MURS or GMRS for Backpacking

I’ve been doing much research to replace my FMRS radios which have poor range and found this great website.

For backpacking would I be better off getting an inexpensive GMRS radio like Midland GXT 900 rated at 5 watts or a 2 watt VHF commerical radio and utitlize the MURS frequency? I am considering Tekk XV-100 which is the lightest and least expensive VHF I can find ! Probably also use it on the ski slopes.

If I go the MURS route and buy a 2 watt VHF commercial radio and use it only on the MURS frequencies do I need a license? Not sure if the radio has to be 95 certified or not.

Thanks in advance for your help! Jeff

my understaning is the MURS do not need a license…but I defer to some of the mor experienced members in this forum. I have also read in this forum that GMRS may be better getting through trees/foilage but distance depends a bit on your location/height of atenna (top of a hill will broadcast much further). Of course GMRS does require the license (which is not really a big deal on

good luck, let us know what you decide

Thanks Dave for your thoughts!

I would like to get the MURS because I can just hand one of the radios to a friend without worrying about a license. But the best price I can find is about $140 for a VHF radio that I want versus less than $60 for 2 GMRS radios. I want a total of 3 so even with the cost of the license the GMRS is much cheaper. For about $200 I can have 4 GMRS radios and a license but it would be about $420 for the 3 MURS radios.

If the MURS radio doesn’t exceed the GMRS it just doesn’t make a lot of sense. If however the MURS does a bit better it might justify the cost.

I keep hearing that VHF does better outdoors but not sure if it is much of a difference and like you said it may have more to do with the thickness of the brush and trees and UHF may have the advantage. I also hear a quality unit will exceed a higher watt cheaper unit so again not sure what to do.

Any additional thoughts by anybody would be appreciated!

its true a higher watt unit doesn’t necessarily mean better range… antenna height is also really important. Some better radios allow you to switch out the antenna and really boost your signal.