Stuck on 'creating observation

Which version of iOS is your device running? Do you use iCloud Photos?

I had this happen again to me yesterday, but under puzzling circumstances. While walking the dog, I took two photos of a spider with my phone’s Camera app. A few minutes later, while still out, I tried importing the photo into iNat to make an observation and I got the endless “Creating Observation” spinner. Which seemed weird, since I figured the photos were on my device and there was no need to interact with iCloud.

Took a look at the photo in my Photos app and saw the cloud with the line through it, meaning it wasn’t in iCloud yet. I manually synced iCloud and was able to import the photo into iNat.

However, I tried replicating that this morning and couldn’t.

Hi tiwane,

I’m on iOS 17.0.3, and am using iCloud. I’ve seen that same behavior for a bunch of apps (including iPhotos) on my phone through many iOS versions. The photo is still on the device (I can access it through the camera app and then going to recent images there), but it is not available to other apps until passing through iCloud. My issue is related - if I go to edit an older photo (tip from another poster) it downloads the full version and I can upload it. Until I do, it never appears to synch sufficiently even if I view the photo on the phone.

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Yes, seems to be the same issue. Thanks for curating. Based on comments above, I found if I edit the photo on the phone it is upload-able, but just looking at the photo on the phone doesn’t seem to make it fully available. Maybe there is some very long-running synch going on that will eventually make them available without this. Surprised that viewing them hadn’t caused the full synch - I had tried that before posting, thinking that would cause download.

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By the way - I mean just opening for edit. I don’t have to perform an edit and save the photo back - it is the download process to support editing that fixes the problem.


I made a GitHub issue for this and talked with Alex about it. It will take some more investigating but it does clearly seem to be related to how we deal with photos in iCloud, probably something changed in iOS 17.

There’s a fix for this in the latest beta version of the app, if anyone’s a beta tester you can try it out. Seems to be working well for me. Apple changed some things with iCloud and we needed to update things on our end.

We released version 3.3 today, which has a fix for this. Should be available to everyone via the App Store.

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