It was an NPOTA weekend …..

in more ways than one.

I worked about 5 or 6 new entities between Friday night and Saturday, so I am getting really close to my personal goal of working 100.  The bands have been good the past couple of days, after totally stinking during the middle of the week, so that was a good thing.

I have lived relatively near Morristown National Historical Park my entire life. I think I've been there once before NPOTA.  Yesterday, I decided to take Marianne and our dog, Harold up there for the afternoon, as dogs are welcome there.  It was a beautiful Spring day, Marianne had an extremely rare Saturday off; and I wanted to do something with her.  It seemed like a good opportunity to enjoy the gorgeous weather, walk the dog and get some good exercise in for ourselves. It's because of NPOTA that I discovered that dogs are welcome there. If I didn't see that while I was up there, activating the park, I wouldn't have known otherwise.

Much to our surprise, when we got there, we found out that a Revolutionary War re-enactment was taking place:






The highlight of the day was when one of the re-enactors came up to me and tapped me on the shoulder. He pointed to the American flag that is embroidered on the left sleeve of my jacket and he said to me, "Kind sir, a question, please. It appears that you have a United States flag on your coat; and yet there are so many stars?  Certainly more than 13!"

I answered, "It's a long and sometimes bloody story, and I don't think we have time to go through it all, but I would like to thank you and your fellow soldiers for giving birth to the finest Nation on Earth."

He chuckled, and I chuckled at our impromptu time travelling scenario. In the end, it was great NPOTA day, even though this one didn't involve Amateur Radio.  So hats off to the ARRL for reminding me about some of the really cool places that there are to visit around my QTH.

In the evening, I decided that I would go out early Sunday morning to activate Sandy Hook, which is part of the Gateway National Recreational Area - RC08.





I used the Jackite pole and my homebrew mast holder and the PAR END FEDZ 40/20/10.  In a little over an hour, I made over 40 contacts on 40 and 20 Meters.  Bext DX was Alberta, Saskatchewan and California.  Not bad for 5 Watts, and if at all possible, the PAR will be my preferred antenna for future activations.  

I would have stayed longer, but I had somewhere to go with my daughter Cara, so I made due with the time I had.  It was a bit brisk while I was there, but it was sunny and clear.  If you click on the bottom photo, you just might be able to make out the New York City skyline in the distance, on the horizon.

Sandy Hook was my third activation, and I hope to do at least two more in New Jersey - the Pinelands and the Appalachain Trail in the Northwest part of the state.  When we go up to Lake George this Summer, I also hope to spend one day at Saratoga and activate HP42 while I'm in the neighborhood.

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



Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

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