A hiking stick that helps friends find each other on a hiking trail.

Kane

3,409 

 Search and Rescue Missions   made in National Parks (2014)

42%

of the rescued were   casual day hikers 

1,431

in trouble because of   insufficient information 

WHERE??

WAIT

Many  casual hikers  tend to rely on their phones to communicate and locate each other.  However, most hiking trails  don't have any phone service  or GPS.  People are getting  lost and separated. 

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Where's Earl?

Earl is about to go to a  casual hike  with his friends.  However, he came very late and his friends went on ahead.  He now has to try to follow the trail to hopefully  find them.  The trail has  no reception  so he can’t contact them to find them.  The trail splits in many ways so he will have to  find the correct turns to make.  Animals can move any markers  that his friends could leave.  How could he find his friends?

Rough and Sketchy

Ideation sketches and mockups focusing on different ways to   detach trackers  to attach to a  forest hiking  trail.  Trying different ways of  attaching the phone  to the main piece.  Eventually deciding on a hiking stick.

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Inspiration

The  simple yet playful pop  of a Pez dispenser is very satisfying as well as familiar.  Pez's history also gives the interaction also gives a  sense of nostalgia and fun. 

Stick with me

The hiking stick is one of the  most common items  to take to trails.  Earl's friends are likely to already carry one on the trip. He can also use the hiking stick to  support his movement  through the forest.

EXPLORATION

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Feel it Through

Exploring different kinds of hiking sticks including a large staff, baton, and a cane.  Each rendition had a   different form of tracker.  What would the  interaction  would be.  Pop? Pump? Plunge? Pull?  Each model also had a different kind of grip to  explore ergonomics. 

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Deciding towards a backwards cane to bring support and keep a small frame

Through the mockups and research, 15° was prime for comfort and loading body weight

implementing the familiar and nostalgic pop from Pez dispensers

Pop To Drop Tracker

Twist To Switch Hands

Adjust Height

App guiding to nearest tracker