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Old 06-29-2019, 10:47 AM   #1
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staying in touch in the Broughtons?

Hi
I'm heading up to the Broughtons(British Columbia) for a month or so and I wonder about keeping in touch with the folks back home. Is there any cell phone coverage up there. Do any of the marina's offer wi-fi? Any thoughts?
thanks
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:58 AM   #2
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Don’t

Surly your not that dependent on your phone.
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Old 06-29-2019, 11:21 AM   #3
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Get Garmin's InReach and send texts. You will be cruising in inlets and fjords with not a lot of commercial support. Part of the charm of the Broughtons is the isolation. If you have a critical reason to stay in touch, for example a very sick relative, then sat phone is in order.
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Old 06-29-2019, 11:37 AM   #4
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If you need to be reached leave the phone number for the CDN CG with one contact person. The CG hailed us by VHF several years ago after a close relative died suddenly. We actually had a nearby boater hear the broadcast and they came over to make sure we received it. This is NOT a conduit for "bring home a dozen eggs", it is for the emergency message only. Leaving a float plan with your contact person will greatly ease the difficulty if you must be contacted, at least they know where to start looking for you.
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Old 06-29-2019, 11:50 AM   #5
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+1 for Inreach for satellite texting. Cheap to buy and use. Always connects.
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Old 06-29-2019, 11:55 AM   #6
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Cell service will pop up in the strangest places, usually not were the marina’s or good anchorages are. There is some very limited WiFi at the Sullivan Bay marina. I used my InReach to have an electrical switch flown up to Sullivan Bay.
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Old 06-29-2019, 12:16 PM   #7
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there are some spot at the entrance that have signal
used to right texts and take the dingy for a spin
when you hit a hot spot they would all send then I would mark the spot on GPS and come back to receive and send again. Personal i0ts such a great place it wasn't that important contacting the outside world
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:00 PM   #8
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+1 for Inreach for satellite texting. Cheap to buy and use. Always connects.

Thanx for reminding me, time to activate my Inreach subscription.


You still staying near home? I'm leaving for the boat tomorrow for upkeep and provisioning; probably underway about the 6th. Got to pick up pax in Friday Harbor on the 16th. Nothing ambitious this year, maybe two months total.


Bill
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Old 06-29-2019, 01:52 PM   #9
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Thanx for reminding me, time to activate my Inreach subscription.


You still staying near home? I'm leaving for the boat tomorrow for upkeep and provisioning; probably underway about the 6th. Got to pick up pax in Friday Harbor on the 16th. Nothing ambitious this year, maybe two months total.

Bill
Bill, we had to scrap the Alaska trip this year because some family issues, so yes, staying around home with short trips. Since we're not up there, I'm keeping close tabs on my TF buddies who are up there now, sort of vicarious-Alaska . Be sure and let me know if you come into Bellingham. There are good facilities for transient boats.
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Old 06-29-2019, 02:23 PM   #10
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Our 17 year old daughter loves it when we turn the corner 8 miles out of town and cell coverage disappears...”No more drama”.
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Old 06-29-2019, 03:20 PM   #11
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I just completed a trip on a friend's boat, Port Hardy to Kitimat in 8 days.
Equip included InReach and a Satphone. My cell coverage ended a couple of miles out of Port Hardy, commenced again at Shearwater for a short visit, then appeared again as I rounded the corner 8 miles from Kitimat (Murray's stomping grounds). Wifi also at Hakai but no cell. Klemtu has some cell, but we didn't go that way.
Neither the InReach nor the Sat phone worked for us. We didn't miss them.

In the Broughtons, look at the Telus coverage map for spots that they have put in some service.
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Old 06-29-2019, 03:37 PM   #12
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I just completed a trip on a friend's boat, Port Hardy to Kitimat in 8 days.
Equip included InReach and a Satphone. My cell coverage ended a couple of miles out of Port Hardy, commenced again at Shearwater for a short visit, then appeared again as I rounded the corner 8 miles from Kitimat (Murray's stomping grounds). Wifi also at Hakai but no cell. Klemtu has some cell, but we didn't go that way.
Neither the InReach nor the Sat phone worked for us. We didn't miss them.

In the Broughtons, look at the Telus coverage map for spots that they have put in some service.
You flying out today?
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Old 06-29-2019, 08:44 PM   #13
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Bill, we had to scrap the Alaska trip this year because some family issues, so yes, staying around home with short trips. Since we're not up there, I'm keeping close tabs on my TF buddies who are up there now, sort of vicarious-Alaska . Be sure and let me know if you come into Bellingham. There are good facilities for transient boats.
Not planning Bellingham, but "short trips" could imply some intersecrion.

So far, I know this:

Slow passage Tacoma to FHR, arrive July16.

Stuart Is

Ganges July 19

Sydney (drop wife) July 25

Free time

Vancouver August 20 (re-acquire wife)

Tacoma September 1-ish

Surely there are opportunities.
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Old 06-29-2019, 11:45 PM   #14
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We cruise the Broughtons and stay in touch via cell phone, text and sometime email with a Sure Call cell booster and rooftop antenna. For marina WiFi, a Linksys WiFi booster and roof top antenna.

An inlet with an opening facing Vancouver island are good places to pick up Vancouver Island cell towers if you have an antenna/booster. Most of the cell towers north of Desolation are located on Vancouver Island so a booster is a must.

Smart phones put out minimal wattage and the antennas are too small for any range. I remember back in the 90's when the analog cell phones had 3 to 5 watts and bag phones a lot more. I used to be able to connect to any cell tower, no matter the distance, without boosters or rooftop antennas throughout Desolation and the Broughtons. And used a card modem to go online with the cell phone and just charged for minutes on line at call rates! The good old days? Not!
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:09 AM   #15
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I just got back from there. I can tell you this:
Kwatsi Bay- Free WIFI
Mound Island- poor but a little out by the entrance.
Port Mcneill- fair. Verizon does not seem to work to good here.
Goat Island Anchorage- good 4G
Cullen Harbor- fair
Dickson Island- none
Claydon Bay-- none
Burley Bay- none
Shoal Harbor- none
Echo Bay- WIFI
Sullivan Bay- WIFI, about the speed of dial up!!

Give it a try any time you cruise by a native village.
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:27 AM   #16
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Internet wifi in marinas in the Broughtons is via satellite. Minimum bandwidth and the speeds gets reduced when everyone connect in the evenings and mornings.

Repeater antennas are at a minimum so if moored a ways from the repeater, weak signal and slow speed. That's where a wifi booster and external antenna is nice to have.
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:41 AM   #17
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Thank you all for your response....it's not about me connecting its about family and friends staying in touch
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Old 06-30-2019, 10:48 AM   #18
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With the InReach they can text or email you anytime anywhere in the world. It is not instant, often takes 10 minutes for the message to go through. Also let’s family follow your location.
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Old 07-05-2019, 04:08 PM   #19
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Our experience is that a cell booster makes a big difference in the Broughtons. And we have an InReach as backup.
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Old 07-05-2019, 07:50 PM   #20
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Staying in touch in the Broughtons

There is good WIFI in all of the marinas in the Broughtons as indicated by others. You can make calls on WhatsApp or Skype free at these locations.
Cell service is possible anywhere near Johnson Strait or Queen Charlotte Strait.
There is no need for satellite phones or fancy equipment - communications are reasonably good.
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