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Archive for 'Musings'

Film Review: 127 Hours

An inspiring film about a life-and-death struggle
Review by Wil Milan
It’s difficult to make a suspenseful film when it’s about a true story and everyone knows the ending. That was the challenge for director Danny
Boyle (of Slumdog Millionaire fame) with the film 127 Hours, the story of Aron Ralston, the young man who in 2003, his [...]

Follow-up Report – Second Generation SPOT

(Click on images for higher resolution photos)
Our initial evaluation of the second generation SPOT GPS Satellite Messenger (SPOT 2) was cut short when the unit died after we immersed it in a bowl of water. While we were originally told it was a production SPOT 2, turns out it was one of the pre-production units [...]

Initial Hands-on Report – Second Generation SPOT

(Click on images for higher resolution photos)
Click to read our Follow-up Report.
SPOT, LLC has started shipping their second generation SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger (which we will refer to here as SPOT 2) that we took a look at when it was introduced at Outdoor Retailer earlier this year. I was supposedly sent one [...]

Update on Canadian 406 ELT Requirements

Here’s an update on the previous post, “Canada Backs Off on 406 MHz ELT Rule”
In speaking with members of Canada’s National Search and Rescue Secretariat at the 2009 RTCM Annual Conference, they indicated that the regulation is still in the Canadian Minister of Transport, John Baird’s, office and still under consideration. Government agencies [...]

Hang In There!

Some revealing information being reported today on the recent off-shore boating tragedy (from St. Petersburg Times originally and FOXNews.com). The difficulty is, we cannot verify the facts, but it makes for a plausible explanation and is entirely consistent with reports of others acting in the same manner in similar survival situations, so worthy a discussion [...]

No Distress Beacon = Tragedy

[sigh!] Here we go again. I am referring, of course, to the latest senseless tragedy involving four fishing buddies, including two NFL players, whose small boat capsized off-shore. Only one survived, clinging to the overturned boat, the other three are presumed dead and as of this evening, the Coast Guard has called off [...]

Not Exactly Survival, But Great Customer Service

Good customer service is such a rarity these days, it’s worth mention when it does occur. I have very wide feet (9.5 EEEE). As a result, I tend to gravitate towards New Balance athletic shoes and Dunham casual and dress shoes (Dunham is now part of of New Balance). New Balance has not [...]

Backpacker Signal Mirror Miss

I just received my October issue of Backpacker Magazine, their “Survival” issue. I opened the magazine at random and found myself reading page 43 where it has a brief article, “How To Use A Signal Mirror.” The instructions themselves are not exactly clear, for example finding the “fireball” isn’t so easy unless you [...]

September is National Preparedness Month

I’m not sure whether to be cheered that we have a National Preparedness Month, or depressed. Monday is the start of National Preparedness Month, as decreed by the Department of Homeland Security . On the one hand, it depresses me a bit that it seems necessary to make such a big deal out of [...]

A Different Kind of Survival Strategy – Lesson Learned

I tend to focus on the gear and technological aspects of survival, but occasionally we touch on the all-important mental considerations. I was reminded this week that sometimes survival planning also involves making sure you’ve adequately prepared for even the most unsatisfactory circumstances, not surviving.
My wife’s step-dad was in the hospital again [...]