GPS App assistance request

11:20 a.m. on March 5, 2018 (EST)
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Hello- I am taking an unsupported Suwannee River canoe trip of 231 river miles in a couple of months and want  the ability to send my GPS coordinates back to a small select group of friends / family each night when I pitch camp to let them know i'm safe. Ideally, I would like:

1) An app that would work on my Android based phone

2) Provides GPS coordinates in Degrees, Minutes, and seconds

3) Allows me to seamlessly send via email / text message current GPS coordinates to a distro list of contacts.

4) I am aware that there are stand alone GPS units or apps such as Gaia GPS that are Android compatible but it does not allow for transmission of coordinates via email or text.

I will be very appreciative of any opinions / guidance that you might provide.

8:44 a.m. on March 6, 2018 (EST)
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I personally use motion X gps, and really like it. It wont do text(i think) but you can send updates manually or setup automatic ones to include gps coordinates, messages and map snapshots. Options are email facebook or twitter or a combo. If your with a group all using the app it will also show all members on the map and their position.

10:39 a.m. on March 6, 2018 (EST)
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TheRambler said:

... If your with a group all using the app it will also show all members on the map and their position.

 That sounds like it could come in handy at times.

6:26 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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LoneStranger said:

TheRambler said:

... If your with a group all using the app it will also show all members on the map and their position.

 That sounds like it could come in handy at times.

 Definitely! Not something I have used a whole lot, but it has come in handy at times for sure.

6:33 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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Dennis. I don't have an app suggestion but a question. You say the plan would be to send location each night from your phone. I am not familiar with the area, but are you sure that you will have signal and be able to do that? I used to depend on my phone for occasional contact with my wife on backpacking trips as I aged but ended up investing in a satellite device as the phones are so unreliable.

8:50 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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Thanks to those who replied to my query. I appreciate your guidance.

Specifically to Phil May - From just south ( approx 4 miles) on the Suwannee river ATT has coverage all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. I have verified this personally at multiple points along the river. North of the Florida / Georgia State line, there is ZERO coverage on the River (also first hand experience). all the way past Suwannee Sills almost to the Okefenokee Swamp Park. Dosen't matter what Carrier, you'll have better luck with two tin cans and a waxed string!

Thank you for the question Phil.

8:55 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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Sounds like you have done your homework. Wish I had some advice in apps. I use Backcountry Navigator for some casual hikes, but the best you can do is send a screenshot from there. Just picked up View ranger for my use in Scotland and haven't fully explored it yet. It does have a Buddy Beacon option that seems to share locations but I haven't used it.

Have a great trip.

9:10 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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TheRambler said:

I personally use motion X gps, and really like it. It wont do text(i think) but you can send updates manually or setup automatic ones to include gps coordinates, messages and map snapshots. Options are email facebook or twitter or a combo. If your with a group all using the app it will also show all members on the map and their position.

 To TheRambler - Is there a version of Motion X GPS applicable for Android platforms?

As I stated above, I have an Android device and my looking online only resulted in Apple platforms.

9:50 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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I don't get why Gaia GPS doesn't have an easy way to copy coordinates. Users have been requesting the function for years but are still stuck with a cumbersome process to manually copy them. Having spent a few decades coding for a living it makes no sense to me. Can't take that much to add it as an option to manual waypoint creation and would let folks like Dennis here take the data to whatever app they wanted without much effort.

11:09 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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i am pretty sure google+ would allow you to do this, and create a circle of people with whom to share your coordinates.  integrates with google maps.  

Glympse is free and runs on Android as well as Ios. can't hurt to download and give it a test drive.  

11:30 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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LoneStranger said:

I don't get why Gaia GPS doesn't have an easy way to copy coordinates. Users have been requesting the function for years but are still stuck with a cumbersome process to manually copy them. Having spent a few decades coding for a living it makes no sense to me. Can't take that much to add it as an option to manual waypoint creation and would let folks like Dennis here take the data to whatever app they wanted without much effort.

 

LoneStranger - Nor do I but it does not have that capability as yet. After I downloaded Gaia GPS a few weeks ago and played around with it I reached out to their CS folks. The app has the ability to email your coordinates but to open the file, you need to use another program such as google Earth, etc. I don't speak "programming" but I would not think it so difficult to have the ability to copy/paste Lat/Lon coordinates into an email or text. It must be difficult or Gaia would have implemented this in a revision. To their credit, their app has a lot of features - just not the one I need.  :-)

11:31 a.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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leadbelly2550 said:

i am pretty sure google+ would allow you to do this, and create a circle of people with whom to share your coordinates.  integrates with google maps.  

