- Aug 1, 2020 at 1:27 pm #3667915Michael MBPL Member
I’ve read so many reviews/opinions my eyeballs hurt. I know I need an SOS and the ability to send messages. I liked the added navigation of the Explorer plus, but everyone seems to think it isn’t that good. I want something that I can carry at all-times while MTB, Hiking, SUP, Splitboarding. I was rationalizing the extra weight of the Explorer plus because it has twice the battery life…now i am wondering if the mini is more practical and less cumbersome for EDC. Thoughts?
Also, has anyone taken the Master class? I’m thinking of taking it. And if you did take it would you rather have the plus or the Mini? Thanks for the feedback.Aug 1, 2020 at 6:23 pm #3667971ArthurBPL Member
I took the master class. They have all been excellent and suggest them. Have had many Delorme/Garmins. I now have the mini. It just finished a 7 day, 10+hours per day hiking. Tracking set to 1x per hour for a now disabled old hiking buddy who wanted to track our path. No logging. 2 preset messages per day and about 6-8 messages to the same friend. battery at 35 % at the end of the hike. Battery is not an issue for me. The weight and size make the Explorer a no go compared to the Mini. You need a bluetooth phone anyway to use with either if you want to send messages in less than an hour of “typing”, and the phone will do virtually everything the Plus will do, so just get the Mini. No matter which one you buy, you will learn a lot from the course.Aug 1, 2020 at 7:12 pm #3667983
Didn’t watch the master course. No doubt it’s comprehensive, but I don’t see the necessity, the inReach is pretty easy to use. I’d certainly trust Art in his positive view of them though.
I had the Explorer+, got rid of it and got the Mini instead. My battery doesn’t last nearly as long as Art’s, but that’s because I log and track every 30 seconds. A few messages at night, and one in the morning. Sometimes check weather (depends on the weather!). It still lasts me two days like that.Aug 1, 2020 at 7:57 pm #3667991MinerBPL Member
Didn’t take the class as I didn’t see any benefit in doing so. The units are easy to figure out. Takes more work figuring out what plan to get based on your expected usage over the course of a year. I own the mini after having borrowed one from a friend who had previously loan me his spot on some long remote trips. I favored it due to the small size and weight of the mini which means I’ll far more likely bring it even if you don’t need a dedicated GPS where your phone will suffice. And as someone else noted, you’ll likely want your phone anyway if you aren’t using the predefined messages and want to type something longer than “I’m ok.” I don’t normally use tracking so my unit is off unless I’m at a break and want to send/receive something so it lasts for weeks.
The rare trips where I want a better GPS than my phone or a backup, I bring my older Garmin Extrex 30x where the combined weight isn’t that much greater than the Explorer and whose maps I’m more use to using anyway. I wish Garmin would make up their mind which maps they want to use after they bought DeLorme. Having different ones for different products is a pain.
Aug 1, 2020 at 8:55 pm #3668067ArthurBPL Member
- This reply was modified 3 days, 6 hours ago by Miner.
In my experience, the logging is the battery killer. It has to keep the GPS calculating, where as tracking only requires the gps to work just before it sends a track point. I use a similar strategy as Miner with the 30X, but lately I just use a gps watch for tracks. Way more battery efficient, Main reason for tracks for me is to sync my photos to the GPS track since I tend to use a real camera instead of my phone.. That may change as the phones get better and better.
The advantage of the class to me was to learn tricks on management, not technical. Like how to use messaging efficiently, good pre written messages, etc. I know how to use the device.Aug 3, 2020 at 12:29 am #3668496Mike WBPL Member
@skopeoLocale: British Columbia
I prefer the Explorer+
I like the all in one capability (messaging and GPS functionality) with no phone required. I don’t want to have to rely on my phone as they have not proven to be ideal for navigation in all weather conditions. I know lots of people use them as their default GPS but my experience with trying to use phones as a GPS has been disappointing (I did try). Touch screens suck in the rain (and cold)! My phone became completely non-functional while skiing because it got too cold. I’ve tried it many times in the rain and it was more frustrating than having to use the keys on the inReach. The screen just won’t react when you have cold wet hands and a soaking wet screen.
I would like better mapping but am too cheap to upgrade to the Garmin GPSMAP 66, which allows you to add mapping.
I haven’t taken the Master Class, and don’t feel it’s necessary for me as I’ve been a GPS Geek for decades. I always pre-load my inReach with routes and waypoints before I go on a trip. I won’t cut corners on safety to conserve battery use (my family appreciates the extra track points as would SAR if I fall off a cliff). A single 18650 battery in my portable power supply will fully charge the Explorer+.Aug 4, 2020 at 6:54 pm #3668942bradmacmtBPL Member
This one is bombarding my Facebook… anyone know anything?Aug 4, 2020 at 6:59 pm #3668943Aug 4, 2020 at 7:17 pm #3668947bradmacmtBPL Member
Idester, thank you. However, the one in your link is the first gen… the one I’ve linked is a second gen.Aug 4, 2020 at 9:19 pm #3669169
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