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  1. #76
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    I think I might have some info regarding FRS/GMRS frequencies, wattages and licences wrong now that I think a little more about it. Maybe Summit or someone has better info. The practical advice is that if you use VHF, be careful about what frequencies you use.

    Another point is that even VHF are still really only line of site. After market antennae help.

  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by bfly View Post
    The Baofeng radios are dual band. That means they will transmit on the GMRS channels (UHF) as well. Legally, no. But they are capable.

    While no one has used a VHF radio for an emergency rescue doesn't mean it is out of the realm of possibility. Programming in the Colorado Connection repeaters wouldn't be a terrible idea in case of emergency in a location without cellular connectivity.
    Good info. Do you have any experience with who monitors the repeaters? I'm trying to get a little more educated and get my HAM licence as I am I site liaison for a pile of paragliding sites in Western Grand County. We operate on 151.955 and most pilots carry InReaches however it would be helpful if we could get in touch with first responders via VHF.

  3. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    Do you have any experience with who monitors the repeaters?
    https://colcon.org/wp/about-us/

    No rescue organizations monitor the repeaters that I know of. I would hope that a HAM, who monitors the network, would be kind enough to relay your information to the authorities if there were an emergency.

  4. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by bfly View Post
    https://colcon.org/wp/about-us/

    No rescue organizations monitor the repeaters that I know of. I would hope that a HAM, who monitors the network, would be kind enough to relay your information to the authorities if there were an emergency.
    That actually happened this winter. HAM was injured in BC, radio to the local CC repeater, was heard by a HAM a couple counties over, gave coordinates, and that person called it into 911. SAR went to the coordinates and got him out.

    CC used to have phone patch capability... dunno if they still do? My HAM license expired years ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  5. #80
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    That actually happened this winter. HAM was injured in BC, radio to the local CC repeater, was heard by a HAM a couple counties over, gave coordinates, and that person called it into 911. SAR went to the coordinates and got him out.
    I just started learning about this while up in Canada. The way that private entities (guides, helicopters, lodges etc.) assist and are involve in SAR is very different than what I'm used to. It seemed like the repeater network was robust and very effective. I wonder why it is not used more around here.

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    I just started learning about this while up in Canada. The way that private entities (guides, helicopters, lodges etc.) assist and are involve in SAR is very different than what I'm used to. It seemed like the repeater network was robust and very effective. I wonder why it is not used more around here.
    1. Canada guides are much more likely to be ACMG certified, versus the very loose meaning of "guide" in the US.
    2. Canada has a lot more heliski helicopters versus the availability of public rescue helos while in the US lower 48, private ski helos are rare and rescue helos are fairly common (not Alps level common). CO has 2 private ski helis but well over a dozen medevac helos + the army.

    But, back in the 80s, before it crashed and went out of business, the heliski company in Summit County used to help with rescue.
    Last edited by Summit; 04-17-2019 at 04:23 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  7. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    I just started learning about this while up in Canada. The way that private entities (guides, helicopters, lodges etc.) assist and are involve in SAR is very different than what I'm used to. It seemed like the repeater network was robust and very effective. I wonder why it is not used more around here.
    Reposted from other thread.

    ------

    This is region-specific to BC.

    My touring party uses a specific VHF radio channel reserved by a mutual friend's construction company in the high-frequency band used by SAR and first responders. If some third party joins us and doesn't have a field-programmable radio we may use a marine frequency or a rural road frequency allocated for northern BC use for inter-party communications. I have a spare radio I lend to someone who joins us who doesn't have a radio

    If I go to a new area and I know there's a commercial outfit there I may (but not always) ask for permission to use their repeater or their simplex frequencies for emergency-only communications. If I don't have permission I don't use the repeater but may monitor the simplex just so I know not to get in the way. They have always given permission when asked and are more often than not surprised that I ask. I have used that relationship also to ask for weather updates and to show gratitude; drop off beer. I've used this courtesy once in 20 years to report an incident involving guided clients where I helped a lost client get back to their guides.

    I do the same thing in a new area to ask what SAR frequencies are used and also monitor the ACMG channel. In Whistler I've used that feature twice in 20 years to call in incidents. One involved myself. One involved a third party where we helped in a rescue.

    As the OP mentioned we use radios all the time for interparty communications for safety; for group splitting etc.

  8. #83
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    ^seconding what lee said.

    There is no reason not to get a VHF capable radio, and program UHF channels in if you would like. There seems to be less infrastructure in the US, but there are still options. For one, program your local ski patrol's freq in for emergency use. And whatever freq the local SAR group uses, and/or the helicopter company they do rescue work with....

