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KPCW Improves 88.1 FM Signal In Summit And Wasatch

Roger Crawford

KPCW Radio has completed a significant upgrade to its signal at 88.1 FM that has noticeably improved the listening experience of our core listeners in Summit and Wasatch counties. 

KPCW operates on two FM frequencies: 91.9 FM, broadcasting from a tower on top of Quarry Mountain just north of Park City, and 88.1 FM, originating on a tower on top of Lewis Peak which is the dominant peak visible to the northeast from the Snyderville Basin.  

The 88.1 signal is now gangbusters. We’re getting calls from Wanship to the Heber Valley to the Timberline subdivision; areas previously without a clear KPCW signal are now getting us crystal clear. - KPCW General Manager Larry Warren

Winter storms had damaged the KPCW antennas, forcing it to reduce the power output of its 30-year-old transmitter.  After a fundraising campaign, KPCW moved forward with this repair project, allowing it to return to full power as licensed by the FCC.  In addition to all new, more substantial antennas, the station also replaced the transmitter with a new model.

“We thank the George S. and Delores Dore’Eccles Foundation for providing the grant which covered much of the cost of the project, as well as the Promontory Foundation, and members of our new Broadcasters Club, who are public radio-minded local citizens who are investing in KPCW’s future, and its commitment to serve the local communities of Summit and Wasatch County,” Warren continued.

One major improvement with the new 88.1 signal its clear transmission across Highway 40, from the I-80 junction to the eastern edge of the Heber Valley.  “We had a problematic one-mile stretch of U.S. 40 where two competing signals on 91.9 resulted in a garbled listening experience,” Warren said.  “Now by tuning in to 88.1 instead, drivers get a clear signal along that stretch going to and from Heber Valley.”

Motorists are advised to set both 88.1 and 91.9 FM as presets on their radios and switch between them to find the best signal.

KPCW's 91.9 FM signals originates from Quarry Mountain; the 88.1 FM from Lewis Peak.

  “This is a big step forward in KPCW’s commitment to serve all of Summit and Wasatch counties,” KPCW Board of Trustees Chairman Bob Richer added.  “This will allow our signal to reach into remote areas we have not previously covered, which will be invaluable in times of emergency, like wildfires and extreme weather and road conditions.”

KPCW is a listener-supported non-profit public radio station.  This year it was nominated for the Marconi Award for Overall Excellence in Broadcasting.  KPCW was just one of five nominees among a field of 4,000 non-commercial radio stations.

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