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Gambit McCrae
03-02-2018, 12:35
I have typed out and deleted this 3 times now....

In todays time we live in a society that is strongly driven by our handheld devices.

In todays time we, we being hikers as a majority, are weight conscious.

I as a hiker have an Iphone 7 plus. It is my camera, my phone, my map, my entertainment that could be present in the form of music, watching movies, facebook etc....Now I have to power this phone and even though I am aware of battery usage my go to method is use it as much as I want, and in return I carry an 8oz battery pack that I can recharge it 5 times off of. Now I have been on the trail for 5 days and am in a motel for the night, so I am carrying a dual wall charger and charge cords for both battery pack as well as phone. And then there is the ear buds which on some trips I have been known to carry 2 pairs of in case 1 pair breaks...

So what gives here! Why, for one, am I counting ounces on a sub 2 lb tent yet I am completely great with 2 lbs worth of electrical crap.

Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics. I would like to do some trips without anything more electronic then my headlamp this year.

Thoughts on this rambling topic above? haha -
Safety concerns in case of emergency instances?

ldsailor
03-02-2018, 12:53
Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics. I would like to do some trips without anything more electronic then my headlamp this year.

Thoughts on this rambling topic above? haha -

Safety concerns in case of emergency instances?

Familiar with Geraldine Largay? She got off the trail to answer nature's call and couldn't find her way back. She died of exposure and starvation. She had a cell phone. However, what she didn't have was a navigation app or a device like Spot. Either would have saved her life.

I use Guthook when I'm on the trail. It works with the phone's GPS, so I turn off the ability to send and receive data and make calls (airplane mode). I never make calls from the trail. People know I'm inaccessible, but I do check email once a day if I have a signal.

It's funny you should ask this question now. I'm a sailor, too. I lament my loss of navigation skills on the water using dead reckoning and a sextant. Everything is electronic and GPS. When I head back to the trail to finish my last section of the AT (900 miles) in May, I'll have some maps and a proper compass, which I intend to use in the more remote areas. It just makes sense to maintain the skills if the electronics fail you, which they will sooner or later.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 13:02
Gambit McCrea, don't confuse rambling with being a sane logical questioning critical thinker having a sober moment of reflection. :)

It's an inane misplaced wt saving approach to endlessly gram weenie tents, cookware, DIY stoves, fuel usage, apparel, and ground cloths ignoring the wt of food, water, and increasing cummulative electronic's wts.

What I find additionally inane are those whIle voicing very strict gear and trail budgets

Time Zone
03-02-2018, 13:07
usually no coverage where I hike anyway, so no point in carrying it.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 13:11
...What I find additionally inane are those while voicing having very strict gear and trail budgets spending so much $$$ on UL/SUL gear when they could apply knowledge and self restraint at no $ cost to save more wt, much more wt., dialing in food and water logistics and electronics purchases and on trail electronics usage.

JC13
03-02-2018, 13:13
I use my phone pretty minimally at home and on the trail. I guess technically I use it more on trail since like you, it is camera, video recorder and occasionally a communications device. I don't use it for entertainment and attempt to drop a post on IG once a day.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 13:27
What could have also saved Geraldine Largay's life was having a map and compass knowing how to use them, not so absolutely relying on a cell phone for survival, and not just hearing but also grasping by applying what little Warren Doyle taught his pupil should one get lost on an AT hike.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 13:40
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2016/05/25/hiker-who-died-after-disappearing-from-appalachian-trail-survived-for-weeks/KAcHuKSdYVHNTNu0qQobvK/amp.html

Doyle responded appropriately as quoted in another article covering this tragedy.

Off topic, but Geraldine's case is an example of a common mistake promoted by some survival shows. With dwindling supplies facing a fatality related to exposure not being injured sometimes it's best not to stay put especially going into four weeks as it was in Geraldine's case less than 2 miles from the AT and less than a 10 min walk from a trail that turned into a road.

Slo-go'en
03-02-2018, 13:51
Well, we did manage for many, many years with just a ATC data book and state road map (no real trail guide), a hand held flashlight and a AM/FM radio if you wanted to listen to music or the news and weather.

But a smart phone is such a handy little device, no wonder it has taken over the world.

I carry two phones, a 4400 mAh USB battery pack, charge and a cord for 15.7 oz. If I only carried the Trackfone and 2200 mAh battery pack, it would be down to 8 oz. The 2nd phone I just use as a tablet since it has the 5.5" HD screen and 17meg camera.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 14:12
"Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics. I would like to do some trips without anything more electronic then my headlamp this year."

Another reasonable sober moment of reflection.

It possibly demonstrates an unwillingness, a strong tendency, maybe even a bonafide behavioral addiction that few want to admit exists or, if they do, unwilling to address changing, if one under many situations, can't disconnect from electronics replacing that connection by a new connection with Nature, face to face socializing with others, a higher power, or a greater personal and universal awareness.

It's usually at this point when the electronically addicted start denying it, justifying the addiction very similar to the illicit and legal drug addicted.

A hike can be the optimal place for fasts of all manner electronics(sometimes myself), coffee(me!), ego, junk food, anger, selfishness, irritability, smoking, alcohol, rampant unquestioned consumption, Materialism, etc

Lone Wolf
03-02-2018, 14:15
i don't own an iphone, smartphone thingy

russb
03-02-2018, 14:20
One of the main reasons I go to the woods is to unplug om the borg.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 14:26
A smart phone should not unquestionably be thought of as a substitute for being intelligent, making smart decisions, or using that possibly smart organ between one's ears!

The thing about so called smart phones is they can better be regarded as a hand held computer that has phone capabilities.

If one is very obsessed about having phone use on trail a phone, just a cell phone, is way less expensive, lighter wt, probably less bulky, and less hassle keeping charged in context of using the phone minimally.

russb
03-02-2018, 14:28
We used to do these trips before the age of cell phones and gps. When I return from being unplugged for weeks at a time it is amazing how little I missed. Nothing really changed. I would have a crapload of junk email, a few important ones. But an auto-responder took care of reminding ppl I was not available. One voicemail from my mom, "oh yeah, I forgot... call me when you get back".
It is quite freeing to be connected to the real world, when one is disconnected from the artificial.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 14:33
You're bucking US cultural standards so expect a backlash of justification for mindlessly adhering to them.

russb
03-02-2018, 14:38
I am used to being thought of as a heretic.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 15:12
...it is quite freeing to be connected to the real world, when one is disconnected from the artificial.

Russ demonstrated a great and much needed awareness. He was able to distinguish connectivity as it is often defined - usually by someone else or something else, with a self serving agenda - to redefining connectivity as he sees empowers him in a different way.

We so often unquestionably cede our ability to self decide and individually define to others or a system that very often have their own agenda prioritized rather than our own.

In order to be free it's common to be labeled a rebel or heretic.

Connecting to something commonly involves disconnecting from other things. Those bent on influencing others to connect invariably intentionally ignore what's being required to disconnect from.

LittleRock
03-02-2018, 15:44
I don't begrudge people for using their phones to take pictures or check in with family. Those are nice things to do, and smartphones make it easier.

What really makes me cringe is when I see people who spend all day listening to music or (god forbid) podcasts while hiking, or spend half their time at the shelters/campsites on social media, watching movies, etc.

Feral Bill
03-02-2018, 15:49
No service where I usually hike. Makes the decision easy.

moldy
03-02-2018, 15:57
I have been known to borrow other peoples phones to report in.

fastfoxengineering
03-02-2018, 16:03
I don't begrudge people for using their phones to take pictures or check in with family. Those are nice things to do, and smartphones make it easier.

What really makes me cringe is when I see people who spend all day listening to music or (god forbid) podcasts while hiking, or spend half their time at the shelters/campsites on social media, watching movies, etc.The fact that people listening to music using ear buds makes you really "cringe" is strange.

Hiking all day every day can get pretty dull at times.





Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk

Slugg
03-02-2018, 16:13
I carry a smart phone, but keep it on airplane mode all day. I put my trail guide on it and use it to take pictures. At night before bed I'll briefly take it off airplane mode to check the weather, check in with loved ones, read the news, etc. It's also my alarm clock.

Slugg
03-02-2018, 16:14
Oh yeah, I also listen to music occasionally.

ldsailor
03-02-2018, 16:37
What could have also saved Geraldine Largay's life was having a map and compass knowing how to use them, not so absolutely relying on a cell phone for survival, and not just hearing but also grasping by applying what little Warren Doyle taught his pupil should one get lost on an AT hike.

