Did I Tell You About The Time We Sent A Phone Up A Flagpole?

We go camping with a group of family and friends a couple of times a year usually. We’ve been doing this for a few years, and have been to a number of places. Sometimes we spend the whole time on the campsite, sometimes we make plans to go off and do something (but never actually do it) and other times we get out and visit places. Often we’ll go out geocaching, which is something the kids enjoy.

So this particular trip we were staying at a campsite near Brean Sands in Somerset. In this modern age, of course we all have a variety of mobile devices that we use to keep ourselves busy and entertained whilst sampling the local cider/beverage of choice. It turns out, you can't get much of a phone signal let alone 3 or 4G at Brean Sands…

However, we did actually make it off the campsite on this occasion. We headed to Brean Down. For those that don’t know, Brean Down is a bit of headland that is 97m high. Spectacular views at the top do make the hike up worthwhile, and there’s fort and temple to explore whilst you’re up there as well. It turns out you can also get a decent 4G signal up there as well! Cue lots of phones binging as they suddenly download a load of messages. Two of our party decided to browse Go Outdoors for an extension for their new tent – checking stock in stores near their home to reserve and collect on the way back.

Fast forward to a little later, when we’re back at camp. It turns out the one of the emails our friend received was the news of the birth of a new baby to friends of theirs in the States. Sadly, although the email had downloaded the accompanying photo hadn’t. So Kate went for a little drive, only to discover that there was no signal anywhere around. By this time Kate’s husband, Darren, has been enjoying a few beers. It occurs to him that the only place we had a signal was all the way at the top of Brean Down. However, nobody was volunteering to walk back up there so Darren got to thinking (never going to end well!) How could he get his phone up higher in order to download the photo? Of course, he could send it up our flag pole… Makes total sense!

It was actually quite breezy on this site, and we’d already lost a flag over the hedge given that it was even windier at the top of the flag pole. This didn’t put Darren off, and he proceeded to wrap his phone in a sandwich bag whilst my husband John, lowered the flag pole. Next step, attach the bag with the phone to the flag pole. Luckily, Darren had some electrical tape available that was perfect for the job. Off the phone goes, being hoisted up the flag pole. After a couple of minutes they bring it back down. Nothing yet – maybe it needed to be up there longer? So it goes up again and we wait.

It actually worked. From the top of the flag pole, the phone got enough signal in order to be able to download the photo of the new born. And do you know what? It looked like pretty much any new born baby I’ve ever seen! However, if nothing else this story definitely shows us that where there’s a will there’s definitely a way.

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