Posts Tagged ‘preparedness’

Exploring Shortwave Radio Signals: A Peek into Non-Local Communications

Curious about what you can hear on shortwave ham radio? This video is a brief survey of the diverse world of communications on the shortwave spectrum. Expand your radio horizons and enhance your emergency communication preparedness by tuning in to the world of shortwave ham radio.

If you’ve started delving into radio communications beyond local stations and channels, like VHF and UHF, you’re in for a treat. Shortwave radio opens up a whole new realm of signals to explore, including emergency communications vital during natural disasters.

Shortwave radio covers a range of radio frequencies from 3 kHz to 30 MHz. This spectrum is home to a diverse array of radio signals that cater to various communication needs, making it a hub of activity and connectivity.

Within these high frequencies, you can tune in to a multitude of transmissions, from transoceanic air traffic control communications to the chatter of ships navigating the vast seas. Imagine hearing the voices of fishermen, much like those on your favorite reality TV shows about high-seas fishing adventures, along with military communications and the vibrant world of amateur radio enthusiasts.

One of the remarkable features of high-frequency (HF) radio is its ability to propagate signals over long distances, transcending line-of-sight limitations. This means that HF radio enables communication between different regions and even continents, fostering connectivity across vast distances.

During times of crisis and natural disasters, shortwave frequencies become invaluable for emergency communications. When local infrastructure falters or is disrupted, shortwave radio serves as a vital lifeline, facilitating critical two-way communications in and out of disaster-stricken areas.

Explore the fascinating realm of shortwave radio, where distant voices blend with essential information, bridging gaps and connecting communities in times of need. Uncover the power of HF radio to transcend boundaries and provide lifelines when they are needed most.

In this video, I give you a glimpse of the voice and data transmissions I pick up on my high-frequency amateur radio transceiver (in this video, an Icom IC-7000). In later videos, I will dive deeper into specific types of HF communications, such as aeronautical trans-oceanic signals.

Another D Day Special Event

This one is being carried out by the Torbay Amateur Radio Society in England.  Here's the info that the ARRL is disseminating:

June 6 will mark the 75th anniversary of Operation Overlord during World War II and the D-Day landings in Normandy. To commemorate those who took part, a small team from the Torbay Amateur Radio Society (TARS) in England is organizing a chain of five special event stations along the UK’s southern coastline. Each will be based in the geographical area of a beach-landing force point of departure and will use a relevant call sign.

TARS will activate a site above Brixham Harbour in Devon — a departure point for many US soldiers who later landed on Utah Beach and will use the call sign GB75UF.

Other clubs activating similar relevant locations will use these call signs: GB75OF — Omaha Beach, South Dorset Radio Society; GB75GF — Gold Beach, Southampton ARC and Soton University Wireless Society; GB75JF — Juno Beach, Itchen Valley ARC and Waterside New Forest ARC, and GB75SF — Sword Beach, Fort Purbrook ARC.

In addition, TARS hopes to have two club stations from the Normandy area of France activating sites on the beaches. Logging is being coordinated centrally, and stations who contact two or more of the stations within the chain will be able to download a suitable certificate to commemorate their achievement. Details on logging, certificates, and operating frequencies will be available on the TARS website. Contact the organizing team via email.

SSB frequencies will include 3.644, 7.144, 14.144, 18.144, 21.244, 24.944, and 28.244 MHz (data only on 10.144 MHz). Stations operating on CW or data will attempt to use similar frequencies ending in 44.

And now for something completely different.

I saw some Hams talking about this on one of the e-mail reflectors I subscribe to. It's the Acu-Rite Lightning Detector.

With the plethora of bad weather we've been getting here, I went onto eBay and picked one up for $20. It arrived yesterday and I put the batteries in, turned it on and it started detecting local lightning strikes immediately - at about 17 miles out. At that point, I wasn't even hearing thunder rumbles. Within a few minutes I WAS indeed able to see flashes and hear thunder, so it seems to work. 

A few hours later, it started chirping again and sure enough - about ten minutes or so after chirpage, another thunderstorm was upon us. I will keep this little guy going so that when I'm home and the antennas are connected, I'll get ample warning that it's time to go disconnect. Better safe than sorry!

