Spring Peepers on Johnson Road

I heard spring peepers for the first time this year. I hiked in an old field off Johnson Road and worked Russia, Panama and a couple of stations in the Michigan QSO Party.


I hiked about a quarter of a mile on a trail from the road and turned south skirting the edge of the field when I heard the peepers. I know where they are! There’s a vernal pool down a horse path through a large and prickly raspberry patch. I look through the woods and onto the small pond. Every time one of these tiny frogs sings, his body trembles enough to send circular ripples into the pond. They are, of course, calling CQ. It is a clear sign of spring and I am overjoyed.


I wandered through this overgrown field for a while. I was searching for a warm spot out of the wind. It’s only about 45F with a stiff breeze and a bit chilly. I pass the telltale signs of a long winter… tiny holes in the grass where mice and voles have sought cover while enduring the bitter cold.

I set up under a tall pine tree on a little hillside facing the sun.


I heave my wire over a branch and tune the KX3 on 20 meters. Stations are strong, but they don’t hear me well. I work UA2FL who is operating the Mineira DX Contest from Russia. Then I work two stations in the Michigan QSO party… N8KS and K8BZ. I switch to 12 meters. HO100CANAL is calling CQ and he answers right away. This is a special event station in Panama celebrating the opening of the canal 100 years ago.

With this I pack up and head back to the car. I check for ticks (usually out
by now) but thankfully, I don’t find any. Maybe the hard winter has reduced
their numbers.

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

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