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Advice needed In Reach Mini

Discussion in 'Backcountry' started by currawong, Jul 30, 2019.

  1. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    I'm about to pull the trigger on an InReach Mini. Requirements are pretty tame. For use with side-country skiing, cycling (say 1/2 day) with bits out of phone range and some inland and enclosed waters kayaking. tracking, preset messages, the occasional location ping and SOS. +1 will be main user so I can be kept informed.

    I'm thinking the base level "safety" plan, with the "freedom" option to only pay for months where you intend using it. I figure break even compared to annual plan is 9 months.

    any gotchas I should be aware of? any reasons not to do this (except probable overkill)
     
    Seth likes this.
  2. zapruda

    zapruda One of Us

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    Not really. There is an annual fee of $25ish. I use the most basic month to month plan. I send the odd custom message but figure I would have to send a lot to come close to being equal to the more expensive unlimited plan.

    The interface is a bit annoying and clunky but being able to send my partner a msg and receive one back when in the bush on long trips is amazing. A simple “all safe” msg is priceless, as is “don’t cook dinner, I’m getting beers and thai on the way home!”

    I was hesitant to leave the PLB at home at first but I am confident that this will do the job if I ever need it.

    My partner really likes the link to my location when I send her a msg. Now after all these years she believes I’m in the bush and not at the pub. Finally!

    Do it. You won’t regret it.
     
    skifree, Chaeron and currawong like this.
  3. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Hmmmm. Have had an InReach SE for a number of years and like it. Thing I don't like about the mini is it is useless without a functional smart phone. So in the back country you become dependent on two rather than one piece of technology.
     
  4. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    is it useless, or just takes away some functions, eg the custom message option and ability to retrace your route? I thought that core functions like location pings, preset messages and, most importantly, SOS, would be independent of phone
     
  5. zapruda

    zapruda One of Us

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    It is all independent of a phone.

    Some things are easier than others. It takes 3 easy clicks to send a preset msg. Sending a custom msg can be frustrating but it is completely doable.

    On the other hand it takes 2 secs to connect to the phone and type a custom msg. I don’t see a problem using the phone.

    I rarely need to though. I use the device standalone 95% of the time.
     
    Fozzie Bear and currawong like this.
  6. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Okay.... happy to be mistaken. And is a back up for when all else fails, so hopefully, like insurance, is never required
     
    currawong and zapruda like this.
  7. Kanangra

    Kanangra Early Days

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    They're great but as usual Garmin have an overly complex set of websites/apps to support it. I find the preset messages (that are unlimited and free) do the job. Battery life excellent. Not super sensitive GPS, but that just means you have to be totally outside - not an issue in the BC.

    You have to remember to add/delete the message recipients on the website before you head out, but that's no more difficult than remembering your boots.
     
    skifree, zapruda and currawong like this.