Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Saratoga National Historical Park - a success!

My outing to Saratoga National Historical Park was an all around success.  I didn't make anywhere near the nunber of QSOs that I wanted to, but it was still a successful day.

The park wasn't as close to our Lake George location as I had thought.  Yes, it was a 1/2 hour down Interstate 87, but once you get off the highway, it's roughly another 1/2 hour to the park.  It was nice to drive through the scenery of upstate New York, seeing farms, horse breeding farms, small towns, etc.  You never get to see the "good stuff" from the major highway.

I arrived at the park a bit later than I had intended, and went to the Visitor's Center, which was very busy.  The Park Rangers were occupied, talking with the many visitors.  When I walked through the doors with my ARRL NPOTA shirt on, I was greeted with a big smile and a "Are you activating today?"  I answered in the affirmative, that I would situate myself in the picnic area by the Visitor's Center and I got a quick nod of approval.

I started out just operating from the Jeep using the Hamstick on 40 Meters and the Buddistick on 20 Meters.  After a while (and a bathroom break) I decided to deploy the PAR END FEDZ using my drive on mast support and the Jackite pole. There were tall trees that would have served the purpose, but that's really a no-no unless you ask for permission ahead of time.  The PAR seemed to perform just as well as the sticks on the Jeep.  I didn't notice any increase in activity after switching over.

I worked up and down the East Coast and into the Midwest. There was one QSO with W6MYN in California.  I tried listening for other NPOTA stations that I saw spotted on the Cluster, but had no luck there.

At the end, before packing up, I even tried 17 Meters for a bit - no joy there, either.

In hindsight, yesterday would have been the better day to go, as solar conditions were much, much better - but it is what it is.

Thanks to all the chasers who stuck with me and allowed me to activate HP42.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

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