Thanks everyone for reading this. Let's see if I can remember all of your questions now, and answer them!
The person who posted above this seemed surprised that such "telephone tree" type drills do not happen more often; while I would say that 99% of
every military assembly I ever attended included verifying current contact information "just in case," this is the first time my phone has actually
rang. Keep in mind I was in the Guard so my daily life did not revolve solely around the military, as I would imagine an active duty person may very
well have the telephone tree tested once in a while. However my role today, for which I was called last weekend, is more along the lines of a liaison
between state and federal entities, certainly not strictly military.
The radio activity was noted on military and federal land mobile FM frequencies, not amateur radio, in the clear, mostly on repeaters, with some folks
living near bases reporting simplex traffic. The frequencies are ones that we knew and so were programmed into scanners, only there is normally little
to no traffic on them. Only after talking to a few more of the fellows today have we discussed doing some searching, "DC to daylight" as they say,
and all modes.
I personally choose to not divulge frequencies; once in the past at the time when I was in commo, I simply responded to an online question about a
frequency, and within an hour had a very angry commo officer on the phone with me telling me to never confirm anything to the general publi again.
Though I like to think this board is anonymous, there is a chance that someone reading this knows me, and I do not want to risk ruffling any feathers.
However...I did some poking around and found a few references buried in recent discussions, which will give some clues to folks who are interested:
I am not sure what someone meant by "piggybacking on cellular towers" or some such terminology that was used. If you mean adding, for instance, a
remote receiver antenna or repeater to a tower that is primarily used for cellular service, then I have seen it occasionally, but in my experience the
military equipment that existed long before the cell tower was usually already performing as well as it could be and giving coverage well enough that
additional sites were not needed. Many times military and federal agencies have picked out the best antenna sites in any given area and erected towers
and antennae long ago before any other agencies or companies had a chance. If you mean using 800MHz or 1.9GHz relays for military commo, that appear
to be cellular equipment, I have never heard of such a thing. Doesn't mean it does not exist, I just have not seen it and thus can't offer any
My purpose for starting this thread was to share observations I had made and things I had heard, and to see if anyone could add to it. I do not mean
to send radio enthusiasts on wild goose chases or to have people questioning the presence of antennae or towers they may see. I will tell you folks
anything significant as best I can without revealing any info that could compromise COMSEC or my own healthy relationship with the government.