One of the best things about heading to a remote RV campsite is getting away from everything, unplugging and relaxing. Unfortunately, truly getting away often means missing out on technology that not only makes life convenient, but keeps you safe.
In a remote campsite, there’s a great chance you’ll be in a spot where there’s no cell phone reception. While that can be a good thing on the surface, the truth is that you simply need to be able to communicate sometimes.
That’s why it’s a great idea to have a pair of two-way radios on hand. With a two-way radio, you can keep in touch between two vehicles while you’re driving, stay in communication when you’re out of eye or earshot on a hiking trail, or talk to someone clear across the campground. If you don’t have a CB radio in your vehicle, you might want to invest in a pair of these radios simply for safety reasons.
Here’s a look at five of the best walkie talkie two-way radios for communicating around your campsite. As a general note, the “mile range” figures on these radios are under optimal conditions, meaning one mountaintop to another with nothing in between and clear air. In most real-world scenarios, you’ll get a range of up to one or two miles – still plenty enough for most reasonable situations.
The MH230R from Motorola has a 23 mile range with 121 privacy codes over 22 channels, along with 11 weather channels with automatic alerts to keep you safe in the event of severe weather.
These radios are rechargeable, and usually last for about 8 hours on a single charge. In addition, you can use traditional AAA batteries in lieu of the charging pack.
Most helpful real-life review: “This is my second pair of Motorola 2-Way radios. I was amazed at how good these radios did in the mountains. At one point I was over three miles away from my father on the other side of a mountain and we could still talk clearly.”
Covering a 16 mile range, these radios have 22 channels. They’re powered with three AAA batteries, and an automatic power saving feature extends battery life.
Features include auto-squelch to reduce interference plus channel scan and monitoring to help find nearby radios. These include the “Roger beep” that lets you know when the other party is done speaking.
Most helpful real-life review: “Worked great during a 2000-mile trip. The battery life is pretty good and the sound is clear and pretty much static free. The price, quality, and otherwise performance of these are great!”
Midland has been a popular name in the CB radio market for decades, so it makes sense they’d make popular two-way radios as well. These give you up to 5,560 channel options to help you block other conversations, and you’ll need it as they boast a 36 mile range. The radios come with 50 channels plus a NOAA weather scan to keep you aware of dangerous weather in the area.
They’re not completely waterproof, but they are splash proof, meaning they offer protection against light rain or splashing water from all directions. One excellent feature here is that you can make “direct calls” to other people within the group without alerting the entire group.
Most helpful real-life review: “I use these radios at our hunting camp in Central Georgia in thick forest. I have used all major brands with Midland the best. It has more features that you will ever need and they are okay to use in the rain.”
With ultra clear long distance reception, these radios have 22 channels and cover 16 miles. A built-in weather radio receiver lets you keep track of weather issues, and the radio automatically shuts off weak transmissions or unwanted noise due to terrain or range constraints.
Also included are rechargeable batteries and a micro-USB charging cable. The “Roger beep” confirmation tone lets you know it’s clear to talk, and power saver circuitry extends battery life when not transmitting or receiving.
Most helpful real-life review: “Great range, fast charge times, love the drop in charge base, great features, long-lasting chargeable batteries come with them – and some really nice ‘add-on’ features like helmet-microphones and lapel mics are available for these radios, as well.”
Specifically designed for harsh conditions, these radios are waterproof and dust-proof. They feature a “VibraCall” silent vibrating ringer for times when a ring would be a little too intrusive.
Like on many other two-way radios, NOAA channels provide emergency alerts including tornadoes, winter storms, severe thunderstorms, flash floods, emergency evacuations and Amber Alerts. The radios charge via a mini-USB charger, and are perfect for the outdoors.
Most helpful real-life review: “Their range and clarity is startling. A built-in LED flashlight is really handy. They are weatherproof, which came in handy when one of my knuckleheaded ankle-biters left his radio where it was hit with our sprinklers, a light rain shower, and a massive amount of dew one night and a hard frost the next. I found the radio, turned it on, and it worked like a charm.”