Very few people know that Idaho has a rally race, it’s somewhat new, but gaining in popularity. This was the first year that my schedule allowed me to work this event, but I hope I can make it again. For me this was another dual purpose event as the safety communications were provided by area ham radio operators (i.e. me). So much like my yearly trek to the Jet Boat races, I’m there primarily to handle communications. That dictates where I’m at and what I’m doing, safety and communications always comes first. But, it’s hard to talk on the radio when a loud car (or jet boat) goes by so usually communications and photography coexist nicely. For this event I was at the finish line for stage 15, the last of the mountain stages, only one stage remained at the fair grounds.
As for the radio communications side of things, this one was tough, the finish line was a dead area, the nearest spot I could get a radio signal out was a mile away. So I had to turn my truck radio into a repeater, park and walk the mile back up the creek to the finish. (So much for having my truck at the finish with the AC running waiting after we closed the road). I used my handheld through my truck repeater, through the main repeater and back down to the start line on the other side of the mountain — a bit of a pain, but it worked. One of the cars (a non competing rally car) was nice enough to give me a ride back to my truck afterwards.