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

Long night

Last evening, I finished the last two of four FEMA courses on the Incident Command System (ICS) and the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and the National Preparedness Framework (NPF) that I needed to take for an Auxiliary Communications Workshop being held in October.


This class is designed for those auxiliary emergency communicators and groups who volunteer to provide backup emergency radio communications support to public safety agencies. Typically, this includes amateur radio and Radio Emergency Associated Communications Team (REACT) communicators, but may include other volunteer emergency communicators.

Volunteer emergency communications operators/groups, using amateur radio, have been providing backup communications to public safety for nearly 100 years. Event planners, public safety officials, and emergency managers at all levels of government utilize their services. Often, amateur radio services have been used when other forms of communications have failed or have been disrupted. Today, nearly all the states/territories have incorporated some level of participation by amateur radio auxiliary communication operators into their TICPs and SCIPs.

This course focuses on auxiliary communications interoperability, the relationship between the COML and the volunteer, emergency operations center (EOC) etiquette, on-the-air etiquette, FCC rules and regulations, auxiliary communications training and planning, and emergency communications deployment. It is intended to supplement and standardize an operator’s experience and knowledge of emergency amateur radio communications in a public safety context.

It's a two day event, held over the weekend of October 24th and 25th at the Middlesex County Fire Academy.  Looks to be interesting. My registration was received and accepted pending my sending in the certificates of completion, which I sent in this morning.

The FEMA courses were comprehensive in scope. Each was designed to be completed in about 3 hours and I came in slightly under that amount of time - maybe two and a half hours or two hours and forty five minutes each.

I crammed two in last night (which wasn't wise) as each evening for the rest of this week is booked with other activities. I was pretty bleary eyed for that last exam, but was pleased when I got the e-mail that I passed.

FEMA offers a lot of free, on-line independent study courses.  You can look them up at

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

Field Day 2015 – Comprehensive Report

Most of the South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club showed up at Spring Lake Park at 10:00 AM or a little beforehand. There was enough pre-Field Day organization that we all pretty much knew what had to be done and what our roles were. Set up went well:

First - set up the antennas, and organize the tent - our "home" for the next 24+ hours.

South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club - NJ2SP - 3A - NNJ

Battery - all power provided was from solar charged batteries. No generators were used or fossil fuels burned to generate RF for the weekend.

Ron N2LCZ helping with the "tower" guys.

In addition to helping up with setting up antennas, Ron devised and built a network so that we could link the logging computers together. No small feat under the conditions we were operating under. N2LCZ is truly SPARC's resident Computer Expert (in addition to his yeoman's work as Club Secretary).

Notice the ominous looking sky - it was a harbinger of what was to come.

Dave KD2SFI (black t-shirt) putting together antennas for GOTA and VHF/UHF.

Dave Hackett KD2FSI, was our Field Day Committee Chairman this year. Dave was the "gasoline" in our Field Day "engine". Dave may be recently licensed, but he's already built up a good knowledge of what will work and what won't. He's got an enthusiasm for Amateur Radio and Field Day that is positively infectious. Dave is the kind of guy that makes you can't wait for the next operating event. If I was putting together a DXpedition to a very rare and exotic locale, Dave would be #1 on my short list of Hams who absolutely had to be part of the crew.

We had the tri-band beam set up on an extension ladder tower affair designed and constructed by our own Philip DeFort, KD2HPG.  Phil is a graduate of our Technician class from last Autumn. In addition to his mechanical contributions, he also added to our score by making some of his first on-the-air contacts as a Ham. He brought along his teen-aged son (also named Philip) who is now serious about getting his own ticket.

Here's a photo of Phil making some of his first contacts.

In addition to the tri-band beam, we brought back the EARCHI for another year. We had a ten meter dipole for GOTA and some VHF/UHF antennas built by Dave KD2DSI. We also had a W3EDP antenna up, which was built for the SSB station in anticipation that 20 Meters would probably close for the evening at some point.

We got through set up high and dry and were on the air promptly for the 2:00 PM EDT Field Day start. And that's when things started to go wrong. First, the winds kicked in and then it started raining buckets. It ended up being the soggiest Field Day that I can remember. In addition, it was pretty chilly all day. I was wearing a t-shirt with a sweat shirt on top, and resorted to adding a jacket as temperatures fell and humidity increased to 100%.  There were several times during the night when some of us went to our cars and just sat for about a half hour or so with the heaters on in order to get warm and dry out for a little bit.