I agree, but she had no idea how to use them according to news reports. At least if she had a phone navigation app, she could see where she was and where the trail is. Then at worst, trial and error would have got her back on the trail.

My use of her plight was an example to demonstrate the good an electronic device presents to a user. Not all electronic equipment is bad. What is bad is not having basic navigation skills with basic navigation tools.

Slo-go'en
03-02-2018, 16:47
The fact that people listening to music using ear buds makes you really "cringe" is strange.
Hiking all day every day can get pretty dull at times.

And while hiking through PA and a lot of other places, the only thing you'll hear is Interstate rumble. But in PA it's pretty much a non-stop background noise.

It seems that people who primary do short hiking trips are more inclined to "leave it all behind" since their not leaving it all behind for very long. For the long distance hiker, a smart phone has become an essential piece of equipment.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 17:10
I agree, but she had no idea how to use them according to news reports. At least if she had a phone navigation app, she could see where she was and where the trail is. Then at worst, trial and error would have got her back on the trail..


Really? Not necessarily! What if she didn't or couldn't use the navigational apps on her phone? Are you incorrectly assuming she had already downloaded detailed enough topos to navigate 2 miles away from the AT in Maine. What if her energy source for running the device had expended or was no longer usable? Ignorance is ignorance. Geraldine didn't have reception. Her calls and eMails weren't getting through. She relied too heavily on an electronic device rather than her brain(another useful electronic device!) and knowledge, some of what was shared when she attended Warren Doyle's 5 day AT thru-hiking class! She went high to a mound to possibly get a view but very likely to gain cell reception. I sincerely wonder if part of her getting increasingly more lost and further from the AT didn't involve paying more attention to her device and attaining reception than awareness of her surroundings and applying techniques to get unlost that didn't involve an electronic device.


My use of her plight was an example to demonstrate the good an electronic device presents to a user. Not all electronic equipment is bad. What is bad is not having basic navigation skills with basic navigation tools.


And, I demonstrated how over reliance on electronics may have cost Geraldine Largay her life!


I never said or implied all electronic usage or electronics is always bad. I don't recall anyone else doing so either.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 17:20
And while hiking through PA and a lot of other places, the only thing you'll hear is Interstate rumble. But in PA it's pretty much a non-stop background noise.


It seems that people who primary do short hiking trips are more inclined to "leave it all behind" since their not leaving it all behind for very long. For the long distance hiker, a smart phone has become an essential piece of equipment.


The most essential piece of equipment to never leave behind is between the ears.


Hmm, after many PA AT hikes I think I recall experiencing many other back round sounds than interstate rumble :) - rustling raccoons, opossum, whitetail deer, bobcats, Goshawks, black bears, owls, screeching hawks, many different song birds, etc. none of which would have been heard nor likely seen if I was listening to man made music and face glued to a device screen. That's not to say I've never listened to man made music while high tailing it through PA AT rock gardens. :)

handlebar
03-02-2018, 18:11
My phone stays in airplane mode all day and night, unless I happen to have service on a lunch break or in the evening. Then it will go on to check in at home. If I don't have service, SPOT does the check in for me. My phone would be off, but I have recently started using it as a camera instead of the point-and-shoot I used to carry. Two features of the phone that I use a lot while hiking are the notepad and attachments to email stored on the phone. I use the Notepad app to write my daily journal each evening. I send emails with attachments of guidebook sections, town guides, data book, hike plan, elevation profiles, backup copies of maps, etc. Saves a lot of paper weight. I still carry printed maps and use a dedicated GPS to store tracks and waypoints since I have to have the GPS to use my SPOT (out of production DeLorme GPS/SPOT combo). I might spend my REI dividend on an InReach and learn to use a GPS App on the phone to shave off a couple ounces.

Deadeye
03-02-2018, 18:20
I hiked the Long Trail twice in blue jeans, cotton socks & tees, and Dunham tyroleans before wireless phones were invented and survived. I bring a phone with me, primarily for the camera, but leave it turned off at the bottom of the pack and rarely use it. Most common use is to take a picture of sunset or my camp and email it home to say goodnight. I can live without it just fine. Doesn't really bother me if people want to use theirs, but there are 2 things I find to be interesting, annoying, and puzzling at the same time: 1) why do people seem to shout when using the phone, and 2) why do so many people pace when on the phone? It's amazing, give a guy a cell phone and put him in the middle of an airport, and he'll wander around in circles for the entire call, bumping into people and walls like a Roomba. It's hilarious, at least until he's in your way.

FranklinBeans
03-02-2018, 19:17
For several reasons, it would be irresponsible for me to hike without a phone. So you bring it, but you don't make it easy to use it. you shut it off, you put it in a ziploc, you put a ziploc in a stuff sack containing the stuff you're least likely to be opening on the regular (think 1st aid and tent repair), bury THAT in the middle of your pack, and forget it's there unless you get eaten by a mountain lion and require a med-evac for the bits that are left.

Slo-go'en
03-02-2018, 20:36
The bottom line is if you find it useful, carry it. If not, leave it home. Just like any piece of gear.

Feral Bill
03-02-2018, 20:48
The bottom line is if you find it useful, carry it. If not, leave it home. Just like any piece of gear. Tweakers find meth useful.:)

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 21:24
The bottom line is if you find it useful, carry it. If not, leave it home. Just like any piece of gear.


Perhaps, no other piece of "gear", perhaps not always as crucial as some make it seem, has such a great potential for distraction on a hike than a so called smart phone, really a mobile computer with phone capabilities.
Addiction to electronic use - smart phones - hand held mobile computers - specifically the addiction to electronic "connectivity", is so high for a reason. It's alluring, tempting, with societies built on this addiction so its not discussed in those terms nearly enough as it could.


When we connect to and via electronics like a mobile computer - a smart phone - we commonly disconnect/disengage from other things. Those other things, worthy things, worthy experiences, other worthy senses like smell and taste, and worthy awarenesses being disconnected from are often ignored. Someone else is oh so often setting the connectivity agenda according to their definition of what it means to be connected. So, they have an agenda to make folks ignore those other things. And, they're doing a dam good job at doing just this. This gets at what Gambit McCrae is concerned.


Gambit is willing to step back and honestly evaluate his behavior, his choices, and what he wants on his hikes on his terms. Gambit is willing to be a critical questioning thinker even if it means stepping outside of normal cultural behavior, even common trail culture. That demonstrates a lot of free thinking maturity, self actualization, and courage. I don't recognize denial and justification for what Gambit recognizes can be a distraction from a more empowering hiking experience.

fiddlehead
03-02-2018, 21:25
I work from wherever I am.
So, of course I take my phone. And use it.
If not, I couldn't be out there.
Also, it's my camera, mp3 player, recorder, weather reports, map, and communicator with my family.
Phone? I don't remember using it as a phone though. (Unless you call WhatsApp or FB Messenger a phone)
Why not?

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 21:30
Smart phone - mobile hand held computer - use can actually make people behave in very unsmart unthinking uncaring self absorbed ignorant ways. That's rarely said.

Dogwood
03-02-2018, 21:42
With due respect, that's the side of mobile computer use we only hear about virtually all the time. All the things a mobile computer can do... in positive terms. What about all the things one can have a tendency to disconnect from when we decide to connect via or to a computer?


This gets at what the OP had in mind when he started the thread...not how great electronics can be. I think Gambit has no illusions on how beneficial a smart phone can be. He's inquiring if that electronic use is a distraction from enjoying other non-electronic worthy experiences.

JJ505
03-02-2018, 22:28
But no law saying you have to do things the way others do. You can use compass and map; take a regular camera; etc. I only do day hikes, don't use the phone much in real life (kind of older than the average user here) but i use a trail app and others. I don't find it distracting.

soilman
03-02-2018, 22:48
I don't have a smart phone and have survived on the trail and off. It seems to me that many people have become slaves to their electronics. I read a book about a couple that did the PCT and would zero so they could catch up on all the things they couldn't do on the trail without a signal, like email, podcasts, facebook, etc.

SpongeBob
03-02-2018, 23:29
I certainly respect the decision to unplug from the grid and leave my phone mostly on airplane mode but I canít resist having the added data from weather radar for tracking T-storms, sending a check in text when I make camp so my wife sleeps well, and Guthookís GPS has helped me find a misplaced shelter on a rainy night or two. Carry a map and compass too, but all the safety and convenience margin plus the camera make the iPhone and a battery pack worth their weight to me. All personal choice, of course, but I find that when I go beyond using the phone as a hiking tool and venture into the news and entertainment realm with it, I lose some of the peace, distance and perspective I go to the woods to find. Stopped calling home nightly for the same reason. Found that in my case a better version of husband and father comes back if I stick to an allís well text with a picture of camp or a view from the day and, short of an emergency, leave the family details behind for a day or two.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

DownEaster
03-02-2018, 23:55
I don't use my phone much at home, but will use it quite a bit more on the Trail.

