Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Field report: QRPTTF/SOTA 2014

View from atop Platte Mound
On May 3rd we celebrated the QRP To The Field event by going out to Wisconsin for some W9 SOTA and a spot of portable ops.  I've been out to Platte Mounds, W9/WI-017, before, back when the W9 association was launched.  Read about that double activation here.

This time around I decided I'd just stick to the "easy" peak and make the most of my time there.  I also treated this activation as one of my 100 Days of Summer which was easy since it took me almost exactly 10 minutes to climb the stairs and trek through the wooded area on the peak to find a spot to operate.

Platte Mound is a public attraction so there's a few picnic tables on the top in a clearing.  This is where I operated last time but I thought I'd go into the woods a bit this time for a little more privacy.  It was a very windy day so that location offered a little respite from that as well.

Log where I sat for the duration of the operation - sore rear end.
I brought along my homebrew 2m/440 antenna I use for satellite work too but unfortunately I didn't make a single sat contact.  I had plenty of luck on HF though!  I set up my latest EFHW which uses snap swivels and little bullet connectors to work on several bands.  I'll have a separate post on that antenna.

I put the FT-817 on 17 and started off. I took a bit of video of the event and put it on Youtube.  I included a review of my new QRP portable bag at the beginning.  Check it out: