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I'm doing some research and am ready to pull the trigger on some radios for my 14 year old Son and I for the mountains. Besides Midland, what other Manufacturers might you recommend? How about the Garmin GPS versions with a radio? Please provide any and all feedback, thx!
Midlands are as good as any two way radio. Just be aware that FRS/GMRS radios operate on “line of sight” type principles. Meaning that if you guys have a ridge or two between you even the most powerful two way will be sketchy at best.
Yeah, thx. I laughed at the 38 mile claim.
I tried some Midlands for work trying to keep up with my other inspectors with no cell service and had poor results. We were in the Pineywoods of East Texas though, so I imagine in the mountains it would have to be better. I don’t imagine your 14 year old is gonna be that far from you.
I wouldn't own anything but midland myself
He won't be but it's for the just in case on his first elk hunt ever. Thx for the feedback. Anyone else?
Radios will likely disappoint you, regardless of brand. If you're ok spending some coin, get a pair of inReach mini GPS devices. Pair them via Bluetooth to your phones. You will be able to text back and forth, regardless of distance.
I was thinking about getting radios as well, we would be hunting only 5 miles apart up in northern Manitoba, wonder if they would be effective. Just need them for emergency use and to make sure its ok to be pick buddy,(don't want to be picked up if a grunting moose is coming in!) Is midland better than motorola? Obviously it needs to run off batteries, no way to recharge up there
I’ve tried Motorola, Midland and some others. The rating of how far they will work is a total joke. I got line of sight about one mile out of a Motorola, and far less out of others. In my case, they’re a waste of money for anything but a few hundred yards, line of sight.
I've talked clearly with other guys 8 miles away, line of sight, in the CO mountains on a Motorola Talkabout. But couldn't talk to my partner on the other side of a ridge. They have their uses and limitations, which vary with terrain. One good thing about our model is the animal sounds for the call alert. We keep ours on elk bugle in September. Once I pinged my partner with the bugle call when he had elk very close and a cow walked over so close he could almost touch her.
Our local game warden drives around with a high power FRS-GMRS scanner during hunting season. Once when I was hunting with AndyJ he recognized my voice when we were coordinating a meet-up spot. He reached out to me way up on a ridge a few miles away, just to say hi and ask how we were doing. He said he hears a lot of very "interesting" stuff...
The old Motorola talkabout distance dps were higher power. See them on ebay sometimes. I have some Baofang programmed to frs/gmrs. Way better than current off the shelf frs stuff and inexpensive. Problem is either aren't ok to use without some red tape.
We use BCA units when snowmobiling. Well built but normal power.
Another vote for the inReach. Not sure how you can be certain a radio will work in the mountains.
If the line of sight is clear, they’ll work in the mountains. Much better then in flatter country. However, as stated above, put terrain between you and it’s pretty laughable how close you can be and not have them work.
Ok so thier all junk?!? What about higher watt units if you paid $400 plus?
All FRS-GMRS are limited by obstacles. The higher wattage units will reach further, but the signal simply doesn't bend around mountains, etc..
If you're willing to drop $400 get the inReach. I've said it on a few other threads too, but I think every hunter going into the mountains should carry one. The safety factor plus the ease of use make them a no-brainer, IMHO. The one caveat to using them, make sure you have the software updated before you step off-trail. Last year I did a solo scouting trip and hadn't turned my unit on for a couple months prior to that....got to camp and while it fired up fine I couldn't send any texts. Btw, here's a picture of a couple mountain lions I got from a trail cam I setup on that trip.
I do have a mini already, interesting thought, thx.