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Looking for the best apps for bicyclists in San Francisco?
This year’s list has a few old favorites that are still staying strong with a couple of new contenders who have really upped their game in the past few years. Below you find apps that will help you do everything from find your way (on- and off-road) to track your fitness (no matter what app you prefer) to help you treat yourself should you be injured in a bicycle accident in San Francisco.
Have a favorite not mentioned here? Drop it in the comments!
Strava launched in 2009 and remains one of the best all-around apps for cyclists in San Francisco (and—most would say—all over the world). Strava still tracks multiple aspects of your ride including distance, duration, average speed, etc. Strava also still allows you to segment those results and post them on shareable leaderboards which creates instant collaboration and competition.Strava’s data is also exportable so you can use non-mobile apps (like MyWindsock) to add even more functional analysis to your daily ride.As fun as a competitive ride is, remember: when you’re on the road your safety is in your hands. Aggressive riding can increase your risk of being involved in a bicycle accident in San Francisco.Strava is free on both Google Play and the Apple App Store with “Premium” memberships available that open access to additional features, the aforementioned leaderboards, and even training plans. Keep in mind, Strava is extremely dense, letting professional users dig deep into their analytics. It may take a bit for a newbie to get up to speed on all the bells and whistles of a premium membership.Availability: Apple App Store and Google PlayCost: Free with optional “Premium” membership features
Map My Ride, once again, tops the list of best bike apps for 2020. At its most basic, it does what the name says—allowing you to track distances, time, etc.) However, there are other features which allow you to analyze almost every aspect of your ride including:
- A caloric burn calculator (with a calorie counter for food)
- Sharing routes and statistics with friends
- Daily motivation
Map My Ride is a little more user-friendly than a feature-heavy app like Strava and can provide a gateway” for bicyclists in San Francisco who want to take their ride to the next level but aren’t sure what they need from cycling software.One slick feature is that riders can warn other riders about potential road hazards (like construction or traffic pattern changes) to help cyclists avoid dangerous routes. This is a great “crowdsourced” way to reduce the number of bicycle accidents in San Francisco.Map My Ride is free and available on both Apple and Android devices.Availability: Apple App Store and Google Play Store
3) Google Maps
That’s right, the Big G has entered the arena this year as the myriad improvements Google has made to its standard Maps app has made this piece of software a handy little addition for any rider who wants to do more than take in the scenery.Of course, the main function of Google Maps is the GPS functionality. This allows you to plan routes through San Francisco from home, estimate travel times, see real rime updates to traffic density in hazard areas, and more. But Google up the game a notch and when you click the little bike icon on the map, it updates your ride route based on cyclist-friendly real world features like dedicated bike lanes.The major power Google Maps holds over other bike apps for San Francisco cyclists is that it is completely 100% free with no paywalls or subscriptions needed to access any of the functions.Availability: Google Play StoreCost: Free
If your idea of a good ride doesn’t include pavement or bike lanes, Viewranger may be the cycling app for you. It’s a GPS navigation system for off-road biking that works like a charm. The app itself and the base map package are completely free but you can purchase detailed topographical maps of 20 countries from within the app.But what good is a GPS app if you don’t have a signal? Viewranger has you covered. The app stores the map in your phone and uses your device’s GPS rather than its cellular radio to pinpoint your location.Viewranger also has great social features as well. Not only can you create and upload your own trails, you can download other riders’ maps as well. Tied together with the “buddy Beacon” which lets you see which Viewranger riders are nearby, this can turn a solo ride down a mountain trail into a shared adventure in an instant.Like to stop and take in the view? Viewranger’s augmented reality feature lets you use your phone’s camera to take in vistas while the app tags the names of the mountains you’re looking at.Availability: Apple App Store and Google Play StoreCost: Free with premium version available and purchasable map packages
5) Wahoo Fitness
If your ride replaces a trip to the gym, Wahoo Fitness is the app you need. Wahoo pairs with all sorts of Bluetooth enabled fitness devices (heart rate monitors, smartwatches, etc.) and stores all of that data in-app. You can view that data in Wahoo’s own (basic) interface or send that data to whatever app or software you’re currently using.Integration includes compatibility with:
- Training Peaks
And more. You can also export that raw data in a variety of file formats to your email or via Dropbox so you can do with it what you will.
How detailed is the data? Wahoo’s basic display lets you customize up to 8 screens of data that track various variables including:
- Heart Rate
- And even route mapping
So how much would you pay for an app like Wahoo Fitness? Nothing. You get all that data tracking and compatibility for free!Availability: Apple App Store, Google Play StoreCost: Free
Apps Can Help Keep You Safe on Your Bike
Every year roughly 600 people are injured in bicycle accidents in San Francisco. If you’re one of the unlucky ones, there are several apps you should consider having on your phone before you ride.
First Aid by the American Red Cross is an app that has thousands of quick first aid tutorials with pictures and video that could save your life. Learn how to quickly staunch bleeding, tips for keeping open wounds clean, and what you should do to treat shock immediately after a crash.
Road ID functions like an emergency alert bracelet on your phone. This app lets you set your phone’s lock screen to display emergency contacts and other information that first responders will need to correctly treat you in an emergency. It even leaves digital bread crumbs so your trusted loved ones can track where you are if you don’t show up where you should be when you’d planned.
Don’t let apps distract you—riding on city streets can be dangerous. Ride safely and always be aware of your surroundings and the cars around you. Always wear safety equipment. Always be prepared to react to traffic in an instant.
Bicycle Accident Client
Sally Morin proved to be an invaluable asset in my recent personal injury case. She is extremely knowledgeable regarding cyclist laws and works very hard to be sure that you are fairly compensated in every way that you deserve.
She or somebody from her excellent team was always available to assist me with any questions or concerns that arose throughout my case. I strongly recommend Sally and her team to anybody who wants no nonsense and no BS legal representation.
They will definitely be the first people that I call if any other legal situations arise.
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