Soon after the start, it became apparent that something was drastically wrong with the beam. The KX3 took a long time to find a match and even when it did, the antenna was not performing as expected. My Autek antenna analyzer showed the driven element was somehow resonant way out of band, so we switched the SSB transceiver over to the W3EDP and limped along for the weekend with that. Unfortunately, the W3EDP didn't perform much better, as I think there may have been a balun problem there. We would have been better off using Marv K2VHW's G5RV as we did last year, but it was already raining buckets and I wasn't about to risk pneumonia just to get another antenna up into the trees.

But even with the antenna mishaps, there were bright spots. Marc Sullivan W4MPS, who is a good QRP friend from North Carolina was in town to visit his daughter. He came by the Field Day site with his wife for a quick visit to say "Hello" before heading to his daughter's house. He came back by himself shortly after the starting gun sounded for a longer visit. And Marc's presence was truly a God-send because right around that time, the digital station was having some RFI problems which was causing their laptop to freeze. They needed some clamp on ferrites, which I had at home. Marc volunteered to keep our CW station busy while I was off fetching the ferrites and doing some other things.

Thank you,  Marc W4MPS for helping out!
In the photo of Marc W4MPS, the guy in background in the rain poncho is SPARC's own Mario KD2HPF. Undoubtedly due to his experience in Scouting, Mario was about the only one with proper foresight to come properly attired for the weekend.  Mario was also a graduate of our last Technician class held in Autumn, along with Phil KD2HPG. Mario was active in the Rookie Roundup and he was active again for Field Day. In addition to being a valuable part of the set up and tear down teams, Mario put in a lot of chair time at the 6 Meter station. He was our mainstay in keeping an eye open for any openings that may have occurred on that band. Mario had a Go Pro with him, and I think there's a video of him calling CQ on 6 Meters kicking around somewhere on the Web.

It was a long chilly night, but it was made bearable by visits from friends from our two neighboring clubs, the Electronic Testing Society of NJ, and the Raritan Valley Radio Club. So many showed up, that it's hard to remember them all and I beg pardon if I forget to mention any - but special thanks to:

Pete KD2ARB for the pizzas, Dave W2OIL and Dan KC2YRC for the home made brownies, the hot coffee and the help with tear down at the end. Marty WB2BEW donated the use of his pop up canopy, kept us company when it got lonely, and was just an all around morale boost. Marty is good people and it was good to have him with us. Same goes for Craig AC2FE, who came in the evening to keep us company for a while.  And Hank N2MU who was not only a friendly visitor, but also a critical thinker who helped us iron out some technical glitches. Again, if I left out any K2ETS or W2QW members, or any other visitors who showed up, I apologize, but my brain is still a little addled from the weekend.

On Sunday, around Noon, Mayor Matt Anesh and councilman Rob Bengivenga showed up at the site. We gave them the nickel tour and explained the operation and its purpose to them. The mayor was by last year, so he was familiar with Field Day, but Councilman Bengivenga was not. 

Yours truly talking antennas with Councilman Bengivenga. 

Marv K2VHW, SPARC President, explaining Field Day and the equipment with the Mayor and Councilman.

And wouldn't you know it, when the dignitaries appeared, the skies brightened up and the sun came out! I was joking around with Mayor Anesh that had we known that he was bringing better weather with him, we would have invited him over on Saturday!

And once again, South Plainfield's Finest parked one of their cruisers by our tent to serve as a little bit of an extra added deterrent against any possible mischief during our overnight stay. Police Chief Parker has been very accommodating towards SPARC, and as the SPPD takes on the role of OEM, we look forward to working with him. I didn't notice it, but fellow SPARC member, Tim Halloran AB2ZK pointed out to me the cruiser's official designation number. 

Car 73 - how appropriate!

So even though it was cold, wet and miserable, and we had antenna problems, and band conditions for Field Day weren't as good as they were in 2014, I think it's safe to say we all had a blast, and that SPARC is eagerly looking forward to Field Day 2016. We're going to remedy our problems and we'll be back, ready to once again take on whatever Mother Nature and Old Man Murphy dish out to us.

Drew W2OU working the digital station.

