NA7U, Casey Bahr, was mobile with the club call on the island of Kauai, HI the week of April 19th. Following is his K7FFF log entries and summary of activity. He operated with a hamstick and Ten Tec Scout running 50 watts. The hamstick was mounted on top of a rented Grand Am. Makes a decent ground plane, hi!
Remember, that even if you have worked NA7U or K7FFF before, you can count 1 or 3 points, respectively towards FISTS awards if you worked these calls in HI, according to FISTS Awards rules.
First of all, a big thanks to everyone who took the time to try and contact me during my skeds in Kauai whether or not we made a QSO or not! All in all it was a real treat for me to work mobile from a remote location with somewhat limited tools at hand. The fact that I was able to work several FNW members and friends as well as many other ops made it a very worthwhile endeavor. I hope that I or other FNW members can do something similar in the future.
Secondly, let me apologize to anyone who was confused by some mistakes I made in the published schedule, especially if it caused you to miss me on the air. As I often do, I forgot to align the dates with the UTC times that I posted. The dates were local time, but should have been 1 day later except for the Saturday sked to match the 0200Z start times. Also, I didn't realize that Hawaii stays on Standard Time the entire year, so the local HI times there were also wrong. I doubt that that made any difference to anyone except me, at least.
All the skeds were made while parked somewhere on the island in a rented Grand Am. Monday's and Wednesday's sessions were from different points in Kokee State Park near or at Waimea Canyon at about 3500 feet elevation. Propagation during these first two sessions was definitely better than later ones when I was near or at sea level, though who can say if that made all the difference. Monday's sked was easily the best as I worked stations almost back-to-back for a couple of hours, getting in some nice ragchews. As a warmup I worked a TX station just before the first sked was to start. The first official sked QSO was with Carl, KC7RZA, FNW #10. Carl may have been generous with the 339 report he gave me from Portland, but we both hung in there to complete the QSO.
Fortunately, that was about the weakest report I received during the trip. On Monday I worked up and down the West Coast, into Florida, and even got a 599 in OH. I also worked an op in Canada and one in Argentina! On Wednesday propagation was again good, but I didn't work as long. I was able to talk back-to-back with a couple of friends from my home QTH (who reported on the improved OR weather since my departure, hi hi), and again into the Southern U.S. and California.
I'm not sure, but I believe it was coincidence that I hooked up with N1YLA in Vermont during one sked. I had worked him before on April 5th the very first time I tested my mobile setup in our driveway in Hillsboro working the hamstick on my pickup! That was also the first time I'd ever worked Vermont.
After we changed our Kauai living quarters from Kokee, up in the rain forest, to Kapaa, at sea level on the east side of the island, I thought that propagation was just a bit less, but quite reasonable. On Saturday morning from the beach it was terrible, however. I worked 3 stations in an hour and had to struggle for every one. I cut that session right about at the hour and engaged in a more productive activity, a bit of snorkeling and underwater photography, hi.
Later, in the evening, I hooked up everything once more at our bungalow and worked as NA7U. Got a strong signal from CA, and my very last QSO was an op in Zambia who was just getting up for breakfast, Brian, 9J2BO! That was a great finish to a wonderful trip. My only regret, radio-wise, was that I hadn't taken the time to install the noise blanker in the Scout before I left. I let that task slip as I thought to myself that I wouldn't be using the radio while driving, but the real problem was that I usually operated in parking lots and got lots of QRN from the other cars. Live and learn.
Frequency UTC Station RST (S/R) Operator QTH FISTS # April 20th, local time (April 21st zulu time) 14030 0150 N5FI 579/559 Bill Houston, TX 2001 14030 0200 KC7RZA 559/339 Carl Portland, OR 4279 (FNW #10) 14030 0213 VE6CGX 589/569 Tony Calgary, AB, Canada 3919 14030 0232 K7WQ 589/579 Mark Olympia, WA None 14028 0250 LU1MBT 569/569 Frank Mendoza, Argentina None 14028 0305 N6MNZ 589/559 Mark San Jose, CA 4056 (CC #402) 14030 0320 WB8OWM 579/599 Skip Canton, OH 2415 14030 0330 WN4DX 559/559 Larry Tampa, FL 3345 April 22nd, local time (April 23rd, zulu time) 14030 0155 N4ZZK 579/459 Al Grayson, GA 4225 14030 0210 W3EVW 579/559 Roger Lester, PA None 14030 0222 K7MPH 579/569 Mark Beaverton, OR None 14030 0232 K7PJT 599/599 Tom Hillsboro, OR None 14030 0259 K4JG 569/589 Bob Brooksville, FL None 14030 0315 KC0AGH 579/489 Mike Denver, CO 4510 April 24th, local time (April 25th, zulu time) 14030 0200 K7FD 589/599 John Seal Rock, OR 2420 (CC #418, FNW #4) 14030 0223 K7MPH 459/559 Mark Beaverton, OR None 14030 0238 KE6JJR 599/559 Mark San Jose, CA 3265 14029 0258 WI9M 449/549 Gary Brown Deer, WI None 14032 0313 N4RD 559/569 Dick Englewood, FL None April 25th, local time (April 25th, zulu time) 14030 1930 K2LNS 579/559 Herb Wilkes Barre, PA None 14030 1942 N1YLA 549/559 Bob Morrisville, VT 3068 (CC #253)
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