CAl Fire Air Ops "South Ops"

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SCPD

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Exsmokey, You rock!, Excellent and informative, you are what Radioreference is all about. Great Post! Thanks

:D:D:D
My information on this system came from a friend and long time radio contact who once worked for the Forest Service as a radio tech many years ago. He has the ability to get more information from current radio tech types than I do even though his employment with the Forest Service was shorter than mine. I'm not a very good "schmusser" and he is. He wrote up both the South and North Zone Nets, as they were called then, in the newsletter of the RCMA or "Radio Communications Monitoring Association." I kept every issue of the newletter for the 20 years it existed. Recently I recycled all of them with some exceptions, as most of the information is very dated, in effect, obsolete. Very important and seemingly timeless, information, such as the writeup for the South Ops dispatcher's net, I kept. I have an entire two shelf book case full of 5" ring binders full of stuff like this.

So I give credit where credit is due and that is to G C Currivan. He not only found the information on this system back in the 1980's, but wrote it up in a very concise and understandable manner.
 

JayMojave

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Dec 13, 2007
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Location
Mojave Ca
Hello All:

I have programed in the "South Ops" frequencies here in Lancaster Ca.

I am hearing USFS Tanker Base at Fox Field also in Lancaster Ca on the input and output VHF frequencies reporting in service and out of service. Not hearing the UHF frequencies.

411. 525, 415.525, 166.5625, and 164.9125

I will ask a friend who is close to Tehachapi Ca if he can hear the UHF link channels.

Jay in the Great Mojave Desert
 

keestrokes00

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San Diego, CA
South Ops Radios

Two quick notes on South Ops using radios.

First CALFIRE uses the state intercom that is connected throughout the state via the state microwave system. 4 main intercoms. South, Sierra, Coast, and Cascade. Also there is a South Ops/North Ops/and CALFIRE ECC Sacramento, known as State. Some ECC's and Airbases have 2 intercoms if they adjoin their neighbors intercom. Example San Luis/Paso AAB has South and Sierra since the work in both areas. Monterey/Hollister have Sierra/Coast since they work with CZU and SCU.

Most FS dispatch centers have installed the state intercom in their ECC's. There are hold outs, but as for the South Ops centers, the Los Padres dispatch center is the only one who is not onboard. But that may change in the near future.

As for air bases, all have the state intercom with the exception of Fox, which I don't understand as Angeles Dispatch and FOX are at the same place. That should change soon as the Federal radio techs get time to update. Same for Santa Maria ATB.

In reference to the FED radio system, it is down till further notice. South Ops can only talk to the Inyo at this time. All the rest are out of service until they come up with some money to replace the system. So "Dispatch Net" is Off The Air.

So if you want to hear the movement of aircraft, equipment, crews, etc, figure out a way listen into the state microwave system. Good Luck....
 

SCPD

QRT
Joined
Feb 24, 2001
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Location
Virginia
Two quick notes on South Ops using radios.

First CALFIRE uses the state intercom that is connected throughout the state via the state microwave system. 4 main intercoms. South, Sierra, Coast, and Cascade. Also there is a South Ops/North Ops/and CALFIRE ECC Sacramento, known as State. Some ECC's and Airbases have 2 intercoms if they adjoin their neighbors intercom. Example San Luis/Paso AAB has South and Sierra since the work in both areas. Monterey/Hollister have Sierra/Coast since they work with CZU and SCU.

Most FS dispatch centers have installed the state intercom in their ECC's. There are hold outs, but as for the South Ops centers, the Los Padres dispatch center is the only one who is not onboard. But that may change in the near future.

As for air bases, all have the state intercom with the exception of Fox, which I don't understand as Angeles Dispatch and FOX are at the same place. That should change soon as the Federal radio techs get time to update. Same for Santa Maria ATB.

In reference to the FED radio system, it is down till further notice. South Ops can only talk to the Inyo at this time. All the rest are out of service until they come up with some money to replace the system. So "Dispatch Net" is Off The Air.

So if you want to hear the movement of aircraft, equipment, crews, etc, figure out a way listen into the state microwave system. Good Luck....
The South Ops radio intercom to the Inyo was shut down sometime in the 80's. The radio tech on the Inyo told me, when I transferred to the Forest in 1988, that he had shut it down and was using the state's microwave. He related that the Breckenridge to Cerro Gordo path was problematic, working in some weather conditions and not in others. I believe there is a microwave dish on the tower at the Forest Supervisor's office is pointed south to the Poverty Hills state microwave site south of Big Pine. I will have to look more closely next time I'm down in the big city.

I would guess that a direct microwave connection would not be needed as phone lines could be used to connect with the Poverty Hills site. That may be how the CHP and Caltrans in Bishop connect anyway. I will have to look at their towers for dishes and their orientation next time I'm in Bishop as well.

That is the information I have. Have you received traffic on the fed net with Inyo and Los Padres traffic on it?

I would love to have a link to the state's microwave network for just this kind of traffic. I guess I would have to move to Bishop and ask the state techs I know to put it on a phone line and then I would get a local flat rate account for it. We had planned on moving to Bishop at some point in the future, but with our current unemployment situation we might be moving there sooner. Of course, any hope of listening to the state's microwave is null. Nice to dream though!

P.S. This "fed" net used to be called "South Zone Net." I think the idea of interagency geographic area coordination centers began in California. I seem to remember the USFS outside California having regional centers in each Regional Office. The other agencies must have had a similar situation. BIFC, as it was then called, must have had to deal with all these agencies individually. The current boundaries of all the Geographic Area Coordination Centers (GACC's) follow Forest Service Regions with only one exception, the Southwest Center covers west Texas federal agencies (not Texas state), west of the 100th Meridian. The Forest Service, Cibola National Forest, administers some National Grasslands in west Texas and the NPS units (Guadalupe Mtns. and Big Bend) in west Texas have used the Lincoln National Forest dispatch center's support for quite some time.
 
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