Midwest Dualsport Motorcycle Community 

Pull up a couch. It's cool in the Lounge. Just remember to be a good neighbor.
 #17603  by ajayhawkfan
 06 Jul 2015 10:44
I just read Troy were he mentioned how he likes riding alone and how that can be dangerous. Most of my riding I do is by myself so I purchased a SPOT messenger with the hope I would never use it.

Over the 4th of July weekend my wife and I went West to the mountains to celebrate our 34th wedding anniversary and do some dual sport riding. We were riding some switchbacks and my wife went down hard. I had no cell service so pushed the spot button. They contacted rescue immediately. Shortly after that a couple in a jeep came by and was able to get a cell signal and was able to talk to 911 and tell them it was not a life or death but an ambulance was needed. Shortly thereafter rescue was there. And Ann was transported to the hospital with a broken collarbone.


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After getting off the mountain I contacted SPOT because I had a phone message from them. They told me who they contacted for the rescue and mentioned they called everyone on my emergency list.

That experience has sold me on the SPOT Messenger. If you don't have one I recommend you consider it.

We are still in mountains of NM enjoying Taos but not riding like we planned.
 #17608  by troy
 06 Jul 2015 15:43
OUCH! I'm so sorry to hear Ann had a hard impact with the ground. :cry: I am praying for quick healing. Glad you are both still enjoying some time together out there.

I haven't done any solo ride adventures in some time. If I do again, I will definitely think to get a SPOT or borrow one from a friend as I have in the past. They make it relatively easy to log onto the web and change the contact info temporarily. That's what I did when borrowing Luc's.

Maybe we need an official shared "RideForum.NET Spot" for folks to use on their adventures---first come first serve.
 #17623  by gagnaou
 07 Jul 2015 11:55
Ouch that must have hurt, sorry to hear!

Now I love my SPOT and more importantly because I know that every 5 minutes it is going to update my position. When I leave home by myself I typically never really know exactly where I will go and I know that if I need to be found it will be a good starting point. As far as my use of the 911 feature, the one time I used it, they ended up having to call me to ask me about my location ;-) kind of defeated the purpose of finding you even when you are out of range.

But regardless I think that it is a must have for any wanderer like me.
 #17636  by katbeanz
 08 Jul 2015 17:38
Ouch! I wish her the speediest recovery possible, she was so gracious and kind at the Atchison rally. :D
 #17659  by ajayhawkfan
 13 Jul 2015 13:55
Ann just got out of the dr's office. She will need surgery to put her collarbone back together. Normally with collarbones they will move back into place and then fuse. Hers is severed and needs to be reconnected in order for it to heal. Her surgery is set for new Tuesday.
 #17660  by ajayhawkfan
 13 Jul 2015 14:02
gagnaou wrote:Ouch that must have hurt, sorry to hear!

Now I love my SPOT and more importantly because I know that every 5 minutes it is going to update my position. When I leave home by myself I typically never really know exactly where I will go and I know that if I need to be found it will be a good starting point. As far as my use of the 911 feature, the one time I used it, they ended up having to call me to ask me about my location ;-) kind of defeated the purpose of finding you even when you are out of range.

But regardless I think that it is a must have for any wanderer like me.
When I got off the mountain I has a message from SPOT on my phone. They wanted to confirm if there was an accident. Hearing that I thought that same, what good is it if they call in confirm in order to send help? I called and talked to SPOT to find out. Their practice is to dispatch help as soon as the signal comes in. They then call your number AND all numbers on the emergency list to try to get additional information to pass on to the rescue team.

While on vacation in the mountains I got an email to renew SPOT for another year. That was done as soon as I got home. I won't leave home without it.
 #17686  by ajayhawkfan
 20 Jul 2015 11:55
Ann is having surgery tomorrow. The dr. is putting in a plate to repair the collarbone. It is not major surgery but it is surgery. Please keep her in your prayers. I'll let you know how it goes as soon as I can.

Thanks,
Eddie
 #17687  by troy
 20 Jul 2015 16:39
Ann has my prayers for quick 100% healing.
 #17688  by Hank Moody
 20 Jul 2015 19:20
Wow, she broke it good. When I saw the x-ray I thought surgery, but you just don't know. Make sure she does her Physical Therapy! I didn't follow through and I'm paying for it now.

Prayers for a speedy recovery.
 #18203  by Jengel451
 16 Sep 2015 08:56
Dang, that sucks. But it does show the value in the trackers.

I used the Spot for a number of years, most of my rides have been solo in the mountains for days at a time. Here are my findings.

Spot is "Ok" but the sat coverage is iffy at best, if you have it facing south, and you have a clear southern exposure to the sky, you're probably fine. Otherwise it's a gamble. I have set my Spot up to track an entire day, and only captured about 1/3 of it. The "What If" scenario's come into mind.

2 years ago, I switch over to the Delorme InReach, so far, the coverage is WAY better, I have only missed a few track pings in probably 3000 off road miles.

The added benefit in my mind, is the ability to have 2 way communications with the search crew, being able to tell them the status of the situation, what's needed etc. It can make the difference of sending a full on Helo extraction, or someone with a quad and a splint etc.

Last benefit, you can set up a monthly plan, and turn it off during months you're not going to use it.

Just my 2 cents.
 #18204  by kendall_smith
 16 Sep 2015 10:14
Jengel451 wrote:Dang, that sucks. But it does show the value in the trackers.

