DX from Hunkins Pond

This afternoon I hiked from Shute Hill to Hunkins Pond. Once there, I set up in a farm field with a remarkable view. I worked Finland, Cuba, Russia and Spain.

The hike was about 2 miles cross country on an old logging road. The day was so perfect… about 70 degrees, sunny with a sky as blue you could ever imagine. I started out across from a cemetery on the top of Shute Hill. From there I headed south and crossed a small brook coming from a large beaver pond.

As I gained elevation, I went through a brilliant field of golden rod. The sound of buzzing bees was so loud, I could have been inside the hive itself.

The trail goes through the woods and over a pretty high elevation and down toward Hunkins Pond where it meets an old range road at a gate.

I brought my Kenwood TH-D72 APRS handie with me. Here’s an image of my track captured from http://aprs.fi – I continued down the Old Range Road to the east another quarter of a mile, but I couldn’t hit an APRS digipeater from there so it doesn’t show in the image below.

The range road borders the Swain’s dairy farm. The fields are simply gorgeous and so are the views. I set up my little HB-1B on 20 meters underneath one of the huge maple trees that David Swain taps each year for syrup.

I operated here for about 20 minutes using 4 watts and a half wave wire. I had good luck as you can see from the log.

17 Sep-12 1910  14.015 OH/DJ9DZ CW 599 599   Finland
17 Sep-12 1921  14.013 CO6RD    CW 599 599   Cuba
17 Sep-12 1923  14.033 UA6AES   CW 579 599   Russia
17 Sep-12 1930  14.060 EA2LU    CW 559 579   Spain

The last QSO was certainly the most notable. After working the low end of the band, I went to 14.060, the QRP frequency. Hearing no one, I called CQ. Jorge, EA2LU returned the call. He was also QRP. He was running a K3 at 5W with a 3 element yagi. Jorge and I have had at least 20 QSOs in the last five years, and it’s always a joy to hear him.

After this, I packed up for the return hike. It takes about 45 minutes back to the cemetery. These are prime outdoor days in New Hampshire. The bugs are few, the air is crisp and fragrant, and there’s plenty of incentive with cold weather ahead. It’s supposed to rain tomorrow.

Jim Cluett, W1PID, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Hampshire, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

5 Responses to “DX from Hunkins Pond”

  • Mike Ve3wdm:

    Good morning Jim, great pictures and as you said from the shots it looks like a very nice day to get out and about with the radio. I was not sure I read what type of antenna you were using….what was it?

  • Mike… thanks so much for the note. I was using a 33 foot wire… half wave on 20 meters. I tuned it with the little Par endfedz matchbox. Sometimes I tune it with the Elecraft T1 or the ZM-2. Works well with any half-wave capable tuner. It’s a simple, effective hiking antenna. One throw… sit under the branch so the wire is vertical. vy best to you OM. Jim W1PID

  • Dave K1THP:

    Jim … keep them coming. I enjoy your Nw Hampshire hikes imensely. It reminds me that you don’t have to have a KX3 or other big dollar rig to enjoy Ham Radio. I have plenty of small QRP rigs that just don’t get enough use.

  • Dave – thanks for your kind note. So glad you enjoy the reports. vy 73 Jim

  • Wayne KM6T:

    Did not know I had a pond.

    Wayne Hunkins

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