Garmin inreach mini

Discussion in 'Maps, GPS and Google Earth' started by Tikkamike, Nov 29, 2018.


Help Support Long Range Hunting by donating:


  1. Tikkamike

    Tikkamike Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,750
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    I dont know how many of you hunt off the well beaten path and away from cell service, But I have recently ditched my Sat phone and purchased the inreach mini. It has the capability to connect with your phone via blue tooth. You can set it to drop bread crumbs so that anyone you choose can track you if you want. but being able to send out a message and receive one back is huge to me. I can just throw it in my pack and forget about it. Knowing is an emergency with family or work comes in they can reach me and dont have to wait for me to call and check in. anyone who spends time in remote locations should definitely check into them
     
    FIGJAM and Capt RB like this.
  2. Capt RB

    Capt RB Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,385
    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2014
    More and more guys are going to this in the boating world also. Much more reliable than the ------ globalstar sat phones. I've stood on the bow in crappy weather more than I care to having call after call dropped due to crappy service. No worries though they don't mind charging you for that spectacularly crappy service.
    Compare that to the text with a location and a 10min bread crumb trail. Add in the fact that you can start and stop your plan for very reasonable rates. Just adds to the reason to add it for your safety factor.
    Len should add it to his store. I feel a must have for the solo hunter
     
    Tikkamike likes this.
  3. Tikkamike

    Tikkamike Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,750
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2009
    absolutely, its one of those tools i look at as why the heck wouldnt you have one. I am on search and rescue and I can say 100% that technology like this has saved countless lives.
     
    HARPERC likes this.
  4. FIGJAM

    FIGJAM Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

    Messages:
    1,494
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    I like to hunt off the beaten path as well, and have found that I enjoy a good solo hunt. I have an inReach and love it. I like how you can suspend the plan so you don't have to pay for it during those months that you aren't using it.
     
    Capt RB and Tikkamike like this.
  5. Mc Fraser

    Mc Fraser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    68
    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2018
    Do active weather and multi-satellite networks are a must for GPS's?
     
  6. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,409
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2015
    I looked at the Mini last year, but settled on the InReach Explorer. They are a must, be you are alone or in a party in the Backcountry. We are subject to all kinds of accidents or illness.

    I chose the Explorer as it has maps, and twice the battery life and costs only $50 more. Your family will be more at ease, every time you send a reassuring text. I hope never to need the SOS button, but feel better knowing it's there.
     
  7. werth338

    werth338 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    198
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2018
    I just got my Mini and haven’t had a chance to get it out. The mini does pair with some of the garmin watches as well so a little more functionality there.
     
  8. MtPockets

    MtPockets Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

    Messages:
    372
    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    I'm still on the fence about whether to buy the Explorer or the Mini, but leaning toward the mini because I already have a very capable GPS with the OnX state chip. To my understanding, the Explorer won't work with that chip.
     
  9. Ed AO

    Ed AO Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    105
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2017
    I have and used the mini this year. I like it. Went with this one due to size and weight. Pairs with the phone and battery life is good. Peace of mind for my family is definitely worth it.
     
  10. kraigwy

    kraigwy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    173
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2008
    Not only do I hunt "off the path" but I live in an area where once you get out of town you have no cell service.

    I tried the Sat phone and it proved iffy at best. Seems I was constantly getting cut off, plus running around in circles trying to keep in touch with the satellites. Not to mention you have to be out in the elements to use it.

    I'm old but that wont stop me from hunting the mountains alone. But my wife fears I'm gonna fall off a mountain or something so to keep her happy I try to keep in touch. Hated to drive off the mountain to call her and tell her I'm still alive.

    Then I discovered the Inreach Mini. Problem solved. Never used the emergency button, but to keep wife happy I can text her anytime. Plus each text gives her a map showing exactly where I am. (The map section can be turned off, IN CASE). Down load the Inreach application to your phone and use the phone for texting. Just have to keep the phone within 10 feet. Dont need cell service. Just use your cell to type out and send, or retrieve any messages. You text to another the same way you would using a cell phone, that person receives it on their cell phone, they dont need a Mini if they have cell service.

    Your suppose to have a clear path to the sky, but I found it works in the truck or tent. Dont have to stand outside like the sat phone. I've even used it in the house. You can get weather also.

    The service cost is reasonable but I pay a little more to have unlimited text's. Like I said, even when not hunting I dont get much cell service so I use the Mini year around.

    Maine thing, it keeps the wife happy, thats worth the cost right there. If you forget your paper map, or GPS, you can at anytime check the map button and it will show you a map showing where you're at.

    I highly recommend the mini.
     
  11. Len Backus

    Len Backus Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,472
    Joined:
    May 2, 2001
    I just bought a mini and will be using it next month in the Tetons.
     
  12. jebel

    jebel Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    176
    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2018
    How does the Freedom plan on these Inreach minis work, exactly? Reading the literature, it sounds like it's always on and taking automatic monthly payments, but you can turn it off on a month-to-month basis. However, it doesn't sound like you can say, "I only want it on September through November each year." Is that right?

    If that is right, how onerous is it to go in and turn it off each month that you don't need it?

    Second question on the Freedom plan: does it always default to beginning/end of the calendar month, or can you activate service on the 15th of the month so going forward your personal 'month' ends always on the 15th?

    These look like good devices.
     
  13. FIGJAM

    FIGJAM Well-Known Member LRH Team Member

    Messages:
    1,494
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    I turn mine on and off all the time - its super easy to do, you just log into your account online and push a button.
     
    jebel likes this.
  14. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,409
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2015
    You set it up on Garmin's website and then you can turn it on and off, as needed, but it must be done with your computer each time. Unless they've changed it, it's a monthly deal, so I don't think you can go 15th to 15th.

    There is a charge every time you turn it on. This isn't a big deal, if you only use it once during hunting season.
     
    jebel likes this.