Exciting News from Patagonian Expedition Race!

February 18, 2013

Reports coming in from the Patagonian Expedition Race show Adidas-TERREX Prunesco within striking distance of the finish line followed by East Wind and the US team GearJunkie-YogaSlackers! These teams have been enduring harsh weather and challenging terrain as they bike, trek, and paddle across Chilean Patagonia in what has truly lived up to its billing as “the last wild race.”

Patagonia Landscape
Photo: Alexandre Buisse – http://www.alexandrebuisse.org/

I encourage you to visit the Patagonian Expedition Race site tomorrow to see the finish. You can get the play-by-play from race officials at their Facebook page and watch the teams move across the map at their Patagaonian Expedition Race MapShare provided by DeLorme.

Here is a screenshot I took just a few minutes ago showing the three remaining teams as they approach the final section, a mountain climb followed by a descent to the coast.

Patagonian Expedition Race Map

DeLorme is proud to have provided inReach devices to race officials for coordination and to top teams for tracking during the race. I’ve been able to watch from behind the scenes, reading race coordinator messages and watching track info as the event crew worked through several logistical challenges. Pete Clayden, the Patagonian Expedition Race director, has been in close contact with me and gave permission to share some of his stories about their use of the inReach. I think you’ll enjoy them!

InReach saves the day…

During the early part of the race several teams were not able to meet the time cap set at Check Point 3 on the far side of a wide glacier. These teams had to return to the starting line for pick-up as this was the only way off the course. Three days after starting the race the teams arrived at the road however they could not get their sat phones to work (the required communications gear) and could not call for transport. Fortunately Sam from the DeLorme sponsored US team YogaSlackers had his inReach with him and was able to text the race coordinator and communicate details of the three teams waiting for pick-up. He coordinated a bus as well as Thai Food for everyone!

Sam-Pete Conversation

Sam’s message to Facebook was my favorite though… check it out here as it shows on the map where he was located.

Sam Facebook Post

A quote from Pete when he contacted me to let us know about the success story:

Chip,

These In Reach devices are just completely outliving our Sat phones, especially now Sam is in the loop and communicating with us. It’s helping us with a very complicated logistical problem.

A huge thank you to Delorme!

Pete.

The river crossing problem…

Five days into the race the Chilean Patagonia area experienced unseasonably heavy rains that caused river water levels to rise. Race leaders Adidas-TERREX Prunesco found themselves at a marked river crossing that had become too dangerous to ford. They managed to place a sat phone call to report their situation however race officials relied on the inReach that was tracking the team to determine their location and then passed details using the inReach to the Check Point crew to scout and arrange an alternate crossing location. They were able to share detailed coordinate information as well as specifics regarding the Check Point’s course of action.

River Conversation

River Crossing

Here’s a quote from Pete when he shared news of the situation with the Adidas team.

Hi Chip, I’m sure you’re following all this as we work the river crossing problem. Having the tracker and the PAT units is making coordinating this much easier, no crackling voices, no misheard coordinates, just clear information.

Brilliant!

Time for sleep now. Pete

We were very pleased to learn that Adidas-TERREX Prunesco was able to cross at an alternate location and continue without further incident.

Where are the YogaSlackers…

Last one but definitely the most exciting. I actually got to help Pete while he was in the field this evening! He sent me a text from his inReach while he was bringing gear to the YogaSlackers team. He wasn’t sure how far ahead of him they were or how fast they were traveling so he asked me to check the map and let him know…

photo 1 photo 2

photo 3 photo 4

My daughter Abby wanted to know what I was doing so she climbed in my lap and helped me find the YogaSlackers and determine how far ahead of Pete they were. We took our first adventure race coordinator role very seriously. Even Abby’s cat Jack got in on the action watching over my shoulder… Beezy the wonder dog was less enthusiastic as you can see in the background.

Abby finds YogaSlackers

Imagine an important tracking question sent by inReach message from the back country of Chilean Patagonia, arriving on my cellphone in my living room here in Maine… I was able to make a quick reference to the Explore map and respond with the information Pete needed. Looking at the conversation thread at the Explore site, it took about 14 minutes for Pete to ask his question, for me to find the answer, and for him to let me know that he’d found the YogaSlackers. Not too shabby for someone well outside of cell phone range in Chile texting with someone many thousands of miles away here in Maine!

Where are the YogaSlackers

Well, I hope these stories from the Patagonian Expedition Race have given you a good sense of what the inReach is capable of as a tracking and communications system. I hope to share more news from the race after it has completed. I’m sure there will be even better tales once all the participants and officials return from “the last wild race!”

Take care,
Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Patagonian Expedition Race 2013

February 11, 2013

The 2013 Patagonian Expedition Race is about to start, with 11 of the world’s best adventure racing teams gathering in Chilean Patagonia for what is hailed as “The Last Wild Race.”

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DeLorme is very proud to be a sponsor of this event, providing the satellite communications for race officials as well as tracking for the top teams in the competition – all via DeLorme’s inReach two-way satellite communicator!

You can follow along as teams like GearJunkie – YogaSlackers make their bid for first place and share their tracking location through the course of the entire adventure.

Watch the teams in near real time at the Patagonian Expedition Race MapShare page and read details from GearJunkie – YogaSlackers and the Patagonian Expedition Race officials at each of their Facebook pages.

The race officials will be using the inReach to share check point details throughout the race, helping to keep all of the race fans informed as teams make their way through the course.

We’ll be posting updates here at the DeLorme Blog and at our Facebook page as well.

Let’s all start cheering for GearJunkie – YogaSlackers and the Four Continents – YogaSlackers as they get ready for the Patagonian Expedition Race to kick off!

One more time with the MapShare link…

http://share.delorme.com/patagonianexpeditionrace

Go YogaSlackers!

Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Eric needs some Holiday Cheer at the South Pole!

December 24, 2012

Okay folks, I understand that it’s Christmas Eve and everyone is busy with last minute preparations and visiting with family and friends. I’m headed to a family gathering in a little while myself. I wanted to take a few minutes and ask all of the tech gurus, outdoor adventurers, weekend warriors, and other readers of this blog to help me send some holiday cheer to a good friend of mine who is a long way from home this Christmas.

Eric Larsen, polar explorer, outdoor adventure, and self proclaimed ordinary guy is in the middle of an extra-ordinary journey to the South Pole… by bicycle!

Eric Larsen

You can read all about his Cycle South Expedition and even follow along with his daily blog posts and real time map tracking. His blog posts are incredibly descriptive and bring you as close as you can get to the ice while sitting warm in your house at your computer.

Eric MapShare

His map is not quite as exciting but I think it perfectly conveys what Eric is experiencing… a long trek over flat terrain with few if any features to break up the monotony of cycling between rest breaks. The following photo is courtesy of Eric’s recent blog post and shows the vast white scenery that is weighing on him both physically and mentally.

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You will see from his recent post that he’s in the middle of some tough conditions with high winds and drifting snow. Reading further you’ll see the mental challenges Eric is facing as he approaches Christmas away from his family and new born son Merritt. I’ve never undertaken a challenge as difficult as the one Eric is facing but I do have two little girls at home and have been away enough to know how that can weigh you down when you’ve got nothing but miles in front of you to think about how far away you are from home.

My request to everyone that is reading this post is for you to take a minute and visit Eric’s site to wish him Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas, or just good luck!

Write a comment on his latest blog post or like his latest Facebook Post.

After you do that share the link with all of your outdoor enthusiast friends that might also want to send Eric well wishes.

Eric is staying in touch with people back home and I’d love for him to get a Christmas update that shared how many people visited his website to wish him well. He has a solid base of followers but I’d like to see a spike of holiday cheer and positive energy headed to the South Pole to let him know that we’re thinking of him and wishing him well.

Eric Map

Let’s all hope for a tailwind and hard packed snow to carry Eric across the remaining 600 miles of his journey!

Thank you all for helping to bring some holiday cheer to the South Pole for Eric. Happy holidays to all of you as well!

Take care,
Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Global Encounter about to summit Mt Kilimanjaro!

August 9, 2012

We’ve talked about the amazing world tour of Toby and David from Global Encounter on this blog before. They visited Base Camp at Mount Everest earlier in the year while we all followed along at their MapShare Page. Well, our self proclaimed “run-of-the-mill Texans” are at it again! Perched at 15,000 feet in elevation these world travelers are preparing to reach the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro within the next six hours!

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You can follow their ongoing adventure at their website global-encounter.com, or go directly to their Twitter Page to see all the messages they are sending to their followers using DeLorme’s inReach two-way satellite communicator. Visit their MapShare Page to send them a message and offer encouragement as they climb the remaining distance to the summit!

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Good luck Toby and David, safe travels to the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro from all of us here at DeLorme!

Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Eric Larsen 7 Peak Challenge for BCM Youth

July 25, 2012

Eric Larsen, polar explorer and DeLorme ambassador, is climbing seven of the tallest peaks in the Pacific Northwest to raise money for Big City Mountaineers and their program to introduce urban youth to the great outdoors.

Photo courtesy of Eric Larsen
Seven for Someone – Mt Rainier, photo courtesy of Eric Larsen.

“Our hope is that the seven peak climb will not only raise funds and awareness for Big City Mountaineers, but for the greater cause of connecting people to the outdoors,” says Eric. “Climbing, hiking and just being active in the outdoors can help create transformational opportunities for kids that desperately need them.”

You can learn more about Eric’s 7 Peaks for $7K! challenge and contribute to his effort at his Summit for Someone site. People who donate $50 will receive a sweet Seven for Someone t-shirt and contributors at the $100 level will be entered to win a prize package with gear from expedition sponsors. If you’re attending Outdoor Retailer you can purchase one of Eric’s Seven for Someone t-shirts at the DeLorme booth for $20 on Thursday when Eric visits to share about his expedition and sign autographs.

