Elevation on Strava FAQs

If your device has a barometric altimeter and it is included in our device database, the activity page will display the elevation that the device recorded into the file. If your device doesn't have a barometric altimeter or the file is from our mobile app, the activity page will display a "corrected elevation". This process involves cross-referencing the GPS data in the file to our database of barometric data. The accuracy of this calculation hinges on the accuracy of your file's GPS data and the accuracy of our basemap. Read more about Strava’s Elevation Basemap.

Elevation data on Strava is smoothed to take out noise— we have a 'threshold' where climbing needs to occur consistently for more than 10 meters for activities without strong barometric data or two meters for an activity with barometric data before it is added to the total elevation gain. We recently changed our thresholds for elevation gain in an effort to provide more accurate elevation data to our athletes who record activities on devices which are not equipped with a barometric altimeter. For the vast majority, these changes have improved the quality of the elevation data reported on Strava. In some areas, the underlying elevation basemap data is poor resulting in inflated elevation totals on Strava.

FAQs

Why is my elevation profile missing or incorrect?

If you don’t see an accurate elevation profile, it’s likely that your GPS device recorded location (or other) data that does not accurately represent your activity. To improve your GPS connection; the device manufacturer will always have the most up-to-date and relevant information, but you can see our Knowledge base articles for Android and iPhone troubleshooting.

Unfortunately, when, for whatever reason, a portion of your activity is not recorded by GPS, it's not possible for us to 'fill in' the missing data. You can create a manual activity to account for the lost elevation gain - although this won't count toward Strava Challenges.

Why is my activity's elevation different than my friend's?

Even though you may have done the exact same activity as your friend, each GPS device, even if you’re using the same GPS device, will record its own unique set of data. This GPS data will always be different because of the inherent variables involved in recording GPS data: recording interval (the time between GPS points), signal strength, GPS hardware, etc. The differences in the GPS data may cause differences in the calculated elevation data.

Another source of confusion is comparing elevation data from an activity with barometric data to that of an activity that has gone through our correction process. Both are accurate ways of totaling elevation for GPS data, but the 'corrected' data is getting cross-referenced to the elevation basemap whereas the barometric elevation is being pulled from the data the barometric altimeter recorded into the file.

My device has a barometric altimeter, why is Strava recalculating the elevation?

If you recorded your activity with a GPS device that has a barometric altimeter, but Strava isn't using that data, it's possible that device is not yet in our database or that the file you uploaded is missing a Device ID. We occasionally see this when activities get synced through 3rd parties so if you know the device is in our database, please try uploading the original file from the device. If you still have questions, please submit a support ticket and include a link to the Strava activity.

Why does my elevation on Strava look different from my device’s elevation?

Because elevation data derived from a GPS signal is fairly inaccurate, Strava automatically corrects elevation derived from a GPS source by consulting elevation databases to determine the elevation at each point in the activity. Our thresholds and smoothing process may differ from that of the other platform or GPS device.

The data recorded by my barometric altimeter is wrong, can I correct this?

If you suspect that your elevation data is incorrect, you can request an elevation lookup on Strava.com.  Click on the "Elevation?" text under the elevation statistic in the overview (shown below.) A dialogue pops up with a button to "Correct Elevation." This button will only appear for data collected with a barometric altimeter (or in rare cases where a previous automatic elevation correction failed.) After a short while, the "Calculating" text will change to "Updated," and if you click on "Updated" your page will refresh with the new elevation data. While it is possible to revert back to the barometric data, this will require your activity to be reuploaded and you will lose any kudos/comments on that activity.

Elevation Correction

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I don't see an option to correct my elevation.

This means that your activity has already been corrected by cross-referencing your GPS data to an elevation database. Please also remember that elevation correction is only available on the web version of Strava.

Can I edit the elevation on my activity?

No, it's not currently possible to make a manual edit to the elevation on an activity.

Can I remove the elevation gain I accumulated while my device was paused?

No, when the app is paused, the activity won't record any new GPS points or progress the distance or time but any change in elevation will still be reflected in your activity’s overall elevation gain. There is no way to remove the elevation data from your activity.

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