So I'm sitting here in Plymouth Mtg., PA scanning through the freqs on my radio and I picked up the Carbon County ARES net coming in loud and clear. Their repeater is located about 60 miles away in Jim Thorpe, PA. I checked in and introduced myself. Net control gave me a good signal report, even though I was transmitting with only 10W. According to him, there were some "scrambled eggs" in the background but I was totally intelligible.
Even though VHF FM is often said to require line of sight, there are a lot of hills between the repeater and me, so I think the knife edge effect is in play.
My rig is a Yaesu FT-7800R 2M/70cm dual bander, with a Comet GP-3 antenna on top of a 5 foot mast on the short chimney sticking out of my roof.
A few minutes later a station from Sussex County, DE checked in and reported that he too was hearing the repeater clearly. He noted that he also was able to bring in Martinsburg, WV shortly beforehand. Impressive!
Nice to know I can communicate out that far without much infrastructure (or will be, once I get a battery backup in place for my shack).