BeachNet Repeater System

District Three EOC Packet Network

Pacific, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Thurston & Wahkiakum Counties, Washington

145.170 |  145.310 |  145.390 |  147.020 |  147.180 |  147.340 |  224.040 |  224.820 |  440.675 |  441.675 |  442.675 |  444.050 |  444.200 |  444.400 |  444.500 |  444.700 |  444.800 |  444.925 |  444.950



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Packet Radio: For those unfamiliar with the term "Packet Radio", a brief description is "a digital radio technique that allows text messages to pass from one computer to another, using Amateur radio". The term "Packet" comes from the packet switching technology, also the basis for moving information on the Internet, which allows many different users to simultaneously share the same physical connection. In packet radio, it allows many users to share a radio frequency, holding several separate simultaneous conversations. One big difference between packet radio and the Internet is packet radio's narrower bandwidth. The data rate (baud) for packet is much slower.

In practice, packet operates somewhat similar to sending and receiving email over the Internet, or texting, however the connection is made using Amateur radio, rather than conventional wired or wireless Internet connections. While we are used to having routers steer our messages from one computer to another over the Internet, with packet radio, some of this overhead will be done manually.

Most Amateur radio packet activity is found on VHF, although there is significant activity on UHF and even HF. The range can therefore be anything from a few miles to several thousand miles, making it popular with "Hams" who enjoy "RV-ing" or cruising on boats, where a normal Internet connection may be scarce. Packet Radio uses virtual "connections", which may pass through a number of other stations, or "nodes", along the way.

Packet radio is much narrower in bandwidth than even a dial-up Internet connection. This means it is slower, and doesn't usually have the capacity to support attachment files. But the fact that it can pass a written message through a normal radio voice channel bandwidth makes it compatible with ordinary Ham radio equipment. It is also important to understand that generally, any station in a packet network can be used as a repeater (digipeater), allowing a connection to "hop" from one station to the next to cover a relatively long distance. This can be very important when trying to relay a message out of an area affected by a disaster.

Although the Packet Radio network can, and does, interface with the Internet at a few locations, the radio portion is itself independent of the Internet. Packet Radio can move messages without any outside commercial infrastructure. It can also move messages from an area that is without Internet service to an area where Internet service is available. Packet Radio is an important technique for those involved in EmComm.

District Three: Western Washington ARES/RACES District/Region Three comprises Pacific, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason and Thurston Counties. For geographical reasons, the Emergency Communication (EmComm) "EOC" Packet Radio Network also includes Wahkiakum County and the Washington State Emergency Coordination Center at Camp Murray. The primary frequency for the network is 145.630 MHz. This is simplex, of course, and does not use any CTCSS (PL) tones.

The packet network is not part of
BeachNet, however since many of the packet resources are co-located at our sites, and owned and/or maintained by Principles, Associates or Friends of this project, it seems appropriate to list a modicum of information on this website.

It is our hope that this material is of some use. If you are involved in, or would like to be involved in, packet radio within this Region, the following links are included for more information:

For District Three frequencies and Node List: Click Here.

To visit the Western WA EmComm District Three Packet Yahoo Group: Click Here.

We hope to see you on the air!

Pictures below, left to right: (1) NEILTN packet node; (2) NEILTN packet node; (3) MINOT packet Node; (4) HOLYX Nodes.






145.170 |  145.310 |  145.390 |  147.020 |  147.180 |  147.340 |  224.040 |  224.820 |  440.675 |  441.675 |  442.675 |  444.050 |  444.200 |  444.400 |  444.500 |  444.700 |  444.800 |  444.925 |  444.950

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This Page Last Updated: 10/08/16.