Events/Trails HIH9 Trip Report

abuck99

SILVER Star
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Nov 8, 2015
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3,331
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ATL
Another mention and shout out to HIH Vendors: you guys totally step up and provide unmatched, generous support. When I think of the events I've been to over the years, HIH stands alone with one of the best vendor supported events I've come across. It's really appreciated! Thank you.

After HIH I had the opportunity to ride co-pilot on the Rubicon with a Jeep factory event that was capped to about 110 vehicles (roughly the same size as HIH). While it was certainly an epic trail run, all I can say is the contrast to vendor support was remarkable. It reminded me how unique HIH really is.
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2006
Messages
3,641
Location
New Mexico
This past weekend I passed by Silverton on my way from Albuquerque to Grand Junction and then back a few days later. It was really weird to be driving a vehicle other than my 100-series through the area. It was also really weird to look down on the Kendall Mtn Lodge while descending from Molas Pass and not see anybody around it.
 

Somebodyelse5

Land Crushers
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Messages
2,138
Location
Phx, Arizona
Just so we're all on the same page.... we have ZERO plans to make ham radio a requirement for HIH attendees. Amateur radio is a serious hobby for those heavily involved and it is regulated by the FCC. Communication is fantastic and you can reach long distances with a basic setup. One of the major problems is misuse. A Boefang radio from Amazon is completely unlocked (think jailbroken) and can transmit on every frequency right out of the box. I spent 21 years as a federal air traffic controller. Someone with a Boefang and strong antenna could easily inadvertently broadcast on an ATC frequency (or any government-used regulated or emergency frequency) and cause serious issues. I hate to sound like a douche, but there's a reason you have to pass a test to transmit via ham radio. I run a Yaesu dual band radio in my 100. If I try to dial in an ATC frequency, I can hear every transmission, but if I try to broadcast, it'll give me an error code and block the transmission. I probably have $500 in that radio and my antenna and Gamiviti mount. With my $35 Boefang, I can transmit just like I was sitting in the Denver TRACON sequencing arrivals during the 6pm push. That's super dangerous. And kinda scary too since everyone seems to have a Boefang and no licence these days.

Again, not to sound like a douche, but don't broadcast on your jailbroken Boefang like it's a CB. If you do, at least be with someone who is a ham radio operator and can ensure you're using it correctly and responsibly. And don't curse. The reason why you hear folks broadcast their callsign every once in a while is because it's required by the FCC. That's the same reason you hear your favorite terrestrial radio station pause for station identification every 10 minutes or so.

There..... now I'm that guy. Sorry.
Hey Stan, I can admit defeat and stop pressing the HAM thing, but there's some stuff that should be out there along with your info above, for the folks that are interested or on the fence.
  • It's real easy to "jailbrake" a Baofeng, but the UV5R that people typically use only can go down to ~130MHz if you are lucky, 136MHz consistently. ATC VHF frequencies are 108 MHz - 138 MHz. So, you'll only get an overlap at the top of the range (see next point for why this doesn't really matter)
  • ATC comms are using AM (Amplitude Modulation, just like CB radios) and a UV5R Baofeng VHF/UHF radio from amazon is only going to operate using FM (Frequency Modulation).... so, for the same reason you can't talk to CB radios with HAM radios, you'll likely only be able to slightly disturb the ATC frequency ranges with a bit of static.
Now.... I am not trying to say someone *should* jailbreak their radios, just that it really shouldn't be that much of a concern. It'd be hard to *accidentally* mess with ATC comms. Programming can't change the hardwares capabilities.

I'm not super familiar with the hardware in ATC, but I'd imagine you aren't listening on both FM and AM for a given frequency range are you?
 

paflytyer

100s in the Hills
Media Partner
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Sep 27, 2011
Messages
2,549
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ColoRADo
FWIW, I've used my Baofang 12 miles away from the airport to see if I could reach the approach control frequency and was loud and clear. Just to add..... I've been a federal air traffic controller for over 20 years and was testing the capabilities with a controller friend (on a non active frequency) to see if someone could actually use a hand held radio and transmit over our frequency. He could override my transmission just by keying up, but I could easily reach the frequency. Also, if you've ever flown in/out of Denver, the airport is almost in Kansas and it's as flat as a board for 50 miles in any direction. Line of sight is almost unlimited.

