Cell Connection

It often looks like where there is paradise on earth (no civilization, no noise/light pollution), there is no cell connection.  In the North Channel, to name a few:  Fox Island, parts of McGregor Bay, Hotham Island,

Wingfield on Georgian Bay. One may think:  why would you want cell connection when you're in paradise?  Because you may still want to know the weather forecast (it's very important when you're on a boat) or communicate with loved ones.

An app like Navionics sometimes tells you whether or not an anchorage has cell service, but not always.  This way, when you plan your itinerary, you know in advance and can notify everyone.  It happened a few times in beautiful anchorages, for a few days or a week, that we had no cell service.  When we came out, the phone started to ping-ping-ping:  many texts and emails from family and friends asking where we've been.  We need to remind them that we may not be able be reached in remote areas.  But then, when you have aging parents, that becomes a bit risky.  What if ....

This summer, we've tried a few things to mitigate that risk:

  1. Putting the cell phone in a net bag (hotspot turned on) and hoisting it up to the top of the mast.  We then use the tablet to communicate, update forecasts, post blogs;
  2. Kayaking or going by dinghie to a nearby island that is located in open water or a nearby waterway that is closer to a cell tower;
  3. Giving the cell phone number of another sailor friend to one family member for emergency only.  This friend can then communicate to us by VHF radio.
    These options don't always work;  but they're worth the try.
    We don't want to limit our travels to cell-provided areas.  There is too much to discover, to experience.  Life is too short!

But ... When there's a will, there's a way .... most of the time!

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