I pull a 2-wheel buggy (wheels are 16″ bicycle type) that pulls so easy. I own both the Garmin inReach Mini and the inReach Explorer+ but I only use and carry the inReach Explorer+. KEEN-FOOTWEAR: Take 20% off your next order over $100 Coupon Code: "20PercentKEEN2020" Thru 12/31. It is very easy to use when wearing gloves in cold weather because you can see what you’re pressing. The other thing that people need to consider is if you struggle with navigation and maybe the area you are going to is new and possibly confusing so maybe the navigation is a top priority. If you turn on 1s tracking…also not unreasonable typical use on the Explorer+ because it has mapping and most people will enjoy seeing their detailed track on it, Garmin say you only get “up to 75hrs”…again a maximum not an average. Works really well and is absolutely free. They really could be more obvious. Once you want original messages it is awkward do without being linked to a phone. If size matters than the Explorer wins, but in the world of hiking and backpacking, less is better, so ignoring all else, the Mini wins this battle. . The inReach Mini is much smaller and lighter weight than the inReach Explorer+, making it more suitable for trail runners, day hikers, and ultralight backpackers who want to minimize the weight and bulk of their gear. Am confused on this. My overnight trips are rare, but I try to do 2 or 3 day hikes per week. Garmin inReach Mini Orange - $499 AUD, Expected 24th of May – Box Contents: inReach Mini… They’re also embossed on the buttons themselves where you can’t see them. What phone do you use to link the explorer to? My favorite activity is what I call “exploration bushwhacking” — as opposed to bushwhacking to a destination. The razor is cheap. Has anyone had any issues with messages not being delivered? Garmin has been leading the way for GPS tracking and satellite messaging for decades now. They could be more obvious but they are there. No duplication of photos, maps, or text without permission. The … The self-contained and brightly backlit inReach Explorer+ screen is a much better option once darkness has fallen. However, the inReach Mini’s user interface is too dim to see in darkness unless you connect your smartphone to it and burn down both batteries, which you probably want to avoid in an emergency. 1. You can also easily send canned messages from the Mini. I primarily wanted it for sos as I am mostly a solo backpacker, hiker and skier. Edited the reference. Do they have an updated model coming out? Looking at the map or composing messages takes power if only because the screen is brightly backlit when you do that. Save 20%-50% on Popular Backpacks including All Archeon Models, Day Packs, Ski Packs, Ariel, Aether, Levity, Lumina, Talon, Tempest, Viva, Volt, Mutant, Xenith, and Xena Backpacks, Travel Packs and Bags. The Explorer+ has a push-button interface that has icons printed on the front-facing buttons. Free Shipping and Returns. ZPACKS.COM: 12 Days of Christmas Sale! The Garmin inReach Mini (MSRP $350) and the inReach Explorer+ (MSRP $449) are satellite-based communicators that share a common set of capabilities in terms of emergency communication, two-way messaging, tracking, and navigation. True, if the phone dies, I’m stuck composing messages with the Mini’s extremely tedious layout. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. I’ve used it hiking around Bigelow’s and AT in Maine. However, Garmin warns that frequent local logging is a power hungry feature on the Mini. Click and Save! You do have to create a Garmin account online to activate them and subscribe. You can just download and use OSM instead for free from an option within Earthmate. The 66i is basically an explorer with slightly better maps and complete integration with garmin’s basemap planning suite. I used my Mini on a 7 day solo backpack in the Wind Rivers. Going by everything you have written up here while juxtaposing between the two satellite messengers here, I think the Garmin inReach Explorer serves a better function than the Mini. Backpacking the White Mountain 4000 Footers Guidebook, Garmin inReach Explorer+ Satellite Communicator Review, Garmin inReach Mini 2-Way GPS Satellite Communicator Review, Gossamer Gear Mariposa 60 Backpack Review, Knog Bilby 400 Rechargeable Headlamp Review, Hyperlite Mountain Gear Packing Pods Review, Insect Shield Clothing for Preventing Lyme Disease on the Appalachian Trail, Western Mountaineering Versalite 10 Sleeping Bag Review, How to Find North with a Compass and Take a Pee without Getting Lost. Interface is easy and even using all day/night, battery life is great for me (generally under 4 days). Despite their similarities, there are significant differences between the inReach Mini and the inReach Explorer+ which are