Monday, June 4, 2012

New Toys

Preparations are continuing and two very important items for my trip arrived this week.
It's nice to have fun and be able to document it but it is also very important to prepare for the unexpected specially when riding alone in remote areas.  One can never be too prepared for a trip of this magnitude.   Covering so many miles in remote areas where cell towers are non-existent is a little daunting.  I am an AMA member and they offer roadside assistance even in Canada but first you have to get in touch with them.  I have purchased GEOS MEDIVAC insurance which offers life-saving medical evacuation and emergency assistance including repatriation to a place close to home.  All these programs are good but you still have to get in touch with someone, and when out of cell phone signal the best way is to use SPOT.  The SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger provides a vital line of communication with friends and family when you want it, and emergency assistance when you need it.  The SPOT system provides Check-in/OK and allows you to keep in touch with family by letting them receive custom pre-programmed messages.   The SPOT lets them know you are okay and where you are by giving your location in Google Maps.  Your family and friends can keep track of your progress as well.  In the event of a life threatening situation you simply activate the SOS emergency services of your GPS location and that you need assistance.  The SPOT service combined with the GEOS insurance gives you peace of mind in case of a critical emergency.

AMA here
GEOS MEDIVAC here
SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger here


The second item I received this week was the GoPro HD Hero2.  The little camera will be used to document the trip by capturing the scenery while I'm riding.  This little jewel is waterproof to 197′ (60m), does an amazing job of  capturing professional full 170º wide angle 1080p or 720p videos and 11 megapixel photos at a rate of 10 photos per second.  Now all I have to do is find a spot to mount the camera on my bike.

GoPro HD Hero2 here


To record the movies on the GoPro I bought a SanDisk Extreme SDHC 32GB SD card which has the speed and capacity to record up to 4 hours of 1080p video.
More to follow


17 comments:

  1. That's what I call boy scout like preparation. Good thinking to carry insurance and have an emergency beacon on you. It is like carrying an umbrella when it is supposed to rain but never does.

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    1. It's more for the family, I know how it feels when your loved one is away and you don't get updates and don't know where they are. The GEOS is just a great benefit, everyone that rides long distance should have it.

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  2. A few years back, we tried the earlier version of the SPOT tracker and it didn't work very well way up north. I picked up the same model you have (except it's silver) and tried it out on my current trip to Barrow, AK. And it seems to work just fine. Whatever they did between version 1 and 2 seems to have helped. I also have the AMA membership but since I rarely venture off the highway, I passed on the GEOS Medivac insurance. For roads like the Dalton and Klondike, it's probably a good thing to have.

    Now I'm looking forward to seeing your video clips...

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    Replies
    1. I'm sure over the years the number of satellites capable of receiving the signal from the SPOT device has increased. Think about it, the device is tiny and must be able to broadcast a signal that a satellite can receive. The Medivac just makes sense.

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  3. Good choices, one for protection/peace of mind, and the other for fun. I know I appreciated Brad having the spot on him when doing off road riding. It was nice to get the emails saying he was okay and where he was. Peace of mind for your loved ones is priceless and it has the added benefit of the SOS function.

    I too am looking forward to your videos and trip reports.

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    Replies
    1. It's a neat little device and like you say "Peace of Mind" for the family. I hope my little computer will be able to process the Hero video.

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  4. I agree great choices, so looking forward to this one...

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  5. Nice Bud, looking forward to the communication during your adventure .

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    1. I won't use my cell phone in Canada, no way I'm going to pay roaming charges, the companies love to gauge you with roaming fees. I will use the laptop for e-mail and Google chat/hangouts as well as skype.

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  6. I will be happy to share what I've learned about GoPro with you- email link at my blog profile

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  7. George, I'd be interested to hear what you think of the GoPro. I've been thinking of getting one. I know they seem to keep improving them.

    What day will you be riding across WI on US-2? I live 30 miles south of 2 off of 63. I'm only 65 miles from Ironwood and about 70 miles from Duluth. I can offer any tools or assistance you might need, or even a free place to spend the night.

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    1. I haven't decided if that's going to be my route. I'm looking for tire dealers that sell the Heidenau K60 along the way and have only found one in Omaha and in Minneapolis. I have to talk to them and see the availability, that's going to determine my route. I will let you know and thanks for the offer.

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    2. If you can last until Fairbanks, there is a local tire shop catering to the advrider crowd and will pre-order your tires including the K60's. Once you arrive in Fairbanks, they'll swap them on for your trip to Deadhorse. They'll also store excess gear so you can lighten your load. Their hours are 24/7 during the riding season.

      For the Klondike Hwy and the Top of the World, you probably won't need them as buses and motorhomes regularly traverse that road.

      http://www.advcycleworks.com/ (no affiliation)

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    3. Richard, the problem is I'm going to be riding gravel and dirt roads while I'm in Whitehorse. There's a ride planned to the town of Faro and we taking a dirt road there :-)
      I want to have the tires by then.

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    4. Sorry, I had forgotten. Now I remember having this conversation before :-)

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