Space Coast Mini Road Trip Radio Report; 13-15 February 2022

Earlier this week, I took my parents down to the Space Coast to visit the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge and Canaveral National Seashore for their anniversary. Since this was a family trip, there wasn’t as much time for radio as there was on the January Space Coast Road Trip, but things were still productive on the radio front. On this trip, I didn’t have KF4LMT Mobile, either. To do some mobile listening, I put a Tram 1089 mag mount antenna on top of the car we were in, and connected it to one of my Uniden BCD436HPs. I was very pleased with the Tram’s performance; small in size, it did a great job on all of the bands I was listening to – VHF Airband, UHF MilAir, and VHF/UHF/700/800 MHz Public Safety. At the hotel, I was able to use a BCD436HP, Whistler TRX-1, and a Uniden BCD325P2. I also had a Mode-S/ADS-B dongle for aircraft tracking. I lucked out and got a fifth floor room (you can hear a lot from the fifth floor!) with a nice view of the St. Johns NWR just out the back.

The small Tram 1089 mag mount antenna on top of the car; the little Tram did an outstanding job on VHF Airband, UHF MilAir, an VHF/UHF/700/800 MHz Public Safety
The view from the fifth floor at the hotel – a nice view of the St Johns NWR. Being on the fifth floor also increased what I could hear on the radios

Amateur Radio

For Amateur Radio, all I had with me was the Anytone AT-D879UVII with a Nagoya NA-771 antenna, but it got the job done just fine. I had several DMR QSOs through the 443.1375+ (CC1) DMR repeater in Bithlo, which is between Titusville and Orlando. The Bithlo repeater has great coverage on the west side of Titusville, I was easily able to get into it with a handheld radio from the hotel near I-95 at Exit 215. When I visited in January, the 444.6750+ (CC3) DMR repeater Titusville was out of service, but this time it was working. During my January trip, I heard some Space Coast area hams talking about a SARnet repeater in Christmas, between Titusville and Orlando, so for this trip I programmed it in – it has great coverage and was easily received with the handheld in Titusville. It’s also worth mentioning that something’s wrong with the 147.3300+ (PL 107.2) repeater in Titusville, something is getting into it and holding it open until it times out and the then cycle starts all over again.

146.9700- (PL 107.2) - Titusville
147.3300+ (PL 107.2) - Titusville
441.9000+ (PL 88.5) - Titusville
442.8750+ (PL 123.0) - Christmas (SARnet)
443.1375+ (CC1) - Bithlo (DMR)
444.6750+ (CC3) - KSC Titusville (DMR)
444.8750+ (PL 107.2) - Merritt Island


The first day of the trip was a Sunday, so there wasn’t much MilCom to be heard, but things picked up a bit on Monday and Tuesday. The highlight of the trip as far as MilCom/Aviation/NASA goes, was catching a Starfighters Aerospace F-104 on Monday while it took a few turns in the pattern at the Kennedy Space Center SLF. Unfortunately, from where we were we could see it but weren’t in camera range. It was still great to see one of the F-104s flying and hear the wonderful sounds it made. On Tuesday morning before leaving to go back to Savannah, I caught a safety exercise at Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39B; a number of the Safety talkgroups, the Fire Department talkgroup, and the Medical talkgroup were all active as units responded to the complex and worked to account for everyone who was supposed to be there.

Jacksonville IAP
251.250 - 125th FW/159th FS Ops
273.900 - 125th FW/159th FS SOF
234.800 - 125th FW/159th FS Aux 5

FANG ## (F-15C, 159th FS)
COIL ## (F-15C, 159th FS)

NAS Jacksonville/NS Mayport/Cecil Field
310.200/134.775 - NAS Jax Base Ops
306.000 - VP-30 Base
285.000 - USN TSC Jacksonville
263.500 - HSM-72 Base?
239.300 - NS Mayport Tower
143.425 ($293) - HSM-?? at NS Mayport?
274.800 - Mayport SESEF

AMBUSH 7## (MH-60R, HSM-74)
LANCER ## (P-8A, VP-10)
NAVY LL 8## (P-8A, VP-30)
CONVOY #### (C-40A, Various)

Kennedy Space Center
128.550/284.00 - Shuttle Landing Facility
132.650 - Orlando TRACON

NASA 442 (EC35, N442NA, NASA)
STARFIGHTER 1 (F-104, Starfighter Aerospace)

