Students Design App to Help Hikers Navigate Pinnacle Mountain

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Ever been on a hike at Pinnacle Mountain and couldn't find your way back? Or you just want to let people know of any problem areas along trails?

Now there is an app to take care of that, but it's who's behind it that makes the app so unique. 

Exciting and yet challenging is how students describe their environmental and special technology class or "EAST."

"I've learned so much from EAST and it's translated to the real world," said 7th grader Avery Caldwell. 

Avery, Ella, Allison and Madison go to PCSSD's Joe T. Robinson Middle School.

These students are creating something many believe is needed for a popular attraction right in our backyard, Pinnacle Mountain. 

"I thought it would be very helpful for people because I know a lot of people get lost on some of the trails," said 8th grader Ella Scheer. 

It's just a prototype right now, but these girls are making an app to make it easier for you to get around in the outdoors. They've spent just as much time at Pinnacle as in the classroom, to ensure they're not leaving anything out. 

"You have information about the park, park history and all the different trails that they offer at Pinnacle," Ella said.

The app will also detect your location.

"If there's a fallen tree, a dead squirrel or if it's really dirty you can type in your problem," Avery said.

The app is designed to alert park officials immediately and can be a go-to-guide at Pinnacle, keeping hikers safe and showing hikers something new at the same time. 

"I didn't know you could rent out kayaks and you could paddle boat," Avery says. 

The students worked with park interpreters to see what would be beneficial for visitors. 

"The presentation of the overall idea that these girls submitted to us was amazingly professional," Park Interpreter Kellie Nichols said. 

However the project is still a work in progress. 

"I think that's really cool to be able to go up to somebody and tell them that I've designed an app," 
Ella said. 

This group of students leave a footprint to a trail of possibilities for other students in Pulaski County. 

The app will be available to download in the Apple store and Google play by next spring. 

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