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Public Water Fountain App?

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Public Water Fountain App?

Old 01-16-14, 12:39 PM
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halcyon100
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Public Water Fountain App?

I've been looking for awhile for a good, reliable way to locate public water fountains with my smart phone while out riding. Especially for when I travel to new places to ride.

I think I could manage just bringing one water bottle with me (or one full bottle and one empty bottle) if I could easily locate public water fountains. I sometimes will stop at stores and cafes, but mostly when I am with other people. I am hesitant to leave my bike when I'm by myself and generally don't want to carry a lock or Camelbak. I use use my Camelbak to carry stuff while commuting to work, so it is nice to be without it when I'm out riding on non-work days.

I did find an app called "WeTap" that locates public water fountains. It is for android phones & will be available soon for iphones. It seems to be relying on users uploading information and misses lots of existing public water fountains. I think it has the potential to be really useful, especially if lots of other cyclists start using it and adding water fountain locations.

Do any of you have any other method for easily finding public water fountains? I have downloaded a number of local county bike coalition maps, but only a couple have public water fountain information and these also aren't very comprehensive.
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Old 01-16-14, 01:30 PM
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This would be useful. A fullblown app is overkill; a kml file (which can be displayed in Google Maps) is fine.

I think I've learned where most of the ones in Seattle are. If I'm near one I'll make a detour to drink from the water fountain before my bottle, and keep that for the times when I might go ten miles and not see one (like going south around Lake Washington and back of the I-90 trail). The downside for me is they shut them off in November and back on usually in May.
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Old 01-16-14, 01:38 PM
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Here is a map of public water fountains in the San Francisco area: https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=...936c9f31&msa=0

User-contributed maps like this can get unwieldy for large geographic areas. That's why apps like WeTap are helpful, since the data is stored in a more efficient database.
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Old 01-16-14, 03:28 PM
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they should add that to Yelp
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Old 01-16-14, 03:31 PM
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try the app where 2 pee... it'll at least get you public use restrooms.
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Old 01-17-14, 08:48 AM
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In this part of the world a lot of fountains are shut off well before the winter frosts and not re-opened until late Spring so you would need to take that into account.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:58 AM
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You can generally drink out of church spigot. You can also ask people if you can fill from they're garden hoses (they'll typically fill from their faucet instead). With regards to filling in a restaurant, you're only in for about a minute -- you can fill in the bathroom rather than the counter if you want. If you take your front wheel with you, it's harder for a snatch and run thief to get your bike.
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Old 01-17-14, 12:06 PM
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How about this?

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/oasi...436816866?mt=8
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Old 01-17-14, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by cderalow View Post
try the app where 2 pee... it'll at least get you public use restrooms.
You should see the tri version!
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Old 01-17-14, 12:23 PM
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I like the app idea. I'll also add that fire stations are usually water fill friendly, as long as no alarms are ringing. They're usually well located , numerous and easy to find on google maps.
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Old 01-17-14, 12:32 PM
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as long as the fountains are on... around here they're turning them off due to the drought
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Old 01-17-14, 03:15 PM
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....or so they don't freeze in cold of winter.
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Old 01-17-14, 10:50 PM
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Thanks for the ideas and suggestions! I never considered stopping at fire stations or churches for water... Mostly, I have looked for schools/colleges and public parks with water fountains. I tend to be a bit introverted, so I am thinking I might feel awkward asking people to fill up from their garden hoses, but I might if I were really dehydrated. The OasisPlaces iphone app looks interesting. I have an android phone, but my husband has an iphone - I'll see if he can download it and check it out. The google map for water fountains is interesting, though it mostly captures public parks. Personally, I think all cycling maps should accurately detail all public water fountains. Maybe I can pitch the idea to some map maker or app developer, and get paid to ride my bike all day while logging information like where the water fountains are...
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Old 01-18-14, 07:58 AM
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What's your concern with two water bottles, how far are you riding and how much do you drink an hour? You could consider one of the smaller Camelbaks that essentially water only; I don't find these to be noticeable.
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Old 01-19-14, 11:37 AM
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Well, maybe I'm being overly weight-weenie-ish about it... Carrying two full water bottles adds some weight. I sometimes will bring the second bottle on a longer ride thinking I may need it, but then I don't use it. My preference (on rides of 2-3 hours) is to carry one water bottle, and stop to refill it at water fountains if/when it gets low. I don't mind stopping as I have a disc issue in my back and it gives me a chance to stop and stretch. The other issue, is that on really long rides, I want both water bottles and I need to refill them periodically.
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Old 01-20-14, 09:29 PM
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I ride a lot in Amish country and found water. Here is a little post about it:

https://chubbyforlife.wordpress.com/2...9-satans-well/
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Old 01-20-14, 09:37 PM
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Public Water Fountain App?

Most car washes have soda vending machines- not free, but since our fountains are off for like 6 months, that's sometimes the best choice in sketchy areas.
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Old 01-20-14, 10:02 PM
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Old 01-22-14, 12:00 AM
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Interesting blogpost leastbest, I will think twice before drinking well water... Carwash vending machines are an idea.
Mike F: haha... There is a funny George Carlin stand-up bit about germs that would be relevant here... Not sure if my link will work, but I agree that a certain "healthy" amount of germs can be good for you.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnmMNdiCz_s

Last edited by halcyon100; 01-22-14 at 12:09 AM.
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