Sunday, 24 July 2016

Colorado 14er Weekend

Each year I try to take part in the event, some years I have been successful, others not so much.  Hopefully this year I'll have more luck than last year when I got skunked !!

Amateur Radio operators from around Colorado will be climbing many of Colorado’s 14,000-foot mountains and Summits On The Air (SOTA) peaks to set up amateur radio stations in an effort to communicate with other radio amateurs across the state and around the world.

Join in on the fun this year during the 25th annual event and see how many of the mountaintop stations you can contact. This year the event is expanded to include the entire weekend, August 6 & 7. However, many mountaintop activators will hit the trail early with the goal of being off the summits by noon due to lightning safety concerns.

Activity can occur on any amateur band including HF and VHF.  Some of the frequencies that will be in use are:

For CW:


For SSB:


You can check the SOTA Watch spotting site HERE for updated frequencies and active callsigns.

Here's a couple of shots of the event from recent years........

Friday, 22 July 2016

Incredible !!

Wow......just saw the stats for my Blog.  As of today I'm at 100,026 views!!   Thanks to everyone who reads my rantings, I really appreciate it.

Hopefully over the past few years somebody may have learned something useful from reading this site.

Well, let's crack on with getting the second 100,000 views !!

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Comings and goings.....

Not much going on in the VE3FCT shack at the moment.....summer seems to be getting in the way!!

However, this coming Sunday the Frontenac Radio Group will be activating Amherst Island, ON-021.  Amherst hasn't been activated in a good number of years so we;'re hoping it will attract a bit of attention.

We will be on from 1500 UTC till 1900 UTC, unless propagation is in the toilet again and then we'll call it quits early.

Callsign will be VE3FRG, and the frequencies will be:

14.250 - 14.260

I have been doing a bit of WSPR with not much success.  Here's the map from last night at 2230 UTC showing the slim pickings on 20m.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Canada Day Contest

Not a very exciting contest for me.  I had to use my IC-718 due to my FT-950 being put out of action in my post Field Day "accident".

The IC-718 is definitely not a contest radio, in fact it was horrible as the DSP was next to useless, and the front end of the radio gets overloaded very easily.  The unfortunate thing is the radio is very well laid out and is super easy to use, and you do not have to go digging through layers of menu settings to make changes on the fly.

I guess if I'm going to keep this rig, I'm going to have to add the INRAD 2.1 Kz SSB filter, which I hear makes all the difference to the radio.

I have submitted my log to RAC for scoring, but I don't think my 50 QRP contacts will win this year.

It's off to Radioworld in Toronto on Tuesday so the "radio doctor" can look at the FT-950 and give me a diagnoses.  Hopefully, fingers and toes crossed, it isn't something too bad that needs fixing.