    For Cody's deal - with a VHF he would have had a few extra options. He maybe could have hit someone on the Hwys Duffey channel, or Blackcomb Heli's Repeater (probably not from that location). Otherwise maybe a guide on the ACMG freq across the valley would could have relay'd. Who knows, but that's generally the first option in Canada unless you are in a remote area.

    The baofengs are ok. They are not actually the power/wattage they advertise, but they work and are easy to program with the cable/CHIRP. Some models I've used have annoying squelch issues that have to be messed around with. For emergency use, and for the price - they are a no-brainer.
    Drive slow, homie.

  9. #84
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    I agree with Z. That said, the reason not to go VHF is that many people don't practice with or have the patience to deal with the complications of their gear. That is why I advocate having a "radio master" or at least owning 2 radios that you can verify their compatibility.

    I'm gonna try and see if I can get the local ski patrol and SAR frequencies but I'm a little skeptical. The answer always seems to be "call 911".

  10. #85
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    May 2002
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    Any of these radios come vox ready?

  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    I agree with Z. That said, the reason not to go VHF is that many people don't practice with or have the patience to deal with the complications of their gear. That is why I advocate having a "radio master" or at least owning 2 radios that you can verify their compatibility.

    I'm gonna try and see if I can get the local ski patrol and SAR frequencies but I'm a little skeptical. The answer always seems to be "call 911".
    Information is public, https://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?ctid=265 https://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?ctid=250

    Knowing which are monitored/used, what to do with it in an emergency can be more complex. Plus someone who isn't practiced in radio discipline can clog up an emergency channel being used for another call, or even that call. If you haven't worked public safety, you need to scan for a while to get an understanding, which is a lot of effort for an emergency only maybe freq. If someone is not pretty familiar, it can make a lot more sense to just have your GMRS radio and a InReach and you simply pass in the InReach message "Contact me on GMRS channel 14-0" and SAR will do that.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  12. #87
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    Apr 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Summit View Post
    Information is public, https://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?ctid=265 https://www.radioreference.com/apps/db/?ctid=250

    Knowing which are monitored/used, what to do with it in an emergency can be more complex. Plus someone who isn't practiced in radio discipline can clog up an emergency channel being used for another call, or even that call. If you haven't worked public safety, you need to scan for a while to get an understanding, which is a lot of effort for an emergency only maybe freq. If someone is not pretty familiar, it can make a lot more sense to just have your GMRS radio and a InReach and you simply pass in the InReach message "Contact me on GMRS channel 14-0" and SAR will do that.
    If you happen to live within range, scanning ops traffic (patrol and lift maintenance, which have been on the same channel in the places I've skied) is also helpful for informing your plan on a lift-served day.

    That said, I'd be very reticent to get on a SAR or patrol frequency without either permission (which, as a race coach, I've commonly had for contacting patrol as necessary) or a life-threatening situation with no other communication channel available; as noted above, it's easy to gum up the works going on a channel that you don't belong on, doubly so if you haven't listened enough to know the expected procedures on that channel.

    I would be careful with passing on GMRS channel numbers, too; I'm not sure that the same channel-to-frequency map exists across all radio manufacturers at this point, particularly with the recent GMRS/FRS rules updates.

    Sent from my SM-G892A using TGR Forums mobile app

  13. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by anotherVTskibum View Post
    I would be careful with passing on GMRS channel numbers, too; I'm not sure that the same channel-to-frequency map exists across all radio manufacturers at this point, particularly with the recent GMRS/FRS rules updates.
    The channels/freqs didn't change, only licensing requirements reduced and permissible power levels for FRS increased.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

  14. #89
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    Thanks dudes. A lot to unpack and put a study on. The related question that I think is really relevant is how/can you text 911/dispatch on an InReach? It seem like the technology exists at a pretty fair price point for legitimate satellite texting in close to real time but the protocols are just getting established.

  15. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by Foggy_Goggles View Post
    Thanks dudes. A lot to unpack and put a study on. The related question that I think is really relevant is how/can you text 911/dispatch on an InReach? It seem like the technology exists at a pretty fair price point for legitimate satellite texting in close to real time but the protocols are just getting established.
    Your InReach is just a weatherproof sat phone that can only do SMS messages. Initially the GEOS comm center will pass your emergency info to the locals and text you their response. They will also pass your InReach's number to your local dispatch/SAR Coordinator and you can then txt directly with them.
    Quote Originally Posted by blurred
    skiing is hiking all day so that you can ski on shitty gear for 5 minutes.

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