Ranger XP Duraclutch Rescue Military 6×6 Hauler

Ranger XP Duraclutch Rescue Military 6×6 Hauler

Making the Ranger XP more durable with a duraclutch install. Peek at the military 6×6 converted into a UTV Rescue Hauler.

BFDX TD-503 DMR Review


I’ve been using the BFDX TD-503 for several months on the local DMR repeater and NCPRN.  The main reason I really like it and its found its place above my Mototrbo and Hytera is it the GUI by default shows the Frequency and Channel Name.  Controls are standard and easy to use.  The case is high quality and it has some heft to it.

It has been left out in the rain, taken on swift-water calls (submerged in the river), dropped, banged, and otherwise abused with no issues whatsoever.

BFDX TD-503 In Water
BFDX TD-503 in Swiftwater
BFDX TD-503 In the Rain UTV
BFDX TD-503 – Rain UTV


BFDX TD-503 - Confined Space Ropes
BFDX TD-503 – Confined Space

Programming is easy and the cable is inexpensive.  The audio quality is better or on par with both my Hytera and Mototrbo’s in both analog and digital mode.  This radio works great on analog repeaters as well.  I’ve been using this pretty much exclusively for any outdoor adventures (UTV’n, Rafting, Swift-water Rescue, Climbing) without fail, mainly because of its price point and performance.  At $250 brand new its much less expensive than a used Mototurbo or Hytera.


I had some issues with the audio on this so bear with it.  Also standard definition only.


IOS Iphone Ipad Tickets CAD integration.

Here a few screenshots of an IOS application I’ve been working on to allow IOS devices to communicate with external CAD systems.  This particular integration is with TicketsCAD.

This is the screen with no calls dispatched in CAD. It will allow creating a new call or sending location information to CAD system.
This screen is show when a call is dispatched. It allows me to set my status as responding to the call as well as GPS Tracking.
After units begin responding or arriving on scene that is shown in the call history. It enables you to see who is responding and who is on-scene.

Wayehutta OHV Park

Wayehutta Basics

The Wayehutta OHV Park is a ATV riding area located in Western North Carolina. Officially it is the Roy Taylor OHV Park.  Most locals including myself call/pronouce it “Worryhut” It is located in the Cullowhee area. It is normally open from Dusk till Dawn and is a fee area (Few bucks per day).  ATV’s, SXS, and bikes are all welcomed there.  I’ve had no problems with larger machines like the RZR-S and 900.  RZR1000’s barely fit but I do occasionally see them riding some of the larger trails.  Recommended size for the Wayehutta area is < 60″.

Wayehutta Trip
Wayehutta OHV Park

Wayehutta Fee Area

You can also purchase a season pass from the a forest service location, Top Cats Grocery or Caney Fork Store.  Be sure to have your pass before going to the park. Here is a link of Trail 10 and the parking area. http://goo.gl/maps/KFKqj .  There is further information located in the parking lot related to rules, fees, and a map.  There is a rest room and water source in the parking area along with covered picnic area. Helmets are required and no double riding unless the machine is designed for it.  Cell phones do not work in the parking area but driving down close to the gate or many places on the trail that are elevated they work fine.  If you have an emergency dial 911, there are emergency service personal that train regularly in the area.

Wayehutta Trails

Trail 10 is the shortest trail to and from the parking area. You must enter the upper side of Trail 1 for a few hundred feet to enter Trail 10.  It is a one way area and exits back onto the gravel road that leads back to the parking lot.  I would rate this trail as the easiest trail.  The only obstacle is a small bridge which is approx 60″ wide.  RZR S and Ranger XP fit nicely snug while RZR 900s may want to have a spotter and be very careful.

Trail 11 is just below the exit of Trail 10. The inlet is also the exit from this trail.  The first section of Trail 11 is two way which leads up to a intersection where it makes a one way loop.  Parts of this trail are steep on both uphill and downhill sections. Also the trail in most places is very wide.

Trail 1 makes a  complete circle around all trails with the exception of Trail 10 and 11 which are independent trails. All other trails at Wayehutta are inside the Trail 1 loop.  To prevent getting lost, just remember that Trial 1 is the outer loop and either direction will eventually lead you back to the parking area or gravel road to the parking area.  Trail 1 is the longest trail and has a little bit of everything. It is well maintained and wide in most areas.  It also takes you up to two large ridge top areas for taking a break.  Trail 1 is two way and has a upper entrance at the top of the parking lot and is the trail you have to follow for a few hundred feet to access the start of Trail 10.  The lower entrance is near the gate to the park which can be seen if you look for the bridge right past the gate.  All bridges are the same width on all trails which is approx 60″.  On the upper side of 1 there is a rock “gate” that prevents anything larger than a RZR-S or 900 from passing.  If you have a RZR 900 with larger wheels or extensions its impassable.

