Taking these in reverse order, I don't think that you can see much of the base from Bald Mountain. I did a "line of site" computer analysis of
spots on the base, and Bald didn't show up.
Regarding the sheriff department being there first, I would think the answer is no. Bald Mountain is only reachable by chopper. The other thing that
would need to be researched is when did the police begin to use repeaters. In the dark ages of police radio, they started out just above the AM radio
band. I have a friend with one of those old Zenith radios (floor standing in a wooden cabinet) that shows the old police band. Anyway, at those
frequencies (the bottom of the HF band), you wouldn't need a repeater and in fact, a repeater might get you in trouble. The problem is the HF signals
travel so far that cities would interfere with each other. This shows up today at "lowband" frequencies used by many highway patrols, though it is
controllable by coded squelch tone.
There are two stories regarding being "grandfathered" into Nellis range access. One is that the owners of the Groom Mine can visit the area. The
other is that there is a mine near Bald Mountain that shows up as private land on the USGS topo map.
Note that the Lincoln County Sheriff department is in cahoots with the base, since the camo dudes are deputized by the sheriff department. I'm sure
they can get access to Bald Mountain to do maintenance.
Access to the Nellis range by civilian organizations seems possible if it serves the interests of the feds/DoD. Verizon has microwave relays on the
range and IIRC, a repeater site near Mercury. Coach USA has a repeater on Skull Mountain for their buses. I need to track it down again, but I recall
Coach USA had a contract to run buses to the TPECR. Here is the license information:
36-45-58.8 N, 116-11-24.1 W
CUSA K-TCS, LLC dba Coach USA
3 Lincoln Centre, 5430 LBJ FWY, Suite 1075
Dallas, TX 75240
The facility shows up at
Hope that link makes it. Verizon has gear there as well.
Lastly, the FAA has gear on Bald Mountain, though this is probably what they call a Joint Surveillance Site, where feds and military share facilities.
Look at this photo
I shot this in the dead of winter, and the hazy sky really shows the antennas. There does appear to be a vertical antenna at the left of the
facility, but it looks like a lowband antenna more than VHF. A VHF vertical might not be that easy to detect. [If you didn't bother to read the
referring page, the circled areas are where I suspect fixed positions cameras are located. In the winter, the heater in the camera enclosures melt the
snow, making them easier to detect.]]If you are foolish enough to repeat my winter Bald Mountain photography, it is important to be there early in the
AM. The ground gets slippery when the sun heats it up. It is easier to drive it when it is still frozen.