Outdoor walk vs. hike on Apple Watch? What's the difference?

What’s the difference between the outdoor walk workout vs. hiking on the Apple Watch?

This official Apple Support article is unhelpful

And I haven’t been able to find an answer by Googling. Thanks!

I believe that the Hike option includes elevation gain/loss as a factor when calculating calories, while Outdoor Walk assumes relatively level ground.


I tried doing my normal walk today as a Hike instead of an Outdoor Walk, and compared results with yesterday. This is a course of about 3.15 miles with a 240’ elevation gain. Results were the same, give or take a margin of error because I don’t walk exactly the same way two days in a row.

I have a Series 2 Apple Watch.

My theory now is that there is no difference between Hike and Outdoor Walk.

According to the documentation with hiking you can see elevation gains in real time. But elevation is not included in the metrics you can choose in the watch app on the phone. Could you see it during th experiment?
So it looks like you may be right, no real differences.
The calories should be similar, because also normal walk includes elevation

In my experience you can see elevation gain/loss on the watch when using the Hike exercise.

You also see elevations it in the Outdoor Walk exercise. Results for the two exercises were identical when I ran them on consecutive days with the same walk, allowing for slight margin of error due to deviations from the course. @Casi

In the results, after the workout, elevation is included, but can you see the elevation also while doing the workout?
iPhone, watch app, workout, workout metrics I only have these option, no elevation:

I don’t look for elevation while I’m doing the workout, so that’s a possible difference.