Electronics on Safari...what do you take or not take?

BeeMaa

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My wife and I are not big computer people. That's to say that we don't mind living without them for a while. It doesn't bother us to not look at our cell phones, computer or even television over the course of a weekend and think nothing of it. However we also know that we are in the minority, and this is most likely a product of how we grew up. I will not get into the "good old days" discussion here, but wanted to know how others felt about taking electronics on safari. Laptops, iPads, cell phones and cameras have become a mainstay of daily life, but does that mean they follow you on vacation or safari? Do you take them in the bush? What are your thoughts and opinions on the subject?

For us, we have taken our cell phones on vacation including safari. Once we took a camera and didn't use it much. On our next vacation, we will probably take a laptop because I can type much faster than I can write. I enjoy writing in a journal at the end of the day, but find the actual writing part of it cumbersome, with typing being much more efficient. The auto-correct spelling is a plus for me as well. I will concede that I do like to draw and sketch things, so I pack a small journal pencil and eraser. It lets me scribble down drawings of animals and scenery I just can't describe with a picture from a cell phone. So for us it's pretty much a cell phone each, share a laptop and a scribble book for me. What say you?
 

Ike85123

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My wife and I are not big computer people. That's to say that we don't mind living without them for a while. It doesn't bother us to not look at our cell phones, computer or even television over the course of a weekend and think nothing of it. However we also know that we are in the minority, and this is most likely a product of how we grew up. I will not get into the "good old days" discussion here, but wanted to know how others felt about taking electronics on safari. Laptops, iPads, cell phones and cameras have become a mainstay of daily life, but does that mean they follow you on vacation or safari? Do you take them in the bush? What are your thoughts and opinions on the subject?

For us, we have taken our cell phones on vacation including safari. Once we took a camera and didn't use it much. On our next vacation, we will probably take a laptop because I can type much faster than I can write. I enjoy writing in a journal at the end of the day, but find the actual writing part of it cumbersome, with typing being much more efficient. The auto-correct spelling is a plus for me as well. I will concede that I do like to draw and sketch things, so I pack a small journal pencil and eraser. It lets me scribble down drawings of animals and scenery I just can't describe with a picture from a cell phone. So for us it's pretty much a cell phone each, share a laptop and a scribble book for me. What say you?
Me and my wife have only taken a camera once also, just phones after that. We take a laptop also. But thats it. I dont like to carry alot.
Hunting is different, of course now we gotta talk optics and a journal.
We will try to get everyones emails in the group. Then exchange pics. Some will have point and shoots, some just phones and then there is always that 1 person that carries 2 cameras and a million lenses. Lol
 

wesheltonj

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I would normally take my camera and cell phone. Now, I would have to have a laptop and WiFi connection as I receive arbitration assignments via email. I can’t miss an assignment or deadline for a ruling.
 

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Cell phone only.. and thats 90% for the camera.. and 10% for emergency contact if someone REALLY needs to call me...

I dont "journal".. but I do take a few notes each day so I can remember key details for a hunt report after I return.. I enjoy actually putting pen to paper to do that..

No way Im taking a laptop or even a tablet with me though.. The temptation would be far too great to be checking email, etc.. and I'd never mentally or emotionally escape from work (the cell phone also gets email.. but Im not very inclined to really "read" anything that comes over the cell.. and Im certainly not opening documents, scanning through excel files etc on a cell phone).. When I travel to Africa (or anywhere that is not a work related trip for that matter).. the #1 thing I value is being unplugged..
 

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I only took my phone on both safaris. I didn’t even use the phone or it’s camera on hunt one. My wife was with me so I really didn’t have to keep in touch with anyone. I did have a sat phone along and made a couple of calls. On the second hunt I did Facetime with my wife three times.
On my next hunt, I’ll take my tablet to write my journal.
 