Drew Moore W2OU is our AC Log expert, fellow CERT member from Piscataway and a very valued member of SPARC.  Drew is a "Ham's Ham" and is a fun guy to be around and to just sit around and shoot the breeze with. Drew is also an ARRL official, so it's nice to have a little bit of the League with us all the time.

Tim AB2ZK and John AB2VE sharing a laugh during a lighter moment.

Tim AB2ZK was our "food guy" this year. Tim ran out Saturday night at 10:30 PM in the chill and pouring rain to bring us some hot sandwiches. He's always got a joke or quip up his sleeve exactly when one is needed. He was in South Plainfield's first CERT class and was a graduate of our first Technician licensing class back in 1995.  John AB2VE helped me set up the W3EDP and the EARCHI antenna. When I was getting a bit frustrated with the way the wind was blowing around the antenna lines I was launching, John kept me focused and on target. John is a veteran member of the South Plainfield Rescue Squad and is a very good friend to have.

W2LJ explaining the KX3 and the CW station to some visitors.
Lastly, two more SPARC members that I want to mention. Wayne Grennier N2LRE is our Vice-President. He's also our publicity guru who gets and keeps SPARC in the town's local publications. There are so many times that friends come up and say, "Hey Lar, I saw your picture in the Observer about that Amateur Radio thing you're involved with." Word of SPARC gets out because of Wayne. I wanted to snap a Field Day photo of him, but he was too busy flitting around with his camera, getting photos of the rest of us!
And our President, Marv K2VHW. Marv saw the need for a new Amateur Radio club in South Plainfield and did something about it. He's our navigator as we sail through uncharted waters. He has a good sense for what's good for the club and he's not afraid to try new things or to listen to a new opinion. SPARC is what it is because of Marv's leadership. We will forever be indebted to him. He keeps us engaged and active - and if a club is going to succeed, that's exactly what you need.

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

2014 SET

This is the weekend for the 2014 SET - Simulated Emergency Test.  Are you and/or your club participating?

The South Plainfield Amateur Radio Club - SPARC, will be!

We are going to meet tomorrow at 10:00 AM at out EOC.  Once there, I will hand out scripts to the "players" who will be dispatched at various sites around town.  Basically, without giving away too much (some SPARC members actually read this blog - can you believe it?) we will be providing backup communications for the town as the result of a major natural disaster, including but not limited to, the manning of the regional shelter that is located in our town.

Each ARES/RACES member will receive an individualized script and will be directed, at specific times during the drill, to call the NCS and report a "situation". What is NOT scripted is the follow up actions and communications that will flow as a result of the reporting of the "situation".  NCS has no idea of what he will be called about - the following communications will be dealt with as the circumstances dictate.

Right now, the script is still evolving and won't be finalized until tonight. This is when I should have a very good idea as to how many SPARC members will be participating in the drill tomorrow.  Since tomorrow is Yom Kippur, some of our members will be unable to attend. I don't want this to be a boring, tedious drill. I want our members to actually do some communicating, and we will see where we go from there.

My part in all of this?  I will sit in the EOC and will play the role of ICS, throwing some curveballs to the NCS as well. This should be interesting.  

In addition, I will be looking for a volunteer to send a report of or activity to our Section Manager, our Section Emergency Coordinator, and our County ARES and RACES chiefs via NTS. (I would do it myself, but I'm taking the XYL out for dinner tomorrow night - today is our wedding anniversary!) This should be a good learning experience for some of our members who haven't has much experience with NTS. Instead of sending it as book traffic, maybe I can get four volunteers to send one message each.

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

There is a season, turn, turn, turn

A time for W2LJ to ponder and to vent.  This is stuff I’ve been thinking over the past couple of days. I can’t speak of these things to “civilians” as they would look at me like I was speaking in tongues (Ham speak?), not comprehending a word that I was saying.

The first occurred the other night as I was walking Harold, our beagle.  As usual, I take my dual band HT with me and scan the various repeaters that I have programmed in there. The HT settled on a local VHF repeater that was holding an NTS Traffic Net.  Having been a avid traffic handler in my early days as a Ham, I don’t mind listening in on these – procedures haven’t changed so much in all these years. At least I thought not.

