Wilderness Protocol Monitoring:
The purpose of this initiative is to offer stations outside repeater range an opportunity to be heard when it is needed the most!
The Wilderness Protocol suggests radio operators in the Amateur service should monitor standard simplex channels at specific times in case of Emergency or priority calls.
The primary frequency monitored is 146.52 MHz; secondarily or alternatively 52.525, 223.5, 446.0 and 1294.5 MHz respectively. The idea is to allow communications between hams that are hiking or backpacking in uninhabited areas, outside repeater range an alternative opportunity to be heard.
NOTE- Though it’s mainly used in the wilderness settings, it’s NOT just for hikers, back packers, or similar situations….it is also available for ANYONE to use at ANYTIME… Folks may need assistance outside of camping as well!
Recommended procedures for “Wilderness Protocol”
MONITOR THE MAIN CALLING FREQS: *146.520* and/or any of the SECONDARY FREQUENCIES.(52.525, 223.500, 446.00, 1294.500)
MONITOR TIMING: Every 3 hours starting from 0700 HRS ..on the hour until 5 (five) minutes past the hour.(7:00-7:05 AM, 10:00-10:05 AM, …, 10:00-10:05 PM).
ALTERNATE TIMING: 0655 to 0705, Etc 5 before till 5 after.. (to allow for differences in peoples watch settings). You can always listen for longer if you want.
ENHANCED MONITORING: Fixed stations or portable stations with enough battery power levels LISTEN EVERY HOUR. (Obviously Continuous Monitoring is also an option.)
LISTENING / MONITORING: Listen to the calling frequencies untill 4 minutes past the hour, then make a few calls asking if there are stations listening that may need assistance. This calling traffic should only start at 4 minutes after the hour preceded by listening for 30 seconds… Unless of course your the one making an emergency call. LISTEN FIRST- CALL CQ with short transmissions. LISTEN FIRST! always a good idea!
NOTE- 146.520 IS A CALLING FREQUENCY…. Make your Calls, and then move off the frequency so others can use the frequency. Suggested frequencies to move to; 146.55, 146.43, etc. etc.
PRIORITY TONE SIGNALS: Suggested for Priority Radio Transmissions ONLY.
USE the LONG TONE ZERO (abbreviated LiTZ). Begin calls for assistance with about 10 seconds of TONE with the LiTZ signal. Do this by keying up and holding down the zero key to continuously transmit the zero DTMF tone ( hence: LONG TONE ZERO ). Then proceed to make your emergency call. This would help those listening recognize that an emergency or priority call is coming through.
Lastly, remind people of the protocol at your club meetings and on radio nets. It a good thing to know.