I rarely find a need to take pictures at home. At home I also have a PC with a nice big (32") display, so there's not much appeal to the 5.5" smartphone screen. My home life is pretty unexciting; an occasional e-mail suffices to keep family and friends updated. On the AT there will be both more to relate and more concern for my well-being, so I expect to communicate more frequently than normally.

Slo-go'en
03-03-2018, 00:01
Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics.

It depends on what your trying to escape from and how plugged in you stay while escaping. Realistically, your not going to leave your phone home. But you can limit its use.

My phone is used primarily for weather, GPS based guide book, photos, ebooks, clock and music. Being able to occasionally check email and be able to make travel arrangements is a bonus.

Just having up to date weather is worth whatever the price. Hum, should I get up now or wait until the rain stops? I think I'll check the radar...

gpburdelljr
03-03-2018, 00:12
You're bucking US cultural standards so expect a backlash of justification for mindlessly adhering to them.
Most of the backlash seems to be coming from the 12% that donít carry them.

Dogwood
03-03-2018, 01:17
R U saying only 12 % of hikers don't carry a phone on trail?

If so where are you getting those stats?

Southeast
03-03-2018, 01:56
Find your own happy medium.

That may be going without an electronic device or it may be doing what you are doing now.

Personally I can escape and still carry a phone.

BuckeyeBill
03-03-2018, 03:02
The sad part is Cell Phones have tak3en the place of the old pay phones. I will carry a small digital camera. the extra weight will make up for more quality pictures. its small enough to fit into a hip pocket on my pack's belt. I can get it out in a matter seconds. Its pretty much blank-proof any thing, water, dust, temp, shock to name a few. Carry 4 64 gig cards and can switch modes and zoom in really no effort. What matters is that it works for me but may be not for any one else. It's your hike, do it your way and don't let someone else tell you your wrong.:D

MuddyWaters
03-03-2018, 07:24
I try to send my wife a text every day or two if have signal.
Sometimes that a week in some places before can send.

I will take pics, review at night, possibly read a kindle book if wired and not sleepy yet. Then theres checking gps position occassionally. Phones have offline uses that replace other things.

Puddlefish
03-03-2018, 09:02
I always get a chuckle when people, currently using electronic devices, have really strong opinions on people who use slightly different electronic devices, in a slightly different manner.

It's not the cell phones that people are really upset about. It's the behavior of the people using them, that you think might impact you. That behavior is going to happen, with or without cell phones.

Some are fairly valid, such as loitering in busy doorways, while people are trying to get through, distracted driving, and noise complaints. Some are just juvenile, such as ignoring you, and not liking the exact same things that you like. Any of these things can happen, with or without cell phones.

garlic08
03-03-2018, 09:11
I don't carry a phone. I fall in the increasingly rare (14% at the time of my vote) category of leaving the house to get away from the phone.

Doing that for months at a time is not easy, but that's sort of the whole point. Nothing worth doing is easy. My first thru-hike was a difficult, life-changing experience, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

It's seldom mentioned, but there's also a cost factor. Not owning a phone is one of those avoided costs that allowed me to become (and stay) financially independent enough to go hiking in the first place. (I retired in the 1990s and never needed a portable device to earn a living.)

(By the way, it should be "kibosh" in the thread title.)

Christoph
03-03-2018, 09:16
I carried mine for keeping in touch at home (mostly by text) a few times a week, to let them know I didn't get abducted by a sasquatch or eaten by bears. Mostly, I was already going to carry it for that purpose but it played multiple rolls as a communication device, camera so I didn't have to carry another electronical thingy with batteries, and my guidebook. That saved a little weight. Puddlefish is correct though, it's the nature (no pun here) that people use 'em. You should also at least have a bit of navigation skill and not rely on any electronics when headed in the woods/wilderness.

Dan Roper
03-03-2018, 09:59
I've never owned a smart phone or cell phone or any other handheld communications device. When others find out by asking to use my cell phone or when it comes up in conversation, there are two common responses: (1) I wish I could do that (I've never met anybody who carried through on the wish), and (2) what happens if you have an accident, etc.? (I've assumed a risk and my family has graciously accepted my lifestyle preference.)

I'm at home in the woods, so the risk of getting lost or having a mishap through unfamiliarity is somewhat lower. I know which snakes and plants are poisonous and which plants are edible. My college days were spent in forestry and as an intern in the forest industry. I'm experienced at compass and pacing and orienteering. I know how to read topographic maps. I've spent my adult years in the woods hiking, backpacking, canoeing, mountain biking and whatever else you can do outdoors, often solo. I love maps, read them avidly, and usually have a good feel for the terrain before I step outdoors. So I'm comfortable being outdoors without a way of communicating.

I've never found the outdoors boring, so there's never a desire to plug into music or other entertainment. Long hikes give me a chance to think and to listen - and to interact with others when I meet them, which I enjoy. I know birds and their songs, butterflies, botany, geography, climatology and just a smidgeon of geology. I can't sing a lick, but songs go through my head and sometimes I sing aloud when I'm confident I'm alone. But above all, being outdoors gives me time to think.

A few years ago, I read a magazine article that touted time to think as intrinsic to many of the breakthroughs in arts and sciences and technology and just about everything else men and women can achieve. Time to think used to be commonplace but isn't any longer, since we tend to be bombarded with outside stimuli today. It used to be when people were engaged in mechanical labor or other physical pursuits that their mind could "run free," seeking answers or puzzling through mysteries or taking on challenges or problems. The great Georgia novelist Terry Kay told me that some of his greatest inspirations came as a child plowing behind a mule. He suspected that the same was true of Byron Herbert Reece, the poet from the Georgia mountains who grew up an lived on a farm and plowed behind a mule.

I don't mind others being plugged in. Often they provide helpful information (weather, a sports score, interesting news). But occasionally its humorous or disconcerting to observe the reliance of some on technology (hikers used to be invariably friendly, but now sometimes they have earbuds in and won't even make eye contact). I don't ever recall somebody's use of tech being annoying on the trail.

I am glad there's not a law that requires us to be plugged in against our wills. To each his own.

gpburdelljr
03-03-2018, 10:50
R U saying only 12 % of hikers don't carry a phone on trail?

If so where are you getting those stats?
From the poll at the start of this thread.

BowGal
03-03-2018, 11:42
what Iíve been doing to prep for my AT thru hike attempt in 2019 is reading books and watching videos while following along in the AT guide.

Iíd love to ditch the guide in favour of the Guthook app to save weight...but unsure if the Guthook app shows all the towns ammenities ie. services, lodging, phone numbers etc. for when I need to book a room in advance, arrange for shuttle etc.

Anyone know?

Slo-go'en
03-03-2018, 11:45
It's seldom mentioned, but there's also a cost factor. Not owning a phone is one of those avoided costs that allowed me to become (and stay) financially independent enough to go hiking in the first place. (I retired in the 1990s and never needed a portable device to earn a living.)

It doesn't have to be expensive. I use a Trackfone I got for $20. Another $20 buys 3 months of service. I splurge by spending an extra $10 for more data, since that's what I mostly use. 60 minutes of talk and text time is 50 minutes more then I typically use in 3 months.

I only activate the smart phone when I'll be on the trail for a month or two. I have a dumb cell phone I use as my home phone. I rarely carry it outside the house. I have 380 minutes banked on it, which shows how much I talk on it.

ldsailor
03-03-2018, 13:24
Really? Not necessarily! What if she didn't or couldn't use the navigational apps on her phone? Are you incorrectly assuming she had already downloaded detailed enough topos to navigate 2 miles away from the AT in Maine. What if her energy source for running the device had expended or was no longer usable? Ignorance is ignorance. Geraldine didn't have reception. Her calls and eMails weren't getting through. She relied too heavily on an electronic device rather than her brain(another useful electronic device!) and knowledge, some of what was shared when she attended Warren Doyle's 5 day AT thru-hiking class! She went high to a mound to possibly get a view but very likely to gain cell reception. I sincerely wonder if part of her getting increasingly more lost and further from the AT didn't involve paying more attention to her device and attaining reception than awareness of her surroundings and applying techniques to get unlost that didn't involve an electronic device.


