I've been trying to decide about GMRS for about a year now. I have two ranches in West Texas that are about 6 1/2 miles apart and in many areas cell phone is not reliable. I've had my ham license, but I can't legally use ham to conduct our family ranch activities.
I would also like to be able to communicate with my home in town which is about 9.5 miles. I'm pretty sure I can't do this with just handhelds, but I plan to use the Midland MXT400 in by truck and set up a base at my home in town with another MXT400. With my house being at least 20 ft high, I should be able to get an antennae around 40 ft.
I've checked elevation on google earth, and my ranch has an elevation of approximately 80 ft higher than town (only 40 ft if the antenna is 40 ft), but there is a rise/hill about 10 feet higher that is about 1.5 miles from the ranch. Since I don't really have a lot of experience with UHF, I was wondering if it was likely that reliable communication would be possible between the mobile and base, with the base having a 40 ft antenna.
Ultimately, I'm thinking about putting a repeater at the ranch, which would allow a 40 ft antennae (20 ft. over existing structure) at that location.
Any comments would be welcome.
Thanks - Karl