Howdy Everyone.  Our monthly EMCOMM meeting for March was delayed and will happen this Saturday at 0930 MST.  The main topic of discussion will be the Desert Rats Running Festival, April 17-18, 2021.  Below is an email from Chip, ARES Region 9 District 4 EC with more details.

Whether you are able to participate in the event or not, we hope to see you at the meeting as much of the information provided could apply to other events as well.

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Greetings, EmComm-ers!

We have a great opportunity coming up in April to practice our comm skills and check out our equipment.  The Desert Rats Running Festival will be held April 17-18 and the organizers have requested amateur radio support at the five checkpoints and start/finish area.  It would be great if we could get enough people signed up to have two-person teams at each checkpoint so one person wouldn’t have to carry the load by themselves.  Al WA4HND is working with the race sponsors to set up communications, and we need to gather names of interested comm folks to start populating a list to begin making preparations.

Minimum equipment would be a 20-watt or higher power dual band radio at each checkpoint since we’ll need to hit the GMRA repeaters reliably.  If there is more than one person at a checkpoint, the second person could use a handheld.  Equipment requirements will be forwarded to those interested in attending.  If you would like to help but may not have the necessary equipment, we can team you up with someone who does.

Be prepared for a couple of long days – Saturday will start around 0530 and run until 1600.  Sunday will be from 0530 – maybe a little later depending on race organizers – and go until about noon.  If you can make one day but not the other, let us know.  You will need to be self-contained and be prepared for any weather eventuality.  It’s spring in Western Colorado, after all, so you will need appropriate clothing, as well as your own food, water, etc.

Please let Al or me know as soon as possible if you’re interested in helping.  Events such as this are great practice for actual emergencies as well as being a chance to get outdoors and enjoy the scenery after a long, dark winter.  The organizers and racers are great folks from all over the country, and it’s a lot of fun being a part of the action.  Also, the race organizers provide some funds to help us maintain the GMRA repeater system that’s so important to emergency communications and day-to-day ham activities, so it’s for a good cause.

Here’s a link to the website describing the race:  https://geminiadventures.com/trail-running-festival/

E-mail me if you think you might be able to participate, and I’ll send you more complete details.  See you in the desert!

Thanks, Chip N0WKR