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A Tracking Beacon Your Partner Trusts

Welp! Here we are. I've done it this time.

Friends say I like to go, "Off The Beaten Path." That I'm, "An Explorer or Risk Tolerant." My wife says I'm, "Over 40" and that she wouldn't worry if I, "Carried an Emergency Beacon or Tracker GPS."

I ❤️ my partner and hate to make her worry. I also really ❤️ multi-day excursions into vast wildlife management areas where I don't often 👀 other people for days. 

I'm going to get a beacon but if I'm dropping big 💰 I'd like your insights on what Tracker/Beacon/GPS you and your partner both Trust to get you Home, on the off chance you're Lost or Hurt and unable to travel? Have you had to use it when it mattered? 

Thanks in advance. LOVE the wilderness and one another. All the best!

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We don’t inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our daughters and sons. — Native American proverb
24 Replies

I second what @OldGuyot has already said.  I'm using a in reach mini right now and it does what it says it's supposed to do.  I send pre text messages to my wife so she knows I'm on track.  If she doesn't get them she's supposed to start worrying.

pro tip: for those using a beacon, for gosh sakes, let others in your party know you have one and show them how to use it, in the event YOU become unconscious and someone else needs to send the SOS.

Unbelievably I find my friends carrying a beacon and basically keeping it a secret.

end of rant

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes

@Philreedshikes   - right???

I’ve encountered that same “shhh, don’t tell anyone I have a locator” attitude more than once. 

This past trip, I took my buddy on his first ever backpacking trip. I added his wife as a contact so she would get the texts that we had arrived at camp and would be notified if the SOS was triggered. 

Then when we got to the trailhead, before we put our packs on, I showed him how to hit SOS and where the app on my phone is in case of emergency (so he could text SAR) with pertinent information . I also removed the lock on my phone.

Standard practice. It’s no different than letting people know you have a first aid kit.  

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“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

btw, are you carrying a pack on your pack?

REI Member Since 1979 YouTube.com/philreedshikes
0 Likes

I mentioned this in another thread about sat-com devices and want to bring it up again. 

Make sure your emergency contacts add your Zoleo or InReach (or…) number as a contact in their phone. My wife had “ignore sms texts from unknown numbers” turned on so she wasn’t getting my initial test messages. (Thanks to Zoleo customer service for figuring that out)

Once she added it as a contact, it worked fine. 

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“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.” (John Muir)

Superusers do not speak on behalf of REI and may have received
one or more gifts or other benefits from the co-op.

I'm going to support what was said about Zoleo.  I have one as well, and I've been super happy with it.  So easy & intuitive to use, both the unit and the phone app.  It's great that it'll search out free Wifi and Cellular before resorting to charging you for use of the Iridium Satellite path.  Customer service is great, and they responded quickly when I had a billing question.  So happy to support this smaller company.