Camping With Convenience: A GPS System Guide

Many people love to go camping because they get an opportunity to unplug from technology. While it’s healthy to unplug every now and then, you should make an exception for your GPS tracker when camping. Carrying a reliable GPS system during your summer adventures could make your excursions safer and more convenient.

Never Forget Where You Parked Your Vehicle

After spending a few days camping in the wilderness, it’s easy to forget where you parked your vehicle. State and national parks often have extensive hiking trail systems with multiple trailheads and parking lots. It’s even more confusing when you camp away from an established trail system. You can easily get turned around, even when you know how to use a compass and map well.

The LAS SYNC helps you get back to your vehicle so you can get home safely and according to your schedule.

The SYNC connects directly into your vehicle’s OBD-II port. The LAS SYNC doesn’t have an internal battery because it draws power from your vehicle’s battery. Assuming you remember to turn off your headlights, you don’t need to worry about your GPS tracker running out of electricity — and it won’t drain your car’s battery either.

When you decide to head home, use your smartphone or similar device to connect to the LAS SYNC. Use its location as a beacon that will take you right to your car, truck, or RV. You never need to worry about getting lost again!

Mark Locations Where You Stow Supplies

Thru-hikers don’t always want to carry supplies while they travel from place to place. Dehydrated food and portable water filters can help reduce the amount of weight you carry. Still, they don’t always meet your needs. For example, a portable water filter doesn’t help when you hike through a dry area without streams or lakes. In that scenario, you need to drop supplies along the path you plan to take.

A gallon of drinking water weighs about 8.43 pounds. If you drink two cups of water per hour during your hike, you should carry at least two gallons for each day. That would mean carrying more than 50 pounds of water for a three-day camping adventure! Dropping off supplies spares you from unnecessary exertion and makes your trip more enjoyable.

When dropping off supplies along a route, you will probably choose to place them near trailheads with parking lots. That way, you can easily stow your supplies in convenient locations while you drive to the beginning of your trip.

Just like parking your car, though, you might forget where you put supplies. Once you get a few days into a thru-hike, it becomes harder to remember where you stopped to drop off packages.

GPS trackers ensure you know exactly where you put the supplies you need to complete your trip safely without getting dehydrated or hungry. Simply attach a small GPS tracker to your package. Then, you can view the location from any smart device.

What if Someone Steals Your Supplies?

GPS trackers will tell you whether someone — or some critter — has stolen your supplies. If you see that your tracker moves from its original location, you can save yourself the hassle of hiking to the trailhead.

Unfortunately, you can’t do much about stolen supplies while in the wilderness. Once you complete your journey, though, you can share your GPS tracking information with park officials. They might already know someone in the area has been stealing supplies and putting lives in danger. Your GPS information could help them find the culprits and protect hundreds of other campers this season.

Make an Itinerary and Share It with Loved Ones

You should always make and share a camping itinerary before heading out for a summer adventure. The itinerary should include the names of everyone in your group, where you plan to camp, and when you expect to move between locations.

If something goes wrong during your trip, friends and family members can give your itinerary to the authorities, making it easier for emergency responders to find you. Keep in mind that your smartphone probably won’t work in remote locations. If your mobile device can’t connect to a cell tower, you can’t place a call when you get into trouble.

An itinerary helps solve this problem by telling responders where to start looking.

Share Your GPS Locations for Safety

You can make authorities’ jobs much easier — and protect your camping group from danger — by carrying a GPS tracker. GPS devices primarily rely on man-made satellites orbiting the planet. They don’t rely on cellular or internet networks. As long as you have an unobstructed view of the sky, your GPS tracker can almost certainly connect to satellites and transmit its location.

Some LAS devices come with the ShareSpot location sharing and tracking system. Before you go camping, share your log-in information with someone you trust. That way, they can keep an eye on your progress. If it looks like an emergency might have happened, they can use ShareSpot to find your precise location.

The LAS 54 and LAS Overdrive work especially well for camping excursions. Both ShareSpot-enabled devices have waterproof, dustproof designs, so even if you’re hiking through the desert or experience an unexpected rainstorm, your tracking equipment is protected.

These LAS devices also have small dimensions that make them easy to carry while hiking:

  1. LAS 54: 2.275 inches deep and 0.945 inches high.
  2. LAS Overdrive: 2.813 inches deep and 1.0 inch high.

Both devices can comfortably fit in your pocket or backpack and have extensive battery life:

  1. LAS 54: Holds a charge for one to three weeks and transmits its location every three seconds to three minutes.
  2. LAS Overdrive: Larger battery holds a charge up to four weeks.

Which GPS tracker should you choose? That largely depends on its application: what will you use the tracker for? Ultimately, you should choose the device with the profile and battery life appropriate for your specific use.

Review Your Route and Plan for Future Trips

After your camping trip, your GPS tracker can give you a full overview of your route. The LAS SilverCloud app can even show you how quickly or slowly you progressed through various parts of the journey.

A route replay offers you two benefits:

  1. You can gather with people who shared your adventure to reminisce about things you saw at specific points along the trail.
  2. You can locate and make note of the spots you’d like to avoid in the future.

Let’s say a particularly steep, muddy hill made it difficult for you to reach your next campsite. You’d likely want to avoid that experience the next time you camp in the area. Use a map to find alternative routes that make your adventure more enjoyable. You might end up walking a little farther, but you won’t get muddy struggling to reach the top of that hill.

Share Insights With Other Campers

The information you get from SilverCloud can also help you give advice to other campers. If you use an app like AllTrails or Seek by iNaturalist, you can give route-specific information to other people. For example, you might inform people that typical water sources between miles 8 and 12 are dried up or that you encountered a large tree blocking the path at mile 12.5.

Without a GPS tracker, you couldn’t provide such helpful information. At best, you could give fellow campers general advice about what to expect. The more specific you get, the more it will help other people hiking through the area.

Similarly, you can point out some of your favorite spots to camp. Some state and federal parks only let people camp in designated areas. Others allow “primitive camping,” where you can bed down just about anywhere.

It’s often challenging to find a dry, flat space for primitive camping. Eventually, you might give up and set up camp just so you can stop looking and take a break. There could be an excellent spot just a few minutes away, though. Sharing your favorite locations with other hikers helps them find safe, clean places to rest during long, multi-day hikes. Hopefully, some of them will return the favor!

Get the Right GPS Tracker for Your Camping Adventure

Any LAS GPS tracker can help make your camping adventure safer and more convenient. Of course, you want the perfect option for your unique plans. Feel free to send an email to ian.conley@landairsea.com for personalized advice.

You can also visit our Hiking and Camping page to learn more about how other people use their devices in the great outdoors. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!