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Humboldt-Toiyabe NF Radio Frequencies.

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#1
Happy Thanksgiving everyone. And, thank you to whoever did the great update of the Wiki, regarding the changes to and upcoming changes to Region 5 Forest Service Frequencies. My only question is, is it known right off hand if there has been, or will be changes to the Humboldt-Toiyabe frequencies (technically Region 4, Nevada), but a large part of the Carson and Bridgeport Ranger Districts being in California (R5). Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks,
Bill
 
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#2
I've been home from the hospital for a week now and it took me that long to revise the USFS wiki pages for California. I just posted a new thread about why those pages were revised (prior to seeing this thread).

I don't have many sources for federal natural resource/land management agencies outside of California. The information I receive is generated by the Northern California and Southern California Geographical Area Coordination Center (GACC). Each GACC (there are 10 of them) generates its own frequency directories, which contain only a very small amount of bordering GACC frequency info.

The Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest (HTF) is in Forest Service Region 4 (Intermountain Region) and the Great Basin GACC. I don't have any sources of information for that region/GACC and very little for the remaining regions and GACC's.

These frequency changes are just a part of a federal government wide effort. Due to a lot of factors, most of which we can't identify or quantify, changes to the HTF's radio nets can't be predicted. It is hard to say if 169.875 or 170.475 will be retained for the repeater output as both fall within the NTIA's assignments for repeater output. A new frequency will have to be assigned for repeater input on a frequency between 162.0500 - 166.4875. Once this is done the other existing frequency can be surrendered or an authorization for another repeater input frequency can be applied for to enable the operation of another net on the HTF. The USFS in California has been doing this for sometime and most NF's there now have a forest net, admin net and service net assigned to them.

My advice to anyone monitoring the HTF is to listen to 169.8750. If traffic ceases then try 170.4750. If neither work doing limit searches in the upper range, 169.5125 - 173.9875 will eventually reveal the new repeater output frequency.

In the meantime I will be searching for any information about frequency changes federal natural resource management agencies are going to make. I don't anticipate a lot of success in this effort, but will do my best none the less.
 
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#3
I slowly muddled my way through the NTIA Redbook and found information about the three frequency ranges in the federal 162 - 174 MHz band. 162.0500 MHz - 166.4875 MHz is the lower range from which repeater input frequencies are drawn from. 169.5125 MHz - 173.9875 MHz is the upper range where repeater output frequencies are drawn from. The middle or simplex ranger is 166.5000 - 169.5000 MHz. There are exceptions due to such things as the NWS radio frequencies and another 60 frequencies previously allocated for specific uses.
 
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#4
Thanks for the info. I hope you are feeling better. I myself am still slowly recovering from a hypoxic induced head injury, suffered about eight years ago now, when I was still in Reno. I am still getting better and for now, I am up in the Pacific Northwest. It may be awhile before I can get back to the Great Basin, where I am from, but I will eventually get back there, at least to visit. It has been at least seven years since I was last in the Eastern Sierra, actually one of my favorite areas in the entire country. I have been slowly collecting a lot of Frequency data from other Western regions and I am amazed at the amount of changes made in the past couple years, or so. Anyway, take care,
Bill
 
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#5
After doing a little more thinking, I came up with the following possibilities:
1. Like you stated, a new repeater input frequency is assigned, the output frequency ultimately stays the same.
2. The old input frequency becomes the output frequency and a new input frequency is obtained.
3. The old output frequency becomes the new input frequency and a new output frequency is obtained.
4. A completely new frequency pair is assigned and both original input and output frequencies surrendered.
5. The input and output frequencies are simply "reversed." in order.

These are situations that I have seen so far on other Forests. And now with the info that you provided in your post, things make a lot more sense. I was trying to go by my own deductive reasoning, not knowing the other NTIA "range/limit" rules. I should know better than this; my father worked for the Federal Government for almost four decades (no pun or disrespect intended). Thanks for the help,
Bill
 
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#6
"the Humboldt-Toiyabe frequencies (technically Region 4, Nevada), but a large part of the Carson and Bridgeport Ranger Districts being in California (R5)"

The boundary of Region 4 includes those portions of California on the Carson and Bridgeport Ranger Districts and are are not a part of Region 5. Federal boundaries often cross state lines depending on the type of agency involved, especially when land and natural resources are involved. The boundaries of cities/counties/states don't always match landform, vegetation and ecosystem boundaries, the very things land management agencies are responsible for. The portions of California included on these two ranger districts are the upper portions of the Walker and Carson Rivers watersheds. Both rivers drain into Nevada and Congress opted to include those watersheds in the Intermountain Region as that is where the end users of the water from those rivers are located.

Portions of the Klamath National Forest are located in Oregon and portions of the Rouge River-Siskiyou National Forest are located in California. Portions of the Inyo National Forest are located in Nevada. State boundaries don't reflect the location of Forest Service Regional or GACC boundaries.

