Monday, January 17, 2011

Find my Rider!

I, like a lot of my blog friends, often worry that my horse will fling me from her back and leave me for dead.* Yeah, some dirt bikers would probably find me before I perished, but still, the thought of getting de-horsed and possibly hurt in the wilderness gives one pause. G and I have worked out what is probably the optimal solution on the market right now (as long as you have a 3G Apple device).

Before we went to SF, we installed Find My iPhone on our phones, in case some skeezy Tenderloin pickpocket managed to snag one. Once we got back, I started thinking about non-theft uses for it. We've tested this a couple of times now, and Find my Phone really does work great.

I had him do the initial install tied to his (free) .mac mobile me whatever you call it account. I've got the account info, so if I need to I can log in there. But mainly it's so he can find me, so it's linked to him. When I'm ready to ride, I still tell him roughly where I'm going and how long I expect to be out. If I'm overdue and not answering the phone, he can just check in on the website and see where I am. Instead of calling the sheriff and saying "Uh yeah she's in Hungry Valley somewhere," he can call and give them my coordinates.

If you don't have an iPhone, you should rush right out and buy one. They're wonderful. I suppose you could also get a Spot Personal Tracker thing - but it's $100 for the device, then $100 per year in service. And it doesn't play games or take pictures or ANYTHING.

The only real problem is if I manage to lose the phone on the trail. Maybe the sheriff's deputies would find it and give it back? I have an extremely unglamorous fanny pack, so that's not a big worry really. And any GPS device attached to you can be de-attached from you - you can't eliminate all risk.

*you may also worry that your horse will fling you from its back, but of course the world revolves around me so I'm sure yall all worry about me and Dixie. ;)


  1. Good advice - I don't have an iPhone but maybe it's time to upgrade.

  2. I just got a Droid. I wonder what they may have.

    I ride in a more populated area, so I hope that someone would stumble upon me amongst the trees if I couldn't operate my cell. You never do know...

  3. I'm pretty sure my corpse would be easy to find, since there would be an enormous, purple-clad MOOSEY-HORSE standing guard over me and the cookies in my pockets that she can't quite get because they're zippered in tightly.

    Still, the iphone is tempting. I still have a dumbphone....

  4. Good thoughts Fund!
    Haver to see bout that for the Droid I have.

    Well, we map all the trails we them too..and with the GPS, can actully pinpoint where we'll be, when we leqave the barn. It is standard for us to write where we are heading to and the time we left.
    I have a "leg safe" by the GPS AND PHONE are on me!
    I worry much more about my horse getting lost-running home- more than someone not findling me!

  5. I have left you an award on my blog!

  6. How about "Find my Horse"? A friend's horse got loose on a trail ride and vanished into the forest. They found him unharmed after a search, but it was scary.

  7. I've got a dog tag attached to her rope halter, and that's the best I can do for her. Well that, and Aarene's backup plan - there's always goodies SOMEWHERE on my body. ;)

  8. You're assuming they're smart enough to follow GPS coordinates. When I sank Ozzy, I gave my coordinates to the dispatcher and they couldn't find me until Erin tracked them down and led them to me.

  9. I'll definitely be downloading that app! I try not to ride alone, but you never know. (Or I might actually need to find a lost iPhone... LOL)

  10. Dom, err, well, there's that. He could email a screenshot of the google map though...

    i2p - it's a little complicated to set up, cause you have to set up the .mac account first, but it's definitely peace of mind against getting your phone swiped. Or just losing it - you can log on and make it beep at you if you lose it in the house/barn/car.

  11. Thanks for the idea, getting this app asap!

  12. OK, clearly I've been trapped in the netizen equivalent of blogging self-centeredness that is post a day 2011.
    I thought only a day or two went by. Wow. Missed a lot of posts.

    GREAT idea. I have an Android, and there's a app to find that phone, if it's lost. Guess who is going to be sorting out how that works exactly?

    Losing horses: reflective tape on gear and dog tags - good.
    Pockets jammed with cookies? Better. :) Also helpful, carrying a paper sack of grain you can shake. Gotta teach the horse that one first though.

  13. Jane - same thing happens to me re: your blog, especially now that you post every day! I could swear I read once a day, but then I'll sit down and there's three posts!

    At this point I don't think Dixie would run for miles without me, which is definite improvement! I do suspect she'd pickpocket the cookies from my unconscious form, then slooowly wander away.


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