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Thread: Short hunting trip...Still bring A GPS!

  1. #1
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    Default Short hunting trip...Still bring A GPS!

    I just went out hunting yesterday, just across the slough from Marshall, it being only a 1-2 mile away trip & didn't bring my GPS, as I thought I'd stay on my snowgo all the way through...well, I changed my mind when I saw that there wasn't much sign along the willows, & decided to disembark from my snowgo & have a looksee into the willows...

    Well I get to moseying around in the willow thickets, & not even keeping track of where I am going, just know that I need to walk into the wind...I mosey some more & more, as I find the deeper I go the more potential I see...I end up on the other side of the island ('bout a 1 mile + walk) & then notice I see the slough throgh the thickets...(was walking in a diagonal zig zag patteren as well, to the left) & think that my snowgo is just right arond the bend when I get out of the thickets, when I see a slough, & no mountains behind the slough (Mt. Pilcher is E-NE of Marhsall, that was my azimuth) So I know that I am near my snowgo...right? I was WRONG!

    If the Island is a retangle, I parked the snowgo on the 1st upper left hand 1/3 of the isalnd, & then walked a good mile or two through the thickets, through the rest of the third of the island, to the lower right handed corner of the island, and then proceded up the shorter side of the island, where I saw a cut slough, of the right hand side, thinking I was on the TOP portion of the retangle...& that my snowgo was "right 'round the bend", I came across some fellow hunters & they said they didn't see my snowgo, & we were inside the island nearest the short right side of the island, near a cut slough...I walk out to the cut slough & it's gettin' dark, & I think I need to turn back, & head for the village, to find a ride, but I keep pushing forward.

    It's gettin' darker & darker quicker & quicker, & I hear someone comeing & I walk out to the slough & it's a buddy of mine on a four wheeler & his partner...I ask him to do a quick spot check ahead to see if he can see my snowgo 'bout 2-300 yards up...he does & come back & says there are no tracks...thankfully he & I talked a bit 'bout where I parked, & he knew exactly where my ride was...told me to get on & we head out...& comes three miles later...my snow go up on the bank, on the Yukon side...

    Moral of the story...No matter how small of a trip you go on, BRING A GPS...as well, I left my day pack & refresments that were in there, were awaiting me, & I had worked up a sweat wearin' all my cold weather gear, & walkin' so much. Either that, I should've stayed on the Snowgo... :P

  2. #2
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    Default compass

    goalie Ive been there too! No fun and yea a guy can get in trouble fast. I love my GPS but will leave it, but I always have my compass, its lighter and never fails! Glad it turned out ok!

  3. #3
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Default

    Myself and another member who I will let live in anonymity unless he chooses to admit to it learned this lesson the hard way a couple years ago. Lucky for us some nearby hwy lights are on a timer and came on just in time to get us oriented. In our situation the ceiling dropped on us and obscured all of our landmarks.

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    Default

    pretty much did the same thing in a valley in idaho this year....lesson learned always bring your compass & gps backup if needed. funny how fast a guy can get turned around....

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    Default No Kidding.

    Heard that. Been there; not a good feeling. Glad you made it out OK. ANy bunnies?

  6. #6
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    Default

    gogoalie- good advice, glad the situation was safely resolved. It could have been a cold night out for you.

  7. #7
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default a good ending

    Glad to hear that this turned out and we weren't reading an obituary. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with the rest of us. It's a great reminder for us all about situational awareness and carring the proper safety equipment. I know that may say that they don't use a gps and talk about failures and weight. The bottom line is, they don't weigh much and yes they fail sometimes, but they work FAR more often they they fail and they can save lives and at the the very least, some trouble. Yes I agree that a compass is a must, and always have and I carry both. Thanks again for the reminder.

  8. #8
    Member MARV1's Avatar
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    Default

    Be careful out there, things are not always what they seem at times.
    The emphasis is on accuracy, not power!

  9. #9
    Member goaty's Avatar
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    Default

    I'm never scared when I don't know that I'm lost yet...but as soon as I realize that I'm not where I think I am, THAT'S when my heart jumps into my throat!

  10. #10
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Default Sno go was lost - U wern't!

    I think most outdoors people can relate at least one Ooops in regards to getting lost!
    Has anyone used one of the Bushnell BackTrack GPS units?
    They seem like a very low cost way to (cover your *****) for just such predicaments...?

  11. #11
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
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    Default "That's Alaska: you go for a walk and then you die"

    Those words spoken by a fellow I met in 2000 shortly after arriving in Alaska. He had his own "walkabout disaster" experience and then told me a story of a fellow bush dweller who fell through the ice while out walking and died. He concluded with, "That's Alaska; you go for a walk and then you die".

    Flat light, short days... ice... plenty of things that can make it risky to do nothing more than walk about here. And so often it seems to happen just as you described, a short walk, a longer walk...distraction...surprise!

