Setting up Social Hiking for the TGO Challenge 2014

Last year, for the third year, Social Hiking had a group map running for Social Hiking users on the TGO Challenge (view the unofficial TGO Challenge 2013 group map). The map displayed the progress of flintyrich, volpi, nickbramhll, aussie_mike and viffer98 live as they made their way from the west to east coast of Scotland.

I know there are several users who are on the challenge this year so, ‘back by popular demand’, there is an unofficial TGO Challenge 2014 group map. If you are new to Social Hiking but what to share your challenge, this post covers how to register, setup your location sources, link media accounts and create your map ready for your challenge. Although specifically for TGO Challengers, other users may find some of the sections useful.

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Social Hiking in Trail Magazine this month!

Social Hiking article in Trail Magazine

Other than the generous support from some of our users, Social Hiking is otherwise not funded. This means there is no money to hire marketing or PR agencies (or in fact for much marketing at all), so it is always a lovely surprise when the outdoor press mention or feature Social Hiking in articles.

This month, Social Hiking is featured in the highlights section of the March 2014 edition of Trail Magazaine – ‘Take a Social Hike’

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An example of using Social Hiking whilst on a hike

Setting up Social Hiking can, for some people, be a frustrating experience – there are quite a few steps to allow Social Hiking to be able to talk to the plethora of media and location services supported before you get going (some easier than others!) – but what happens once everything is all set up and you have successfully shared your first map?

As a lot of my focus is on helping guide new users through the set up process, ‘graduates’ of that process are left to discover, thankfully with the help of the wonderful Social Hiking community (who are amazing at welcoming new users and sharing their knowledge), some of the more advanced ‘power’ features and to work out how best to share their adventures.

What I thought might be useful to these ‘graduates’ is an insight into how other people use Social Hiking, not just the final map, but the process of creating the map. So, on a recent hike with Rich (@FlintyRich), I recorded a series of mini-podcasts (they are only a few minutes each) describing how I use Social Hiking during, and after, a hike. This is not THE way, just MY way – the site can be used in many different ways depending on your personal preference. It would be brilliant if other users would be willing to share with the community how they use Social Hiking for their outdoor adventures (it does not have to be in audio form!)

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Inspiring and connecting people by making things shared more discoverable

At it’s core, Social Hiking is about three things:

Sharing: helping people share their outdoor adventures, whether those adventures are an epic cycle across the globe, a weekend spent wild camping on a mountain or a wander through a local park.

Connecting: helping people connect with others, whether that’s people to walk with, people happy to share their knowledge and expertise, or just making new friends.

Inspiring: helping people find inspiration from the outdoor adventures of others, whether that’s inspiration to go on the first walk in years, discovering a new route or area to hike or planning an epic adventure of their own.

Changes to Social Hiking support and suggestions

Today the Social Hiking Get Satisfaction customer support portal has been closed.

It has been running since 2011, and although it has been a really helpful way to help support users and to collect ideas and suggestions, it ultimately was not used enough to warrant the quite high cost.

For support, I will continue to use the Wheredidthetigergo’s (my day job) online helpdesk powered by Zendesk – to be honest this tends to be where users end up anyway when they need help. You can email your support enquiries direct to, visit or click the ‘Help’ tab on the left hand side of the website (this replaces the previous ‘Feedback’ tab that was linked to Get Satisfaction).

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What is your ultimate,fantasy, outdoor adventure? – Competition Winner

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” ― Thomas A. Edison

Over November we had a competition running: share your ultimate, fantasy, outdoor adventure to win a Sawyer Squeeze.

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Social Hiking Podcast Episode 3 – The one with Richard Flint (@flintyrich)

Rich Flint packing tent away in Snowdonia

For the third episode of the Social Hiking podcast, my guest co-host is Richard Flint (@flintyrich). Topics covered include some of our favourite maps, a hike in Snowdonia, an update on developmentsv recent and coming up, and Rich talks about his experience on TGO challenge.

A massive thank you to the sponsors of this podcast: Sawyer Europe – who provide clean drinking water to countless people including the thirsty backpacker whose only source of water might come from a remote dirty puddle.

I would really appreciate any feedback on the podcast – what you liked or didn’t like, or what you would like to see covered in future podcasts.

You can subscribe to a RSS feed of just the Social Hiking podcasts at (to put in your preferred podcast app) or in iTunes (or search for Social Hiking)

Thank you for listening :)

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What is your ultimate, fantasy, outdoor adventure?

Sawyer Squeeze

What is your ultimate, fantasy, outdoor adventure?

Tell us and you could be in with a chance to win a Sawyer Squeeze water filter!

You dream about it in your spare time: where to travel, what to do, whom to go with. You see friends and people you admire take trips over mountains, adventure through deserts, walking from one country border to another… and now it’s your turn to dream!

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Updates to Social Hiking – push notifications, more Adventure Bot commands, notifications centre and other bits and pieces

Over the last few weeks we (the royal we – I mean me) rolled out another update (to if you are counting) – here are the main changes, improvements and tweaks. You can view the full list of changes at

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