Tag Archives: dying in the field


onX HUNT mapping for both the Garmin GPS (colored – microchip capable) and mobile device, such as the smart phones which 90% of hunters and outdoor enthusiasts carry with them 24/7.

Emergency Beacon
Needs to be registered.

The Garmin GPS, at least in the 21st should have WAAS (Wide Area Augmentable System) Note: Global Positioning System GPS is made up of at least 24 satellites, working in all conditions 24 hours a day and is FREE.

Garmin Rino 755 has two way and your location is available to another user. This is one that I highly recommend.

I would say at least 40% tell me they are “Old School” and use paper maps and a compass (that is maybe on the compass).

Just one little note with onX HUNT on the mobile side there is a trail layer that features trails old and new (CONUS).   Another tool that can help in many hunting areas.

Let’s get real about paper maps, most are outdated, and boundaries change all the time.  I threw out all my paper maps, that I have had for more than 30 years with all the X’s on them, moving the X’s to my GPS.  Paper maps are outdate in field use and lacking the ability to Zoom in.  Even if you mark your map with routes, it surely isn’t going let you do an active route back to camp or truck as a GPS would do.  As for the compass, it’s Okay, if your batteries go dead or enemy decides to use an electromagnetic pulse or EMP while you’re in the back country.

These can reach out many miles and reasonable in price in the pairs.

Beside the Garmin GPS, Mobile Phone with the onX HUNT APP and chip, there is the 2 Ways such as Motorola handheld communicators, and last but not lease is an Emergency Locator Beacon, just in case you’re in real trouble and are immobile…  

We must remember to have them in our backpack or ditty bag (U.S. NAVY), along with the other tools used in the field.  Frank Biggs 


Getting lost and not coming back!

Many times I am outspoken on many subjects and on this subject I am rightly so.

I have written this because of the trio that walked into Iran and were taken as prisoners.   There was not excuse for them at all and I feel they got what they deserved for trespassing in a foreign land without permission.  Only in the U.S.A. can you trespass and not get arrested in most cases!

How many times do we hear of hikers, hunters, fisherman, Boy Scouts, Mountain Climbers and even the Christmas Tree hunters being lost!  Then a team of searcher’s has to go out and look for them for days, months and even of the course of years.  Many years ago a young child was lost near LaPine, OR on a Christmas Tree Hunt.  He as never found, fowl play or just lost?   As for small children there are devices from Garmin (I feel Garmin is #1 in technology) that are used for hunting dogs to keep track of where they are.   Kids can move quickly and have a habit of always wearing the patience of the parents in movement!

In the old days before modern technology it could happen pretty easy, I know I have been mixed up on a couple of hunting trips myself in the old day of the last century.  It could have helped though to taken out the old standard compass and map!

On one occasion on a deer hunt near Walton Lake in Oregon, could not remember which direction to go in getting back to camp.  It was early so I took a nap next to a logging road, another hunter came along at gave me directions.   Another time in the Snake River Canyon on an elk hunt, I came out at dark in dark timber on the trail-head and my horse had been moved from the trail-head by a hunting buddy (don’t hunt with him anymore).  I was lucky to hear my horse bay and found him in the darkness of the night and road him the 4 miles out to our base camp in a snow storm.

With today’s technology and low cost of such items as a GPS, and with the new Garmin’s that high sensitivity antennas, cell phones, 20+ mile range handhelds like the Motorola’s and Beacon Locator’s (sell for 99 bucks), there is no excuse to be left in the wild.  That is not to say someone or ones can not be in trouble in the field and need assistance to get out.  This can happen to anyone in a matter of seconds.



Motorola Handheld 20 mile line of sight range
Beacon w/GPS
Garmin 62 Series-Works in Timber

To many times there are people lost within 200yards to 1/2 mile of their central location such as the vehicle, being so close and not knowing!

I do not go anywhere, even on a short hunt of an area that I know without a Cell Phone and at least (1) of my Garmin GPS’s.  Plus I usually have a paper map to go along with the GPS.  My Garmin’s all have TOPO and the maps have been setup in areas that go into.

I do know that some people feel they do not need such equipment and it weights too much to carry or the cost of such items, why spend the money…  Spend the money, HMM, like the trio that came from the East Coast to mountain climb Mt. Hood in a snow storm.   I am sure in their minds they knew everything about the tame mountain in the Pacific Northwest.   Mt. Hood as with any mountain or wilderness is not tame in the winter months.   They lost there lives, did they fall into a crevasses, fall off a cliff, get to cold or did they just lose their way…   With proper equipment of technology they could have been saved or found within a reasonable time.

As it is said don’t leave home without it, a small price to pay for a piece of mind or saving yourself.