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PostPosted: July 22nd, 2019, 10:40 am 
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Joined: February 12th, 2008, 6:01 pm
Posts: 438
Location: North Bay, Ontario
Hi, just back from a nearly-aborted solo trip due to an issue with my InReach

As usual I had synched the unit and updated the usage plan before the trip, and everything seemed to be OK.

I had promised my wife that I would message her the first night just to assure her that things were OK. After I made camp, I turned on the unit, and I couldn't see anything. I looked at it again in a darker spot and I could just barely make out that there was text there, but I couldn't read it. Long story short: what had apparently happened was that, during the synch, the screen brightness had been set to its lowest level. It was nearly impossible for me to navigate the menu's because I simply could not read the screen. Maybe if I had had reading glasses, but I didn't. After an hour of trying I gave up and was ready to abort the trip the next morning. However I gave it another shot the next morning and managed to bring the screen brightness up to a level where I could read it. This was done mainly through random trial and error, as I simply could not read the screen and don't use it so often that I have the menu's memorized.

So lesson learn. After a synch, always test the unit thoroughly outside. They recommend that, and it is certainly necessary. I was able to message my wife and do the trip. I don't like being dependent on this piece of tech, but so it goes.

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: July 22nd, 2019, 2:25 pm 
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Joined: February 10th, 2008, 4:41 pm
Posts: 320
All electronics fail sooner or later.
Personally, I leave them at home.
Better to expect no message than to have the expectation not met.


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PostPosted: July 22nd, 2019, 3:34 pm 
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Joined: February 12th, 2008, 6:01 pm
Posts: 438
Location: North Bay, Ontario
Stencil wrote:
All electronics fail sooner or later.
Personally, I leave them at home.
Better to expect no message than to have the expectation not met.


I pretty much agree with you. I chose to buy this thing not so much for my own safety, but because I have elderly relatives who could take a turn for the worse at any time and I felt I had to be reachable. Also, now that the devices are available and relatively cheap, it feels nearly irresponsible to go on an extended trip without one, since a search and rescue could endanger others. But still, back in the day we would do such trips and think nothing of it.

Actually, in this case the device did not actually fail. It was my fault for not thoroughly testing it before I left.

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: July 23rd, 2019, 5:59 am 
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Joined: August 27th, 2002, 7:00 pm
Posts: 2510
Location: Geraldton, Ontario Can
I sync my inreach with my cellphone. Only turn them on when I want to send or check for messages. Can last for months that way. Much easier to send or read messages on the cell.


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PostPosted: July 23rd, 2019, 7:35 am 
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Joined: February 12th, 2008, 6:01 pm
Posts: 438
Location: North Bay, Ontario
RHaslam wrote:
I sync my inreach with my cellphone. Only turn them on when I want to send or check for messages. Can last for months that way. Much easier to send or read messages on the cell.


I don't own a cell phone. I too only turn it on once or twice a day. No tracking, social media or anything like that. I think from now on I will NOT promise to send anyone a message, and use it only to receive emergency messages or to use the dreaded SOS key. And of course test it thoroughly before I leave. I have to wonder why they would have a screen brightness setting that makes the screen basically unreadable.

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: July 23rd, 2019, 7:59 am 
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Joined: February 12th, 2004, 9:28 am
Posts: 2245
Location: Waterloo, ON
I love my InReach and do use it to message on trips. That includes a trip last September where the harness came off one of the canoe packs (glue wore out after 10+ years), so we texted home to have someone check how booked that lake was and stayed there an extra night rather than moving further since we were going to be coming back out the same way.

That said, I too have had a tough time finding that friggin menu to turn up the brightness. Maybe not quite as bad as you describe but it was a pain and could definitely be improved.

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