2M/Ham radio, get yours before the


2005 Expedition Trophy Champion
2M/Ham radio, get yours before the Trophy

Okay, I'm motivated again to teach some more folks about Ham/Amateur radio (yes this includes your popular 2m) and my youngest is now old enough for me to start getting out a little more. Sorry about the indefinete delay in late 2005.

Radio communication is SO beneficial on the long trails. Ursidae69 and I were talking distant mountain ranges apart thinking we were on the exact same trail whilst in Leadville. And for those of you who think CB/FRS is all you need, there are better solutions. The same way you choose your overland vehicle vs. a horse & covered wagon (though that sounds quite good).

In fact, I'm suprised that many gps/nav competitions don't do much with team vehicles and radio communication. The FCC test is not terribly difficult, relying on memory, and allows you an absolute wealth of frequencies, and ability to use any radio you can make or get your hands on, internet connections & the ability to talk all over the world.

I'm thinking about holding a get-together in the Valley (AZ) somewhere tentatively on 13 July 06. Please let me know if you're interested.
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Expedition Leader
Just to add a pair of pennies, pskhaat and I made a marginal 2m contact out in Moab. I was traveling westbound on I-70 at the Cisco exit, he was in town. That's about 50 miles, goes through Castle Valley and neither of us have ideal antenna mounts and the orientation was just plain bad. I see ham as not even optional for back country travel anymore. In that vein, I don't mind lending a hand to someone up here interested in getting a license. If you can install a CB radio, you can basically pass the entry level tech test.


Expedition Leader
pskhaat said:
Ursidae69 and I were talking distant mountain ranges apart thinking we were on the exact same trail whilst in Leadville.
Scott, I'm glad you had your radio on since Bajataco was supposed to be monitoring the frequency! :p

I love 2 meter, I had been hearing you call out for 30 minutes before I finally keyed up because I didn't recognize the call signs. It was so crystal clear and we were in two different mountain ranges, amazing. :ylsmoke:


Expedition Leader
bigreen505 said:
Dave, I'll take you up on that!
Hey, cool! Yeah, there's probably a couple of people who might be interested, let's set something up.

Just to see when tests are given:

Pretty much figure that within any 2 week period, you will be able to find a test being given somewhere around here.

The next few days are hectic for me, but after about 7/10 I could pretty much help out with whatever. Don't mistake me for a super elmer, but I'm licensed and can explain some of the theory. We should start a new thread and maybe get a few Front Rangers together for it.
I am very interested in learning the proper use of the ham radio, I have used radios in the past but they did not require a license. I have heard that you can also be on another's license, is that not true?

Thank you,
Steve Curren


I must agree, that Ham radio is an amazing resource offroad.
I'll also throw my hat in the ring for helping out anyone interested!

The Technician class license really is a pretty simple test (getting simpler as of this month as they have reduced the number of questions) and the General Class will soon be "no code" which will open up the HF frequencies to many more people.

We could probably get a couple of volunteer examiners to come to an event if we have enough people ready to take the test.


Mike K6UK


2005 Expedition Trophy Champion
Steve Curren said:
you can also be on another's license, is that not true?
You may be thinking of GMRS which is a pay-for-your-license kind of gig on UHF which shares some FRS freq's.
I don't know, I was told by a friend that a number of people can use one license. I would like to have instruction on the use of the radio as well as get my own license.


2005 Expedition Trophy Champion
Steve Curren said:
I don't know, I was told by a friend that a number of people can use one license.
GMRS is an immediate family license meaning siblings, parents, children can share a license. As for different friends and trail folks, no, unless they are immediate family they can not share a license. GMRS is great too, but honestly you might as well become a Ham: GMRS has few people on it due to the cost of license and you almost eventually need to know as much as a Tech (lowest) level Ham to get use out GMRS anyway. Being a Ham gives you a LOT more channels and frequencies than GMRS. I think if the expedition/wheeling community agreed to go to GMRS or even MURS (see below) it'd be a great choice, but alas people resist.

Amateur/Ham definetely needs each person's own license. As a ham, you can allow someone else to use your `station' temporarily, but that doesn't apply to non-licensed parties in the conversation.

MURS is basically VHF CB which is awesome but is having big resistance in the marketplace though it takes no license just like HF CB. MURS limited to to 2 watts (actually not as bad as it sounds).

You can purchase FCC agreements for commercial licensing, but this is usually application specific and not intended for talking with anyone outside of your business domain and thus can't realistically be applied to everyone on a trail.

I have a hacked together CB rig but wish and prefer eveyone else to be a Ham, it makes the radio experience so much better.
Thanks for the education, I have a ham HT and I want to obtain a license. I have written the 13th on my calendar for a possible ham class and I am eager to get on with the license. Presently I am using a cb and family radio when I go out with a group, the range is lacking in both but I know I would get resistance from them in going to a ham radio.
Thanks again,
Steve Curren