January 30, 2024
A Northeast Iowa farmer turns to Midland's GMRS handheld two-way radios for reliable, easy to use communication.
Carl Dodge grew up on his family's farm.
“I grew up on a farm with one brother, my mom, and my dad. We actually lived on the same farm that my dad grew up on. We had cattle, hogs, corn, soybeans. It was a pretty standard small farm for the mid 90s."
After attending college, Dodge never anticipated returning to agriculture. However, after working "random" jobs he never felt a passion for, he ended up meeting the farmer he now works for.
Eventually, his work on the farm would lead to sharing his experiences on social media.
“In 2018, I started sharing some farm content on Youtube just as a way to share some farm stuff with a cousin who never had the opportunity to have her kids around a farm. I tried to send her some video footage, but it was too big for an email attachment. I put it on Youtube and people started watching it, asking questions in the comments. I just kept making more videos so now Youtube and Instagram are a big part of my farming life.”
For Dodge, the unpredictability of farming keeps his life interesting. He also said he enjoys constantly learning more.
“I like the independence, the flexibility, and the challenges that come with farming. I also really get excited about figuring out what I can do better. Whether it’s finding a more suitable bull to use for the style of cows we’re trying to produce, what I can do to get the corn to germinate more uniformly, something I can do with the planter that I didn’t do the year before. You can be happy with the job you’ve done, but you’re never going to be fully satisfied.”
However, now that he can share farming with his kids, that is unlike anything else.
“Being able to show my kids is the thing that I love the most about farming. I’ve got an 11-year-old daughter and an eight-year-old son. They’re to the point now where they can actually participate and help. My daughter helped us work cattle last week.”
Dodge said him and the farm began using handheld two-way radios several years ago.
“We always just used to use our cellphones in the field and call each other when we needed to change plans.”
Once his wife started operating farm vehicles, handheld two-way radios became a matter of safety.
"She had never operated large equipment before. We felt like there were sometimes where we needed to get her information right away. We might need to let her know about a washout ahead. If she misses the call or there’s no cellphone service, it can get dangerous.”
They turned to the GXT1000VP4 GMRS Two-Way Radio.
“We really liked them. It was better audio quality and better range than I had ever had in a handheld radio.”
He loves the mobility the handhelds bring him.
“My favorite product is the GXT1000. It’s a powerful little handheld. If you’re jumping in a pick up, you could have it clipped to your shirt collar or your coat, somewhere else. They’re so handy.”
Even after damage, the GXT1000s are successful in the field.
“These are rock solid pieces of equipment. We did run over one of them with a combine this summer and it still works. The antenna broke and so did the screen, but as long as the other radios are on the same channels, this baby works like a dream.”
They then added in the MXT115AGVP3 MicroMobile® Farm Tractor Bundle.
Things don't slow down during the winter for Dodge, both at home and on the farm.
“We’re always selling hogs, getting babies in, making barn repairs, there’s those daily chores. At home, I’ve got the cattle all winter. We just got done breeding cows in December so now we’re just taking care of them, feeding them, and cleaning up after them.”