You will have more options in RaDAR for the upcoming Nov 6th RaDAR Challenge according to the new draft rules. Note there are new categories and online logging and evaluation. Eddie ZS6BNE is in the process of finalizing the rules and his online web pages. So please standby for updates. Below is a slide show entitled Why RaDAR? It includes some of the new RaDAR ideas coming.
Thursday, October 14, 2021
Linda, Suzy, and I made a camping trip from late September into October; FDR State Park, GA, Unicoi State Park, GA, and Cheaha State Park, AL. On our way to FDR State Park from Dothan, AL we had our first blowout on a trailer tire. This was disappointing since I replaced all the tires with Goodyears recently. The good news was we were safely back on the road in a couple of hours.
|Dowdell's Knob SOTA Summit|
At FDR state park, I did a POTA activation with seventy-seven contacts. I also did a SOTA activation from nearby Dowdell's Knob WG4/CE-004. It is an easy drive-up summit. I had good success with the Icom IC-705 and the Alexloop. I was running five watts because I set five watts as the max and forgot how to raise it to ten watts. Even at five watts, I got contacts on 40, 30, 20, 17, and 15 meters for a total of twenty-one. I also used the IC 705 for a two-meter simplex contact on 146.520 MHz.
|The activation stats for our stops while camping|
|Always a joy when my buddies chase me.|
Unicoi State Park in North Georgia was a change of scene. Unfortunately, it rained for most of our stay. I got in a POTA activation. Also, the Peanut Power Sprint, a two-hour QRP event, was on October 3rd. I was Nut 113 and I worked twenty-one other QRP Nuts mostly on 40 meters. I had to bring the rig into the trailer to escape from the rain. When camping, I look for other parks in the area I can do POTA from. I found Smithgall State Park. I went during a brief break in the rain. To speed my setup I went with the Alexloop again. I was pleased to get seventeen contacts and four on 40 meters SSB.
|A view along the trails in Unicoi State Park, Suzy enjoyed the trails.|
Our last camping stop was at Cheaha State Park. I had no internet to spot myself on the POTA Site. I did hunt & pounce taking advantage of the SKCC WES and several QSO Parties for a total of nineteen contacts. I ran ten watts and the Alexloop yet again. Due to a calendar miscalculation, we had to leave the park a day early. So I missed doing the SOTA summit right there in the Cheaha State Park. Oh well, a reason to go back.
|Sunset at Cheaha Mountain, the highest mountain in Alabama.|
So the next event for me is RaDAR on November 6th. Eddie ZS6BNE has come up with New RaDAR Rules. I will likely go with the IC 705 and the Alexloop mag for a manageable pack up, quick setup, and rapid band changes.
|Suzy stays dry at the Smithgall State Park POTA activation.|
Thursday, August 12, 2021
I launched a pico balloon from Oklahoma on July 20th, 2021. It carried a Skytracker payload developed by Bill Brown, WB8ELK. I got APRS reports from it for ten days. The SSID was N4KGL-11. It cruised above 28,000 feet and gave us much entertainment. Boy, this pico balloon flight was fun!
|The launch was over Keystone Lake at Keystone State Park, Oklahoma|
|The ten-day flight started in Oklahoma did a trip to Mexico and back, then to the Gulf of Mexico, and was last heard from in Colorado.|
|This is the solar-powered Skytacker payload developed by Bill WB8ELK It only weighs 12 grams.|
Saturday, August 7, 2021
|The 100-watt setup at Lake Lurleen State Park in Alabama|
|Contacts with friends via Ham Radio|
|A view of Lake Bailey at Petit Jean State Park, Arkansas|
|Suzy in the trailer|
Tuesday, June 29, 2021
Linda and I are trailer camping during our retirement. So a campground was our Field Day venue. I chose East Bank COE Campground on Lake Seminole. It is not that close to Panama City or Dothan, but it did have ample green space for antennas.
|Site A-10 at East Bank Campground|
Fortunately, Rick NZ2I came all the way from Callaway, Florida, to join me to make a two-person 1B GA entry.
|Rick NZ2I, a great friend|
We made use of a Clam Venture screen shelter that was very easy to set up and did fine. We also made use of an Icy Breeze portable air conditioner. We had one brief shower when setting up. Otherwise, the weather was good but hot.
|The new Clam Venture Screen Shelter|
My setup this time was the Icom 7100 and three antennas, an Inverted L with the Icom AH-4, the SOTABeams 40-30-20 link dipole, and the Bravo 7K vertical. Rick NZ2I arrived about an hour before the start and helped finish the antenna installs.
|The Bravo 7K vertical did great to the West Coast and Canada|
|The Icom 7100 was the rig this year.|
|Sunset over Lake Seminole|
Wednesday, June 16, 2021
My camping plans for Meaher State Park this May at Spanish Fort, AL near Mobile, served several purposes. First, it was an opportunity to catch up with two of my ham buddies from my teenage days growing up in Dothan, AL. The Mobile Hamfest on Saturday was our gathering place. Forrest is a lawyer in Mobile and Curtis is a semi-retired broadcast engineer in Lucedale, MS. This reunion was fifty years in the making. It was very enjoyable to remember our early ham days and find out what these two have been doing since. My third buddy, Lionel, could not come this time, but another reunion is in order for all of us.
|Teenage Ham Buddies: Left to right, Greg, Curtis, and Forrest|
|Linda and I enjoyed the sunset at Meaher.|
Tuesday, June 15, 2021
Dennis's favorite hobby was ham radio. He was involved with repeaters and packet radio in the past. In recent years, Dennis enjoyed operating amateur radio on the outdoors. Dennis and I enjoyed many outings together, putting parks and islands in the air. Dennis was the ultimate friend, a team player, and was always ready to help others. Dennis is survived by his wife, Lana.