She had been on the trail for 900 miles. If she had a navigation tool on her phone or a separate navigation device, hopefully she would have had a working knowledge of how it works. Let's face it. Guthook and similar apps are a world easier than navigating using a map and compass.
Who said anything about Geraldine downloading maps? My point is she did not have navigation tools on her phone. This observation is borne out of the media reports that made no mention of any navigational aids on her phone. The phone was obviously thoroughly inspected after she was found according to media reports.
The phone's power source was more than enough to view a navigation app for a few minutes to figure out which way to go, and then to periodically review her progress toward her goal. The most used app, Guthook, running in airplane mode, can last for days. It does for me. Remember she was texting and emailing for some time after getting lost.
Texting and emailing her husband was not a smart use of her phone. It was of desperation. That fits with the reports that she probably should not have been on the trail.



What could have also saved Geraldine Largay's life was having a map and compass knowing how to use them, not so absolutely relying on a cell phone for survival, and not just hearing but also grasping by applying what little Warren Doyle taught his pupil should one get lost on an AT hike.


She had a compass. See the image of what the searchers found. According to this report (https://www.pressherald.com/2016/05/26/hiker-who-died-on-appalachian-trail-didnt-know-how-to-use-a-compass/), she either did not want to use it or didn't know how to use it.
42074

My point here was not to rehash this ladies mistakes and misfortune, but to show how technology could help every hiker. Should it be the only source of navigation? No. But there is no reason to eschew it just because you want to eliminate a few ounces or go really "primitive." And I don't see where Geraldine was over reliant on her phone. In her mind, there was no alternative even if the way she used it was not smart. Who knows? Maybe she could have got a signal and we wouldn't be talking about her now. The reality, though, is she didn't know how to use the compass she had and she left her Spot tracker at a motel.


I never said or implied all electronic usage or electronics is always bad. I don't recall anyone else doing so either.

It's not hard to reach that conclusion. Okay, so now I'm confused. What are we arguing about?

Recalc
03-03-2018, 13:24
Started out using a phone for navigation, photos, communication to family, reference, and occasional reading. With each year, usage of electronic decreased.
Looking back, photos taken were really good and I wouldn't trade them for anything, but there is a price. Time spent documenting your hike means not being present on the trail at times.
A lot of time can also be wasted doing this. Same for phone navigation, it wasn't necessary to check location so often.
Every few nights I listen to music. Battery consumption is minimal on downloaded music. Never listen while hiking because I want to be in touch with surroundings.
My first year of hiking consisted of daily emails which doubled as a trail journal (I'm not a social media kind of guy). Before you know it, too much time is being devoted to this communication at the end of the day. Daily correspondence has been replaced with a Google Sheets page that lets family know that I am alive and my location. Family is aware they may not see an update every day.
Keeping a battery charged is always a challange on the trail. Then it dawned on me, what would happen if I was without a cell phone at all? Absolutely nothing. The phone remains in airplane mode most of the time, and the trail is now center stage.

Furlough
03-03-2018, 13:51
R U saying only 12 % of hikers don't carry a phone on trail?If so where are you getting those stats? See the OPs poll that is a part of this thread. Now 14% as of 12:51pm 3/3/2018.

Dogwood
03-03-2018, 14:27
She went high to a mound to possibly get a view but very likely to gain cell reception. *I sincerely wonder if part of her getting increasingly more lost and further from the AT didn't involve paying more attention to her device and attaining reception than awareness of her surroundings and applying techniques to get unlost that didn't involve an electronic device.


You conveniently left that last sentence out of your last post IDsailor.


This is contrary to what was briefly covered should one get lost on an AT hike in the 5 day class she attended with Warren Doyle. Doyle was interviewed to possibly provide clues in helping find Mrs Largay although Warren himself notes he's not conducting a survival school. She already had some limited information. She didn't necessarily require more information. She didn't use that info or remember it or was paying attention in class. Sincerely, maybe, she was on her smartphone in class or had a problem focusing on using her brain for self surviving self getting un lost because an over reliance on her smart phone?


This is a common mistake...we need more information...or we need that info from being connected to electronics because that's the source of information that can save us. How about utilizing more fully the info you've already been exposed or know? How about being aware of information not provided by a navigational app? Couldn't that info, that awareness led her back to the AT too rather than over relying on tech?

Idsailor, as you willingly rehash Mrs Largay's fate in support of electronics, you're doing exactly what I previously posted when we ignore the potential downside of over reliance on electronic devices - a mobile hand held computer. It's well known, and not being contended, what electronics positively can do or help us with. It's the side that limits us that backs us into a corner through over reliance of them that causes problems. We can become complacent dumb downed utilizing our own computers between our ears. You of all people being in the Navy should recognize this if you understand the tools the terrorist of 911 used inflicting great damage. They used what we thought was our strength- technology - against us. YES, sometimes over reliance on tech or electronics can be a downfall.

Dogwood
03-03-2018, 15:56
From the poll at the start of this thread.


See the OPs poll that is a part of this thread. Now 14% as of 12:51pm 3/3/2018.

Duh. :rolleyes: I didn't take the poll because none of those choices fit me so didn't look at the results.

George
03-03-2018, 16:05
What really makes me cringe is when I see people who spend all day listening to music or (god forbid) podcasts while hiking, or spend half their time at the shelters/campsites on social media, watching movies, etc.

in other words they are not doing it the "correct" way IYO

George
03-03-2018, 16:11
I didn't take the poll because none of those choices fit me .

same here, my answer would be:

I am a very light cell phone user - no idea how to use most of what it does

but now that I have a smart thingy, I will learn/ use it more on the trail as there will be no access to laptop, gps and I will probably read some/ quit using a paper guide book - maybe even use it for music

Christoph
03-03-2018, 16:26
I’d love to ditch the guide in favour of the Guthook app to save weight...but unsure if the Guthook app shows all the towns ammenities ie. services, lodging, phone numbers etc. for when I need to book a room in advance, arrange for shuttle etc.
Anyone know?

I downloaded the .pdf version of AWOL on my phone. They have both options available. If you like to look at the maps and stuff a lot, I would recommend both for the phone though as each are quite different in approach.

Dogwood
03-03-2018, 16:43
There's a beautiful well written well acted scene in The Secret Life of Walter Mitty a film with a mini sub plot about photography, a camera - a hand held device, which equally could be any device. The message could be easily lost since it wasn't over the top emoted or heavily handed suggested...or lost in the great cinematography of this IMO Oscar contender. It was perhaps one of the best scenes in the movie.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JfjkiTB1fHQ


Sean Penn, a professional photographer traveling all the way to the Himalayas, painstakingly finally gets into frame an exceedingly rare shot of the elusive and very rare snow leopard. He knows this shot will be financially valuable and make him a more famous photographer in his career field. This is a valuable shot! Yet, what does Sean Penn do and say when a rambling distracted Ben Stiller inquires "when are you going to take it(the picture)?" What does Sean Penn value more?


Sean Penn, (as he moves away from his device, his professional tool of choice, a camera) says, " sometimes I don't; if I like a moment(staying in the moment), I mean me, personally, I don't like to have the distraction of the camera, I just want to stay in it."


A bewildered yet receptive Ben Stiller receiving a valuable lesson, acting as a kindergartener, and even though Stiller himself is involved in photography professionally, says "stay in it?"(as in what are you talking about?).


Sean Penn: "yeah, right there, right here."


Watch the actors faces. Brilliantly acted by Mr Stiller and Mr Penn.


Then, to cement the lesson Sean and Ben go down the mountain leaving the quite valuable camera behind and further demonstrate the joy of life being enjoyed without having to be tethered to a device.


How many times do our devices get in the way, cause us to be distracted from possibly experiencing the greater joys of LIFE?

BuckeyeBill
03-03-2018, 17:23
Thought this was fitting:


https://whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/files/8/584-162e-instaholdup_original.jpg

Dogwood
03-03-2018, 17:50
Duh. :rolleyes: I didn't take the poll because none of those choices fit me so didn't look at the results.

I'm willing to let the hike dictate to me what I will or will not carry. I try not to overly impose my desires or habits(electronic or otherwise) or tendencies for Matetialism on the hike. I aim to be flexibly enthralled evertime I get to experience a hike or Nature regardless if I've chosen to carry a phone, camera, hand held mobile computer, music player, watch, GPS, downloaded apps, or not.

