A visit to the Wythall Club and some 50MHz bicycle portable….

On Tuesday evening, I made the 80 minute or so trip up the M40 to visit the Wythall club in south Birmingham to present the 'My World of VHF' talk to them. It was a very enjoyable evening - the meeting was well attended and there seemed to be more interest in VHF matters than there sometimes is. Thank you to all everyone at Wythall for their warm welcome and a fun evening. It's always interesting presenting the talk as it's a reminder to me of the various aspects of VHF/UHF operation. Somehow talking about simple 50MHz portable activity struck a chord with me.

And so it was this morning that I headed out on my bike with the FT-817, the ATX Walkabout antenna and the Baofeng UV-5R. I rode up onto Windmill Hill, a couple of miles from here.

I knew 50MHz had been in and out as I'd made some QSOs from home before I headed out. Although I didn't make any 50MHz QSOs, it's always interesting to listen on the little whip antenna - and to hope that signals will come up. The furthest I heard was an LZ2 station and the strongest was an EA5, but not really strong enough for a low power QSO. Once again the GB3MCB beacon from Cornwall was audible and I heard a station from the South West (IO70) - so it's a fair path over the Ridgeway.

Funnily enough as I was packing up, I overheard a QSO on a 145MHz repeater about how there was never any activity on 50MHz. Really?

Tim Kirby, G4VXE, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Oxfordshire, England. Contact him at [email protected].

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