Glympse is free and runs on Android as well as Ios. can't hurt to download and give it a test drive.  

 Thank You Leadbelly2550 - I'll give it a look see.

12:37 p.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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I thought they had released an android version... but I guess they have not.

1:08 p.m. on March 7, 2018 (EST)
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Dennis Lindsey said:

LoneStranger - Nor do I but it does not have that capability as yet. After I downloaded Gaia GPS a few weeks ago and played around with it I reached out to their CS folks. The app has the ability to email your coordinates but to open the file, you need to use another program such as google Earth, etc. I don't speak "programming" but I would not think it so difficult to have the ability to copy/paste Lat/Lon coordinates into an email or text. It must be difficult or Gaia would have implemented this in a revision. To their credit, their app has a lot of features - just not the one I need.  :-)

 I tried it and found I really like Gaia for what it did do. It is still loaded on my phone as a back up app for navigation. I also have the Earthmate software from my inReach and Guthook's as well. More maps don't add a lot of weight.

Here in the NE the mountains make cell coverage really spotty so the inReach is my choice for communication much of the time. Frau Stranger and I really like being able to stay in touch throughout my trips since I'm alone much of the time.

Hope you'll take some pics on your trip and share them with us when you get back. Always love to see where other folks are going!

1:47 p.m. on March 8, 2018 (EST)
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LoneStranger, tagging on to Dennis's thread...

I haven't tried Gaia yet but does anything stand out as being more useful to you than the Earthmate software? That's what I'm using and I can sometimes download and overlay USGS maps to that interface. It's been especially helpful to pull the older USGS maps when I'm trying to trace an un-maintained route in the Smokies.

2:23 p.m. on March 8, 2018 (EST)
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Nothing I can think of Pat. I am not a heavy GPS user so they all seem pretty much the same to me. My primary reason I fire it up is to see how close to camp I'm getting when my stomach starts rumbling. I did use it once last Winter to verify that, as I suspected, I'd lost the trail. It also told me the trail was in the direction I figured it would be, so nice to have some support for my beliefs.

5:53 p.m. on March 8, 2018 (EST)
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The Garmin Rino has the features you are looking for plus FRS/GMRS radio built into it. But it is not a phone app. It is, however, a very solid GPS.

If you rent a satellite device like the Inmarsat BGAN, many cell phones allow you to call/text over wifi. Or you can rent a satellite phone.... Likely that will be my choice when I go out for a week in May. It will give me a little experience before I make the choice to actually buy one, when my PLB battery is due for replacement - might instead take the plunge with a sat phone. 

6:08 p.m. on March 8, 2018 (EST)
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The Rhino's are great - we have a set of 4 at work so our field teams can keep up with each other. For solo trips they are very expensive and heavier than the Inreach (at least the older model I have).  Neither are phone apps so don't really help Dennis out much. 

I looked into Viewranger a bit more Dennis - the BuddyBeacon feature can do what you ask.  This is from the web: "ViewRanger BuddyBeacon lets you share your real-time location with friends, so they can follow your adventures on their phone or computer. Your location is PIN protected so you handpick who can see your location"

On a side note you mentioned the Okeefenokee Park, does the Suwanee drain the Okeefenokee?  I thought the St Mary's came out of there but its been since the 80s that I canoed in that area...just interested in old haunts - this sounds like a great trip.

1:42 p.m. on March 9, 2018 (EST)
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For Lori P. and Phil M. - Thanx for the additional input / suggestions. Phil to answer your question RE: the origin of the Suwannee River, the Suwannee River does originate out of the Okefenokee Swamp but so does the St. Marys, River. To my knowledge those are the only two rivers that originate there. In my opinion, The Suwannee drains the lion share.  Thanx to all.

9:52 a.m. on March 11, 2018 (EDT)
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If you are interested in a Rhino, I have one I could give you a good deal on. I havn't used it much in the last few years, and have been debating whether or not to sell it.

8:01 a.m. on March 12, 2018 (EDT)
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TheRambler said:

If you are interested in a Rhino, I have one I could give you a good deal on. I havn't used it much in the last few years, and have been debating whether or not to sell it.

 

To The Rambler - Thank you so very much for the offer of what I'm sure would be a great opportunity. However, I am on a fairly limited budget as a retired service member so while your offer is tempting, I must decline. Thank you for your graciousness. 

June 19, 2018
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