I find it refreshing and freeing. It allows me to be more aware of things I can easily be unaware of when I choose to have my eyes glued to a 3"x5" screen and ear buds in.

brotheral
03-03-2018, 18:21
i don't own an iphone, smartphone thingy
Neither do I Lone Wolf ! :D

towerclimber727
03-03-2018, 20:06
I hiked the Long Trail twice in blue jeans, cotton socks & tees, and Dunham tyroleans before wireless phones were invented and survived. I bring a phone with me, primarily for the camera, but leave it turned off at the bottom of the pack and rarely use it. Most common use is to take a picture of sunset or my camp and email it home to say goodnight. I can live without it just fine. Doesn't really bother me if people want to use theirs, but there are 2 things I find to be interesting, annoying, and puzzling at the same time: 1) why do people seem to shout when using the phone, and 2) why do so many people pace when on the phone? It's amazing, give a guy a cell phone and put him in the middle of an airport, and he'll wander around in circles for the entire call, bumping into people and walls like a Roomba. It's hilarious, at least until he's in your way.I admit... I'll wear a rut into the carpet if I have to be on the phone for any amount of time lol. I definitely don't shout though, unless I'm in the air working but that's only because I have to then :)

Sent from my VS996 using Tapatalk

BowGal
03-03-2018, 21:48
I downloaded the .pdf version of AWOL on my phone. They have both options available. If you like to look at the maps and stuff a lot, I would recommend both for the phone though as each are quite different in approach.
Ty so much..didn’t know this existed in PDF format.
Just purchased.

Another Kevin
03-04-2018, 02:04
I've said before: my phone is, at various times, camera, audio or video recorder, notebook, the novel I'm reading, the weather forecast (or at least the barometer!), GPS device, flashlight for changing my headlamp batteries, and so on. It's kept in airplane mode, so it's everything but a communication device (OK, I'll pop out of airplane mode to try to get the weather forecast.)

In the era before smartphones, I carried at various a camera, a notebook, an AM radio for the weather, a tiny penlight for changing flashlight batteries, a paperback book, and so on. If those things are acceptable, why is the gadget so offensive?

In any case, I know that some hikers do find the device offensive, so I don't use it in front of others, at least without asking permission (generally speaking, to use it as a camera - the other functions can wait until I'm by myself). If you're going to get upset that I've got the thing in a pocket, when I haven't brought it out in front of you, I don't think I've much to say.

Algae
03-04-2018, 09:55
Hey Gambit, nice poll. I've found myself thinking along similar lines recently as I've been easing into winter and cold weather camping this season. Carrying 60+lbs of snowshoes, crampons, poles, 4season tents, etc doesn't bother me too much; but I've found myself balking at the 2+lbs of electronic crap I carry with. My sole reason for carrying my phone outdoors is for the hundreds of books I have downloaded on Google Play. Gone are the days of my scouting youth where my McKinley pack was supplemented with half a dozen paperbacks. Now I can turn my phone to 'Airplane Mode' and 'Battery Saver Mode' when I'm in my tent; and voila-a virtual library at my disposal.
And I've learned some important lessons regarding lithium ion batteries and single digits temps in the past few months; enough to know I'd never trust my phone as a location finder or gps in an emergency. The spinning floating needle thingy seems to work every time tho.

Another Kevin
03-04-2018, 11:28
And I've learned some important lessons regarding lithium ion batteries and single digits temps in the past few months; enough to know I'd never trust my phone as a location finder or gps in an emergency. The spinning floating needle thingy seems to work every time tho.

Hey, I remember you! We met on the NPT - you were NOBO and finishing and I was starting SOBO. You got the last of the good weather that season, I got rain and sleet the whole trip, and there was snow on the ground when I got to Benson.
Right you are. Primary navigation is a map written on a dead tree, and a magnet turning in a vial of alky. (Oh, and an alitmeter. I do use my barometer rather too much, but it's so convenient to be able to use any contour line as a handrail or backstop!)

LiIon batteries work better in the cold than any other kind. Which doesn't say much.

Gambit McCrae
03-05-2018, 09:02
what Iíve been doing to prep for my AT thru hike attempt in 2019 is reading books and watching videos while following along in the AT guide.

Iíd love to ditch the guide in favour of the Guthook app to save weight...but unsure if the Guthook app shows all the towns ammenities ie. services, lodging, phone numbers etc. for when I need to book a room in advance, arrange for shuttle etc.

Anyone know?

4208642087

BowGal
03-05-2018, 11:19
4208642087

Sweet! Thank you

Lnj
03-05-2018, 14:50
I only find the phone use offensive if it interferes with my own personal hike, which rarely ever happens, but does on occasion. One such occasion was when I approached a beautiful overlook to just sit and to the music of the woods on a gorgeous fall day, but someone else was already at the peak and on a phone call... that seemed to be very negative and loud and just wrecked my time there. I mean it was like a having a TV on up there blaringly loud. That wasn't cool. Another such occasion was when I finally got my 16 year old daughter to go on a weekend trip with me and we were laughing and talking and having just the best time ever, when she checked her social media and some stupid boy did or said something that upset her so she got upset and couldn't think of anything else the whole trip. We ended up coming home a day early. Stupid phone ruined my weekend with my girl. VERY not cool. Other people, what they are doing, quietly, I couldn't care less.

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 15:49
I only find the phone use offensive if it interferes with my own personal hike, which rarely ever happens, but does on occasion. One such occasion was when I approached a beautiful overlook to just sit and to the music of the woods on a gorgeous fall day, but someone else was already at the peak and on a phone call... that seemed to be very negative and loud and just wrecked my time there. I mean it was like a having a TV on up there blaringly loud. That wasn't cool. Another such occasion was when I finally got my 16 year old daughter to go on a weekend trip with me and we were laughing and talking and having just the best time ever, when she checked her social media and some stupid boy did or said something that upset her so she got upset and couldn't think of anything else the whole trip. We ended up coming home a day early. Stupid phone ruined my weekend with my girl. VERY not cool. Other people, what they are doing, quietly, I couldn't care less.

And, the problem no longer was your daughter's alone. It became your problem and obviously a problem for your relationship with your daughter.

Same thing when I attend a supposed group lunch with expected face to face socializing - so called team building time - with loud large screen TV's usually with sports, poltical or financial markets coverage competing for and replacing personal face to face team building relationships. This is compounded by rude self absorbed alienating hand held device addiction and use at the table or bar. This is so very uncool personally and in biz.

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 16:00
A few yrs ago on a gorgeous upstate NY Daks fall day at the summit of Mt Marcy there were in excess of 300 people, 200 impatiently self absorbed on or frantically trying to get cell coverage literally tripping, falling down, and bumping into others like The Walking Dead Zombies or heroin street addicts seeking their fix as their world was reduced to a 3"x5" screen.

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 16:03
Don't tell me all the wonderful things hand held devices positively can do without recognizing the very real downsides too.

perdidochas
03-05-2018, 17:26
I have typed out and deleted this 3 times now....

In todays time we live in a society that is strongly driven by our handheld devices.

In todays time we, we being hikers as a majority, are weight conscious.

I as a hiker have an Iphone 7 plus. It is my camera, my phone, my map, my entertainment that could be present in the form of music, watching movies, facebook etc....Now I have to power this phone and even though I am aware of battery usage my go to method is use it as much as I want, and in return I carry an 8oz battery pack that I can recharge it 5 times off of. Now I have been on the trail for 5 days and am in a motel for the night, so I am carrying a dual wall charger and charge cords for both battery pack as well as phone. And then there is the ear buds which on some trips I have been known to carry 2 pairs of in case 1 pair breaks...

So what gives here! Why, for one, am I counting ounces on a sub 2 lb tent yet I am completely great with 2 lbs worth of electrical crap.

Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics. I would like to do some trips without anything more electronic then my headlamp this year.

Thoughts on this rambling topic above? haha -
Safety concerns in case of emergency instances?

Well, a typical paperback weighs a pound. If you read for recreation, then you will need at least a pound for that. Have you weighed all of your electronics? Is it really two lbs?

Slo-go'en
03-05-2018, 18:09
A few yrs ago on a gorgeous upstate NY Daks fall day at the summit of Mt Marcy there were in excess of 300 people, 200 impatiently self absorbed on or frantically trying to get cell coverage literally tripping, falling down, and bumping into others like The Walking Dead Zombies or heroin street addicts seeking their fix as their world was reduced to a 3"x5" screen.

Sounds like really bad timing. Just being one of the 300 people is bad enough.
I bet half the people staying at AMC Huts which have cell coverage are on their phone after dinner.

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 18:23
...Have you weighed all of your electronics? Is it really two lbs?

I'm an ULer. What do you think?