Many National Forests were established for the sole purpose of controlling grazing, which was having devastating effects on water quality and watershed conditions on public lands and downstream communities were suffering some significant consequences. The best example of this is the Tonto National Forest in Arizona, nearly 70% of which is absent of commercially valuable coniferous forest. Uncontrolled grazing was decimating the watersheds of the Salt and Verde Rivers and the only protection available at the time was the establishment of National Forests.

Having worked on the Bridgeport Ranger District for 7 years and with 34 years of residency in the area I have my opinion about where those boundary lines are located. I think better management would result by transferring both ranger districts to adjacent R5 National Forests. I think the Forest Service would gain efficiencies by abolishing R4 and divining it up to R1, R2 and R5, along with some possible transfers to the Bureau of Land Management. Further discussion would be off topic.
 
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#7
After doing a little more thinking, I came up with the following possibilities:
1. Like you stated, a new repeater input frequency is assigned, the output frequency ultimately stays the same.
2. The old input frequency becomes the output frequency and a new input frequency is obtained.
3. The old output frequency becomes the new input frequency and a new output frequency is obtained.
4. A completely new frequency pair is assigned and both original input and output frequencies surrendered.
5. The input and output frequencies are simply "reversed." in order.

These are situations that I have seen so far on other Forests. And now with the info that you provided in your post, things make a lot more sense. I was trying to go by my own deductive reasoning, not knowing the other NTIA "range/limit" rules. I should know better than this; my father worked for the Federal Government for almost four decades (no pun or disrespect intended). Thanks for the help,
Bill
Bill, you listed 5 different actions that might result when bringing a radio system into compliance. It all depends on which of the 3 ranges the existing frequencies are in. The unseen factors have to do with possible interference issues with other federal agencies, conflict with one of the exceptions I listed or perhaps something neither of us are aware of.
 
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#8
Ok Thanks again, sometimes I tend to overcomplicate things when I use "logic". I keep forgetting that the whole big picture does not have to make sense to "us". I also wanted to say thanks for clarifying the "boundary" situation (radio vs landform). I was not really aware of all of these factors, but now it does make more sense. Thanks,
Bill
 
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#9
The only definitive thing that I've noticed is that Region 4 does seem to have some newly assigned "standard" inputs for the Region, which follow the NTIA rules. If there are such things as "standard" inputs and outputs which fall within the assigned ranges. I've also noticed that some of these "standard" assignments aren't confined to R4, but crop up in other Regions as well. It seems like "in the old days", Frequency pairs would be specific to certain Regions; but that seems to have changed. Thanks again,
Bill
 
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#10
The only definitive thing that I've noticed is that Region 4 does seem to have some newly assigned "standard" inputs for the Region, which follow the NTIA rules. If there are such things as "standard" inputs and outputs which fall within the assigned ranges. I've also noticed that some of these "standard" assignments aren't confined to R4, but crop up in other Regions as well. It seems like "in the old days", Frequency pairs would be specific to certain Regions; but that seems to have changed. Thanks again,
Bill
Bill, just slow down and don't reach conclusions based on a small amount of data. Given your interest in federal fire/natural resources/land management agency radio use learn the basics of the agencies. Knowledge of the agency's mission and organization helps when trying to figure out their radio systems and deciphering what you hear. Finding a glossary of the terms and lingo a profession uses is essential to understanding what is being said. Open the National Interagency Fire Center website and reading everything you can about Geographical Area Coordination Centers and the agency units in them will allow you to understand basics such as the R4/R5 boundary. Visit National Forest and BLM District websites and look at the maps they provide. BLM District websites show the field offices under their jurisdictions and the boundary lines of the geographical areas each is responsible for. Many National Forest websites have mini maps of the forest showing ranger district boundaries.

Remember the old story about the blind people who encounter an elephant in their path. Each feels what is within their reach. Each declares what the object is based on the limited data they have and are not willing to hear what the others are saying. The point of the story is we can't rely on just the data we possess, we need to understand the viewpoints of others and not reach conclusions until we have more data.

I don't understand what you mean about "standard inputs and outputs." It would be helpful if you cite specific examples when passing along your observations. I've had direct experience with Forest Service radio systems that started back in the early 70's. I know there are repeater pairs that have been used in every part of the country and that if a region used some of them more than other regions it probably had more to do with assignments to other agencies.

One repeater pair standard that existed up until narrowbanding started is the repeater output was the lower frequency of the two and the repeater input was 600 kHz higher in frequency. The long existing Forest Net of the Toiyabe used 169.875 as the output and the input was 600 kHz higher at 170.475. The Inyo National Forest's original VHF High Forest Net had the output on 168.125 and input 600 kHz higher at 168.725. The Stanislaus and Cleveland National Forests each had nets using 168.150 as an output and 168.750 as an input, using the 600 kHz spacing once again.

