Spot X

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IntrepidXJ

ADVENTR
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Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
3,070
Yes, I've been using one since they came out. The first one I got had some battery issues, but they eventually replaced my device and I haven't had a problem since. Aside from the early battery issues I've never had a problem with messages and tracking not going through and it seems just as reliable as my Gen3 was.

My biggest complaint is the keyboard is a little tough to type on, especially with big fingers, but it's usable....just slow.
 

fossana

Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
266
I switched from an older Spot to an In-Reach Mini out of principle. Spot stopped sending out an annual email notifications about subscription renewal, after which there were significant hikes in the rate. One year there was a $60 jump.
 

Nick

Spiral out.
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Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
12,655
I’ve been using an Inreach SE since it came out and plan on getting a mini sometime soon. The Spot just looks enormous. Other than price I feel like it’d be pretty hard to justify over the inreach and for that type of item I don’t think the price difference is that significant. View attachment 74160From Skurka’s review:
Yeesh! Yeah, that is big. I've been struggling a bit with the weight of it but haven't actually seen one in person so that's good to see. I had the first InReach and it was absolutely horrible. Maybe I need to give it another look.
 

Brendan S

Member
Joined
Mar 19, 2016
Messages
294
Yeesh! Yeah, that is big. I've been struggling a bit with the weight of it but haven't actually seen one in person so that's good to see. I had the first InReach and it was absolutely horrible. Maybe I need to give it another look.
The SE I have has always been fine and there have been firmware updates that have provided real improvements over time. I typically have my phone for navigation and the pairing with the Earthmate app works well for messaging.
 

fossana

Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
266
The Garmin/Delorme maps are pretty much useless for detail, so I primarily use the Backcountry Navigator on my Droid and carry the Mini (with the most basic plan) in case of an emergency. Some features are meant for phone pairing, but basic ones (e.g. canned texts) are standalone. If you do get one, set aside some time for activation and potentially a call to tech support. It was slightly painful.

Adding that they were pricey when they first came in out in comparison to the mapping units, but I suspect stores are offering discounts now. My Spot plan was up and it was alpine season, so I had to pay full price.
 
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River

Member
Joined
Jan 26, 2012
Messages
419
Definitely give the Mini a look. The Gen 1 was a pain, but the SE has been great for me. If I upgrade, it would be to the Mini. It's easy enough to pair to a smart phone for typing and I'm carrying that anyway for navigation. Also, I believe the Inreach uses Iridium satellites which seem to have better coverage.
 

Carcass

Member
Joined
Aug 8, 2018
Messages
196
I am very happy with my inreach. It's taken some unintended abuse and lived. Even got messages through in some slot sections.
 

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wsp_scott

Member
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Joined
May 16, 2016
Messages
533
I have the most basic/cheap plan, I very rarely type a specific message, I just ping my wife with a "everything is fine" message and she can see me on the map if she cares. Every once in a while I text her a specific message, but you get 10 free texts each month. The generic messages are all free no matter how many you use. I also don't care about tracking, so that doesn't enter into my decision.
 

swmalone

Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2016
Messages
258
I have the most basic/cheap plan, I very rarely type a specific message, I just ping my wife with a "everything is fine" message and she can see me on the map if she cares. Every once in a while I text her a specific message, but you get 10 free texts each month. The generic messages are all free no matter how many you use. I also don't care about tracking, so that doesn't enter into my decision.

So your position on the map is available for her to see even without the tracking? That was one of the issues I was concerned about with getting the safety plan.
 

Stephanie B

Steph and Blake
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Joined
Dec 7, 2017
Messages
147
We've had an inReach for a few years. Definitely like the ability to pair it with a phone for both typing messages as well as having a bigger screen on the phone.
 

Nick

Spiral out.
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Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
12,655
So your position on the map is available for her to see even without the tracking? That was one of the issues I was concerned about with getting the safety plan.
She’ll only see points when you sent out some type of message.
 

wsp_scott

Member
.
Joined
May 16, 2016
Messages
533
So your position on the map is available for her to see even without the tracking? That was one of the issues I was concerned about with getting the safety plan.
You get 3 different auto messages that you can customize. My most used one says something like "trip going as planned", when I send that it also sends the gps coordinates and a link that shows the location on a map. So it is not automatic like tracking, but it lets someone know where you are if you choose to tell them.
 

Stephanie B

Steph and Blake
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Joined
Dec 7, 2017
Messages
147
I just consulted with Blake and he confirmed that there's a way on the inReach to invite/allow someone to follow you in real time via their computer (or possibly phones - not sure). Actually, now that I think about it, we used this feature a few years ago to aid friends hiking the Arizona Trail. They once had to hike "off" of their printed maps to find a source of water. They texted me to ask which direction they should go, how far, what's the terrain, etc. I got on the computer, located their "dot", and got them going to a ranch house. This feature could be very helpful, I would think, if you get lost or confused AND you have family or friends that are savvy with maps.
 

Stephanie B

Steph and Blake
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Joined
Dec 7, 2017
Messages
147
Also, Nick, not sure if the Spot can do this or not but getting hourly (or perhaps it's every 2 or 3 hours) weather updates on the inReach has proven to be very useful to us many times when we've been off the grid. And, I think you can get weather for locations other than where you happen to be at the moment.
 

Yvonne

I lava it!!!
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Joined
Jan 19, 2012
Messages
2,993
I used my dividends and bought the In Reach Mini. Even though I barely backpack, I do get out in the backcountry on long extended day hikes. You never know, even on day hikes, you can get in trouble.
So what plans do you guys use?
 

Stephanie B

Steph and Blake
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Joined
Dec 7, 2017
Messages
147
I used my dividends and bought the In Reach Mini. Even though I barely backpack, I do get out in the backcountry on long extended day hikes. You never know, even on day hikes, you can get in trouble.
So what plans do you guys use?
Hi, Yvonne.

We have the Safety Plan for $11.95/month.

Safety Plan Details
  • Unlimited SOS (hope never to use it!!!)
  • 10 text messages/month
  • Unlimited Preset messages (predefined messages set up on the website)
  • Tracking points: $0.10 USD for each point
  • Overages are $0.50 USD for each text message over the 10 messages allowed in the monthly plan period.
  • Text messages include free-form sent messages and received messages.
  • Tracking points refer to the individual "breadcrumbs" sent by the inReach at user-selected intervals ranging from 10 minutes to 4 hours.
 

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,198
I used my dividends and bought the In Reach Mini. Even though I barely backpack, I do get out in the backcountry on long extended day hikes. You never know, even on day hikes, you can get in trouble.
So what plans do you guys use?
I use the plan of telling the wife my route and times. And have a backup. Never had a need for anything else
 

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