    Welcome back and thanks for the tale.

  12. #12

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    Leave them home. Nothing like thinking you're "lost" to spur one to start thinking about where they are going and probably even more important - HOW THEY WILL BE GETTING BACK!
    Joe (Ak)

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    Default

    Marv, glad it worked out! My personal belief is that you can't always trust a GPS...batteries can die and so can satellites, and the prevalence now of high-tech orienting has led to some poor navigation skills for too many.

    A compass, on the other hand, as others said they are light and it's sure good to know how to use one. I've never been lost in winter...cuz you can always go back on your backtrail dude <grin>!

  14. #14

    Default I've only

    been in a few situations where I got socked in and didn't have any clue to where I was. I just hunkered down and waited for things to break. I figure if I can't figure out where I came from, then something is wrong with me. I got "lost" out one night after helping some buddies locate an old trail about 20 miles off the road. I left them my satellite phone as theirs was dead and I had to be at work the next day! There were snow machine trails all over the place and I got a bit excited until I stopped before the panic set in and thought about where I was. It was a clear dark night, stars were bright, I knew the hills were to the east and the what there was of the moon was to the east also. I needed to be on a trail that headed due west. After checking out the hills, moon, etc. I got on the right trail and found the truck. Moral of story is to not panic and try to figure out where you went wrong. I also could have backtracked back out, but common sense prevailed on the direction.

  15. #15
    Member Phil's Avatar
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    Default Glad

    your "short" trip turned out OK. Most of us who have hunted very long can tell similar tales. Dark is scary and wind is unreliable. Like others, I always have a compass with me.

  16. #16
    Member barrowdave's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bushrat View Post
    Marv, glad it worked out! My personal belief is that you can't always trust a GPS...batteries can die and so can satellites, and the prevalence now of high-tech orienting has led to some poor navigation skills for too many.

    A compass, on the other hand, as others said they are light and it's sure good to know how to use one. I've never been lost in winter...cuz you can always go back on your backtrail dude <grin>!
    Mark,
    I agree completely about the compass being the "go to". My son and I were in a pretty wild area of the UP of Michigan deer hunting this year. We had crossed several streams etc. Knew what direction we had gone in but each had a GPS also. Thought we would try them on the way back. The only thing they got right was the distance to camp. Good thing we looked at those things AND the compasses. Got back to the clearing and could see the cabin, **** GPS's were pointing 90 degrees off. My son said he had if figured out how to use a GPS. Look and it, ignore it and use the compass. LOL First time with the GPS so I am sure we might have done something wrong. But I grew up using a compass and sure will stick with it.

  17. #17
    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    Default Compass Training?

    Ok Guys n Gals maybe some of us that have never really used one much could use some inputs on how?
    I have 3 that range from inexpensive to maybe $25.00. I know that when I lay them out side x side they generally point in the same direction but can vary more than I like.
    So, does it matter if it is not exact as long as it point consistantly even if not true north?
    I do have an older higher quality GPS and it will bring you back VERY close to where you started - however it is a bit heavy.

  18. #18
    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Talking

    GPS? COMPASS? LOST in your own back yard? what is this generation coming to out there GOGO man?


    you need to put a whiner on the sled... so it sound like the dog teams of yesterday while it is parked all complaining to go home..then you have a bearing to return to...

    GPS... gee whiz what kind of bush living is that?








    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  19. #19

    Talking

    Quote Originally Posted by bushrat View Post
    I've never been lost in winter...cuz you can always go back on your backtrail dude <grin>!
    [/SIZE][/FONT]
    My thoughts the entire time I was reading the post.

    A flashlight and compass are always in my pocket.
    "96% of all Internet Quotes are suspect and the remaining 4% are fiction."
    ~~Abraham Lincoln~~

  20. #20
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    Default Lost ?

    I am one of those guys that spent a few years looking for people lost in the woods.
    1. We did not venture out with out a map of the area we were going to be in.
    2. All were trained in map an compass, but no one was allowed alone.
    I still use map and compass.
    3. The office allways knew where we were going ,especially if there was a change of plan. I rarely go out with out telling some one.
    4. radios are essential not optional. I carried a sheriffs brick and my 2meter amature radio. ( this is before the days of cell phones) Now I just carry my 2 meter.
    5. I wish we had LED flash lights then, but oh well . I carried 3 different flashlights spare batteries and bulbs. Now I carry one nice LED flash light .
    So,
    Ideally, One would tell some one else what I am doing where I am going ,the route I intend to take ,and when i intend to return.
    Have a sign trap designating MY foot print( The type of boot print ) some where obvious ,This gives rescue people something to work with.
    aND i KNOW YOU ARE GOING TO SAY, BUT NOTHING IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO ME ! So it doesn't ,What did being prepared cost ?

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