Do weather band radios work?

Questions about equipment and supplies to bring on a trip (including reviews).

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Do weather band radios work?

Post by Iconic »

I plan to do some boating around the many harbors and islands of Isle Royale this summer. I am considering bringing a hand held marine radio with weather bands. Can I expect to receive weather being this far out from the mainland?
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by Bobcat1 »

Yes. I carry a small NOAA weather radio when I go to Isle Royale. You get either US or Canadian weather forecasts depending on where you are on the Island, for the western Lake Superior region. I recall Rock Harbor as being particularly bad for reception. I would also check the websites before your trip, to get familiar with buoy location and "seas" forecast, so you know what they are talking about when they give the current conditions at various buoys in the area.

https://www.weather.gov/marine/lsopen
19 RH-ML-TI-RH by kayak
16 RH-DF-MB-TI-RH-3M-RH by kayak
09 RH-DF-MC-TH-HL-SD-WC
00 WC-IM-WC
96 WC-FL-SB-SD-HL-CE-3M-RH
94 RH-DF-MB-3M-RH
92 RH-DF-LR-CW-HL-SD-IM-WC
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by dcclark »

I sometimes carry a NOAA radio similar to Bobcat. I've had a lot of trouble getting signal from near lake level -- for example, Rock Harbor, Daisy Farm, Moskey. Up on the ridges I got great reception. That all depends on atmospheric conditions too, but I've never had consistently good reception when not on the ridge.
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by Ingo »

Do carry a VHF if boating. I've almost always been able to get a forecast on the weather channels (US and Canadian) on my handheld VHF when paddling, mostly on the N side. But it varies--I have had to stand on a picnic table with the radio in just the right position. But having the VHF allows you to communicate with other boaters to pass along forecasts, as well as other safety issues.
79: worked RH, 01: BI-DB-RH, 02: MC-LR-WL-CH, 05: MI-CI-MB-DF-RH-TM-RH, 09: MC-BI-DN-RH, 11: WC-HC-WC, 12: MC-CB-HL-TH, 13: RH-PI, 14: BI-ML-CI-CH-MB, 16: RH-CI-TI-RH, 17: WI-IM-SB-FL-WC, 18: MC-PC-BI-DB-RH-DF, 21: RH-ML-DF-MB-DF
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by Base654 »

I carry this one:

I can usually get a signal at most campgrounds. Campgrounds, not camp sites. I am the weird one wandering to and fro, twisting my raised hand around. I like this one due to the size. it is only slightly bigger than the three AAA batteries that power it. The "channel" button cycles through the stations until it finds one.
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by Iconic »

I guess I will bring one. I got a chuckle out of standing on a picnic table to get reception! Thank you all.
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Re: Do weather band radios work?

Post by johnhens »

North side either MI or MN. Can also get CN, but it is on metric with temps in Celsius, wave heights in meters and not sure if pressure is in millibars or inches of mercury. West side is MN and South side starting at Malone is either MN or MI. Become familiar with the times the open lakes forcast is given. I think the MI forcast may include a forecast for IR as well.
Also a MAFOR forecast is given. https://weather.gc.ca/marine/marine_bul ... qcn30.cwto
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MAFOR
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