I'm not a super ham guy or super rah-rah about much of anything and the chances of someone stumbling on a well-used frequency is super slim, but that's not really the point. I'd just prefer that folks don't abuse the hobby at HIH. It's a shortcut around something that folks take seriously and believe it's important to respect that.
 

Somebodyelse5

Land Crushers
Joined
Feb 9, 2014
Messages
2,138
Location
Phx, Arizona
FWIW, I've used my Baofang 12 miles away from the airport to see if I could reach the approach control frequency and was loud and clear. Just to add..... I've been a federal air traffic controller for over 20 years and was testing the capabilities with a controller friend (on a non active frequency) to see if someone could actually use a hand held radio and transmit over our frequency. He could override my transmission just by keying up, but I could easily reach the frequency. Also, if you've ever flown in/out of Denver, the airport is almost in Kansas and it's as flat as a board for 50 miles in any direction. Line of sight is almost unlimited.

I'm not a super ham guy or super rah-rah about much of anything and the chances of someone stumbling on a well-used frequency is super slim, but that's not really the point. I'd just prefer that folks don't abuse the hobby at HIH. It's a shortcut around something that folks take seriously and believe it's important to respect that.
I can agree with that, I just wanted to give another point of view for the folks on the fence...it’s an intimidating hobby to get into and we need as many folks getting into it as we can to keep the hobby alive.

That said, what ATC frequency were you able to hit with your Baofeng? I can message you if you’d like.

I’m working on getting an ADSB receiver for the house and do a lot of watching on flightradar.
 

paflytyer

100s in the Hills
Media Partner
Joined
Sep 27, 2011
Messages
2,549
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ColoRADo
HIHX UPDATE and HIH9 business.

Chris and I are happy to say that we were able to write two checks from HIH donations this year. We ended up with just over $2,400 in donations! Thanks to all the folks that participated this year. A $1,250 check was presented to the San Juan County Sheriff's Department and a $1,250 check was presented to San Juan Search and Rescue. DeAnne Gallagos (The Chocolate Dog owner and Silverton Chamber of Commerce Director) presented the checks during their monthly town board meeting. The funds to the sheriff's department are being used to install a police radio in their new squad SUV. The San Juan SAR funds will go to much needed equipment and gear. We felt those were two very worthy recipients. Sheriff Conrad has been great to work with and it's always a good idea to stay on the right side of the law! The fine folks from SAR would be the ones risking their lives if we ever needed to be searched for and rescued so that's a group we certainly want on our side.

Thanks again to all that participated. It means a lot.


Early season info for those of you that need to plan your vacations with work well in advance.

HIHX will be July 22- July 27, 2020 and it will most likely be awesome.
 

geanes

SILVER Star
Joined
Mar 3, 2017
Messages
2,113
Location
Austin, TX
HIHX UPDATE and HIH9 business.

Chris and I are happy to say that we were able to write two checks from HIH donations this year. We ended up with just over $2,400 in donations! Thanks to all the folks that participated this year. A $1,250 check was presented to the San Juan County Sheriff's Department and a $1,250 check was presented to San Juan Search and Rescue. DeAnne Gallagos (The Chocolate Dog owner and Silverton Chamber of Commerce Director) presented the checks during their monthly town board meeting. The funds to the sheriff's department are being used to install a police radio in their new squad SUV. The San Juan SAR funds will go to much needed equipment and gear. We felt those were two very worthy recipients. Sheriff Conrad has been great to work with and it's always a good idea to stay on the right side of the law! The fine folks from SAR would be the ones risking their lives if we ever needed to be searched for and rescued so that's a group we certainly want on our side.

Thanks again to all that participated. It means a lot.


Early season info for those of you that need to plan your vacations with work well in advance.

HIHX will be July 22- July 27, 2020 and it will most likely be awesome.
When does the "Insiders" email invite go out? :)
 
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