Has Anyone Used The Bivystick?

DrNed

The mountains are calling and I must go
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Mar 31, 2013
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Preparing for two different week long backpacking trips this summer and for the first time
I'd like to get a satellite communicator.

I'm sure everyone has their favorite but has anyone used the bivystick? If so what are your thoughts?

Thanks
 

Jackson

I like to go outside.
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May 31, 2015
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2,545
Good to see some more competition entering the market. The Amazon reviews, although limited, seem good. I'm interested to see if anyone's tried one.
 

DrNed

The mountains are calling and I must go
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Joined
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Good to see some more competition entering the market. The Amazon reviews, although limited, seem good. I'm interested to see if anyone's tried one.
Agreed.

There doesn't seem to be a clear favorite between Garmin & Spot so I'm looking elsewhere.
I also came across this one - Somewearlabs.com

My dilemma is the new devices are priced better than the Garmin & Spot but not significantly.
Then there's the reliability. While some people like one device and some like another. Those
that have been around for awhile have some proven reliability.

My other dilemma is these new ones rely on connecting to your phone to send messages.
What if my phone falls in during a simple river crossing? (done that) Have I lost my ability to
send for help in an emergency?

I was hoping someone would say, "I've used that one, it's great!"

I'll probably end going with one of the Garmins.
 

Brendan S

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Mar 19, 2016
Messages
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You can definitely still use the inreach units on their own.

BPL has a pretty extensive review of the mini Here

Agree that it’s good to have some other competition. For right now I’d probably go with something with a bit of a track record but the bivystick does look interesting.
 

regehr

Member
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Mar 28, 2012
Messages
1,475
ugh-- I'm definitely interested in a device like this but am never going to pull the trigger as long as they require a plan. just let me pay for what I use! (I know I can probably start and stop plans, but I don't want to do that)
 

Jackson

I like to go outside.
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Joined
May 31, 2015
Messages
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ugh-- I'm definitely interested in a device like this but am never going to pull the trigger as long as they require a plan. just let me pay for what I use! (I know I can probably start and stop plans, but I don't want to do that)
That's where I stand too. I've just rented them from Skycall Satellite when I've needed them, but even doing that 5-10 times ends up costing as much as just buying a unit. It's all very frustrating.
 

RyanP

Formerly bob32
Joined
Mar 1, 2015
Messages
304
If you don't want to pay for a plan/subscription, you may want to consider a personal locator beacon (PLB) instead. I got my ACR PLB few years ago for a one-time cost of under $250 (the annual REI 20% off deal is great for things like this!). I didn't do a ton of research before buying it, and this was a few years ago, but from what I could tell it would suit my needs better than a SPOT. I don't really want the capability to send "I'm OK" messages---I told my wife that if she doesn't hear from the SAR crew, then that means I'm okay. And I think it's more reliable than the SPOT. The Garmin (and similar devices) are admittedly the best of the bunch, since they allow 2-way communication in the case of an emergency (which would be extremely useful for many emergencies), but they cost quite a bit more as well.

I agree that this device looks intriguing and more competition is good, but I would also personally prefer something with more of a track record.
 

DrNed

The mountains are calling and I must go
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Joined
Mar 31, 2013
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So I've been doing some more shopping and
came across this site laminashops.com

They've got an inreach mini for $260 less than
everyone else.

I like finding good deals but when it becomes
too good I get a little nervous.

Anyone ever shopped at this site?
 

DrNed

The mountains are calling and I must go
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Joined
Mar 31, 2013
Messages
1,016
Also found on the Garmin site that they
offer a Freedom Plan which is basically
a month to month subscription, turning
service on and off as needed.

I think that's what I'm going to do.
 

Perry

Formerly Cuberant
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Aug 8, 2016
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I used the Freedom Plan for the first two years I've had my InReach Explorer and now Explorer+. It is nice to be able to turn it on and off. I recently switched to an annual plan as I was just on the cusp of having it activated frequently enough of the year to be at the same cost. I decided it would be nice to not have to remember to turn it off and on all the time. Besides, now I feel guilty if I don't get out all the time because I'd just be wasting money :D.
 

wsp_scott

Member
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May 16, 2016
Messages
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I used the Freedom Plan for the first two years I've had my InReach Explorer and now Explorer+. It is nice to be able to turn it on and off. I recently switched to an annual plan as I was just on the cusp of having it activated frequently enough of the year to be at the same cost. I decided it would be nice to not have to remember to turn it off and on all the time. Besides, now I feel guilty if I don't get out all the time because I'd just be wasting money :D.

I did the same thing, when you realize it is going to be activated for 7 or 8 months, might as well switch to the annual plan
 
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