Avalanche Transmitter

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Avalanche transmitters, sometimes called Beeps, Bips or Doggy Beacons are transmit only devices. As such they cannot be used to search for other people but then dogs lack opposable thumbs required to operate an avalanche beacon. As such transmit only devices should not be used by groups. Their advantage is that they are generally small, light and fairly cheap: between 60 to 80 Euros and have good battery life. Therefore it is fairly easy to carry one every time you go out. Oh and they can also be attached to your dog in case Rover gets hit by a slide.

Barryvox avalanche transmitter

Barryvox S2 Avalanche Transmitter

The idea of a doggy beacon raises important moral questions amongst some backcountry enthusiasts, should Fido be potentially rescued before human victims? As the doggy beacon transmits on the same frequency as other beacons it is difficult to tell the signals apart.

The main advantage over Recco devices is that there is a much greater chance that someone near an avalanche site (pisteurs, guides, other skiers or snowboarders) has a transceiver and therefore can commence an immediate search. They are also useful as a second system for practicing searches.

Transmit only devices are available from the Swiss Manufacturer Barryvox, French Nic-Impex, and Ortovox. Dog owners have reported that it is hard to fit the Ortovox device, sold specifically for dogs, onto a dog's collar.