on Instagram, message me on Facebook, get ahold of me any way that you'd like to with any questions that you may have about BHA's mission and the good work that BHA is doing all across this fabulous country right now. I look forward to standing beside you as we fight the public land grabs that must be stopped.

Thanks for reading through an entire shameless plug, but these public land grab issues are critically important, and I can't tell you how much I appreciate OnXmaps commitment to doing the right thing. They really are a good company, folks.:)

Best regards,
Mike Haralson, Oregon chapter, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers

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