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Old 07-09-2016, 09:28 AM   #1
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Weather and towing.....

When getting ready for a long trip I watch the weather carefully. Too many casualties in "Tornado Alley" or flash floods this time of year. I have the usual weather APPS on my IPhone but there ar extra precautionary means available. I activate my vehicles hot spot and carry a IPAD mini with real time weather APPS. There are also trip mapping services with real time weather available for $$. During daytime one can watch the horizon for issues but the nighttime viewing on the IPAD is very helpful. In addition I have a weather radio channel on my CB radio which picks local weather forecasting. Sometimes this information is more entertaining that listening to non satellite radio.
Anyone else have any suggestions?
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Old 07-09-2016, 09:39 AM   #2
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Thanks Jim. I have been wondering about navigating cross-country and avoiding extreme weather conditions. We are starting to plan a cross country trip to explore other states and provinces and your tip is extremely helpful. I'll start using my weather apps at home to familiarize us with them. I don't know what you mean by activating your vehicle's hot spot--do you have to have wi-fi on all the time? On our last trip my cellular service was costly....maybe it's time to upgrade.

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Old 07-09-2016, 09:41 AM   #3
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When getting ready for a long trip I watch the weather carefully. Too many casualties in "Tornado Alley" or flash floods this time of year. I have the usual weather APPS on my IPhone but there ar extra precautionary means available. I activate my vehicles hot spot and carry a IPAD mini with real time weather APPS. There are also trip mapping services with real time weather available for $$. During daytime one can watch the horizon for issues but the nighttime viewing on the IPAD is very helpful. In addition I have a weather radio channel on my CB radio which picks local weather forecasting. Sometimes this information is more entertaining that listening to non satellite radio.
Anyone else have any suggestions?
I don't know which weather app you use, but I found My Radar useful since it shows your location, and while not quite real time, it is only about 5 minutes behind.

One of the problems I've had with Weather Radio (both NOAA & weather alerts on standard broadcast stations) is they ofter identify the problem areas by counties, and when traveling, I rarely know what county I'm in.
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Old 07-09-2016, 10:40 AM   #4
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I believe the weather radio will only pick up the broadcast that is receivable in your area, thus if you can receive it, it is nearby. The hot spot I'm referring to is some vehicles, Chrysler's is called "UConnect and has the ability to have internet on the go, similar to your phone but unlimited used for a flat fee, I think mine was $45 for 30 days, of course it only works while the truck
is on, otherwise you will need your phone as a hot spot.
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Old 07-09-2016, 10:45 AM   #5
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For My Radar, did you get the free one or the Radar NOAA or Radar Pro NoAA?
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Old 07-09-2016, 10:55 AM   #6
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Our truck came with a 5 year subscription to Sirius Travel Link. One of its features is weather forecasts and a weather radar map. Useful.


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Old 07-09-2016, 10:58 AM   #7
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For My Radar, did you get the free one or the Radar NOAA or Radar Pro NoAA?
I got several, a couple were $2/each, other were free. I have about 30 APPs for use while traveling, Next Exit, KOA, Cracker Barrel, Flying J, Walmart, rests stops, my radar, there are a bunch available.
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Old 07-09-2016, 12:12 PM   #8
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For My Radar, did you get the free one or the Radar NOAA or Radar Pro NoAA?
I have the free version. I have unlimited AT&T service on my iPhone (which can be linked to the Tacoma) and my iPad is on Verizon so I usually can find service on one or the other...

As to the NOAA broadcasts, they are somewhat local, however the weather radar shows very exact locations of storm cells & how they are moving.
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Old 07-09-2016, 01:51 PM   #9
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Try the Weatherbug app! The Elite costs you but they other one is free. Elite shows 10 days the free one 7 days. Uses your location for weather alerts and radar. I have android phone and tablet.
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Old 07-09-2016, 05:45 PM   #10
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The hot spot I'm referring to is some vehicles, Chrysler's is called "UConnect and has the ability to have internet on the go, similar to your phone but unlimited used for a flat fee, I think mine was $45 for 30 days, of course it only works while the truck is on, otherwise you will need your phone as a hot spot.
It seems like everyone has that now - they build a $100 mobile access point (hotspot) into the vehicle and push it as the reason to buy a new $40,000 vehicle. Certainly GM thinks it's the most desirable feature of their SUVs, judging by their TV ads.

Truly unlimited fixed-fee mobile internet access would be very desirable - with no other internet service at my house it would almost pay to buy a used vehicle and just leave it parked in my driveway I doubt it's unlimited here, so I'll have to look into that.

Edit: US$50/month in the U.S.; so much in Canada that Chrysler doesn't even mention it in any obvious place.
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Old 07-09-2016, 05:51 PM   #11
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Many provinces and states combine weather warnings with road condition information on websites and in apps, often identified by the "511" number used to reach the telephone version.
Alberta example: Alberta road conditions, road reports and traffic cams | 511 Alberta
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Old 07-09-2016, 05:53 PM   #12
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We most use Wunderground, then Accuweather, WeatherBug or Hi-Def Radar.
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:05 PM   #13
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I prefer taking secondary highways and byways when possible and find cell service pretty spotty. Does anyone have any ideas for non cell service weather while you are moving? Can never find a radio channel with the weather when I try.
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:22 PM   #14
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It seems like everyone has that now - they build a $100 mobile access point (hotspot) into the vehicle and push it as the reason to buy a new $40,000 vehicle. Certainly GM thinks it's the most desirable feature of their SUVs, judging by their TV ads.
You noticed that too, eh? A whole commercial dedicated to one feature, one I would not even care to have.
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:26 PM   #15
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I prefer taking secondary highways and byways when possible and find cell service pretty spotty. Does anyone have any ideas for non cell service weather while you are moving? Can never find a radio channel with the weather when I try.
You have to stop moving but even small towns often have a library with wifi.
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:27 PM   #16
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Old 07-09-2016, 06:58 PM   #17
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I prefer taking secondary highways and byways when possible and find cell service pretty spotty. Does anyone have any ideas for non cell service weather while you are moving? Can never find a radio channel with the weather when I try.
This has a bit of the feel of using a sledgehammer to drive a tack, but...
XM Sirius satellite radio has a weather channel. Works everywhere, unless you're in a tunnel or similarly shielded from the sky.

Weather radio is the more obvious answer, as Jim mentioned in the initial post (his is combined with CB in one receiver). The U.S. service is the "NOAA" broadcasts mentioned earlier. These systems run on dedicated channels, which is why you need a specific weather radio receiver, but you're not searching random broadcast stations hoping for a weather report.
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Old 07-09-2016, 08:57 PM   #18
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I use the weather radio at home and on the road too. The only problem, and I'm serious here, is that when I tune the station in, I have to have the road atlas out because I'm often no familiar with the towns the computerized voice is referring to. This is especially true when they give the severe weather warning county by county. I find it to be
pretty accurate though.
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Old 07-10-2016, 06:49 AM   #19
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Computerized voice??, I thought it was the same person, like the Wiz in Oz, who went around and broadcasts the forecasts.....
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Old 07-10-2016, 08:19 AM   #20
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There is a new one called Storm Shield by EW Scripps we have been using for several months now. You can set it to use you current location or point it to a exact address and save it as a favorite. It worked great while we were traveling on vacation last month and last week we had 5 waves of severe storms and it gave us warnings every time. It has radar too.
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