One Oscar Wiskey India (1O - Wisconsin) Winter Field Day

This year, I finally had the station and wherewithal to operate Winter Field Day 2022 representing Four Lakes ARC. I had other priorities on Saturday, but Sunday was just a matter of getting started early enough. Waking up, showering, gathering the station components, and transport to the local park I had in mind left me with barely two hours of the event remaining. Arriving at the scenic overlook of Madison's Hoyt Park before the rotating groups of, ah, recreational smokers, started happening gave me easy access to the benches in the park to be my operating position.

Blanket on a bench with my backpack, radio carrying case, and red clipboard for paper logging. First operational use of my tripod and jackite pole wire antenna in the background.

No question about it, this is a 1 Oscar station; no walls to separate me and my one radio from the outdoors!

A balmy 22-27 F according to the car outside air temperature, setup was nice and quick after the practice (and tuning) of the antenna the night before on the sidewalk of my apartment. Checking the tuning of my one-measurement/one-cut design technique resulted in performance right where I needed it on 20m:

NanoVNA tuning of the wire antenna showing an uncalibrated SWR of 1.56 at 14.3 MHz

From there it was off to the races listening for SSB stations running a frequency. I worked my way down 20m from 14.350 after finding no immediate callers on the Extra portion of the band. That first countdown to about 14.180 took me at least an hour and a half. Maybe not the most efficient method of pouncing, but that's what I did, unassisted and in the cold. By total happenstance, popping back to the top of the band got me NQ9A, the FLARC Secretary and one more before 1900Z hit.

On a quick break to stretch and maybe warm up a moment after the event ended at 1900Z, the station's still intact!

Never to waste a good opportunity (despite the temperature of my toes and contents of my bladder), I skipped over to Parks on the Air to grab some spots and hunted four parks before it was time to go QRT myself and get back home.

Before breaking down, I grabbed a picture of the connection point of the wires for my antenna.

Jackite pole in a 2" PVC pipe on a speaker tripod. The tuned 175" white wire goes up the pole and the 197" brown counterpoise heads off into the snow opposing the feedline. The junction is a banana socket binding post to BNC female adapter hooked to 30' of RG-316 coax to the not-very-necessary tuner.

And another view of my operating position:

The bench absolutely needed the blanket! The NanoVNA carrying mailer helps guide the coax across the backpack down to the tuner and radio.

Overall, I net 15 contest contacts and four POTA contacts over two and half hours of operating. Very good for a first run in the cold and cloudy. Outdoors, emergency power, and away from home net me most of my event points, but that's what they're for, right? Other wire antennas for the pole to provide additional band agility should be straightforward. Then it's on to more portable operation!

Thanks for the contest and 73!


Popular posts from this blog

ARRL 10m 2022 - Two Days In A Park, QRP, Unassisted, SSB (And POTA)

MEAN WELL HLG-320H Power Supply Actual Teardown and Failure Investigation

Parks on the Air: First Run at K-1452, Governor Nelson State Park