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Something importrant which I know nothing about!

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scruffy1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Holy Year from Pamplona 2010, SJPP 2011, Lisbon 2012, Le Puy 2013, Vezelay (partial watch this space!) 2014; 2015 Toulouse-Puenta la Reina (Arles)
Many pilgrims have worried folks back home knowing that if the Basques don't skin you alive why then two bears might out of the woods and maul you (with apologies to Elisha and II Kings). My youngest son is off in the wilds of the Yukon, Canada just starting a canoe trek from Whitehorse. His Mama is worried, capsized canoes, bears, moose, blood-crazed mosquitoes all whirling in her imagination. He is a good lad and fixed for her a GPS tracking app so that we can know at any moment - as long as the GPS holds out - just where he is and how far he has gone. Electronic Technology is not one of my virtues - for that, I have two sons. Therefore I can only post his last position on that app so you know where to begin hoping that if you cannot figure out how to set it up then maybe you have a son or a daughter who can. It works better phone to phone rather than phone to PC. Unlike the Yukon, GPS is readily available along the Camino.
 

Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
Many pilgrims have worried folks back home knowing that if the Basques don't skin you alive why then two bears might out of the woods and maul you (with apologies to Elisha and II Kings). My youngest son is off in the wilds of the Yukon, Canada just starting a canoe trek from Whitehorse. His Mama is worried, capsized canoes, bears, moose, blood-crazed mosquitoes all whirling in her imagination. He is a good lad and fixed for her a GPS tracking app so that we can know at any moment - as long as the GPS holds out - just where he is and how far he has gone. Electronic Technology is not one of my virtues - for that, I have two sons. Therefore I can only post his last position on that app so you know where to begin hoping that if you cannot figure out how to set it up then maybe you have a son or a daughter who can. It works better phone to phone rather than phone to PC. Unlike the Yukon, GPS is readily available along the Camino.
Hopefully this app will help ease some worried minds. 😊

Your son's trip sounds fabulous! I hope he has a great time!
 

c0484

Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013
Many pilgrims have worried folks back home knowing that if the Basques don't skin you alive why then two bears might out of the woods and maul you (with apologies to Elisha and II Kings). My youngest son is off in the wilds of the Yukon, Canada just starting a canoe trek from Whitehorse. His Mama is worried, capsized canoes, bears, moose, blood-crazed mosquitoes all whirling in her imagination. He is a good lad and fixed for her a GPS tracking app so that we can know at any moment - as long as the GPS holds out - just where he is and how far he has gone. Electronic Technology is not one of my virtues - for that, I have two sons. Therefore I can only post his last position on that app so you know where to begin hoping that if you cannot figure out how to set it up then maybe you have a son or a daughter who can. It works better phone to phone rather than phone to PC. Unlike the Yukon, GPS is readily available along the Camino.
Each time I walk the Camino I carry a SPOT device that allows up to 10 people to track me 24/7. It updates every 10 minutes. It has the added advantage of having a button for emergencies. They can have help to you in a matter of minutes.
 