I used the Spot for a number of years, most of my rides have been solo in the mountains for days at a time. Here are my findings.

Spot is "Ok" but the sat coverage is iffy at best, if you have it facing south, and you have a clear southern exposure to the sky, you're probably fine. Otherwise it's a gamble. I have set my Spot up to track an entire day, and only captured about 1/3 of it. The "What If" scenario's come into mind.

2 years ago, I switch over to the Delorme InReach, so far, the coverage is WAY better, I have only missed a few track pings in probably 3000 off road miles.

The added benefit in my mind, is the ability to have 2 way communications with the search crew, being able to tell them the status of the situation, what's needed etc. It can make the difference of sending a full on Helo extraction, or someone with a quad and a splint etc.

Last benefit, you can set up a monthly plan, and turn it off during months you're not going to use it.

Just my 2 cents.
Thanks for that comparison, Jengel! I have a Spot Gen 3 that I haven't had activated for a little over a year and was considering turning it back on soon. I may have to look into the InReach- that sounds like a worthy competitor to the Spot. I really like the ability to turn it off when you're not using it. That was one of the reasons I let my Spot subscription lapse, especially since I had a plan with way more features than I needed that ended up being too expensive to justify having.

I'll have to comparison shop between the two and their respective plans and get one up and running again.
 #18206  by troy
 16 Sep 2015 10:17
LET ME KNOW what you find out, Kendall!
 #18208  by Jengel451
 16 Sep 2015 10:40
there are two devices to chose from, the SE and the Explorer, the main difference is that the explorer includes internal mapping suite. Again personal preference, but I've found that putting all your eggs in one basket is risky out in the wild.

Here's my setup:
Montana 600 for maping/tracks
Inreach SE
Phone with offline maps, and Delorme maps to synch with InReach.
Compass/paper map

That way, I have potentially two separate ways to communicate, and I have three ways of figuring out where I am.

Here's the crazy bit, I was in Death Valley, and there were a few times that none of the above would lock on, even the compass was off.
 #18212  by Jengel451
 16 Sep 2015 13:00
I think being in the Pacific NW had a lot to do with coverage, Spot uses Globalstar which is a bit limited up north. Inreach uses the Iridium network which, back when it was being built had some very deep pockets (NSA/DOD) funding a lot of the satellite launches.
 #18213  by MoRidin
 16 Sep 2015 14:08
You guys should check out some of the very good options made by ACR. These are true 406 MHz portable (very) handheld emergency locator transistors.

A good friend of ours (I think he posts here too) has one:

http://www.thegpsstore.com/ACR-2881-Res ... oCfgjw_wcB

These are "all in" devices. Not good for "I ran out of gas" - or "It is too muddy and I can't get my BMW unstuck". These are reserved for "Troy just broke his femur and has a sucking chest wound". Once you pull the ELT, it is the same result as a plane crashing. You will have some serious repercussions if you simply got the big GS wadded up in the mud...

The good news is that the initial cost is pretty low and there are no annual fees ever. Since these are lifeline devices, they recommended that the internal battery be replaced every five years - which is < $100. So figure $20 annually to have a device that WILL get a helicopter to your location anywhere in the USA.

Definitely worth having. I don't own one, but may add one this year. When we go deep in the back country, I always feel safer knowing it is there. I don't make it a habit to borrow gear, but I have asked to borrow it on several occasions.
 #18214  by Jengel451
 16 Sep 2015 15:18
Nice unit, along the lines of avalanche beacons. Nice to see the price coming down. You're right though, it's an "all in" device.
 #18268  by kendall_smith
 24 Sep 2015 14:21
troy wrote:LET ME KNOW what you find out, Kendall!
Well, I just logged into my SPOT account and I think I am going to go a different direction in the near future. Unfortunately, SPOT does not allow you to choose only the features you want/need and instead forces you to buy their "package" deal which includes a bunch of features I don't want or need. They try to butter you up by saying that the tracking feature is "included" with my baseline $149.99 per year subscription fee and that is one of the features I don't need- I already have a GPS for that.

I am going to look into that ACR unit that MoRIdin posted. I figure if I can sell my SPOT Gen 3 and forego the $150+ reactivation fee, that $250 one time fee for the ACR will be easier to swallow. In the end, the only feature I truly need or want is the ability to get help if I or someone else with me has a bad accident and needs immediate help. Short of that, I think I will take my chances on being able to get myself out of trouble. I've done it before, I can do it again! :lol:

If anyone is interested in buying my SPOT Gen 3, shoot me a PM.
 #18283  by Hayden
 28 Sep 2015 08:04
Do keep in mind guys that a SPOT is not just for riding. I wear mine around the ranch I work on all the time. I had a close call this year while cutting up a Cotton Wood tree that fell during a storm back in may. It was 7' across at the base. I was cutting a branch that was about 4' across when it shifted and came my way. I was standing on the trunk about 5' off the ground. I stepped back and tripped. I threw the saw, took a tumble and ended up on the ground with the 4' in dia branch I cut coming my way. It missed me by a couple a feet and I stood there thinking what if. I was by myself, no one knew where I was at, what I was doing and I wasnt expected at work the next couple of days. Land owner was gone as well. I had my big CAT hoe and skid sitting there running. If I had been pinned by the branch, i could have been there a long time before someone came a look'n. I now wear mine all the time out here.

Hayden.