During this time many repeater pairs were used in several USFS regions.

In California, the average workload on the 18 National Forests in R5 is higher than it is in other regions and second nets, first penned as "admin nets" became necessary. Most often each frequency in their forest net were assigned as outputs and new frequency assignments for input frequencies were obtained. This began to occur in R5 in the late 80's or early 90's, so the 600 kHz standard had been dropped or waived, at least in R5, that long ago. The new input frequencies did not have any type of standard spacing. For example, on the Inyo NF 168.125 was the output of the Forest Net and 168.725 was the input. When a second net was added on that forest using 168.750 as an output and an authorization of 173.8375 was obtained as an input.
 
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#11
The 600 kHz spacing standard was used by other federal agencies as well. Two repeater pairs used frequently by the BLM and NPS are 166.300/166.900 and 166.375/166.975.
 
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#12
Once again, thanks for the help. I will slow down on my analysis and take yours and others suggestions, before reaching any conclusions. As far as providing examples, here are a few of what I meant, and after you posted your updates, it changed my conclusion as to these "newer" assignments, as I would call them, meaning to me, that I have not seen them assigned before (which of course does not mean that they have not been around somewhere else in the Federal government pool).

"Newer, or more recently assigned" inputs" to the Forest Service:

164.875
163.1625
165.075
165.0125
164.1375
And outputs:
171.1375
173.775
170.4625
Bill
 
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#13
Once again, thanks for the help. I will slow down on my analysis and take yours and others suggestions, before reaching any conclusions. As far as providing examples, here are a few of what I meant, and after you posted your updates, it changed my conclusion as to these "newer" assignments, as I would call them, meaning to me, that I have not seen them assigned before (which of course does not mean that they have not been around somewhere else in the Federal government pool).

"Newer, or more recently assigned" inputs" to the Forest Service:

164.875
163.1625
165.075
165.0125
164.1375
And outputs:
171.1375
173.775
170.4625
Bill
Narrowbanding doubled the number of frequencies available in each MHz of range from 40 to 80. The federal government's share of the VHF High band is a little less than 12 MHz, which yields about 950 frequencies. Each cabinet level department and a number of independent agencies have some of those 960 allocated to them. It takes a lot of coordination for all the agencies to get their needs met. Normally, the frequencies an agency is assigned some of those frequencies nationwide and some covering regions or states.

Obviously frequency pairs have to be reused many times across the country. The pairs are not always the same around the entire country There are dozens or more reasons for this, but remember such things as international agreements with Canada and Mexico that preclude the use of some frequencies near the borders. There are radio telescope sites, such as the Very Large Array in New Mexico and one in Virginia or West Virginia that reduce the number of frequencies that can be used a certain within range of those facilities. At one time the Monongahela National Forest had to use VHF-Low for all radio communications due to the radio telescope nearby. I'm not sure if that is still the case.

When I arrived on the Toiyabe in the early 80's I noted that the radios had 169.875 as mobile receive and 170.475 as mobile transmit. In 2015 both the Apache-Sitgreaves NF and the Arapaho-Roosevelt NF used the same frequency pair. This is the same repeater pair being used in at least 3 different Forest Service regions. At one time the Ashley NF and the Angeles NF used the same pair for their forest nets.

What you are calling "standardized" inputs, outputs and pairs I would call picking frequencies from a limited pool of available ones that work within the constraints of a myriad of local conditions. You calling it standardized and my calling it something else is just a matter of semantics. Either way, if we know a repeater output frequency in use in Montana that is the same as one used on the Angeles National Forest, but don't know what the input is in Montana, knowing the input used on the Angeles may help us find the input in Montana, but not necessarily. The situation in Montana is different and it might require that a different input be used there. The old practice of having the input be 600 kHz above the output is gone and this has led to more flexibility, but makes it harder for us to figure out the frequency changes.

One other suggestion for you. When providing specifics of frequency uses, include the location of where the frequencies are being used. For example, if you have noticed 171.1375 being used outside of California, provide what forest and what the net is called (e.g. "Prescott NF Fire Net" or "Deschutes NF - South")
 
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#14
Second request for any info

Hello again everyone.
I was just wondering if anybody out there had become aware of any Frequency changes in the Humboldt-Toiyabe (both the Toiyabe and Humboldt part of their network), since last time I posted. I know that these changes don't often happen until Spring, but I was just wondering if anyone had anything to share on this. It seems that the majority of the Region 4 Forests have already changed their frequencies to be in compliance with NTIA guidelines. So, if the Humboldt-Toiyabe have not yet made any changes to their frequencies, would that mean that they technically had until 2019 to do so, or they wouldn't necessarily have to change them at all, because of the clause in the NTIA guidelines that says that, basically an exception can be made if it can be proven that the spectrum is being used more efficiently by making the exception? Anyway, the last frequency pairs that I have for the Humboldt/Toiyabe are as follows:
169.875/170.475 Toiyabe "portion"
171.475/172.225 Humboldt "portion"
169.975/171.425 Santa Rosa RD/Leviathan Peak (Carson and Bridgeport RD's).
Any info would be greatly appreciated. I'm not in Nevada at this time, so I can't really monitor for any changes. Thanks,
Bill
 