important to know about so you can pick the right unit for your needs. The inReach functionality should work exactly … Categories won by the Garmin inReach Mini = 4. Confused it with another Garmin device I own. OSPREY-PACKS: Holiday Sale Markdowns! Yeah. Your email address will not be published. If you want more information about PLBs or Satellite Messengers, click HERE. Though it boils down to preference because the two of them are both great and capable, but I prefer the explorer more. Besides, it is not something you would typically need the Mini to do if using it primarily as a safety device when hiking. SHOP THE HOLIDAY SALE! It seems mythical given the published data. Puts full-featured navigation, aviation weather, DUAT(S) flight plan filing and electronic flight bag capabilities on your compatible mobile device; Pair Garmin Pilot with an inReach Mini or inReach Explorer+ to send and receive text messages, use the inReach … There was a particular problem sending texts to AT&T customers.. I’ve seen mixed reviews of the 66i. It continues to work amazingly well but… I have always had problems with messages getting out and getting back in. Other than the fact that the explorer has received a wider acceptance here among all my colleagues, it stands Some feet apart from the Garmin in reach Mini and should be taken ahead of it. Had been tempted by the 66i but we were also resistant to paying for their platform maps. We find reception impressively reliable on the Explorer+, and it is relatively quick to send and receive messages. Thanks for an excellent review Philip! Garmin uses Iridium = 100% coverage of the earth, while SPOT uses Globalstar = only few area’s covered and not every area is even good. The Explorer Plus is easily the better overall device, but if size and weight are at a premium, the inReach Mini is your best bet. I do power down my blue tooth connection to save power (on both phone and Explorer) and thus far, zero power issues overall. The Explorer+ is going to be easier to work with than the Mini and is not dependent on a second electronic device, your phone. I paired it with my Samsung smartphone. Works great! They will continue work while being charged but they do have a power off when charged feature you may want to turn off. I do about 20 miles a day and having this safety item is a requirement for me. If you want to see more reviews of different emergency locators than click HERE. Do you ever have concerns that these electronic systems breed a false sense of security? Your email address will not be published. In the event of an actual emergency, you’re probably going to want to send and receive detailed messages with search and rescue. A tiny battery pack to top up phone and Mini if required, easy enough….. Yo, Phillip – Canada is part of North America (NA = Canada, the continental US and Mexico). For backpackers and explorers who go off-grid, spending time away from the comforts of … Thru 12/7. Are you saying you could link the Mini to a 66i and use the 66i for the display. In 2017 Garmin introduced theInReach Mini, a smaller, cheaper alternative of the InReach Explorer+. That’s a pretty deep discount for Garmin. Let’s start by adding up how many categories were won by the Mini and the Explorer (we’ll leave out the ones where there were no winners). Activation fee: Both the inReach and the Spot X Bluetooth have a one-off activation fee of about £20. I’ve not, but I don’t use the feature much. While there are various tips and tricks you can use to extend the battery life of both units, there’s no getting around the fact that the Explorer+ battery is over twice as large as the Mini’s battery. Hyperlite Mountain Gear Southwest Backpack, Sea-to-Summit Etherlite XT Ins. Yes, you’re going to spend $99 more with your initial purchase but your monthly or yearly expenses are identical so that is not a decision maker for me. I had a bushwhack like that today, actually. Required fields are marked *. Garmin InReach Explorer vs InReach Mini. We do have a new procedure that my wife or family confirms they got my messages as they have not gotten them until the next day. With its smaller battery size, the Mini is best used by day hikers and short overnight trips up to 2-3 days in length, while the Explorer is better for longer backpacking, bikepacking, or hunting trips lasting 4 days or more. In 2016 when Bill & I got our Delorme Insight device (pre Garmin merger) there was considerable push back and posts about “yuppie 911s.”For me it is an adjunct device for that moment when oneself or for others need a SOS activated and use these particular to do two-way conversation with SAR to plan next steps. 