When I do carry electronics, depending on what electronics I'm bringing, it can be more than 2 lbs. Sure the better higher end camera and lenses sky rocket the wt but it's also in my honestly UL opinion chargers and battery baanks like an Anker or solar panel with shortened wires or separate GPS that contribute to the wt.

Most often, when I do decide to carry, going UL a cheap TRACFONE for truly emergency use is all that I'll take. Other times I throw a old school AAA battery operated mp3 player into the mix and bump the ph charger about 3 wk's ahead.

Other times its more than 2 lbs, specifically as much as 35 ozs. That's a huge wt and bulk hit when my Big 4 are sub 48 ozs!

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 18:40
Sounds like really bad timing. Just being one of the 300 people is bad enough.
I bet half the people staying at AMC Huts which have cell coverage are on their phone after dinner.

What made it worse is after their spoiled expectations of
"needed" connectivity weren't being met they imposed their anger, irritation, and frustration on others.

Even going to the side of the summit to eat in peace and get away from the electronic whores they'd come over standing right over me right where I laid out my food as I'm obviously enjoying watching the hawks play and taking cloud surveys irritatingly impatiently incessantly(even though I was trying to make it clear I was ignorning them) ask if I had gotten reception. OMG, I wasn't even displaying a device.

It was a scene out of a crack house or street corner crack spot.

I'm usually for live and let live. But, C'MON that's not live and let live. That's do as I do or else I dont care crap about the consequences to you.

rocketsocks
03-05-2018, 19:53
Lots a moanin’ goin’ on!

Dogwood
03-05-2018, 20:06
Lots a moanin’ goin’ on!


Yeah thats from many on their phones.

MuddyWaters
03-05-2018, 21:24
Electronics arent a problem. The electronics have lots of varied uses that simply replace or supplement paper.

Its the people that want/need to stay connected to the outside world....while on the trail..and impose this onto others thru their actions..that has always been an issue.

Slo-go'en
03-05-2018, 21:25
Electronics arent a problem. The electronics have lots of varied uses that simply replace or supplement paper.

Its the people that want/need to stay connected to the outside world....while on the trail..and impose this onto others thru their actions..that has always been an issue.

Well, once you stop walking what else is there to do? :)

Time Zone
03-05-2018, 21:31
Want to add context to my vote: if I hiked where there was cell service, I probably would carry a smartphone. It would be left in airplane mode and serve as my camera, and at night, maybe my guide to the stars and constellations. Perhaps I might even have GPS hiking apps on there and all that. But I would (hope to) not connect to the internet, make/receive calls, get voice mail, email, etc etc. In a way I'm glad I don't have to make that choice, because, looking around at others, it's obviously tempting to do so, and I do enough of that already at home.

gpburdelljr
03-05-2018, 23:00
Lots a moanin’ goin’ on!
Some people aren’t happy unless they are moaning and groaning about something. No matter how much they moan, however, smart phones on the trail are here to stay.

BowGal
03-06-2018, 11:03
Electronics arent a problem. The electronics have lots of varied uses that simply replace or supplement paper.

Its the people that want/need to stay connected to the outside world....while on the trail..and impose this onto others thru their actions..that has always been an issue.

I agree...technology has its place.
While my AT attempt next year will be a trip of a lifetime, I am travelling from another country. I have no family or friends in the US...and since I’m hiking solo...I do need to keep in touch with my hubby from time to time.
Only social media I’m on...if you can count it as one...is this forum and TrailJournals. No FB, Twitter, instagram, or YouTube. I hope to take pics and video for myself...but can’t see a need to do daily updates.

TexasBob
03-06-2018, 11:20
Well, once you stop walking what else is there to do? :)

That's hilarious, I got my laugh for the day. I looked through all the posts on this thread and it is interesting that of those whose age is revealed I think the average age of the posters is about 55 with only two people under 30.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 13:51
That's hilarious, I got my laugh for the day. I looked through all the posts on this thread and it is interesting that of those whose age is revealed I think the average age of the posters is about 55 with only two people under 30.

I noticed that too. Just as I noticed the avg age of those 200 + moaning the most about not getting electronic connection atop Mt Marcy was around 22 yrs old.

BTW definitely not 55.

Can't turn electronic addiction and imposition into an age war. People of all ages moan about something maybe different things but let's not hang this on being a cantankerous older person. Gambit the OP doesn't look to be anywhere near 55 either!

Leo L.
03-06-2018, 14:16
As this thread slided into pro+con electronics, I might add an observation of my own.

Some years back, our younger son did a local multiday hike together with his friend.
His friend was constantly on the social media all the time trying to impress online followers about what cool thing he was doing - Hiking!.
They broke up the hike the second day afternoon, when his friends' battery ran empty and all his euphoria was gone, suddenly.
It took our son years to recover and find some fun in hiking again.

Now I was reluctant to get new electronics for most of my life, but some years back bought a Sony smartphone and find it absolutely great to replace all the paper stuff I usually carry into the desert. Love this little Sony.
But I belive I still use it with common sense, have it in airplane mode most of the time, safe battery life, do no gaming and other fun stuff ever. Like a normal grownup woud do.
Last spring we were in the desert for weeks, walking on GPS with Google Earth downloads only.
During one break in the middle of the hike, my friends spoke about being hooked to the phone while in the outdoors - first I didn't get the whole story, but it turned out they were speaking about me!
Without having noticed it myself, I seem to have turned into a smartphone freak, always having it handy, tapping away on the screen, all day and evening long.

Gambit McCrae
03-06-2018, 15:13
I noticed that too. Just as I noticed the avg age of those 200 + moaning the most about not getting electronic connection atop Mt Marcy was around 22 yrs old.

BTW definitely not 55.

Can't turn electronic addiction and imposition into an age war. People of all ages moan about something maybe different things but let's not hang this on being a cantankerous older person. Gambit the OP doesn't look to be anywhere near 55 either!

No Sir I am not. Turned 30 for the first time last week actually lol

AllDownhillFromHere
03-06-2018, 15:19
That's hilarious, I got my laugh for the day. I looked through all the posts on this thread and it is interesting that of those whose age is revealed I think the average age of the posters is about 55 with only two people under 30.
This kind of smug superiority can only come with age.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 15:48
This kind of smug superiority can only come with age.

You must not be spending much time around tweeners, teens, and Millenials. Sheltered, entitled, defensive and narcissistic are some traits commonly attributed to Gen Y

Psychologists even have a Narcicisstic Personality Disorder. "The hallmarks of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) are grandiosity, a lack of empathy for other people, and a need for admiration. People with this condition are frequently described as arrogant, self-centered, manipulative, and demanding."

Tell me that doesnt describe many smart phone users???????

KDogg
03-06-2018, 16:09
I find these threads hilarious. Being connected on social media is the way things are now and are going to be in the future. No amount of whining is going to change that. Forcing todays generation (actually it goes back past the millenials) to leave their phones at home is just dumb and making judgements about them is even dumber. There are so many examples of this throughout American culture and all that ever happens is the complainers end up on the wrong side of history.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 16:26
??? Societies routinely require people to address their behavior...especially when that behavior impacts others. We all don't get to do anything we want ignoring everyone and everything else. There is a name for that...chaos...a free for all...the Wild West. See how that feels when it's experienced against you.

Don't turn it into an electronics bad electronics good issue. It's human behaviors at the root of the issue just like alcohol, cannabis, firearms, self defense, getting behind the wheel, or putting someone into a choke hold.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 16:32
BTW, I'm a smart phone and electronics user. And, sometimes I find that usage getting out of hand. So not down on electronics as much as I'm down on imposing, unaware, self absorbed, denying, and addicting behavior having negative impacts.

AllDownhillFromHere
03-06-2018, 16:38
I find these threads hilarious. Being connected on social media is the way things are now and are going to be in the future. No amount of whining is going to change that. Forcing todays generation (actually it goes back past the millenials) to leave their phones at home is just dumb and making judgements about them is even dumber. There are so many examples of this throughout American culture and all that ever happens is the complainers end up on the wrong side of history.

Ayup.

"The children now love luxury; they have bad manners, contempt for authority; they show disrespect for elders and love chatter in place of exercise. Children are now tyrants, not the servants of their households. They no longer rise when elders enter the room. They contradict their parents, chatter before company, gobble up dainties at the table, cross their legs, and tyrannize their teachers."
--Socrated, 400 BC

rickb
03-06-2018, 17:12
It used to be that I would eagerly introduce myself as a former thru hiker to those in the middle of their own hikes.

With some frequency the person living his adventure would suggest that things must have been different way back whenó to which I would invariable reply not so much, you still have to walk 2000 Miles.

