Browsing "Saskatchewan"
Feb 27, 2013 -

Thinking About Saskatchewan

It’s hard to believe that I will be back in Canada in about 10 weeks. I don’t really want to think about that, but the fact is that I’m heading for rural territory with no idea of what services, if any, will be available to me. As things stand, I have no internet options whatsoever besides public wifi for Canada since I broke my ties with Telus. I’ve conceded that the only decent Canada-wide plan that would work for me is that offered by Bell with its Turbo Hub, so that’s what I’m looking at getting. I did email SaskTel to see what my hard wired options are and got a stock reply that had nothing to do with my question, as expected. I’d rather stick with a nationwide provider and mobile internet anyway.

When I bought my property, there was zero cell service in the village and for miles around. Now, I’m seeing coverage up to the limits of the community. This gives me hope that a booster would work. I contacted a company that puts together booster systems for folks in rural municipalities to see what they have to offer for my situation and at what cost. At this point, I’m looking at $300 for the Turbo Hub, plus about $70 a month for 10GB (remember I got FIVE GB for that price from Telus), so even if I end up forking out an extra $500 for a booster, I’m still well ahead of what it would cost to get a hard wired connection, if one is even possible.

I want to avoid landing without having a solid plan for getting online even if it takes a week or two to execute that plan. The loose ideaat this point is to get to my property and take a few days to meet the neighbours and establish a good enough relationship to determine if a summer there will be feasible. Who knows, the neighbours could end up being great and offer to sell me power, hard wired internet, water, and access to a toilet for dumping with a macerator, or they could all be horrible people who decide to run me out of town. I just won’t know till I get there.

It is encouraging to see that cell phone coverage map expand exponentially. I’m still seeing a big dead spot around my old homestead in the Gatineau Hills, but that’s no surprise. Saskatchewan is the second to last frontier in Canada (much more so than even Yukon, the NWT, or Nunavut, and just ahead of Quebec outside of the Montreal-QC City corridor)), so I’m gratified to see them moving ahead quickly, with their coverage map jumping in leaps and bounds.

I’m not looking forward to going back to Canada, but I’m slowly taking my head out of the sand about the notion of it. 🙂

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Canada, Cell Phone, Communications & Electronics, Countries, Internet, Saskatchewan, Technical, Travel    3 Comments
Apr 18, 2012 -

Inching Towards the Border

I am at the Walmart in Estevan (The Energy City), still in Saskatchewan. I didn’t get much sleep last night and drove about 500km total today in the toad, so I was tempted to stay in Weyburn. But I felt that three nights there were already pushing it, that another 80km wouldn’t kill me, and that it’d be nice to start the day so close to the border (40km). If the border crossing goes smoothly, I will have a chance to do my business in Minot and still make it to the RV park I have in mind. But I have managed to get a full charge today (THANK YOU GALARNEAU), so tomorrow’s cold and overcast forecast isn’t too scary, not with sun being promised from Friday onward, and I will keep open the option of detouring to Bismarck if I do not manage to find the required services in Minot.

Estevan is rather a large city for this part of Canada. The Walmart isn’t as convenient to access as I had to drive through town, but the lot, like that in Weyburn, is nice and big with plenty of space to tuck away a 50′ rig on level spot.

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Boondocking/Dry camping, Canada, Saskatchewan, Travel    1 Comment
Apr 16, 2012 -

Less Than Ideal Boondocking Weather

I awoke to the worst kind of weather for boondocking while relying on solar. It’s frigid and overcast. I’m still bringing in about 4A, but the furnace is taking that out just as fast. I’m trying to keep the rig around 16C and not freezing by staying wrapped in the electric blanket, which has a negligible draw.

Needless to say, I was glad to have an excuse to run back to Assiniboia (three hours round trip) this morning. I may need to go again tomorrow or Wednesday, so I am staying put. I’ll explain what’s going on in my next post.

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Batteries, Boondocking/Dry camping, Canada, Electricity, Saskatchewan, Solar Panels, Technical, Travel    1 Comment
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