The repeater itself was having problems. Some kind of interference or intermod was making communications difficult at best, almost impossible at worst.  Two stations were having difficulty passing a couple of messages due to the interference.  The receiving station asked the sending station to send him the messages via e-mail, and then he would deliver them.  He told the Net Control Station to consider them passed traffic.  Passed traffic?!?  Would that be proper?  Would that be considered the equivalent of going to another repeater or simplex frequency and passing them on the air?  I applaud the ingenuity of the two stations, but ultimately passing traffic via a means that was not “radio” has me wondering if those could rightfully be counted as passed traffic.  I may be a bit behind the current standards, so – anyone out there know if this would be considered Kosher?

When you get right down to it, I would think (IMHO) that  traffic nets are supposed to be the resource available when everything else has turned to deep doo-doo.  In that event, there will be no Internet to fall back on.  IMHO, the two stations should have exhausted every RF means possible before resorting to e-mail and the Internet. But again, I may be just an old curmudgeon who’s behind the times and isn’t up to current standards. Can anyone shed a little light on this?

Secondly, the next scenario has to do with the QRP Fox Hunts.  No calls will be used to protect the innocent and the not-so-innocent.  We have been very fortunate to get some new blood showing up in the hunts. New-to-Fox-Hunting Hams have been showing up to participate both as Hounds, as well as Foxes. This is a very good thing, because if there’s no influx of new people, then sooner or later, the “sport” is going to die out.  That would be a bad thing, as these are so much fun.

Anyway, a week ago we had a Ham perform his first ever shot at being Fox.  I’ve been there, so I know what he faced.  Believe me, for an experienced Fox it can be daunting, let alone your maiden voyage.  The Hunt begins and close to, if not more than, a hundred Hounds are calling you all at the same time. A wall of barking, and they’re all barking at you. No amount of “Here’s what to expect” from an experienced Fox can really prepare you.  It’s truly a “deer in the headlights” moment  for most newbies (myself included).

Here’s the rub – it was an 80 Meter hunt, and according to Da Rulez, “The 80M Foxes will operate within +/- 10Khz of 3.560 MHz”.  Well, the newbie Fox got distracted, excited, or maybe just a bit overwhelmed and planted himself just a hair above 3.570 MHz – less than 600 Hz away from the boundary.  As it was, 42 Hounds found the Fox and snared his pelt. So it’s not like we’re talking that he was so far out of bounds that everyone was left mouth agape, wondering “Huh?”.

When he posted his log, he apologized for his error, and basically stated that this would not be repeated next time.  Needless to say, that’s not good enough for some. Let’s just say that some of the responses were not exactly friendly, kind, understanding, encouraging or constructive. Here we get a volunteer to subject himself to a pileup of QRPers for 90 minutes and because you didn’t think to look outside the box, you let the poor guy have it!  Nice ….. really nice!

Did he break the rules? Yes.  Did he realize his error and apologize? Yes.  Is this a cause for making someone feel like a schmuck? Definitely NO!

It’s not like we’re talking of a deliberate act, like interference or jamming, or being a willful idiot.  The guy made a one time mistake, apologized for it and intends to do better the next time.  I’ll be the first to admit, that in the past, I too may have been hot headed at times and may have been more than willing to jump on the pile with harshness. But due to some of my reader’s comments to me on some of my own blog postings (when I’ve been harsh), I feel that I have learned and have come to realize that this is not the right thing to do. Constructive criticism is the best way to go, and  we need to cut the poor guy a break. Otherwise, we’re going to scare off volunteers and you’re going to find yourself hunting a Fox that’s literally not there (never mind just a little off frequency!)

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

Getting ready for the next one.

Sandy’s visit through the area has taught me a lot.  I thought I was prepared; and for the most part, I was.  But things can always be improved upon – some points for me to remember, that I think are worth sharing:

1) You can’t have enough ice.  If you don’t have / want / or use an emergency generator, you can’t have enough ice.  I bought four huge bags last Sunday, the day before the storm hit.  I could have used twice that – and I should have been making my own, filling plastic containers with water and sticking them in the freezer. As it was, after the third day, I had begun to run out of ice and all the perishable items in the refrigerator had to be tossed.

2) Generators.  Lots of folks purchased generators after their experience with Hurricane Irene last year. That was fine until the gas ran out, then they were in the same boat as me.  Most of the gas stations around here had plenty of fuel, but also lacked the electricity they required to pump it.  I have ordered an 1100 Watt AC inverter that was mentioned in SolderSmoke and I am going to purchase a couple deep cycle marine batteries and a charger.  Once I start using them after a power outage  they may not last for long, but at least I will be able to power up the freezer and refrigerator for a while.

