As you can see in the photo above, of Neal W3CUV, they actually did hit the trail; and from an e-mail that Bob sent me, they had a wonderful time!
" Hi Larry,
Just got home a bit ago and took a shower. Whew! It got warm and the gnats were driving me crazy. I put some repellent on, but they seemed to be everywhere. You'd be proud of me, I was very careful in the sun but got a great sunburn on the back of my neck! Reminds me of my Piscataway FD pictures. Hi.
Otherwise, it was a great day and fun was had by all. We made a half dozen contacts, mostly on 40 meters. 20 Meters yielded one QSO and 30 meters was a complete bust! So radio was a bit disappointing, but we enjoyed our outing. I'm enclosing a picture of Neal operating his MFJ 40 meter QRP radio. Before Dave and I left Neal and headed back to Erie, we took the short trail (1.1 mile) and I got a picture of Dave and Neal. Then as we said goodbye, a picture of Neal before he disappeared into the deep woods!
He just called me on his cellphone and I listened for him on 40 meters, but nothing heard, we are just too close for 40 meters. He was in his tent and settling in for the night. Hope he makes some contacts and has a safe hike.
73 de Bob W3BBO"
I love stories like this! There is nothing better than getting outside and sitting under the shade of some trees while playing radio! QRP may not have been designed with this in mind; but it sure fits "hand in glove" with outdoor operating!
If you've never tried it before; then I heartily recommend it. It doesn't have to be a backpack expedition to Timbuktu. either. Unhook your QRP gear from your main antenna, pack a hunk of wire and a battery and head off to your local park. A whole new facet of Amateur Radio awaits you.
73 de Larry W2LJ