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Posted: 3/16/2002 2:50:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/16/2002 3:03:03 PM EDT by Derek45]
My Father in Law is retiring and wants to hike the entire Appalachian mountian trail. From Georgia to Maine. I told Him should take My cell phone in case he gets hurt or in trouble, but he say's it won't have coverage up there. Anybody know if it's worth talking this old timer into packing a phone? His Family is worried. He's 66 years old.
Link Posted: 3/16/2002 3:32:19 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/16/2002 3:37:32 PM EDT
Why not consider satellite telephone. Not cheap, but excellent coverage. [url]http://www.globalstar.com/[/url] Link as example. Put "satellite telephone" into Google for more.
Link Posted: 3/16/2002 3:52:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/16/2002 3:54:00 PM EDT by Garand_Shooter]
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 5:03:54 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/17/2002 5:04:31 AM EDT by Derek45]
Originally Posted By Garand_Shooter: If he is serious, tell him to get a technician class amatuer radio license. A 2m(VHF) radio is small and light, can be powered by AA batteries or any 12v power supply, and there should be repeaters that he can hit from the entire route, if not with the stock rubber duck antenna than certainly with a I seriously doubt there is any place on the trail that you wouldn't be able to contact someone on 2M, ... [url]www.arrl.org[/url]
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Not enough time, He's leaving in less than 2 weeks. I've got an advanced class license but he's not interested. He read morse code in the USAF back in the 1950's, he could, he could get a general class if He wanted to.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 5:46:23 AM EDT
There will be places were the phone will work, and many places it won't. I live in central WV, the hart of the Appalachian mountians, cell phone receptions will probably be spotty, but it should work near many of the towns along the way. Call you cell phone company and ask them if they know about service along the trail.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 6:05:33 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/17/2002 6:09:08 AM EDT by COZ]
I too live in central WV and like Jeff said cell phone coverage is sporadic but enough to be definately worth taking a phone for safety! If a cell phone and charger overload you then your hurting! You should insist he take it! I always take mine in the woods hunting. You never know what may happen. Nice bit of assurance. Besides you'd be surprised how far these things reach when your up high in elevation.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 6:39:02 AM EDT
Best advice? Dont go alone. Go with another person. Oh yeah, take a cell phone, but don't rely on it. Buy a hand held CB radio and make a 1/2 wave dipole antenna made from extension cord cable (cheap) and some coax, cut for channel 19 to hang in a tree for it. Don't use rubber duckie antennas, they are practically useless. I would look into those emergency distress beacons that skiers use. Also check with the Forestry service and get their advice....and follow it!
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 7:05:09 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 1:22:52 PM EDT
I would strongly recommend him going with a group, no matter how experienced (is he?) and strong he is. Things can happen. And do. If there is no one else making the same hike, maybe he could at least arrange to be part of several other shorter group trips that together would span the entire route with a few solo legs. However, you can let him know that I made some solo trips myself at about 1/3 his age, and after a while, being alone wasn't much fun anymore, especially that time when the rock under my foot came loose and I had to drag myself back to civilzation with one good leg.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 1:29:28 PM EDT
FCC rules allow use of any frequency in an emergency. Every ham knows this and will respond appropriately if he should get on in an emergency. Take the ham radio and forget about the CB.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 1:34:08 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/17/2002 1:35:38 PM EDT by MC_Man]
Most cell phone providers have a map of their coverage. I planned a motorcycle trip from Tampa, FL to Sturgis, SD and obtained one of these maps. It clearly showed where you can or cannot make/receive a call.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 2:47:21 PM EDT
Get a sat phone! Cells only really work well in flat areas like Florida and the eastern seaboard and area's where there are enough towers to provide good coverage.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 3:41:51 PM EDT
Realistic, he won't need one. You have the chance of communication at least every other day (for some exceptions of course). If saftey is his concearn (from two legged animals), a .22 in the backpack will suffice (area with bears have designated shelters for sleeping). Honestly, part of the experience of hiking 2100 miles is different for everybody who undertakes this trek, but I didn't see a single person with a cell phone back in '91. Believe me, he won't be the only one starting, and most people will give you the "shirt of thier back" if needed (he'll make numerous friends). Tell you're family that he'll have a great time if he's physically prepared for those first 300 miles of mountains in Ga, N.C, and Tn. Also tell him to keep his backpack under 45lbs and he won't have a problem.
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 7:56:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/18/2002 6:44:12 PM EDT by FNFalGuy]
I wouldn't say that I came remotely close to hiking the entire Appalacian Trail, but I have done bits and pieces of it in North Carolina. We tried using cell phones, just as a safety precaution and had very little luck. The FRS radios were great to keep touch with each other when we got separated by more than a few hundred yards. From my time on the trail, the following MUST BE ADDRESSED: 1 Don't go alone, it's too easy to get lost and/or be hurt and far away from civilzation. 2 Take a water filter with you. The terrain will make you drink tons of water and before you know it, you'll be out of water! We filtered water out of all sorts of nasty locales, with no ill effects (Pur Voyager Series) 3 Have some sort of communication with you, just in case you have to "reach out and touch someone if you get hurt or lost". There is still no guarantee that you'll get enough reception, but bring the phone/radios along just in case. 4 Wear the right shoes. I didn't invest in good hiking boots and my feet and ankles were raw! I now have a $300 pair of boots and my feet are just fine! 5 Pack light, but keep the essentials (sleeping bag, fire starting equip, tent, compass, first aid stuffs, food, small flash light, knife and personal hygene products). 6 Hang your food HIGH in a tree and over a ravine, if possible. We had a black bear come into our camp twice the same evening, trying to get to our food. Bears and in some areas, wild pigs are a real risk to hikers(per the Rangers that we spoke with). 7 We climbed alot of rough terrain and risked, falling off the damn mountain. There are plenty of places to fall to your death, so pick your trail and / or path wisely. ... as cool as hiking the Appalician Trail is, it isn't a bike trail, near any sort of thriving city,so BE CAREFUL!
Link Posted: 3/17/2002 7:56:59 PM EDT
Tell him to bring a gun. It might be illegal in some of the states, but there have been murders of hikers and campers on the AP Trail in Pennsylvania and Virginia. GunLvr
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