Trail 2 has just been revamped and is very wide and fast.  It can be accessed from Trail 1 and is two way.  A very popular route is to ride in on the upper side of Trail 1 to Trail 2 then down Trail 8 back the parking lot.

Trail 3 is a two way trail that has some steep sections mostly sandy and clay.

Trail 4 is a two way trail which leads up to one of  ridge clearings on Trail 1.

Trail 5 is a very short trail.

Trail 6 has been revamped and has some very challenging uphill and downhill slopes.  It also has a partial rock climb section that includes two moderate hills with embedded rocks sticking out.  I have had no problems on either a RZR or ATV in two wheel drive picking a drive-able line.  It also has some steep grades with negitive cut that provides banks on both sides.  One of my favorite trails.

Trail 7 has been revamped and some sections are wide but with steep drop offs on the side.  This trail along with exiting 7 via 7A is one of my favorite trails.  There is a waterfall along the left side of this trail if you don’t speed by it.  This trail eventually leads to a optional section labeled 7A which is one way and extremely difficult. It is one of the most difficult trails at Wayehutta.   I have taken dirt-bikes, ATVs, RZR S, and even a 6×6 thru this area but its not for the faint of heart. Most everyone that sees it for the first time pauses and spots the area before attempting. It has very steep inclines with 2 sharp S sections.  Also there are very deep ruts that have to be navigated at steep angles.  I would recommend for first time visitors to ride at least with someone on this trail or see if anyone that has rode the trail would like to take you with them.

Trail 8 is has a very steep downhill section that is one way.

Trail 9 is nicknamed “Rocks on Rocks”. It is very rocky and is a one way trail rarely traveled.  There are some small streams at the trail in the rock section and in places it gets very narrow. I have no problems with RZR-S or ATV on this trail.  It is the most likely location at Wayehutta to encounter snakes at close proximity, use caution.


I ride at Wayehutta almost every weekend and using the map post above that should direct you to the parking lot as well as wet your feet on trail 10.  We normally ride in a fairly large group including RZR’s , RZR – S and ATVs. If you are going to be in the area drop me a line and if you have any questions about the riding area please ask.

Rescue 3 SRT Swiftwater Rescue Technician Class SRT 1

I recently took the Rescue 3 SRT class at Haywood and Nantahala River.  It’s certainly one of the best classes I’ve taken.  Leaving the class you certainly leave with a good feeling that you can perform a swiftwater rescue.  Our class was a three day class, beginning on Saturday at Haywood community college for the classroom portion.  The next two days (Sunday and Monday) were on the Nantahala River.  Our class instructors were Rescue 3 instructors Trey Smith and AJ Bird.  I’ve taken other classes with both instructors and it doesn’t get any better, not to mention a comfort level existed, with instructors you know and trust.  If you consider taking this class, below are my recommendations based on my experience in class: Continue reading “Rescue 3 SRT Swiftwater Rescue Technician Class SRT 1”

Learning Neutral Buoyancy Scuba Diving Control How To

I have many of the open water skills mastered but as with any thing else try to practice each one to keep my muscle memory fresh in case I need the skill during an emergency.  My next skill I’ve been trying to polish up on is buoyancy control.  During my first dives my hands flailed a lot, I seemed to either be positive or negative and had trouble hitting the sweet spot.  I think a lot of it was I didn’t sit down and think about it until many frustrating dives later.  I’ve also been logging things I’ve figured out and tips that may help others which is below: Continue reading “Learning Neutral Buoyancy Scuba Diving Control How To”

Public Safety Radio Programming – The easy way – Processing Serial

In 2004, we had a large flood in area and departments from other areas of the state came to the EOC to help. One of the big issues was getting radios programmed so we could talk to each other.  Recently while playing with my Kenwood TK-380 I wanted to see how hard it was to capture and view the data. Using a simple processing script I dumped the data to disk and could see it was binary data.   Continue reading “Public Safety Radio Programming – The easy way – Processing Serial”

Dark Water Diving – Scuba in the Dark

Dark water diving initially to me was night diving.  I have done a few dives in semi clear water with the worst being a few feet of visibility.   Recently we did a training dive at Bear Lake and I got to experience what dark water diving was like.  It was a sunny day, as we descended with our lights.  At about 20′ it was almost pitch black and I needed a light to see anything. As we went further down on the anchor line visibility went to  near 0.  I could not see my hand or anything else for that matter. Even with my trusty dive light there Continue reading “Dark Water Diving – Scuba in the Dark”