Related to this – if you know that a big storm or blizzard is headed your way – gas up those vehicles!  All of them!  You don’t know how long gasoline might be in short supply afterwards.  Go and Google “long New Jersey gas lines after Sandy” if you want a dose of stark reality.

3) Candles. You can never have too many.  I thought I had an adequate supply; and I did.  Our power was out for close to five days.  If it had been out much longer, I would have started to reach the “uncomfortable zone” of running out.  Oh, and if you’re like me, make sure your emergency candles are the unscented variety.  It might have lifted someone else’s spirits; but I didn’t need the house smelling like a flower shop.

4) Flashlights. Forget the big honker ones that use “D” batteries.  I bought some “D” batteries and flashlights, and they are a waste as far as “bang for the buck” goes.  I have purchased two LED camping style lanterns that use four “D” batteries each and they will last a lot longer while providing tons more light than normal flashlights.  For regular flashlight usage, get the small handheld LED flashlights.  I had two of them and am going to get more.  Each of these babies used three “AAA” batteries which are still plentiful in the stores (I mean really, most people use “AAA’s” for their remotes, right?).  They were used throughout this crisis and they were as bright on the final day as the first.  Also, those headband LED lights?  Some may consider them “dorky”, but I am going to purchase a few.  They will be invaluable for the times you have to do something in the dark that requires both hands. (I.E. – shaving on the morning darkness with one hand holding the safety razor and the other holding the flashlight was less than ideal. Trying to move ice around from cooler to freezer with one hand – less than ideal).

5) Firewood / Fire logs.  I had a small supply left over from the last heating season. I should have laid in a bigger supply.  I didn’t run out; but was running uncomfortably low, and it was starting to get chilly here. I would wake up in the morning, and go look at the thermostat to see that the house temperature had fallen to 56F (13C) overnight.

6) Charge up everything!  All my handhelds, HF radio batteries, cell phones were charged to the max ahead of time, I also broke out my solar panel and had it ready to charge up 12V gel cells if needed as this wore on.

Food and water were no problem  We had the stove top available for cooking. The electronic ignitors didn’t work; but kitchen matches did the job (I have multiple boxes of those).  We had an AM / FM radio for news/entertainment.  That was a necessity – however, I want to purchase one of those offered with the built in hand crank generator.  This will cut down on the amount of batteries needed and many of these models also have USB ports so that you can use the hand crank generator to charge up your cell phone, kindle, Nook, Kobo, etc.

What did bother me when we would listen to the radio; and the announcers would say, “To report (such and such) please go to this Website ……..”  How the heck am I supposed to go to the Internet when there’s no electricity?  Also, going through my e-mails after the fact yesterday, I saw there were calls for ARES radio volunteers at the Middlesex County hospitals.  The requests came via e-mails.  How was I supposed to have seen those?  I am one of the last persons in the world NOT to have a smartphone and my “18th century” cellphone handles e-mail, well, …… let’s just say “crappily”.  Maybe that’s just a personal problem and I need to get “with it”.  Not going to sweat that one for now.

The KX3 was invaluable and a God send – thank you Lord, for Elecraft!  But seriously, any battery powered HF rig (PFR3, ATS, MTR, Yaesu FT-817, etc) is so essential if for nothing more than to ward off boredom.  I would come home after work, eat dinner and then ………. nothing.  Too early to turn in, I took afore mentioned LED flashlight and headed down to the basement shack and spent the night on the bands.  I worked a fair amount of DX and even had a QSO with DL3GA who commented that “It is nice to hear a station on the air from New Jersey”. Hey, how many times have you heard THAT before?  Maybe, never? (LOL!)

But I was also able to keep in touch with a lot of my QRP friends, including Jim W1PID who would check in with me every night.  Just those brief, continual QSOs did a lot to improve my psyche and moral, knowing that there were folks out there that I personally knew that I could stay in touch with.

This is by no means an exhaustive treatise on being prepared for an emergency – it was one of some personal observations.  But do yourself a favor.  If you’re given enough notice that a big storm / blizzard / whatever, is coming your way – get ready and try not to wait until the very last moment to do so!

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

Subscribe FREE to's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: