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#373 - 10/27/09 06:50 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Paul]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Thanks for posting that, Paul. Was the trouble only because you were out of aerobic condition?

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#380 - 10/28/09 09:14 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
Paul Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 172
Loc: Santa Clarita, CA
It couldn't have been worse. I did have a treadmill test a month later and it was perfect. That was a relief. Now I am nursing a torn (partial to complete) quadrecep muscle. At age 60, do you think I have a chance?

paul

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#384 - 10/28/09 10:10 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Paul]
Rod Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 660
Loc: Santa Clarita, Ca. USA
You will heal Paul,albeit slower than when you were 20. Did you keep the Mercedes?

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#389 - 10/28/09 01:03 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Rod]
Paul Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 172
Loc: Santa Clarita, CA
I wish. Talk about a beautiful vehicle.

Oh, I forgot to mention, he was in the middle of some project and had a satellite phone ( those things are big and heavy).

They invited me on their next year's trip; however in the end I declined. I don't know if you had a chance to look at his accomplishments. But here are just a few:

Producer:
Grand Canyon Adventure: River at Risk (2008) (producer)
The Alps (2007) (producer)
Mystery of the Nile (2005) (line producer)
Love Behind Bars (2003) (TV) (producer)
Top Speed (2003) (producer)
... aka MacGillivray Freeman's Top Speed (USA: complete title)
Adventures in Wild California (2000) (producer)
... aka MacGillivray Freeman's Adventures in Wild California (USA: complete title)


And this famous video: Cinematographer: Michael Jackson's "Thriller" video.

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#1787 - 01/20/10 11:11 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Paul]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
On wpsmb in the Personal locater beacons - the Yuppie's 911 thread:
Originally Posted By: Karen R
OK, I bought Son of Spot, not because I wanted it, but because it gives my family peace of mind. I hike/backpack solo. Even the most experienced person can be in the wrong place/wrong time. Spot is not 100% accurate, but my family relaxes when they get the I'm OK, and they'll know my last location if I go missing. Just another tool, not perfect. And yes, I'm annoyed by the extra weight and pushing the stupid buttons, but it's a fair trade off so they feel better.


Originally Posted By: BiletChick
Hey Karen
I haven't hiked solo yet, but the family still worries. I was given one for Christmas for the same reason as you...piece of mind for others.
I have not activated it yet so I can't comment on the accuracy. IMO SPOT is a great tool when used properly ie: tracking purposes. The 911 feature has always seemed to me like an easy way out for (inexperienced and/or unprepared) hikers...with no consequences when it's abused.


Karen and BiletChick (since you're both members here): Have you sent your units back in for the recall? I also got a SpotII for Xmas, and just got the mailer from them and sent it back. They're moving pretty slowly, so make the contact and get the process started.

The new units are nice -- quite a bit smaller and lighter. But the major drawback for hiking is the belt clip has been removed. I like to carry mine on my shoulder strap (old one shown here):

I'll have to create some sort of velcro strap or something to attach the new one.

As for accuracy, mine has been very good, except in canyons where the sky is not as accessible to the unit. And I loaned it to a friend who carried it on her hip belt, and almost NO signals got out!

And I use mine especially for family peace-of-mind. But then, if and emergency arises (probably never will), it's nice to have along.

My son is planning a southbound PCT hike this summer starting at the Canadian border in June, and he'll be taking the unit along. It will be lots of fun keeping track of his progress.

Incidentally, last Saturday, I put mine up on the ski rack before we started home -- to send one more OK checkpoint -- and then forgot and drove down the road. It fell off from over 6 ft onto the pavement going about 35 mph. Checked the unit tonight, and it still works fine. cool This is the second tumble it has taken; last one was down the back side of the Half Dome Diving Board. Very hardy units!

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#1788 - 01/20/10 11:21 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
The SPOT folks should set up a " Tell Your SPOT Unit survival Story" on a website, because I have heard and read many many stories about people forgetting them here and there and finding them on the road -- hours later -- in perfect working order.

I have SPOT, Sr., and I carry it in the pocket of my backpack belt, and it seems to work just fine. I used to carry it the same way you carry yours, Steve, but I lost it once during one of the rest stops when I flung off the backpack. Being in the pocket does not comply with the "upright" position that is instructed, but it seems to work fine. Drawback is that it IS like carrying a brick!

B
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#1789 - 01/20/10 11:36 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Bee]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Note the lanyard securing the unit to my strap! It is a camera lanyard that I installed for that very reason, after losing the unit on the Diving Board.

If yours works in a side pocket, I sure don't understand why my friend had so much trouble.

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#1790 - 01/20/10 11:42 PM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
Bee Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 1261
Loc: Northern California
The devices can be fussy at times. One of the things that they do NOT like is to bee in close proximity to a GPS device -- as your friend if this was the case. There is something about the competing signals in the close environment that causes the SPOT to cancel out. I have known a few people who could not figure out why their SPOT would be so troublesome, and when I mentioned the GPS issue (does not happen all of the time, BUT, I would consider it counter productive to place the device in a compromising situation) It works fine if one person carries the SPOT and another carries the GPS. I am not sure how far apart the devices should bee, but I err to the side of safe on this one. When I hike alone, I don't carry a GPS because I am very familiar with the terrain AND I have a map, too.

B
_________________________
The body betrays and the weather conspires, hopefully, not on the same day.

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#1796 - 01/21/10 08:21 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
BiletChick Offline


Registered: 12/10/09
Posts: 31
Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Steve-
Thanks for the info. I have the original SPOT, the bigger & heavier one. I'm aware of the recall for SPOT II. Is there a recall for the original one also?

I'll be heading to my local camera shop for a lanyard...good idea, thanks!

Best of luck to your son on his SOBO PCT!!!!

Stacy
_________________________
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#1797 - 01/21/10 08:37 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: BiletChick]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
It is only Spot II that is on recall.

I hope to make a number of resupply runs and hikes for him if he makes it down to Calif. ok.

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#1798 - 01/21/10 08:40 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Bee]
BiletChick Offline


Registered: 12/10/09
Posts: 31
Loc: Huntington Beach, CA
Bee-
Thanks for that tidbit of info...very important since I do plan on carrying the SPOT, my GPS, and maps (rookie hiker :)). I'll have to find a good place for both and hope there are no problems. Do you know if all GPS's have a negative effect on SPOT or just certain mfg's & models?
Thanks again,
Stacy
ps I know you usually don't do cold cold stuff, but are you coming down to LP this weekend for the AH hike?
_________________________
Picasa Web Albums

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#1799 - 01/21/10 08:46 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
duelmen3 Offline


Registered: 11/06/09
Posts: 11
Loc: San Dimas, CA
Hey Steve, Just wondering if your son has a trail journal for his thru hike. I like to follow a few journals every year and would like to follow his adventures as a SoBo. A link to the SPOT would be cool to follow as well.

Gary
_________________________
Everything I ever needed to know about parenting, I learned from watching Davey and Goliath

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#1802 - 01/21/10 10:38 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: duelmen3]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Gary, he's already getting set up for a journal, practicing with video updates, etc. He's even working on getting several units on his Ed Technology Masters at EMichU out of the process. So he's got a journal already to go:

    Mr. Cosner's PCT Adventure

He's got a link to my SPOT page already.

Check out the videos made with his camera on the hiking pole.

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#1803 - 01/21/10 11:59 AM Re: Article: SPOT Satellite Tracker [Re: Steve C]
duelmen3 Offline


Registered: 11/06/09
Posts: 11
Loc: San Dimas, CA
Thanks Steve. His is one that I am already following! I'm in SoCal and would be more than happy to help him out if he needs it when he gets to the San Gabriel's and I'm available. Looking forward to reading and tracking his adventure.

Gary
_________________________
Everything I ever needed to know about parenting, I learned from watching Davey and Goliath

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#2945 - 03/12/10 11:20 AM Re: SPOT II update [Re: duelmen3]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
I have just received my "SPOT II Satellite GPS Messenger" back from its recall, but I haven't registered it yet. I hope I can just transfer the service from the old unit.

When I received it back from the recall, there is an info paper included that shows the number of messages it is capable of sending out.

I have not compared closely, but my impression is that the new one will use up battery power much faster -- only a few days if running in Track mode (sending a signal every 5 minutes).

The main advantage seems to be size and weight, but with the power usage, it's a trade-off when compared to the older Spot Messenger.

Edit: OK, here's the battery life numbers...

-------- Sky View --------
Mode 100% Clear 50% obstructed
Check-in/OK/Custom msg: 700 msgs 350 msgs
Track progress 7 days 3.5 days
SOS/911 6 days 3 days


Edited by Steve C (03/12/10 10:29 PM)

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#2966 - 03/12/10 08:21 PM Re: SPOT II update [Re: Steve C]
Ken Offline


Registered: 10/29/09
Posts: 742
Loc: Los Angeles
Steve, will your son be at the kick-off?

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#2967 - 03/12/10 10:20 PM Re: SPOT II update [Re: Ken]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
No, Ken. He's hiking southbound, starting mid-June. Several days after his last teaching day. He's flying straight from Flint, MI, to Seattle.

Edit: Update on his trip: The PCT hike morphed into a coastal bicycle ride, ending in Morro Bay, Aug. 14.
All the details are here: Brett's PCT Adventure

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#3014 - 03/16/10 01:23 PM Re: SPOT II update [Re: Steve C]
Bob West Offline


Registered: 11/13/09
Posts: 780
Loc: Bishop, CA, USA
Although it took quite a while to get my new Spot II repaired (post-Oct purchase), it has worked very well in limited testing I've done over here on on the East side. Satellite acquisition is very fast in open terrain. Haven't tried it in heavy timber yet - waiting for Spring conditions.

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#6778 - 08/21/10 12:10 AM Re: SPOT II update [Re: Bob West]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
Resurrecting this thread....

On wpsmb, the question was asked:

"Does the SPOT II Tracker/Messenger work ok on the Main Whitney Trail?"

Yes, it does. I've seen the Spot tracks from several Whitney regulars, and it works well most of the time. Just be sure it is carried high on your pack facing the sky. I stick mine on the top of my pack's shoulder strap.

As for its not working sometimes: I've seen Spot tracks where an erroneous location was sent, showing the position maybe a half mile south of the person's obvious location. Those things can happen in canyons like Whitney Portal. Mine reported a bad location along the Vernal Falls trail in Yosemite last time I was there. But the majority of locations are exactly right on the trail.

And once in a while, there will be NO signal getting out. That happened along Bubbs Creek in Kings Canyon. The canyon walls are so high that the unit either could not "see" enough satellites to get a good location, or could not send its signal to an overhead satellite.

The other mistake users make with the unit is to turn it on, send an OK signal, and turn it off as soon as its lights blink that a signal was sent. However, even if a signal was sent, there are time periods when no receiving satellite is overhead, so the "sent" signal is never received. The unit should be left on at least 20 minutes, maybe even longer, to ensure an OK signal gets out.


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#7027 - 09/01/10 09:19 AM Re: SPOT II update [Re: Steve C]
tdtz Offline


Registered: 08/26/10
Posts: 511
Loc: CA
over on the WPS site someone mentioned that one flaw with the SPOT Tracker information is that it is deleted after 30 days (actually, it was deleted after a week for me) and therefore it was useful as a history or memento of hikes if the hikes were prolonged (such as the JMT).

A friend turned me on to this site:
www.spotwalla.com

you can (pre)set up trips by dates and the site will grab the data from your SPOT shared page and will automatically create and update a permanent webpage with the visual data.

This link is set up to record any SPOT activity from noon until midnight today. When I go for my evening hike it will automatically fill in the information and show a map of my hike. Right now it will only show a world map until it starts getting data.
http://spotwalla.com/tripViewer.php?id=1eb54c7e7c90a455c

Tom

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