1 Intro. Too much chance that a Grizz has wandered across state boundaries from the Yellowstone area. I have used the Expolorer + for extensive winter and summer backpacking and day hikes. From what I’ve gathered, messages sent to email addresses have a better success rate than those sent to SMS. Middle of nowhere. Unfortunately I gave my Explorer to a friend, but I doctored this image … Its also very very expensive. I’m concerned people rely on them too much and rely less on acquiring skills through pursuit of hiking education, planning hikes, and avoiding preventable injuries. Unless you are an extreme sport athlete, who cares about 4.0 ounces or even that the Explorer is about twice the size. sending an SOS. I don’t link the explorer to a phone and while you can, I’m not ever sure why anyone would want to. Every time I use my Mini, I spend half my time recovering from pressing the wrong button. Top Pick | Garmin inReach Mini Satellite Messenger 3.5 oz $350 (current price) Highlights: Top performance in almost every category, best message reliability, smallest & lightest, visual display, almost all operations can be done without a phone Look no further than the Garmin inReach Mini … I sent maybe 3 messages per day. You don’t have to connect them to a phone to use them. It’s only $100 more than the explorer+ at the current sale prices. The Explorer also gives me a chance to get back out alive if I break an ankle or a leg. Let’s start by adding up how many categories were won by the Mini and the Explorer (we’ll leave out the ones where there were no winners). I was very happy with that, but it seems to indicate the 50 hour battery life is more realistic. © Copyright 2007-2020, SectionHiker.com and Fells Press LLC. It seems worth noting that the “Average Battery Life” that Philip gives above (100hr E+ vs 50hr Mini) are not the numbers Garmin currently publishes, at least as far as I can find and I’m not sure where they come from. I wonder if this is something added to newer models. It could happen. The Garmin inReach Mini is the tiniest of all these devices, with the SPOT Gen3 not too far behind.Both the SPOT X and Garmin inReach Explorer+ are larger and heavier than the other devices by a few ounces. I’m not convinced on this one yet but the website for the Explorer makes no mention of this so I have to give the edge to the Mini in this category. Frequently Asked Questions, Wilderness Navigation Tools. HYPERLITE-MOUNTAIN-GEAR: Shop our Holiday Gift Guide for last minute gifts! InReach Mini vs. SE+ and Explorer+ The Mini is half the weight and size of the Garmin SE+ and Explorer+, which were released in early 2017. Hard to drag yourself out of the Sawtooth Wilderness Area! Sometimes not. You’d link the mini to a phone, although it’s also not entirely necessary. (3.5 oz. Gear Questions. I have a solar panel on top of my gear and it charges a 12v 8ah battery, wondering how I can charge the Mini or the Explorer+ from a battery terminal, but I will get one or the other. My experience is that it sometimes pauses until it gets the right kind of attention…. I used the tracking each day. In my view what is important is that either device has enough battery to last a day or so and be there for you in an emergency. 90hrs is printed on the Mini box I bought in July 2020 so I think they mean it and it is not a typo. With Explore and inReach, you can communicate, map, track, and share your trek from anywhere on Earth. All Rights Reserved. The Mini’s buttons are positioned on the sides of the device and are much less user friendly because you can’t see the black-on-black icons printed on the buttons. Choose the Garmin inReach Mini if you go on short outdoor adventures ( 1 to 3 days). Thx for the other map options. At this point, the Garmin inReach Explorer+ still gets the win for me over the Garmin inReach Mini. 30% Off Sitewide. (4 oz. That’s how Bill & I feel when we’re using our older iReach device. My bad on the touchscreen. You should recharge your phone and InReach to an appropriate level each night to ensure they are ready for action if needed. Almost every message we sent was confir… It can do alot . I wouldn’t travel in “the Primitive” without it (I live in Idaho and love the Stanley Basin area for hiking, fishing, camping. Still learning. Message composition is just too slow, battery draining, and awkward an activity with the inReach Mini or a networked smartphone. I have a very good Garmin GPS and really don’t want to purchase another and if I an link my iPhone to the Mini, what buttons would I have to “push” to send or receive a message? Thru 12/7. The SPOT and SPOT X (the latter being a miniature device comparable to the InReach mini). I turned off the Mini in the evenings after I sent a message confirming my location for the night. Some of the primary differences are if you value size and weight and maybe you don’t like having gadgets with you on the trail. You can