Dersu is the project of a group of technology and mountaineering enthusiasts. In the image below, Fernando Errekalde and Borja Delgado, two of the founders of the startup
Designed by mountain experts, Dersu offers personalized routes adapted to the level of each user to maximize safety in this activity.
It is estimated that around five million people regularly practice hiking in Spain, around 10% of the population. A solid mass of fans, lovers of nature and physical activity, which has grown considerably after the impact of the pandemic. For all of them, whether they are beginners or long-distance and experienced amateurs, Dersu emerged in May 2021, a project based in Jaca (Huesca) that seeks to "connect people with the mountains". An objective that materializes in an app that tries to "put everything the mountaineer needs in a single point", explains its CEO, Borja Delgado, founder of the startup together with three other lovers of the mountain and technology: Fernando Errekalde, Juan Delgado and Maria Renilla.
In Dersu, users have access to routes created by professional high mountain guides, "so that all the information is perfectly reliable," says Delgado. But this service is only the starting point of the proposal, which goes much further. «We incorporate a mountain library within the app, so that it is not just about making routes, but you can learn about the mountain, everything you need depending on your level. And we also include everything that is part of both weather information, risk areas and group management, "emphasizes the founder.
The application, which currently has 1,100 routes on the main mountain ranges of the Peninsula, channels and valleys, including some in French territory, also allows you to import routes from external agents. Being included in the app, they are evaluated by the Dersu system that will notify the user if the routes pass through a critical point.
It is clear that safety is a real priority for the company from Huesca, and that is that the main cause of death in the mountains right now is overestimation of own abilities . "Determining in a reliable and objective way the level of a route and the level of a mountaineer is one of the first things, and I think the most important, that we have done when developing this app," says Delgado.
That is why the first thing the user does when downloading the application is to fill out a questionnaire that will determine their physical and technical level precisely in order to prevent risks and be able to make personalized recommendations correctly.
The company has recently raised one million euros to boost its business. The app is in the free trial phase, although the founders hope to launch the paid version for ten euros a year this month.
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