C.W. Richter

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Depends where you're going. Cell phone camera maybe laptop but if there's no Wi-Fi in camp there's no point lugging yet more dead weight. I've written many a hunt report on the back of an airplane doggy bag with a flight attendant's pen... You can also use speech to text to put voice notes on your phone it has a time and date stamp which matches up with any photos you took on it. A bug zapper may be more valuable in the rainy season..
 

IdaRam

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Cell phone only, mainly for the camera. No lap top or tablets. Time to unplug! :D
 

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My first trip all I took was a couple of cameras and a old flip phone for a alarm clock.

On my trip next year I'll take my smart phone and two cameras. I'll leave the phone at the lodge and just use my digital cameras. While phones take great photos my cameras take better ones. But then my phone is 2 years old and I doubt that I'll have to get a new one in 18 months.
 

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You should get a small pocket sized digital camera. My Canon G7X takes high quality pic including amazing Night Sky photos. Night Sky photos most amazing pics of 1000's of stars and other galaxies!
 

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One of my cameras is a small lightweight one that I just pack on my hip, the other one is a larger one that will stay in my pack until it is needed for a better photo.
 

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No laptops or tablets etc but I take my phone for the camera as well as the ability to text my kids each night and send the pix to friends and to check the occasional e mail. I also like to listen to downloaded music on the flights to and from-noise cancelling headphones with Bluetooth are awesome on the plane and I download books as well as music. I take a nice camera with a bigger lens for pictures along the way and at a game park during the trip.
 

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Cell phone for sure. In a pinch I can read and edit a brief that a junior attorney is about to send so someone like @wesheltonj can read it in the next camp!

@autofire check out the Starwalk app, it uses the phone and GPS to show where stars, moon, sun, planets, etc are in the sky. It is a major help to figure out what one is looking at. Seeing the Southern cross in person was a real treat for me.

I also bring a Kestrel anemometer because I like the data about temp, humidity, etc. It travels with me in my pack everywhere.

I’d love to figure out if Onx Hunt will work in Africa, I enjoy the map to see where I’ve been.
 

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For civilized Africa, my iPhone (comms and photos) and iPad (entertainment - movies and books). For wilder Africa, a Sat Phone. For both - a quality pocket camera. I have owned a Sat Phone for a decade and it is invaluable for a camp in the Zambezi Delta, parts of Namibia or where checking in at home is otherwise impossible. When I was still in the corporate world I attended or chaired more than one virtual meeting with a hippo bellowing in the background. These days, I like to check in with the lovely Mrs. Red Leg for a few minutes most evenings.
 

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I am still active in our various companies, and I find I can relax far more when I know what is going on. Reaction time is very short these days and it is far more work fixing something that has veered way off course in the last 12 hours than a little tweek here and there. So I always have a phone, loaded with all the media, email, whatsapp, instagram, etc. Same doubles as the camera and video and then it is easy to sew together a little movie clip of the trip. My buddy and I still keep written journals, done with fountain pen, sketches, photos pasted in. We also write up the hunting stories in book format and get round to 'publishing' them occasionally. Just done the air rifle one and the one covering our Carruthers club so far.
 

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Just my celphone for the camera and alarm clock. I check emails occasionally at night. I don't want anything else hanging off me when I'm out in the bush.
 

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I bring my phone for the camera as well as another small camera. In the remote areas I hunt, there’s no cell signal so I have both a sat phone to check voicemails and my InReach to text my wife. After my experience in CAR, I don’t go anywhere outside of the USA without my InReach. It bluetooths to my phone, making sat texting a breeze. It also has mapping and that’s fun to look at once in a while. My wife brings an iPad for downloading daily photos.
 

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Laptop
Mobile phone
Digital camera.
Chargers, and electrical socket adapters (very important)
 

GuttormG

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Camera and cell phone.

A powerbank, extra memory card extra battery for the camera.
 

BeeMaa

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I suppose every generation took the latest technology of the day to the field. Whether it be firearms, ammunition or electronics. That’s why we have all those “vintage” pictures from so long ago. Someone along the way thought it might be a good idea to document this with more than just words.
 

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