I really believe that.

The one exception being that without the benefit of electronics ó no one in my family even had their own answering machine ó I got to experience a sense of isolation/independence from the world and family that I had never experienced before or since. Without going full hermit, of course.

Something to be said for disconnecting and dealing with your quiet self.

Exactly what, I donít really know.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 17:43
Uh ohh, be careful ADFH. You're trending towards becoming one of those "usual suspects." :D

In that quoting of Socrates, knowing he was famous for not penning his own thoughts(source of quote is in doubt?), it should be understood Socrates had great appeal among young Greeks because he was not only willing to question behavior of the their generation but the supposed wisdom of the older generations and of everyone in between.

This quote should not be taken out of context of Socrates' larger views on ethics or justification for a younger generation to engage selfishly...which it often is.

Contradictory, Socrates was no general despiser of younger people and avocated for personal self control.

Ironic that Socrates quote is often cited to justify a lack of self control and consideration of others.

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 17:48
No Sir I am not. Turned 30 for the first time last week actually lol

Sir? I said I'm not 55. ;)

CalebJ
03-06-2018, 17:50
To be fair, you didn't say you were younger either :-)

Dogwood
03-06-2018, 18:10
I figured I'd lure some 37 yr olds into posting when I mentioned alcohol and cannabis. :D

rocketsocks
03-06-2018, 20:29
I figured I'd lure some 37 yr olds into posting when I mentioned alcohol and cannabis. :D
All Ďem Millennails...they really love that one :D

rocketsocks
03-06-2018, 22:07
Not everyone requires full emmersion into the great out of doors to recharge their internal batteries, and having electronics along on a hike isn’t synonymous with the crazed wired-in “walk into a wishing” well zombies of town life, It’s not an all or nothin’ thing, many can be quite content with the splendor of nature and then utilize the worlds knowledge in the palm of a hand at will.

ldsailor
03-07-2018, 12:08
Some people arenít happy unless they are moaning and groaning about something. No matter how much they moan, however, smart phones on the trail are here to stay.
So true. And as for the "moaning and groaning," I find it sad that there are people on this forum who cannot simply state an opinion or acknowledge an opinion of others and leave it at that. For some reason, they believe it necessary to beat others into submission if a stated opinion conflicts even slightly with their own opinion. I always thought these forums were for an exchange of ideas and not a platform to bludgeon other forum users into agreement.

I also find it sad that we seem to have some age bias creeping in.

putts
03-07-2018, 13:59
Not a moan, groan, gripe, or complaint - just my thoughts (40 yr old, white male with a beard) I didn't/don't own or use a smart phone on a thru or in "real" life. I am happier to carry my camera, mp3 player, guidebook, pen and paper, map and flip phone. In "real" life I am happier to not be expected to have pocket access to emails, and social media. I prefer acoustic to electric.

Dogwood
03-07-2018, 15:33
So true. And as for the "moaning and groaning," I find it sad that there are people on this forum who cannot simply state an opinion or acknowledge an opinion of others and leave it at that. For some reason, they believe it necessary to beat others into submission if a stated opinion conflicts even slightly with their own opinion. I always thought these forums were for an exchange of ideas and not a platform to bludgeon other forum users into agreement.

I also find it sad that we seem to have some age bias creeping in.

Thats probably aimed at me.

Let me make it clearer and extend an olive branch. Again, I acknowledge your valid opinion electronics - navigational apps - on a smart phone can certainly be useful. I'd be a hypocrite if I suggested otherwise. I have navigational apps on a phone sometimes which I partly rely. I wasn't putting an absolute kabash on electronics in our exchange. It was the hikers possible over reliance on it that possibly led to an escalation of events that cummulatively tragically led to loss of life. We hear so often about the greatness of electronics , the side we most often hear about. That's not in contention! It is the sides we often don't hear about which I was opining.

We can disagree, or in our exchange do what we were doing which was adding to the scope of each other's valid opinions even though we were coming from different angles.

That does not mean I was not acknowledging your opinon, which FWIW I consider based on fact rather than mine based on conjecture. :)

BTW I've read your posts several times considering your info before I replied to them. You were not being ignored.

rickb
03-07-2018, 16:11
Would now be a good time to wax poetic about a Dollar Store Candle in a Coke can lantern?

Nah, there really is something nice about 1000 lumens at the press of a button :).

Coffee
03-07-2018, 16:39
With the near extinction of pay phones over the past few years, carrying a cell phone is necessary for a number of reasons. My Moto G is a bit over 5 ounces. I keep it off while I am hiking and only use it very rarely for navigational apps and I sometimes listen to audiobooks in the evening once I'm in my tent and sleeping bag because I find listening to audio books easier than reading in my tent. I have a separate lightweight camera which lasts a long time on a battery so I rarely have to recharge my devices. I will carry my InReach device on most trips where I know cell coverage is limited and this is the for the peace of mind of family, first, and potential safety second.

As someone who is connected almost all the time in civilization, I highly value my time on trail as a chance to unplug and reconnect with the real world.

Dogwood
03-07-2018, 16:45
Sure is. :)

When your life might depend on light and that push of a button doesn't instantly result in that light what does one then do? Is that being verbose to consider that? :-?

From reported info, four wk's uninjured sitting in one place less than two miles from the safety of a massively well used trail with spent supplies facing exposure with no evidence of an eventual attempt to walk out after repeated attempts at connecting via electronics reeks of an over reliance on safety coming from those electronic connectivity attempts.

George
03-07-2018, 19:06
Sure is. :)

When your life might depend on light and that push of a button doesn't instantly result in that light what does one then do? Is that being verbose to consider that? :-?

From reported info, four wk's uninjured sitting in one place less than two miles from the safety of a massively well used trail with spent supplies facing exposure with no evidence of an eventual attempt to walk out after repeated attempts at connecting via electronics reeks of an over reliance on safety coming from those electronic connectivity attempts.

and she had a spot type device left back at the motel - this was my reasoning for a sat phone (a thread I had started) - one device that potentially does it all would be likely to be carried when you need it

Slo-go'en
03-07-2018, 20:41
Would now be a good time to wax poetic about a Dollar Store Candle in a Coke can lantern?
Nah, there really is something nice about 1000 lumens at the press of a button :).

I kind of miss the flickering light of a candle. In fact, I've started to bring my old candle lantern on short overnight hikes in the fall. It's nice to have a little non-glaring background light.

AllDownhillFromHere
03-07-2018, 22:48
I kind of miss the flickering light of a candle. In fact, I've started to bring my old candle lantern on short overnight hikes in the fall. It's nice to have a little non-glaring background light.
Definitely - decades ago it was candles. Although, check out those Luci blow-up solar lights. Pretty decent.

Dogwood
03-07-2018, 23:48
and she had a spot type device left back at the motel - this was my reasoning for a sat phone (a thread I had started) - one device that potentially does it all would be likely to be carried when you need it

What if she had no power for the sat ph?

That's another kick in the electronics arse. We say if she had navigtional apps, more connectivity, more electronic device help she might be alive, which can be true, yet she already had electronics that could have saved her - a SPOT and she didn't have it on her....in Maine.

If I had to choose any one state on the AT I'd want a SPOT the most ME would be at or near the top of the list.

I muse did she become over confident in her smart ph as is common as her sole source of info and as "the" tool in a one tool does it all approach? What happens when that one tool breaks or is not functioning? What happens when what we expect to occur, what we're accustomed, what we've become spoiled to, like having power or connectivity, isn't realized and our lives depend on still being able to function?

She may have gotten lost or even more turned around attempting to get connectivity via electronics. That could very well factor into why she was found on a hill. Although we dont know for sure a very real case can be made that she over relied on electronics which is why she got lost in the first place and found where she did.

What I take from her situation is electronics are great, darn useful tools, but in the event expectations of connectivity or power are not forthcoming I better be able to know other non electronic ways of proceeding even if it means self rescue.

What's the back up plan to no electronic usage? Is there such a plan?

Take this in context the massively popular highly used AT super hiker highway and the most populated areas of the east coast are not always at the center of everyone's hike.

Coffee
03-08-2018, 00:51
It is very easy to get turned around and lost in heavily wooded terrain - it has happened to me a few times, one time briefly when I went to get water after setting up my camp where all my gear was located and it was getting dark and cold - very scary. That was a while ago, I am less complacent now - I take more precautions now like making many mental notes of where I am relative to the trail or camp, taking a compass bearing if walking into the woods to dig a cat hole or find water, etc. I also always have my Delorme InReach with me whenever I am hiking or even away from visual distance of my campsite. These things are kind of embarrassing to admit to. It's easy to get lost in a dense forest with no easy points of reference which is what I think happened to the unfortunate hiker in Maine, although a lot of that story is really inexplicable to me.