 TG 5 - Emergency Button
 TG 153 - Environmental Health
 TG 185 - Canaveral National Seashore 911 Call Boxes
 TG 221 - Fire Net 116
 TG 229 - KSC Unknown
 TG 241 - KSC FD Station 1 Paging?
 TG 242 - KSC FD Station 2 Paging?
 TG 243 - KSC FD Station 3 Paging?
 TG 245 - Fire Tac 1
 TG 295 - FSA-1
 TG 391 - KSC Unknown
 TG 411 - CCSFS Photo/Timing
 TG 431 - KSC-1 
 TG 495 - KSC Unknown
 TG 503 - Medical Net 117
 TG 557 - NASA SLF Tower
 TG 583 - KSC Unknown
 TG 676 - KSC Unknown
 TG 735 - Safety Net 105
 TG 736 - Safety Net 110
 TG 737 - Safety Net 205
 TG 743 - Cape Cape Canaveral SFS/Eastern Range Safety
 TG 855 - Launch Support Net 104
 TG 875 - Test Net 1
 TG 923 - Safety Net 1
 TG 995 - KSC All Weather Alert

 TG 101 - Operations 1; enc
 TG 104 - Unknown; enc
 TG 2 - ULA Unknown; unenc
 TG 4 - ULA Unknown; unenc
Cape Canaveral SFS
133.800 - Cape Advisory

YETI 167 (sounded rotary wing)

USAF (157) TRS (Cape Canaveral SFS site)
 TG 48011 - Patrick SFB FD Dispatch; enc/unenc (Dispatch unenc, units enc)
 TG 48046 - Patrick SFB MOC; enc/unenc
 TG 48055 - Patrick SFB Base Ops; enc
 TG 48057 - Patrick SFB Unknown; enc
 TG 48105 - Patrick SFB Tower; enc
 TG 48303 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown
 TG 48311 - CCSFS Fire 1; enc/unenc (Dispatch unenc, units enc)
 TG 48324 - Cape Canaveral SFS Fire Station 2?
 TG 48334 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; unenc
 TG 48335 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc
 TG 48342 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; unenc
 TG 48353 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc/unenc
 TG 48368 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc/unenc
 TG 48379 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc
 TG 48388 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc
 TG 48393 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc
 TG 48403 - Cape Canaveral SFS Unknown; enc
 TG 48407 - Cape Canaveral SFS Support; enc/unenc
 TG 48413 - Cape Canaveral SFS KSC Med Net; unenc
 TG 48415 - Cape Canaveral SFS Environmental Net

Space Coast Regional Airport
118.900 - Space Coast Regional Tower
132.650 - Orlando TRACON

KONA 281 (C206, FBI)

Patrick SFB
133.750/269.375 - Patrick AFB Tower
132.650 - Orlando TRACON
349.400 - Patrick AFB CP

KING 4# (HC-130J, 39th RQS)
REACH 218 (C-17A, 62nd AW)

254.275 - Live Oak MOA

Jax Center
273.550/134.000 - Jax Center St Johns Low
307.250/126.350 - Jax Center St. Augustine High
327.100/134.850 - Jax Center Torry Low/High

Miami Center
245.250/132.250 - Miami Center Melbourne Low
269.300/133.475 - Miami Center Bairn Low
293.225/126.950 - Miami Center Stoop Low
348.700/119.825 - Miami Center Hobee Low/High
379.250/134.350 - Miami Center Adoor Low/High


Most of the FedCom that I heard was from the Coast Guard and the National Park Service. The vast majority of the Coast Guard traffic on the Rescue 21 frequencies was encrypted, but the activity on the National Park Service Canaveral National Seashore frequencies was in the clear.

156.800 - Marine VHF Ch 16
157.100 - Marine VHF Ch 22
162.3250 ($293) - CG 111, Sector Jacksonville; enc
412.9750 ($293) - CG 409, Sector Jacksonville Air Ops; enc

169.7875 ($407) - Canaveral National Seashore KSC Repeater
171.6500 ($321) - Canaveral National Seashore Edgewater Repeater

Public Safety

Most of the public safety traffic I heard was from the various counties’ trunked repeater systems; EDACS in the case of Volusia and Brevard and P25 in the case of Duval, St Johns, and Flagler. On the conventional side of things, both the Bunnell and Orlando Florida Forestry Commission repeaters were very active all three days with wildfire related communications.