also control when its GPS tracking capability is activated to conserve battery power. Even on shorter days hikes, I would not dream of leaving home without a safety net like this and the peace of mind if offers… or more correctly stated, my WIFE would not allow me to leave home on extended solo hikes/backpack trips without a way for us to stay in touch and for me to reach help if needed. ... Now the Garmin InReach vs … Most search and rescue requests are initiated near sundown or at night when hikers realize that they’re horribly lost, that they didn’t pack enough insulation to weather the night, or they freak out because they don’t have flashlights and can’t see in the dark. While that and Kurt’s anecdote makes the 50hr for “Average Battery Life” for a Mini at least a plausible working number it doesn’t lend weight to the Explorer+ having both an “Average Battery Life” of 100hrs and a figure of UP TO 100hrs for 10min Send Tracking (default). So I prefer to save weight and storage space. Look at the subscription prices. SPOT Gen3: 3.4 x 2.5 x 1 in. Our review of Garmin InReach Mini Verge Score 7 out of 10 This concerns me if in emergency. Categories won by the Garmin inReach Explorer = 8… Besides having one of these for when I need it, I also feel that I am likely to come across someone else that needs help one of these days. Compared to each other, they’re in the same ballpark—though the SPOT X is slightly lighter.Here are each device’s key dimensions, starting with the smallest and lightest weight. They even went so far as to suggest that Garmin gave REI those numbers (the ones that REI publishes) but I couldn’t confirm that. Which satellite messenger would win the top prize between the Garmin inReach Mini vs Explorer? It all really comes down to your needs and the things that are important to you. This will drain the Mini and smartphone batteries at an accelerated rate. Mini: Up to 90 hours at 10-minute tracking (default); up to 35 hours at 10-minute tracking with 1-second logging; up to 24 days at 30-minute tracking power save mode; and up to 1 year when powered off, Explorer:Up to 100 hours at 10-minute tracking mode (default); up to 75 hours at 10-minute tracking with 1-second logging; up to 30 days at the 30-minute interval power save mode; and up to 3 years when powered off. This switches off logging, Bluetooth, ANT+ and message checking and sleeps between Sending the current location to the Satellite. While you can carry a spare battery to recharge both devices, you’ll have to do it a lot less often with the Explorer+. A family member is getting into winter hiking. Garmin inReach Mini: 3.9 x 2 x 1 in. If I break a leg while I’m far off the trail, it’s going to take SAR a looong time to find me if I can’t tell them where I am. Who won the battle between the Garmin inReach Mini vs Explorer? Costs nothing extra. That setting seems reasonable for typical usage so if you use other features in addition you will get less than 100hrs out of it. Sometimes it seems to take a while but that could also be due to connectivity issues. Save big on holiday gifts for … What is the Difference Between a Single-Wall Tent and a Double-Wall Tent? To use those capabilities, you need to connect the Mini to a smartphone with Bluetooth, much like a computer monitor, and use your phone’s display and controls. As a result I usually (70% of the time) have cell coverage; the Mini’s job is to protect me while I’m in those coverage holes. Garmin’s product pages do not estimate “Average Battery Life” but provide numbers for various specific cases. To be honest, most of the features that could make Garmin inReach Mini special are present on the Explorer too and I don’t seem to see to much difference between the two. Hiking in the NH hope anyone who does need assistance is carrying 10 essentials plus appropriate additional gear or the SAR will cost them (as it should) https://hikesafe.com/about. If you need navigation and a longer battery life than the Garmin inReach Explorer wins. In contrast, the inReach Explorer+ is entirely self-contained with physical buttons that can be used to control all of the device’s functions including a color map navigation screen. Pacerpoles: Why aren’t all Trekking Poles this Good? Subscription plans: Both devices have several tiers of subscription plans, from light use to expedition. If you’re like most people you probably don’t use the device very often which makes it even more frustrating. REI.COM: Save an Extra 25% off one REI Outlet item with coupon code EXTRA25.Ends 12/7. Explorer: yes. Besides this from what I read online and experienced myself, even while testing a SPOT Gen3 and both a Garmin inReach Mini and Explorer+ only a few days, seems that the Iridium network is more reliable/stable. Being able to see the icons