Sunday, March 27, 2016

Rainy Day RaDAR

I had ambitious plans for Saturday. I wanted to explore Salinas Park in Gulf County, Florida. The steady showers and thunderstorms nixed that plan. However, since my wife was working there in Port St Joe for the day, I needed to make the best of it. I decided to go to Jetty Park first. It had a small pavilion to shield me from the rain, The antenna I chose was the Alexloop mag loop. I have found that a mag loop will work well under pavilions even if they have a metal roof.

The pavilion at Jetty Park
I had arranged a RaDAR to RaDAR attempt with Eddie ZS2BNE in South Africa on 12 meters CW. I was near the saltwater of the marina which was on the path toward South Africa. At the scheduled time Eddie was there, faint but he was there. I pulled out my report as 419. So what a pleasure to hear you Eddie. Hopefully, we can R2R during the April 2nd RaDAR Challenge. RaDAR is the Rapid Deployment Amateur Radio concept that Eddie introduced in South Africa. Now, RaDAR has gone global.

The Alexloop

The Elecraft KX3

My operating was sparse during the day as I went QRT when the thunder rolled in. At the Jetty Park, I also worked a Virginia station on 30 CW and Italy on 17 meters SSB, The Italian gave me a 58 report. I later setup the Chameleon F Loop under a pavilion at Frank Pate park, I snagged a Colorado contact on 17 meters. The mag loops help out on rainy days. It was not the rain that kept me QRT but the lightening.

The Chameleon Mag Loop


My plan is to return to Port St Joe for the April 2nd RaDAR Challenge. We will see how the weather shapes up. The forecast looks better than this weekend. It is still raining today, Easter Sunday

Pelicans and Gulls on the Jetty

A line of gulls waiting out the rain

Boats in the marina