159.4500 (PL 100.0) - Florida Forestry Commission Bunnell
159.2700 (PL 91.5) - Florida Forestry Commission Orlando

151.0100 (PL 103.5) - Fl Parks - Little Talbot State Park

453.0750 (PL 146.2) - Trauma One Jacksonville
462.9500 (PL 173.8) - LifeFlight (Jacksonville)

First Coast P25 TRS (Duval County)
 TG 1087 - Jacksonville Fire/Rescue A2 Dispatch
 TG 149 - JFRD A-4 Supression
 TG 1099 - JFRD A-8 Support
 TG 1525 - Jacksonville IAP Gate Operations

St Johns P25 TRS
 TG 10000 - St Johns County Fire/Rescue A1 Dispatch
 TG 10065 - St Johns County Fire/Rescue A15 Training 1
 TG 10070 - St Johns County Fire/Rescue A16 Training 2 
 TG 10615 - NPS Castillo de San Marcos
 TG 10620 - NPS Fort Fort Matanzas

Flagler County P25 TRS
 TG 2059 - Flagler County Fire/Rescue Primary
 TG 2060 - Flagler County Fire/Rescue Tac 3

Volusia County EDACS TRS
 TG 02-041 - Volusia County Fire Services 1 East Dispatch
 TG 02-042 - Volusia County Fire Services 2 West Dispatch
 TG 02-043 - Volusia County Fire Services Tac 3
 TG 02-044 - Volusia County Fire Services Tac 4
 TG 02-047 - Volusia County Fire Services Tac 7
 TG 02-051 - Volusia County Fire Services Tac 9
 TG 02-052 - Volusia County Fire Services Tac 10
 TG 09-157 - Volusia County County Wide 2
 TG 10-102 - Daytona Beach IAP C5

Brevard County EDACS TRS
 TG 03-011 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Dispatch 1
 TG 03-012 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Dispatch 2
 TG 03-013 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Dispatch 3
 TG 03-015 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Dispatch 5
 TG 03-017 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Paging 80
 TG 03-027 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Dispatch 4
 TG 03-031 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Tac 1
 TG 03-034 - Brevard County Lifeguards Central
 TG 03-063 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Tac 57
 TG 03-097 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Paging 45
 TG 03-101 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Paging 20
 TG 03-102 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Paging 40
 TG 03-103 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Paging 60
 TG 03-127 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue Admin
 TG 04-156 - Brevard County Fire/Rescue - First Flight
 TG 05-155 - PSIC 1
 TG 05-156 - PSIC 2
 TG 07-011 - Titusville FD Tac 11
 TG 07-031 - Titusville FD Station 10
 TG 07-035 - Titusville FD HQ Dispatch
 TG 08-051 - Melbourne FD Dispatch
 TG 08-052 - Melbourne FD North
 TG 09-066 - Palm Bay FD Tac 6
 TG 11-051 - Cocoa FD Dispatch
 TG 11-052 - Cocoa FD Tac 30
 TG 12-011 - Cocoa Beach FD Dispatch

Canaveral National Seashore – Playalinda Beach

The southern part of the Canaveral National Seashore, where Playalinda Beach is, one of my favorite places to visit. As part of Kennedy Space Center, it’s where the beach, mangrove swamps, nature, wildlife, and the space program all come together. After you go through the entrance toward Playalinda Beach, you can see Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39B and 39A beyond the mangrove swamp on the right side of the road. We saw a large Bobcat by first scenic overlook on the road going to the beach, but unfortunately by the time we grabbed cameras, it had decided that it didn’t want to be the subject of our photos! It was quite windy on Monday (take a look at the flags at the Ranger Station in the first photo in the slideshow below), so we didn’t stay on the beach long – but it was long enough to take in both its beauty and some shore birds. The beach is pristine with beautiful blue-green water, so unlike the muddy brown water at the beaches here in Coastal Georgia. If you look down the beach to the south you can see more of Launch Complex 39B and Launch Complex 39A. Standing on the beach, you could turn one way and see shore birds and turn the other and see parts of the space program. Finally, at the end of the road by Beach Access 13, we saw what appears to be a photo/video tracking station for launches.

Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge – Black Point Wildlife Drive

The Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge is also part of the Kennedy Space Center. The NWR’s Black Point Wildlife Drive winds through the mangrove swamp and offers plenty of opportunities to see a variety of birds, including ducks, egrets, herons, ibis, ospreys, spoonbills, and storks. We had quite the experience as Roseate Spoonbills and Wood Storks came right up to the side of the wildlife drive to feed even though we were standing right there! They were close enough to photograph with a cellphone camera. There were a lot of Spoonbills out on Monday (somehow fitting – pink birds in abundance on Valentines Day) and it was an amazing sight. Getting to see an Osprey relatively close in a dead pine tree was another awesome experience. It was too cool and windy to see a lot of Alligators, but we did see a few – mostly small and medium sized but a couple of large ones.

As usual when I visit the Space Coast, I stayed at the Holiday Inn Titusville – Kennedy Space Center off of I-95 at Exit 215. It’s clean, comfortable, has a friendly staff, and a great restaurant. I can’t recommend it enough, it’s become my go-to place to stay whenever I’m down that way.

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