on the front of the Explorer+ is a lot more self-documenting. The problem with the mini is that you can’t see the icons on the buttons because they’re on the sides of the device and colored black-on-black. BACKCOUNTRY.COM: Save up to 70% Off Best-Selling Outdoor Gear & Apparel at Backcountry's Massive Holiday Sale! I’d recommend getting the Explorer+ if GPS functionality is required. Now thru 12/5. Connection times vary, but we rarely waited more than 5 minutes to get a solid one. I have at times had to power down both and start over. I got one after using the original InReach for many years. But it was definitely adequate (I had an Anker battery pack if needed). Probably not but here it is anyway. They hemmed and hawed about how there’s no good way to know since it depends on how hard your devices have to work to get a satellite lock and what other functions you might be using…but in the end they agreed that the REI metrics were more accurate as a real world reflection of battery performance and not the idealized metrics that Garmin has published. Exactly. On messages and bluetooth connectivity… I have an original (I think) DeLorme Inreach Explorer from like 5-6 years ago. There is absolutely no reason to track every 1 second. It takes about 2 minutes to teach someone how to use the explorer+ in an emergency. The very specific definition of these numbers indicate that if you also use the E+ for Mapping and Navigation then you will probably get much less than 100hrs of battery life and that the practical battery life is not as distinct between the two devices as Philip suggests. Philip Werner I also want the ability to compose and send detailed ad hoc messages to my family or search and rescue, especially at night. You only need a clear view of the sky to acquire satellite connections. This makes custom message composition easier for both devices and allows you to control the device from your phone…eg. I’ve never noticed them before. I used the Mini for about 8 hours per day, so that adds up to about 50 hours. Logs are not sent to the Satellite. I initially thought I would lean more toward the Garmin inReach Mini but the more I hike, I see that I am always wondering if I am on the right trail and what altitude I’m at. The North America SKU of the inReach Explorer+ comes preloaded with a 1:24k map of Garmin Yarmouth (Former DeLorme) North America data of the U.S. and Canada. SHOP THE HOLIDAY SALE! When the Mini is linked by bluetooth to a phone sending or receiving messages is like using an email application on your phone. I realized I would feel really stupid bleeding out on a trail like that because I was too cheap to buy one. Manage your Garmin Explore or inReach account. Choose the Garmin inReach Explorer+ if you go on longer outdoor adventures (2 days and more). Some people prefer the map and compass, and sometimes I feel the same way. Contents hide. Also, my Mini does not have a touchscreen. Sometimes restarting the bluetooth on either the phone or Explorer fixes the problem. i just bought the mini on sale. But regardless, I refuse to pay garmin for more maps for a GPS device (they cost extra) when you get dozens of excellent map layers for free with GPS phone apps, like GaiaGPS. The inReach Explorer+ comes with preloaded color maps for North America and Canada (1:24k) and Mexico (1:125k), and it’s GPS navigation capability is entirely self-contained with a built-in display screen, digital compass, barometric altimeter, and an accelerometer (so you don’t have to be moving for it to know which direction it’s pointing. Are Vibram Soles Good for Hiking and Backpacking? if you so wish. If you need to save some money and need lighter and more compact than the Garmin inReach Mini wins. Philip – Because the given number for the Explorer+ for 10min Send Tracking (default) is “up to 100hrs”…a maximum not an average. Both the Explorer+ and the Mini are standalone. The size really isn’t even a big issue. The InReach Mini has the same messaging capabilities and GPS as the Explorer+, but … It is also worth mentioning that the Mini is less than half the weight of the Explorer+. I turned on Bluetooth in the morning, sent a tracking message on my phone and started the tracking, then turned off Bluetooth on both the Mini and the phone all day. With inReach satellite technology from Garmin and an active satellite subscription 1, you can stay in touch globally.You can send and receive messages, navigate … The mini wins this battle by over twice the weight loss, so the biggest loser is the Mini, meaning it wins for this category. I purchased the Garmin Mini If you would like additional information, leave a COMMENT BELOW or send me an EMAIL. Pretty much any battery bank with a USB A socket will work. So, for me the Garmin inReach Explorer gets my vote.