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#15
Im noticing some changes currently on HTF frequencies this October 2017 and this is what i have found so
far.
(Radio Service Techs Repeater Checks Using 169.8750/Input 170.4750 On These Sites:)
Slide Mtn Tone-1 110.9 Hz
Hawkins Pk Tone-3 131.8 Hz
McClellan Pk Tone-9 100.0 Hz
No Other Repeaters Were Included In Rdio Checks On October 27/2017

(New: McClellan Pk)
169.8750/CSQ HTF Forest Net Repeater Output McClellan Pk
170.4750/100.0 HTF Forest Net Repeater Input Tone-9

(New: Mean Pk)
170.5250/CSQ HTF Forest Net Bridgeport Ranger District Repeater Output Mean Pk
164.1875/156.7 HTF Forest Net Bridgeport Ranger District Repeater Input Tone-6

(Status: No Longer Functioning Mean Pk)
169.8750/CSQ HTF Forest Net Repeater Output Mean Pk
170.4750/156.7 HTF Forest Net Repeater Input Tone-6

(Status: No Longer Functioning or Input Frequency Has Been Changed)
169.9750/CSQ HTF Forest Net-2/Admin Repeater Output Leviathan Pk
171.4250/103.5 HTF Forest Net-2/Admin Repeater Input Tone-8

Im Monitoring 162 MHz - 174 MHz For Any New Changes Daily.
Im In Gardnerville,Nv And Have Decent Setup For Monitoring.
 
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#16
Im noticing some changes currently on HTF frequencies this October 2017 and this is what i have found so
far.
(Radio Service Techs Repeater Checks Using 169.8750/Input 170.4750 On These Sites:)
Slide Mtn Tone-1 110.9 Hz
Hawkins Pk Tone-3 131.8 Hz
McClellan Pk Tone-9 100.0 Hz
No Other Repeaters Were Included In Rdio Checks On October 27/2017

(New: McClellan Pk)
169.8750/CSQ HTF Forest Net Repeater Output McClellan Pk
170.4750/100.0 HTF Forest Net Repeater Input Tone-9

(New: Mean Pk)
170.5250/CSQ HTF Forest Net Bridgeport Ranger District Repeater Output Mean Pk
164.1875/156.7 HTF Forest Net Bridgeport Ranger District Repeater Input Tone-6

(Status: No Longer Functioning Mean Pk)
169.8750/CSQ HTF Forest Net Repeater Output Mean Pk
170.4750/156.7 HTF Forest Net Repeater Input Tone-6

(Status: No Longer Functioning or Input Frequency Has Been Changed)
169.9750/CSQ HTF Forest Net-2/Admin Repeater Output Leviathan Pk
171.4250/103.5 HTF Forest Net-2/Admin Repeater Input Tone-8

Im Monitoring 162 MHz - 174 MHz For Any New Changes Daily.
Im In Gardnerville,Nv And Have Decent Setup For Monitoring.
 
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#17
I’m just wondering if 170.525 will eventually be the new net for the entire Forest, or just the Bridgeport District repeaters, or if Carson Ranger District will have an entirely separate frequency pair? I noticed over the past few years that 169.875 seems to have been phased out, at least in the West, even though it fits the
new NTIA “realignment” guidelines. It wouldn’t make sense to me personally to keep Leviathan on a separate frequency, since the Sierra NF won’t be using 169.875 as an input anymore, unless there’s another
reason that we don’t know about.
 
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#19
Oct 31 2017
You may be right on phasing out 169.875 or at least 170.5250 going to be used for bridgeport district, radio techs are using 170.5250 today and he was refering to masonic and rocky and i noticed lobdell is on 170.5250 now also so i can confirm mean pk and lobbdell summit are now on 170.5250.
He was calling minden on rawe pk on 169.8750 and there was a problem so he used hawkins pk to talk to minden.
Anyway there is lots of tech activity on the htf freqs so im going to dedicate my monitoring to the 162 mhz - 174 mhz band and try and gather more info i will report back what if anything new.
And leviathan 169.9750 is still dead so maybe your right on that also.
 
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#20
On a hunch, try both 170.475 and 171.3875 and see if either are being used as outputs for the
Carson RD. I know that sometimes they will simulcast the new output with the old when they are switching
over.
 
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