Traveler
03-08-2018, 07:45
I think most everyone who has spent time on trails has gotten disorientated for a short time when leaving the trail or campsite for water or other reasons. The experience can feel embarrassing or be very frightening.

These incidents can occur with anyone, including the most experienced and physically fit among us, serving as a reminder the forest, like the ocean or sky, is not necessarily dangerous in and of itself. It's simply indifferent and intolerant of carelessness or mistakes. You don't need to be in the middle of a several hundred mile wilderness to become lost, knowing how to work your way back is the only real prevention.

Gambit McCrae
03-08-2018, 09:13
Guthooks (Using my smartphone) has saved my rear 4 times, two times in the smokies and twice on my 250 mile walk in the mid atlantic trip last October. None of which were in any way life or death. 3 times were to let me know I was off the AT and on another trail. and the 4th time was when I could have sworn I wasn't on the AT(in the smokies, before daylight, in the rain) and it ended up being a peace of mind when I saw I was on the AT.

I have decided to continue bringing my iphone on trips. The weight is already justified, and I will continue to leave it on airplane mode until the end of the day. Maybe on my week and 2 week trips this year I will try turning it off and putting it in my backpack more instead of having it on my hip. I enjoy taking pictures of all my trips so it may just stay on my hip after all.

Dogwood
03-08-2018, 10:33
It is very easy to get turned around and lost in heavily wooded terrain - it has happened to me a few times, one time briefly when I went to get water after setting up my camp where all my gear was located and it was getting dark and cold - very scary. That was a while ago, I am less complacent now - I take more precautions now like making many mental notes of where I am relative to the trail or camp, taking a compass bearing if walking into the woods to dig a cat hole or find water, etc. I also always have my Delorme InReach with me whenever I am hiking or even away from visual distance of my campsite. These things are kind of embarrassing to admit to. It's easy to get lost in a dense forest with no easy points of reference which is what I think happened to the unfortunate hiker in Maine, although a lot of that story is really inexplicable to me.

This is exactly what I'm saying one can do - dont always use electronics as your sole means of reliabilty. Yoy display multiple layers of safety of approaches.
Consider this happened on the AT. What happens when youre backpacking/hiking takes you into greater remote regions? Even though you have your Delorme with you youre not turning your mind off. You have multiple levels, multiple approaches to keep from getting lost and getting unlost. You are not being complacent, mentally lazy, electronically spoiled. That's developing your abilities beyond being able to look at a screen or tap a keyboard. You're not allowing yourself to be electronically dumbed down. You're demonstrating a greater awareness and it didn't come from yrs and yrs of hiking.

That's not a beat down on devices. It's an opinion about developing ones abilities, challenging electronic comfort zones. Isn't that what backpacking is about for so many or so they(we) say...expanding comfort zones?

Coffee
03-08-2018, 13:18
I agree with all of that. One must have multiple redundancies when it comes to survival and to not rely on electronics exclusively. Getting lost can be a good learning experience provided that one survives to learn from it. In retrospect, one of my most embarrassing (but harmless) learning experience came from taking a break and blissfully getting up from my log and heading back in the direction from which I had come, only to find out probably four miles later when I returned to a road crossing that I had crossed earlier in the day. After much cursing at the time, I look back on it with some amusement today (while still wishing to never repeat it).

Colter
03-08-2018, 21:31
I often find a smart phone to be a very valuable tool. I also have no trouble being completely disconnected. Either way I hike my own hike.

LucyInColor
10-03-2018, 13:17
I keep my phone off for the most part but I become more dependent on Guthook at the end of long days when I'm SURE my intended camp spot is right around the corner, or I missed it. The more tired I am, the more I rely on Guthook. This summer I wandered off the trail into a mosquito-y thicket. Guthook told me the trail was 20 feet to the right but I couldn't see it. I walked what I thought was 20 feet & still didn't see the trail. I was in no imminent danger, but I was surprised by the games my mind played. Guthook must be wrong. It's broken. OMG, I'm really, really lost, (even though I heard barking dogs & cars). Does my Garmin Mini have enough charge for an SOS? Will an SOS even work in this thicket where Guthook doesn't? Where's my whistle? What a horrible place to die! Another five steps landed me on the trail. Guthook was right all along. So, I'm not using social media on the trail, but my phone definitely has its place in my pack!

Grampie
10-03-2018, 17:15
I have typed out and deleted this 3 times now....

In todays time we live in a society that is strongly driven by our handheld devices.

In todays time we, we being hikers as a majority, are weight conscious.

I as a hiker have an Iphone 7 plus. It is my camera, my phone, my map, my entertainment that could be present in the form of music, watching movies, facebook etc....Now I have to power this phone and even though I am aware of battery usage my go to method is use it as much as I want, and in return I carry an 8oz battery pack that I can recharge it 5 times off of. Now I have been on the trail for 5 days and am in a motel for the night, so I am carrying a dual wall charger and charge cords for both battery pack as well as phone. And then there is the ear buds which on some trips I have been known to carry 2 pairs of in case 1 pair breaks...

So what gives here! Why, for one, am I counting ounces on a sub 2 lb tent yet I am completely great with 2 lbs worth of electrical crap.

Why am I going to the trail and the woods to escape yet staying plugged in via electronics. I would like to do some trips without anything more electronic then my headlamp this year.

Thoughts on this rambling topic above? haha -
Safety concerns in case of emergency instances?

I thru-hiked in 2001. Very few hikers were carrying the electric crap they carry today. What cell phone service there was was limited. It made for a much different hike than today. I think it was far more enjoyable.

Traveler
10-04-2018, 06:35
I remain at a loss to understand why someone carrying a cell phone, GPS, MP3 player, digital camera, or other electronic device would make someone else's hike less enjoyable.

lonehiker
10-04-2018, 10:53
I remain at a loss to understand why someone carrying a cell phone, GPS, MP3 player, digital camera, or other electronic device would make someone else's hike less enjoyable.

Because people are more worried about what others are doing...

Gambit McCrae
10-04-2018, 11:37
Because people are more worried about what others are doing...

That doesn't make sense

Feral Bill
10-04-2018, 11:55
That doesn't make sense

Many things don't.

Five Tango
10-04-2018, 12:09
I use my phone to find my way while driving.Once at the trailhead,it's going with me because I'm not about to leave it in the car.I have a section of the Guthook App and Gaia GPS,have not used either one because I have not needed to.For my wife's peace of mind I do carry a plb,ACR ResQlink,because it is fairly powerful and has no fees.
The thot has occurred to me that it could come in handy in the event someone had a real emergency and time was of the essence etc.What few pictures I take are done with a cheap Kodak camera.I don't listen to music and have made only one phone call from the trail so far but I agree it's bad trail etiquette when others are around.

cliffordbarnabus
10-04-2018, 23:44
once, i used an electronic headlamp on the trail.....

George
10-04-2018, 23:59
That doesn't make sense

makes perfect sense to me - like the post I read in the last few days implying folks wearing bright colors ruined others outdoor experience ( tried the BS to link it to LNT)

I say get over yourself - if you often have a problem with other peoples actions, look in the mirror for the root of the problem

Heliotrope
10-05-2018, 08:26
HYOH. But I donít want to carry anymore weight than I have to. I refuse to carry a battery pack. Iíve made it seven days on one charge of my iPhone, using it for photos and a very occasional guthook check. I choose to stay off social media texting email and phone calls on my hikes because I want a break from daily life.

What other people carry and use is their own business except when they blatantly disregard the experience of others. I do find it obnoxious to have to listen to somebody elseís crappy music choices as they walk along the trail. Use earbuds for crying out loud.


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hohjoe
10-05-2018, 09:28
I carry an iPhone SE. The smallest iPhone I could get. It stays in my pocket except for the occasional picture.

fastfoxengineering
10-05-2018, 11:11
My number one hated electrical device on trail is piezo igniters.

Especially when someone doesn't know how to use a jetboil and just clicks away.



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CalebJ
10-05-2018, 12:52
My number one hated electrical device on trail is piezo igniters.

Especially when someone doesn't know how to use a jetboil and just clicks away.
Why does this bother you?

fastfoxengineering
10-05-2018, 13:04
Why does this bother you?
Theyre just obnoxiously loud in my opinion at 5am.

I know ..... I should go stealth by myself somewhere

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