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Old    Cole K (SkySki)      Join Date: Feb 2010       01-03-2013, 8:59 PM Reply   
Bought a share on a houseboat. Looking for some good two-way radios. From what I can tell, there are no real good portable handhelds that go more than 5 miles without really good line of sight. That's not Lake Powell. So I am wondering if anyone that goes there can point me in the right direction. I ultimately want to be able to talk with the houseboat while it is anchored in a cove 20+ miles from Wahweap. If we go for supplies, I would like to be able to talk to the houseboat. Would a CB work or am I stuck with trying to get a ham radio?
Old    Joe (ilikebeaverandboats)      Join Date: Jul 2007       01-03-2013, 10:06 PM Reply   
I think 20+ miles is a little out of CB range but by no means am I an expert.... I actually am working on installing my first CB in the truck info is out there, lots of write ups on various offroad and diesel forums...its a lot to sift through but the info is out there! Let us know what you do!
Old    Justin Michael (JustinMD)      Join Date: Jan 2012       01-04-2013, 12:32 AM Reply   
http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/index.php?pageName=mtBoater
Old    RB (boardman74)      Join Date: Jul 2012       01-04-2013, 5:10 AM Reply   
Good rule of thumb is do you get cell service? You may run into issues if not. I know with off shore fishing we would lose cell service at about 8-10 miles. CB still needs towers and repeaters. Marine VHF with a tall digital antenna would get us out to around 30 miles but at that point only back to the Coast Guard with Tall station antennas and HP radios. Locally only would get about 12-15 miles across water. All these, handhelds, cb's, and VHF, are line of site. If the shoreline has towers along it which repeat(carry) the signal cb or VHF might work. If Cell phone won't work look into a sat. phone. Cheaper than 2 HAM radio set ups.
Old    Chris (cjh1669)      Join Date: Apr 2005       01-04-2013, 9:05 AM Reply   
Did you buy into a private timeshare or a company owned, or through a time share company? Our time share has a VHF CB on it that worked in the back of last chance back to wahweep, about 30 miles. It also had a cell repeater that actually worked fairly well as long as you stood close to it.
Old    RB (boardman74)      Join Date: Jul 2012       01-04-2013, 9:43 AM Reply   
If the lake is set up with VHF repeaters(I bet it is) thats going to be the way to go. Otherwise if nothing else a sat phone is a better option than HAM radio, IMO.
Old    Cole K (SkySki)      Join Date: Feb 2010       01-04-2013, 9:59 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjh1669 View Post
Did you buy into a private timeshare or a company owned, or through a time share company? Our time share has a VHF CB on it that worked in the back of last chance back to wahweep, about 30 miles. It also had a cell repeater that actually worked fairly well as long as you stood close to it.
It's a private shared ownership deal. They do have some type of VHF system and a huge antenna, but I have no details about it yet. I will have to look into that cell repeater part. I was worried that we would not be able to talk with the houseboat if we found a sheltered cove.
Old    Raynold Andrews (renjams)      Join Date: Mar 2013       03-14-2013, 10:15 PM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkySki View Post
Bought a share on a houseboat. Looking for some good two-way radios. From what I can tell, there are no real good portable handhelds that go more than 5 miles without really good line of sight. That's not Lake Powell. So I am wondering if anyone that goes there can point me in the right direction. I ultimately want to be able to talk with the houseboat while it is anchored in a cove 20+ miles from Wahweap. If we go for supplies, I would like to be able to talk to the houseboat. Would a CB work or am I stuck with trying to get a ham radio?
Hi there buddy. You might want to check some of these top two way radio brands and models. They are great and are so affordable too. Cheers!
Old    Kenny (trash4life)      Join Date: Jun 2005       03-15-2013, 11:31 AM Reply   
Communication at Lake Powell is always sucky. We have the marine radio with the antennae on our houseboat that has good range but our wakeboat is the weak link. My wife made me install a marine radio with the large antennae on it on our old boat because she was worried about getting stranded out there on the lake. It worked well but was a pain to have the big antennae strapped to the side of the boat (looks ugly IMO). So I bought a handheld marine radio that has good range but not as good as the one with the antennae. It works well enough for us but we're not trying to hail someone from 20 miles away. So your best option is to install one on your boat for maximum distance.
Old     (Orange)      Join Date: Jun 2012       03-15-2013, 11:44 AM Reply   
Quote:
Originally Posted by trash4life View Post
Communication at Lake Powell is always sucky. We have the marine radio with the antennae on our houseboat that has good range but our wakeboat is the weak link. My wife made me install a marine radio with the large antennae on it on our old boat because she was worried about getting stranded out there on the lake. It worked well but was a pain to have the big antennae strapped to the side of the boat (looks ugly IMO). So I bought a handheld marine radio that has good range but not as good as the one with the antennae. It works well enough for us but we're not trying to hail someone from 20 miles away. So your best option is to install one on your boat for maximum distance.
Great info.

For OP, keep in mind comments like the above from actual use on Powell and not the theoretical ranges quoted by radio manufacturers. Canyon walls at Powell will block and reflect signals and cause all kinds of degradation in range versus what radios might be capable of with clear line of sight reception. Your ability to be able to communicate back to your camp will be unlikely be dependable unless you went to the extreme of getting satellite phones.
Old    Bruizza (bruizza)      Join Date: May 2009       03-15-2013, 3:56 PM Reply   
This is the radio we bought to keep on our wake boats at Powell. I never really had to use it over a distance greater than 5 miles so I can't guarantee it will work at 20+ miles but we have had 0 issues with contacting our houseboat or the other wake boat we bring. We own a timeshare through the same company as Chris so we have the cell phone repeater and VHF repeater deals on the houseboat.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

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