DeLorme is proud to be a sponsor of Eric’s Summit for Someone event and I am particularly excited having gone on my own Big City Mountaineers Summit for Someone hikes in the past to Mt Langley and the Grand Teton. Their program is truly remarkable. I think those of us that have grown up in the outdoors and make our living from it have a responsibility to share that experience with others. I know I will always remember climbing Pleasant Mountain here in Maine with my parents when I was a kid. It’s not the tallest peak but it got me started. If any of you are aspiring climbers I highly recommend you seek out a Summit for Someone adventure of your own!

By letting all of us follow along with him using DeLorme’s inReach two-way satellite communicator, Eric is sharing his experience with people all over the world and supporting BCM with his seven summits challenge. You can climb with him by watching his track and reading his posts on his MapShare. I was very excited to follow along as he climbed the first of his seven peaks.


Mt Rainier, WA


Mt Hood, OR


Mt Saint Helens, WA

Eric will be finishing his 7 Peaks for $7K! challenge next week and I encourage all of you to follow along with him and donate to his BCM climb. Eric, his sponsors, and most importantly the kids that BCM expose to the great outdoors will most definitely appreciate it!

Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Seek the Peak – Mt Washington Hike-A-Thon

July 20, 2012

Last night’s Get Out More Tour presentation by Sheri and Randy Propster was a lot of fun. A quick thank you to both of them for letting me participate. I took more notes on all the gear that I need to update in my kit… so many new things to see, it really was impressive. Sheri and Randy were even nice enough to let me try out a few things on tomorrow’s hike, I can’t wait for that!

I’ve included a video clip of their talk about the inReach for those that couldn’t make it.

I’m working with the Mt Washington Observatory team to pass out PN-60w & inReach devices to 10 different groups and individuals who are getting ready to climb Mt Washington tomorrow. You can watch them start their hike in the morning between 6am and 9am with everyone finishing up around 5pm. It will be great to see all those hikers approaching the summit from different trails. Sheri and Randy will be showing off the climb at their Get Out More Tour booth at the after party too. People can check it out and send a message to hikers still on the climb. Here’s the link to the Seek the Peak MapShare page.

Seek the Peak MapShare Page

I will be carrying the inReach labeled Team DeLorme 1 tomorrow so feel free to send me a message. For people on the hike, I have a few small prizes in my pack if you mention that you read this blog… look for the group of hikers wearing the DeLorme hats!

Send a message to any of the hikers and wish them well. The profile from Topo North America sets the elevation gain at 4,350 feet from the Pinkham Notch Visitor Center to the Mt Washington Observatory. That’s a pretty significant climb that will get everyone’s attention! A word of encouragement always helps…

We hope to hear from you while we’re on the climb. Now get outdoors!

Chip Noble
Team DeLorme


Join the Get Out More Tour in North Conway, NH – win prizes!!!

July 18, 2012

This post is for all you serious gear junkies out there. Backpacker Magazine’s Get Out More Tour is stopping at the EMS store in North Conway, NH this Thursday evening, July 19th from 7 to 8:30 pm, and it’s your chance to be part of one of the best backpacking and hiking presentations I’ve ever seen!

Sheri and Randy Propster are the hardcore hikers behind the Get Out More Tour and they are bringing their trail knowledge to EMS to share with outdoor enthusiasts of all skill levels. Whether you’re brand new to the back country or a seasoned thru-hiker they have great information to share with you.

I was able to attend their event in Portsmouth, NH last week where they were nice enough to let me set up a table to talk with guests about DeLorme’s inReach device. I was very impressed with how much information they fit into their presentation and found myself taking photos and notes on all kinds of cool gear that they use on their trips. At the end of the presentation they answered questions from the crowd and then gave away a ton of great prizes from all of their sponsors.

Hopefully my brief introduction to their event has caught your attention because they are going to be at the North Conway, NH EMS tomorrow and I will be setting up a DeLorme table again. I would strongly encourage anyone that is within a reasonable drive of North Conway to put this on their schedule for tomorrow evening… and that’s not just because they are going to be giving away a ton of cool prizes including some bonus goodies from DeLorme. If you’re a gear junkie like I am you’ll really appreciate all the information that Sheri and Randy have to share from their hiking adventures.

Seek the Peak – Mt Washington Hike-A-Thon…

For those of you that can’t make it to North Conway’s EMS on Thursday, the Get Out More Tour will be at the Seek the Peak event on Saturday, July 21st to support the Mt Washington Observatory fundraiser.

The DeLorme Outing Club will also be participating in the event. You can follow our progress along with 10 other hikers from the huge group of participants at our MapShare site once everything gets under way on Saturday.

I’ll be carrying some fun prizes with me so be sure to say hello if you see me on the trail. Mention this blog post for a prize… while supplies last!

See you on the trail!

Chip Noble
Team DeLorme

Okay, I have to share this… as I was getting ready to submit my blog post I got an inReach message from Sheri and Randy Propster from the summit of Mt Washington. How cool is that?! Nothing like a little inReach in action to share in the moment. Come out to EMS on Thursday or the Seek the Peak event on Saturday and join in the excitement!


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