My job with Reclamation moved to Denver in 1988. However, I continued to work to establish more FM translator stations in southwestern Colorado, now that I knew what was needed to accomplish the tasks. Next was a relay station on Storm King Mountain, southeast of Montrose, to send the signal from Grand Junction towards Gunnison. That unit officially served Cimarron, a very minor population. Later the station was deactivated in favor of a microwave link between Grand Junction and Gunnison.
Another unit was planned to serve Ridgway and Ouray, but local opposition on Log Hill, the proposed site, forced the unit to be placed on a miniature tower on a former garbage dump in the valley bottom, a decidedly inferior site. That station was shut down when another radio company claimed the frequency for their unit on Log Hill.
The Gunnison station was about four years in the planning. The proposed site was on top of the tall hill south of town. There were already numerous radio towers on top and the land was owned by the Western State College. There was again local opposition, this time expressed in the denial of access to the electric power grid on the mountain. It was claimed that the power line was already at its limit. Eventually we selected a location on the west side of the hill and erected our tower. We installed a thermoelectric power generator, run off a propane tank. We were able to make the claim that whenever the other stations on this hill lost electric power (not that unusual an occurrence) our station would be the only one broadcasting. In addition to the local population, the station was intended to serve Christian radio programming for the college students and the camp of the Way International cult group. Eventually another radio company asked to share our tower. They installed a solar power system to serve both their own needs and ours.
These are views of the Gunnison tower from the town of Gunnison. First is an overview. Note the
three trees on the right. The second enlarges the three trees and the tower behind them. The
third enlarges the tower itself as seen 28 April 2015.
Christian radio, KJOL for Montrose, Lake City