Adventure SchoolEDITION 54

Choosing the right safety and communication equipment for your next trip

The thrill of pursuing an adventure; whether it’s hiking at Kakadu National Park, 4WDriving along the Simpson Desert, heading out fishing in the crystal clear waters of Hervey Bay or camping out at Cradle Mountain-Lake St Clair, there is no denying the absolute isolation you feel from the rest of the world.

Rushing out into the great outdoors and travelling to remote locations would require research and knowledge about the places you’re visiting as well as being smart about what to pack along with you throughout the journey. Apart from the obvious items you’ll bring along, such as water and food, you always need to be prepared for the unexpected.  After all, we’re not all like Bear Grylls where we fight to survive.  Yes, we need to bring the right tools but we also need to have the right equipment.  There’s no shortage of equipment available out there, and it can get quite overwhelming to choose which one and what product is right for your next adventure.


One of the best devices you can bring with you when you’re out hiking or cycling would be a GPS tracking device.  These compact, lightweight, durable and most often waterproof devices are great for any weather condition.  They’re can range from $150 – $1000, depending on the features you want and/or need. There are so many different GPS devices on the market it can be hard to choose the right one for you. The best way to choose is to look for one that is specifically tailored to your adventure through the features of the GPS.  A good quality GPS can boast features such as upgradable maps, compass, altimeter, barometer and emergency services options enabling you to reduce the amount of equipment you need to take with you.

For hiking and cyclists, a great feature to look for is the ability to chart your courses. You can then upload it to your computer and analyse your course, enabling you to see altitude changes, climbs, descents and distance. You can then share it with your family and friends. It is also a great way to keep track of where you have been and visit those places again.

Some GPS also come with an SOS button that allows you to send a text to emergency services and even your family.

The Garmin GPSMAP 64ST features a 2.6-inch sunlight-readable colour screen and is preloaded with TOPO Lite Australia and New Zealand maps and retails for $499.00.  It has a high-sensitivity GPS and GLONASS receiver that can reach into the thickness of the woods.


UHF radios are great devices to have for communication over short distances as they work on a line of sight. Travelling in a 4×4 convoy across Australia, it is crucial that you have a set of these to allow communication within your convoy. They are a low-cost option with no setup fees or ongoing costs. The UHF units are also available in vehicle packs that will keep you hands-free while behind the wheel but, also the option to take it out of your vehicle to use as a portable device.

The Uniden 820S 2W (Tradies Twin Pack) is a great kit to take along and install in your car.  It is built for rugged conditions and is a reliable 2-way radio ideal for communicating in a group or the outside world. The UHF820s-2 Tradies pack retails for $249.99.



If you find yourself fishing in the open seas or hiking in the thickness of the bush, you should never leave without an emergency beacon.

EPIRBS and PLBS very similar, and will both send out a distress signal when activated. EPIRBs are for marine use only and are designed to float upright to gain a more efficient signal to the satellite.

Personal Locator Beacons or PLBs are mainly used for land base travels. These are small, lightweight, pocket-sized units that will easily stow away in your backpack. If you find yourself in an emergency, all you have to do is raise the antenna on your PLB and press the emergency button, this will notify emergency services of your approximate location.  The search can take about 1-4 hours instead of days.

Added security for EPIRBS and PLBS are strobe lights and rescue whistles. These small inexpensive tools will assist search and rescue teams in locating you if it is dark, you are in a high-density area, in low visibility or areas that are hard to get to.


Most often than not, you can find yourself in a position where your devices are running low in battery, therefore compromising your safety by conserving power by turning off your devices or having to weigh yourself down with extra batteries.  And because we rely so much on our devices and equipment, such as phones, laptops, tablets and cameras, a good and reliable solar charger is a must for any adventurer or traveller on the go.  The GOALZERO Nomad 28 Plus is a light 28-Watt panel (when it’s in full direct sunlight) designed to withstand water, heat and drop resistant.  The Nomad 28 is a very reliable solar panel to charge your USB devices and retails for $399.00.


At SatPhone Shop, we understand the importance of communicating at all times whenever you are travelling alone or in a group and heading out to remote locations.  Our experienced team of professionals can guide and assist you with your safety equipment or satellite communication needs with 100% support from our team.

SatPhone Shop is your one-stop shop for communications and safety solutions.  Whether you are looking to buy, rent or simply have a question you can visit our showroom at 5/8 Anzed Court, Mulgrave VIC or call us on 1300 368 611.

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