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Emergency Beacons?

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Emergency Beacons?

Postby Stu Brandel » Sun Sep 10, 2017 7:11 pm

My wife asked if there was anything I could bring in my back pack that would put out a emergency signal if I ran into real trouble. I tend to hike alone, so I admit is a good idea. But I know nothing about what devices may exist - or even what such devices are called. I always bring a cell phone, but I of course that is only as good as the cell service. I would appreciate any education you can give.
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Re: Emergency Beacons?

Postby beean » Sun Sep 10, 2017 7:55 pm

Something like this?

https://www.gme.net.au/catalogue/emergency-beacons-and-safety/mt410g.aspx

Other gizmos that are popular are the Spot and InReach, which allow the sending of 'I'm ok' messages. Spots are notoriously unreliable.

I'm a fan of the emergency only beacon because your significant other may panic if you forget to send an 'I'm ok' message and call for a rescue. This has happened twice now to friends of mine due to their daily check in message not being sent by the device.
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Re: Emergency Beacons?

Postby nartreb » Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:11 pm

I haven't read it yet, but I'm hoping this book will include some new details about a recent case in my neck of the woods that highlighted some limitations of rescue beacons:

http://www.mountainwanderer.com/proddet ... prod=NHH67
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Re: Emergency Beacons?

Postby MoapaPk » Mon Sep 11, 2017 9:24 pm

nartreb wrote:I haven't read it yet, but I'm hoping this book will include some new details about a recent case in my neck of the woods that highlighted some limitations of rescue beacons:

http://www.mountainwanderer.com/proddet ... prod=NHH67


I would still recommend the ACR beacon as one of the lightest; the trouble is that people tend to activate it only when the sh*t has hit the fan. The others -- as unreliable as they might be -- tend to make a person send a signal before a chancy move. I've been a SPOT user for 9 years, and while it drives me crazy, and maybe only half the signals get through, I've learned the idiosyncrasies. I was hoping the Garmin-acquired InReach technology would replace both the gps and satellite beacon, but alas, it's just another heavy mess requiring smartphone access for full gps capability.

One thing I've learned ab out SPOT: you can't wait for the red "battery low" signal. The transmitting power lessens A LOT as the batteries wear down. The voltage vs discharge curves for Li batteries just don't have enough slope, and vary among battery types, so the unit really can't tell the state of the battery.
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