Scanner Friendly Vacation Spots

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n2ops

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I'm planning to do a story on Scanner Friendly Vacation Spots in National Communications. Please share where you vacation and you found great scanner listening. Easy to program, basic analog, ease of setting up any trunking, no encryption, no beat in simulcast, etc. NY City is a good example with basic analog channels and standard PL. This information will be invaluable for the scanner fan in planning where to go on that next trip. Thanks. Jim Sutton N2OPS jim@otrym.org
 

n2ops

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I am preparing a story for National Communications on the best and worst vacation destinations for scanner listeners. These will be ones that have attractions for the entire family AND great scanner listening. The top spots would most likely be analog without trunking. Or they could have very basic easy to follow trunking. Of course good solid signals and no encryption. Good easy to hear P25 like national parks is also good to list. The worst would be encryption, P25 simulcast with a beat esp Phase 2, poor signal quality, to name a few. One example of a great location is NY City. The information will then be compiled for a continually updated list in Radio Reference. Please email me with your locations. Include what makes them best or worst. Even some basic frequencies and PL's would be great. jim@otrym.org Thanks.
 

Spitfire8520

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One example of a great location is NY City.
I wouldn't necessarily say that NY City is a great location if you're looking for "Scanner Friendly" due to the laws regarding scanners in vehicles, but that's me and one probably wouldn't be in a vehicle if one were in New York City.

I have often thought a theme park section would be nice somewhere on the database.
The database actually has quite a few theme park related items on it. It's generally organized like anything else by geographic location. A lot of theme parks are heading towards those digital modes that cannot be monitored or require DSD and a computer to decode. Some are even just doing away with radio communications and using cell phones or cellular PTT systems.
 

n2ops

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Personal experiences

Looking for actual personal experiences. For example a trip to a city and the amusement park. Then the state park and the tourist railroad. Or a national park and the adjacent communities. I know from the refusal to correct the Phase II errors for Monroe and Ontario Counties in NY that there are ignored errors in the reference listings.
 

ecps92

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Sadly with the new scanners (IMHO) folks want INSTANT access and won't spend the time to search/investigate for those frequencies. Many are already in the DB here and the Wiki at ScanNewEngland due to the DIEHARD scannists who spend the time to seek out the channels, so other can enjoy w/o breaking a sweat in finding the channels.

Massachusetts Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki
CT Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki
Rhode Island Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki
New Hampshire Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki
Rhode Island Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki
Vermont Recreational Facilities - Scan New England Wiki

Looking for actual personal experiences. For example a trip to a city and the amusement park. Then the state park and the tourist railroad. Or a national park and the adjacent communities. I know from the refusal to correct the Phase II errors for Monroe and Ontario Counties in NY that there are ignored errors in the reference listings.
 

wise871

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I recently took my 436HP and my 396XT with me to Universal Studios in Orlando. I had the 436 in trunk discovery mode in the car while I had the 396 with me in my cargo pocket with ear bud. If I just used the 436 I would have missed all the action because the talkgroups were out of date. Programming the 396 with Just the control channels and running in search mode allowed me to monitor all the parks traffic. I was able to know exactly all the wait times for the rides and which ones to hit first. It really saved me hours of wait time knowing what was going on. After the 4 day trip I recorded a ton of new talkgroups.
 
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SkiBob

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You are welcome to use my information in your article. I would hope since you are gathering information from here, that you will post the finished product here as well.

My favorite vacation spot to use a scanner is at the beach. No, not literally on the beach, just while at the beach. We frequent Panama City Beach in Florida. Here are some of the things you can monitor:

Public Safety: While Panama City is a re-banded trunked system and rather difficult to program, it does cover a large area and includes many agencies. To make it easy, just use the import feature that RR offers in many of scanner software programs.

Retail: Most retail has a very short range, but I have found a new appreciation for going shopping with the wife. I hang back with the close call feature on, ear bud in, and log my freqs. as we go from store to store. One time I got a close call alert. It sounded like a personal security team. It took me a while, but we found Honey Boo-Boo and family in one of the stores. Although disappointed it wasn't Angelina Jolie, it was fun to search them out. Sometimes you can catch some insider information. Things like "don't tell them about the corporate promotion today, but if they ask, give it to them."

Beach: Beach patrol is fun to monitor as well as the Coast Guard. Panama City has a base nearby that can be interesting to monitor. Tourist boats, lifeguards, parasailing, just to name a few.

Air: Banner planes are all over Panama City Beach. They usually communicate over one of the air to air frequencies. Often times they will tell other pilots "did you see that pod of dolphins down there?" It’s interesting to listen to some of their conversations regarding plane traffic, weather and marine life.

Hotels: There are so many high rise hotels in the area. It's nearly impossible to figure out who you are listening to. Often times you will hear housekeeping talk about their finds in the rooms… some are just outright gross while some make you laugh.

Maritime: Channel 16 is a must anytime you are near the ocean. Although you never want to hear anything on the emergency channel, when you do, it’s typically memorable. Port Authorities, tow boats, fishing vessels, Coast Guard and pleasure boaters are all things that can be monitored on the Marine Band.

FRS: You can usually hear a mother yelling for her kids on this band. Many businesses use this band as well. Really, you never know what you are going to hear. I always have it scanning while on vacation.

Most of what I monitor while on vacation are things that I find myself. I have found that I really can’t rely on a database for all of my information. For me, the fun is in the discovery, then the challenge of finding what and who it is that I’m listening to. Don’t be afraid to scan the bands. You just never know what you might hear.

I use a Uniden BCD396XT Scanner.
 
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