Six of the best apps for survivalists

If you really want to escape the 9-5 this summer, go feral with the help of the best survivalism and exploration apps

Just because you love gadgets and tech it doesn't mean you need to spend all summer sat in front of a glowing screen with your headphones on.

Heading off into the wilderness to reconnect with Mother Nature can be a great way to recharge your batteries and prepare you for the inevitable depression that the long winter months will bring.

But while Ray Mears may be able to fashion an impregnable fortress out of a single twig and prepare a six-course banquet out of a grasshopper, the modern geek has a different weapon at their disposal: the smartphone.

Yes, these days you can indulge your survivalist fantasies while getting a helping hand from an app. These are the six we'd take with us into the wild.

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1. Smart Compass

A compass is a must for any trek in the wilderness, and a smartphone compass can do things that a traditional model couldn't dream of. Smart Compass has an augmented reality display which makes it incredibly intuitive to follow: hold your phone or tablet up to the horizon and real-time video from the camera is overlaid with a compass heading. This enables you to set off in the direction of a landmark without having to constantly re-check your orientation. It's simple, very effective and free.

Stuff says: ✭✭✭✭

Platform: Android Price: £free

Download Smart Compass here

More after the break...

2. SAS Survival Guide

The SAS Survival Guide could be the only survival app you’ll ever need. It has a huge amount of well-written info on everything from making camps and fires to foraging and coping in extreme conditions. And as well as all the guides and tutorials, there's a bunch of useful tools including a text-to-Morse encoder. An imminent update will add the SAS Urban Survival Guide to the package. Handy for when the zombie apocalypse eventually comes.

Stuff says: ✭✭✭✭

Platform: Android, iOS, Windows Phone Price: from £2.59

Download SAS Survival Guide for Android here

Download SAS Survival Guide for iOS here

Download SAS Survival Guide for Windows Phone here

3. Magnificent Magnifier HD

This might not seem like an essential tool for a survivalist, but there are plenty of occasions when the ability to zoom in on some tiny detail will come in handy. There are loads of magnifying-glass apps out there, but we’d stick our pin in this one. It’s great for diagnosing vehicle breakdowns or making repairs in dark spaces, as well as improving legibility of maps or small print. And unlike with a normal magnifying glass, you won't need to juggle a torch at the same time when using it in the dark.

Stuff says: ✭✭✭✭

Platform: Android Price: £free

Download Magnificent Magnifier HD here

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