Ranger Kathryn's Arches

March 23, 2011

Horseshoe Canyon: Radio Glitch

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 11:02 pm
Tags: , , , ,

“600? 681.” Pause. Nothing.

“600? 681, Grandview.” Long pause. Nothing.

I, volunteer #681, was trying to contact the Hans Flat ranger station (#600) on channel 2 (Grandview) for my twice-daily check-in. I could hear other radio traffic, but obviously was not transmitting. If the ranger station an hour away didn’t hear from me for a day, they’d send someone to check on me, and I did NOT want that to happen. I was fine.

Sunrise over the La Sal Mountains, as seen from Sheep Camp

I switched to the relay channel that the NPS put up, and couldn’t get anything on that either. After reading the entire radio manual in the trailer, and trying everything I could think of — including trying to radio Arches National Park whose traffic I could hear, and having them call Hans Flat — I shrugged and gave up. I’d be in a pickle only if a real emergency arose, but there wasn’t a thing I could do about it.

I drove to Hans Flat on Day 3 for a potluck and a hiking expedition, and walked into the ranger station carrying my radio. Within minutes Gary had checked its innards, reprogrammed it, and rendered it fully functional. Whew. Now 681 could call 600… and she hopes it is only twice a day for routine check-in.

Have you ever been out of touch with civilization for long? How did it feel? What concerns did you have?


  1. No, but I’ve been thinking of you out there and wondering what it’s like. I think it sounds fantastic, and hope to try it some day!

    Comment by Becky — March 24, 2011 @ 1:11 am | Reply

    • Need to invent a fresh adjective for this whole experience.

      Comment by Kathryn Burke — March 24, 2011 @ 8:15 pm | Reply

  2. i honestly don’t think i’ve every been without human contact for even 24 hours. my bucket list does have the Superior Hiking Trail on it though….

    Comment by john — March 24, 2011 @ 11:43 am | Reply

    • SO DOES MINE!!! Could be a sibling bucket project…

      Comment by Kathryn Burke — March 24, 2011 @ 8:15 pm | Reply

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