scruffy1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Holy Year from Pamplona 2010, SJPP 2011, Lisbon 2012, Le Puy 2013, Vezelay (partial watch this space!) 2014; 2015 Toulouse-Puenta la Reina (Arles)
Each time I walk the Camino I carry a SPOT device that allows up to 10 people to track me 24/7. It updates every 10 minutes. It has the added advantage of having a button for emergencies. They can have help to you in a matter of minutes.
My sister and I have walked all or parts of several Caminos together. I have a habit of ignoring guidebooks and will frequently go walkabout down a more interesting lane, off to just about any historical/archeological/prehistoric/religious site which catches my fancy. My sister, known affectionately in the family as "Wrong-Way Rachel", has no sense of direction she also finds distances confusing. Years ago I searched for her over two days in Burgos only to find that she had mistakenly walked back to Agés and was enjoying the company at El Pajar, sigh. SPOT would have been such a relief back then only back then there were no cellular phones.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
Many pilgrims have worried folks back home knowing that if the Basques don't skin you alive why then two bears might out of the woods and maul you (with apologies to Elisha and II Kings). My youngest son is off in the wilds of the Yukon, Canada just starting a canoe trek from Whitehorse. His Mama is worried, capsized canoes, bears, moose, blood-crazed mosquitoes all whirling in her imagination. He is a good lad and fixed for her a GPS tracking app so that we can know at any moment - as long as the GPS holds out - just where he is and how far he has gone. Electronic Technology is not one of my virtues - for that, I have two sons. Therefore I can only post his last position on that app so you know where to begin hoping that if you cannot figure out how to set it up then maybe you have a son or a daughter who can. It works better phone to phone rather than phone to PC. Unlike the Yukon, GPS is readily available along the Camino.
@scruffy1
I also carry SPOT, in the Canadian Rockies and in Spain. There are various options for reporting in, but I never set it for continuous location finding, because it uses up battery power. However, even with a cell phone, I find the option to call for emergency help through a satellite reassuring, even in Spain. I don't turn it on, but failing an accessible cell phone tower, it is in my pack pocket with a spare set of lithium batteries in case of emergency. Like your sister, I have a very limited sense of direction, but for general use on camino, maps.me with the camino maps overlay is adequate. However, camino routes do change, as I found out on my last days walk into Santiago on the VdlP, when I chose, mistakenly, to follow the maps.me route that had served me well all the way from Seville, rather than a new set of yellow arrows. My experience of following yellow arrows to bars or albergues well off my route has caused me to be somewhat suspicious of them.
In any case, you should be able to follow your son on his journey. Depending on what system he has chosen, you may also get check-ins from him when there are no cell phone towers for actual telephone communications. But it is still an adventure, though a little too buggy and uncomfortable for me at this stage of my life.
 

scruffy1

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Holy Year from Pamplona 2010, SJPP 2011, Lisbon 2012, Le Puy 2013, Vezelay (partial watch this space!) 2014; 2015 Toulouse-Puenta la Reina (Arles)
@scruffy1
I also carry SPOT, in the Canadian Rockies and in Spain. There are various options for reporting in, but I never set it for continuous location finding, because it uses up battery power. However, even with a cell phone, I find the option to call for emergency help through a satellite reassuring, even in Spain. I don't turn it on, but failing an accessible cell phone tower, it is in my pack pocket with a spare set of lithium batteries in case of emergency. Like your sister, I have a very limited sense of direction, but for general use on camino, maps.me with the camino maps overlay is adequate. However, camino routes do change, as I found out on my last days walk into Santiago on the VdlP, when I chose, mistakenly, to follow the maps.me route that had served me well all the way from Seville, rather than a new set of yellow arrows. My experience of following yellow arrows to bars or albergues well off my route has caused me to be somewhat suspicious of them.
In any case, you should be able to follow your son on his journey. Depending on what system he has chosen, you may also get check-ins from him when there are no cell phone towers for actual telephone communications. But it is still an adventure, though a little too buggy and uncomfortable for me at this stage of my life.
You and me both! He's done 60k of a 750k planned trip almost as long as the CF but in a canoe!
 

benny aumala

Member
Camino(s) past & future
may-june 2016
may-june (2019)
Similar functios seems to be available for mobile phones.
An additional gadget is not necessary. Many of these programs are for
commercial distribution network to see where cars are going.
And drivers try to hide the phone to get some liberty moments.
 

c0484

Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013
My sister and I have walked all or parts of several Caminos together. I have a habit of ignoring guidebooks and will frequently go walkabout down a more interesting lane, off to just about any historical/archeological/prehistoric/religious site which catches my fancy. My sister, known affectionately in the family as "Wrong-Way Rachel", has no sense of direction she also finds distances confusing. Years ago I searched for her over two days in Burgos only to find that she had mistakenly walked back to Agés and was enjoying the company at El Pajar, sigh. SPOT would have been such a relief back then only back then there were no cellular phones.
SPOT is a satellite system. I have carried one whenever I hike. You may not need one, but it is essential when you come upon someone in need of emergency assistance.
 

