We need to experience nature and see new things off the beaten path. We want to get away and enjoy the outdoors away from work and the same old day to day grind. When you venture far from civilization you need to be prepared. After all “failing to plan is planning to fail”. If you hike in the mountains you bring certain necessities with you, which may include: food, water, first aid kit, knife and maybe a GPS.
But, will any of these items allow you to summon help in an emergency? No, you’re basically on your own. Even if you are in a group the amount of time it takes to get help could mean the difference between life and death. If there is a bad fall that results in extreme bleeding or if there is head trauma the amount of time to get that person medical attention is very important.
Everyone at one time or another loses signal with their cellular phone. Surprisingly vast areas of the U.S. are still not covered by cellular service. Most of these areas are where people want to hike and enjoy the outdoors.
Being prepared is a necessity. Satellite phones have saved hundreds of lives over the years. Handheld satellite phones can easily be placed in a backpack and now weigh less than a pound. Satellite phones will provide communication even outside of cellular range. Satellite phones do not need a local cellular or landline service to function. In fact, satellite phones work better away from civilization where buildings and other tall structures could block the signal. When using a handheld satellite phone you must be outside away from tall structures and trees. A satellite phone must have line-of-site to at least one of the satellites to establish a communication link.
The satellite phones signal goes up to one or more satellites, it is then sent back down to a ground station where it is sent through the public telephone network to its call destination. The same is true in reverse. When calling a satellite phone, the call from a landline or cellular phone goes to the satellite ground stations where it is transmitted to one or more satellites, then sent down to the satellite phone.
Hopefully while enjoying yourself outdoors there will never be an emergency, but “failing to plan is planning to fail”. Help can be a phone call away if you are prepared.