Thursday, May 10, 2007

Hope You Can't Hear Me Now

Here's a subject most of us wouldn't dare think about. But imagine going on a vacation in the U.S. where there is no cellphone signal for any wireless company network. Forbes LLC states that more than 230 million Americans, 75% of the population, use cellphones and made 2 trillion minutes worth of calls on them. A joint effort of Forbes and American Roamer, a company that makes coverage maps for wireless carriers, found large signal-free areas as well as small holes in the sum of all networks in places like national parks. They found that each of these places have stuff to do except chat on a cellphone. In the map above, the areas of white or lightest shades of blue is where there is zero or weak wireless reception.

So if you feel your significant other is married to their cell phone maybe it's time to divorce them from their phone and stop by one of the following places. Actually some of these are places many would consider visiting.

- Yakutat, Alaska (pictured right, a fishing town popular with visitors in the Gulf of Alaska surrounded by mountains, population 680).
- Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
- Yosemite National Park, California
- Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, Minnesota
- Olympic National Park, Washington
- Sequoia National Forest, California (Only an hour's drive outside L.A. but with spotty coverage on the slopes of the San Gabriel Mountains.)
- Baxter State Park, Maine
- Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
- Adirondack Mountains, New York
- Big Bend National Park, Texas
- Antelope Wells, New Mexico
- Pyramid Lake, Nevada (pictured below, located just outside of Reno; known for the pyramid rock formations and fishing)
- Round Spring Cavern, Missouri
- Great Salt Lake, Utah
- The Montana-Idaho Border
- Eastern Park County, Wyoming
- Tillamook County, Oregon
- Death Valley, California (National Park Service warns on their website "do not depend on a cellphone" in case of emergency.)
- Big Horn Mountains, Wyoming
- Andes, New York (About three hours northwest of Manhattan, the Catskill Mountains help to make it cellphone free.)

Just because there is no wireless service, the research showed there may be internet connection. For example, a lodge in Yakutat Alaska offers computers with internet access and a Wi-Fi router for guests toting laptops. But knowing how some people heavily depend on and are addicted to their cell phone, they may choose going without water rather than going without a cell phone.


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