It’s wonderful to get out and explore nature. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to leave your favorite pieces of technology behind. Just like you want your cell phone to work no matter where you are, it would be very convenient to access the Internet anywhere, as well. Unfortunately, when you are out in the wilderness, you’re lucky if you get a cell phone signal at all. If you do, it will most likely not provide data service.

Some remote locations, such as KOA campsites and RV parks, offer free wireless access points, or “hotspots”. However, if you are not very close to such a hotspot, you might have great difficulty getting online. By following the advice outlined below, you will dramatically increase your chances of being able to get online during your next camping trip or woodland expedition.

remote wifi hotspots

Have the Right Equipment

Most notebook computers come with built-in wireless networking support. However, the built-in transmitter is often weak. In addition, the receiving antenna is usually very small and not as sensitive as it could be. Hooking up an external wireless client device can dramatically improve your chances of picking up a coherent signal out in the middle of nowhere.

You have a few options in the realm of wireless client devices. USB and PCMCIA cards are cheap and plentiful. You will see the best results if you choose one with high sensitivity and transmission power. However, the best performance comes from wireless bridges with their own external power supply. These are best attached to specialized external antennae attached via a coaxial cord.

When choosing an external antenna, you will have to decide between “directional” and “omnidirectional”. A directional antenna is an elongated device that is pointed directly at the access point one wishes to communicate with. This approach focuses energy in a narrow beam rather than dispersing it in all directions. However, you will need to know where the access point is to use it properly. An omnidirectional antenna does not need to be pointed in any particular direction. They sometimes work better when elevated, such as from a high tree branch.

Use the Right Configuration

Although most people are used to configuring their wireless network equipment for maximum performance, this can have a negative impact on long-distance communication. In order to achieve the most stable connection, try setting your wireless adapter or bridge to transmit using 802.11b at a low data speed, such as 1 megabit per second.

Image Credit: woodleywonderworks

Author Bio:
Peter Wendt is a writer from Austin, Texas. He enjoys outdoor activities, but can’t stand it when he can’t bring his laptop with him for long periods of time. That’s why he chooses this provider when he needs to make a wifi hotspot