Big Bend Conservancy
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I have been to BTSR twice for their week long summer camp. In what program will you be participating? If it is regular summer camp program, you and your Scouts will be at Base Camp which is nestled inside a canyon with a creek running down the middle, where there is plenty of water and available shade. It cools off at night being at 5000+ feet. Base Camp has landline phone service, might even have radio. Hundreds of youth and adults enjoy that camp every summer, so I am a bit jealous because that canyon is such a gorgeous place.
I'm surprised the Boy Scouts haven't shut down the camp for a couple of weeks to conduct an eval of what changes might be needed.
I use a sat phone when hiking by myself in Colorado. It does take a few minutes to get the green light in the valleys, but even in South Colony Lakes (a typical narrow high mountain valley) I had talkable service for 4-5 minutes. Plenty of time to get a message out. As a SAR dude, you know how important it is to have a the best info available so that the RIGHT resources in the CORRECT quantity can be deployed for each emergency. A two way communication is best for this exchange. Spots can't do this. You have bad info on cost, which makes me think you have bad info on coverage and use. If a sat phone won't work, a radio sure won't work in the same location.Find the local phone numbers for their 911 systems before leaving. Besides, if their system is like most, they are set up to transfer phone calls between agencies very easily. Conversely, when it comes to one agency talking to another agency via their respective radio systems, it turns into a total $--t show because they just don't talk the same way. This is who I use in Colorado. The county SAR people are not going to charge the Sat phone renter anything for a call.http://www.roadpost.com/Iridium-Satellite-Phone-Rentals-P704C279.aspx?UserID=377215348&SessionID=EV4gbZfpioNWEbEf7Nvp&source=hp#gsc.tab=0
PLB versus SPOT versus InReach. Transmission power:PLB - 5 watts for 24 hours. SPOT/InReach - 0.6 watts and not sure of the time. Case closed. Wayne Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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