Back in the Saddle Again

It’s always a pleasure to work Bert (F6HKA) in France but especially so this morning when I heard the familiar strong signal here on the east coast. He always has a 599 signal. This morning I worked him on 10 meters. I’ve been very busy since the beginning of the new year and Bert was my first DX contact for the 2014  log book. He was sending K3Y/EU but I knew exactly who he was when I hear him. We’ve worked 9 different times now and he always takes a few extra moments to say hello and how are you? He’s a true gentleman and he enjoys working QRP stations.

I was skipping across the bands now and I worked the next station who was in Madrid and on 12 meters. This contact into Spain was much more difficult but I finally worked EC4DEX after several attempts.

I now dropped down to 15 meters and caught this station (IQ2CJ) in Northern Italy. It was also difficult to copy but we finally managed to exchange call signs and move onward to other stations. I was hearing a station in Ireland but couldn’t work him.

It’s freezing cold this morning. The temperature is -11 Celcius and the wind is blowing at 32 kph. We’re expecting a low tonight of -20 Celcius with a wind chill of -39 C. BBBBrrrrrrrrr……….

 I don’t plan to go outdoors today because of the windy cold weather.      

As I continued to travel towards the lower bands; I stopped on the 30 meter band and threw my call out on the QRP frequencies. I was answered by Hal (KA4SDU) in nearby Louisville Kentucky. He lives next to the Ohio River and enjoys watching the barge traffic as it moves downstream. We both being Navy Veterans, we had a delightful talk about several different things.

 Hal loves to play with antennas and produces a really neat one called Hal’s Bamboo Beast

The month of December brought NO outside activity for the WV Chapter of the NAQCC Club and I doubt for the next couple of months. I don’t want to end up like that frozen rabbit in the upper picture.

Our monthly club breakfast, at the Charleston downtown restaurant, is this coming Wednesday. A few days later Eric (AC8LJ) will drive to a fellow CW operators home to see a variety of different keys. I’m assuming the weather will be a little warmer at that time.

Don’t want to end up like that frozen rabbit……


John Smithson, Jr., N8ZYA, is a regular contributor to and writes from West Virginia, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

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