Packinglight

Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2014)
July-August 2019, Pamplona-Santiago
Wow that is cool, scruffy1
I (mostly) paid for university working summers in the Yukon. It is beautiful and unforgiving nature.
He’s on an amazing adventure. I love it up there. The mosquitoes: well, a little less love for the mosquitoes. Whitehorse is a square dusty little town but it has a Wild West no BS charm to it.
 

K Turner

One step at a time
Camino(s) past & future
14 August 2019 (SJPdP 16 August)
I have the free Camino Pilgrim app on my phone, ready for my journey next month. I hope to use it to send my coordinates to my kids once daily. I've sent a couple test messages to them through it and it's worked great.

I hope your son has a great trip!
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011 (2019)
In any case, you should be able to follow your son on his journey. Depending on what system he has chosen, you may also get check-ins from him when there are no cell phone towers for actual telephone communications. But it is still an adventure, though a little too buggy and uncomfortable for me at this stage of my life.
To give @scruffy1's son some credit, he appears to be using the Garmin inreach system, which like SPOT, uses a LEO communications satellite constellation (Iridium) to provide the communications channel. Both Iridium and Globalstar (used by SPOT) offer good worldwide communications coverage, including close to the poles, which their satellites cross as part of their orbital pattern. Neither of these systems depend on terrestrial networks with their towers, etc.

GPS satellites have similar orbital patterns at somewhat greater distances from earth. So, @scruffy1, there won't be any real difference in the availability of GPS between the Yukon and Spain.

So unless @scruffy1's son hides in a cave or the like, his Mama should be well up to date with his current whereabouts!
 
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PDX Bucky

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
First Camino -- April/May 2017
My sisters in San Diego "walked" with my wife, Diane, and I on the Camino Frances using the "Share My Location" setting on our iPhone 6S. A very easy solution for the "Where's Waldo" question.
 

Jim_Hyde

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Walked Le Puy - Navarrenx April/May 2018 Planning to walk RLS Trail & GR78 Carcassonne - SJPDP 2020
Most GPS software lets you track a person if they set you up as a buddy with authorisation to follow them. You can always turn off the GPS or buddy beacon facility if you want to go off grid. Also most GPS need to have line of sight to around 5 satellites, some steep sided valleys or gorges prevent this so map reading skills are still needed or at least a good sense of direction
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011 (2019)
Most GPS software lets you track a person if they set you up as a buddy with authorisation to follow them. You can always turn off the GPS or buddy beacon facility if you want to go off grid. Also most GPS need to have line of sight to around 5 satellites, some steep sided valleys or gorges prevent this so map reading skills are still needed or at least a good sense of direction
This is true of smartphone based GPS software as well as specialised location sharing devices such as PLB, EPIRB, and SPOT that they can set up location sharing. It is not true of all dedicated GPS units, although that is changing as the availability and functionality of sports watches and similar devices increases. These devices use a mobile phone to provide that data link they need. They have to be linked to your mobile phone which has to have data services enabled to make all that work. The data service might be through your provider or could be wifi if that is available.

PLB, EPIRB, SPOT and Garmin's Inreach all use a satellite phone service. I assume that other dedicated locator beacon providers do something similar. This allows them to provide location and reporting across the whole of the globe. PLB and EPIRB only locate and send messages when activated in an emergency and there are normally no fees associated with that. SPOT, etc all seem to require some form of satellite phone service subscription, which will have a combination of connection and usage charges. This allows the device to send short messages with your location information and some other standard format short messages that won't break the bank when it comes to the monthly bill for the satellite service.

It is largely a moot point for most of the Camino routes, although outside of the major towns and cities, network infrastructure largely follows the major roads. There are still going to be sections of poor mobile coverage where the camino route doesn't closely follow the major road networks. In these places, you are unlikely to get reliable 'on the move' or near real time location reporting, and your loved ones might have to wait until you get better mobile reception or a wifi service to find out where you are.
 
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