Dear Peter – What a wonderful QSO with you from along the riverside! I promised I would send some pictures and here they are. I am also writing you a note with a full account of my radio adventure this afternoon including our QSO. I also worked Columbia and Denmark.
The journey starts when I take the bicycle out of my VW camper on the old road that runs along the river and goes to New Hampton. The road has a gate, so to proceed, one must use a bicycle, a horse, or go on foot.
The road hasn’t been used regularly since the 1940s. It’s beautiful and passes through old farm land. When I first came to this spot nearly 40 years ago, a farmer grazed his cattle in the nearby fields. After cycling for a kilometer or so, I come to a corner with a perfect view of the river.
I continue another 2 km and come to an old bridge abutment. The bridge is no longer there, but there is a small clearing under some tall trees where I like to operate.
I pull the equipment from my bag and heave a line up about 12 meters over an oak branch. Then I pull up a 10 meter wire. It is perfectly vertical, and I sit down directly under it.
Today I am using the KX3 at five watts. The coax runs to a 9:1 unun and then to the antenna. At first I listen on 20 meters and hear HK1R calling CQ from Columbia. We quickly exchange 599s, and I switch to 15 meters. There you are, and I call. You know the rest, but for the sake of other readers, I will say you are 589 and you give me a 569. I tell you that I am QRP and portable near the river. You send, “solid copy from UR QRP DR Jim.” While we are chatting, you find my web page and comment on the pictures. I promise to send you some photos from today. We continue for more than 20 minutes. I am amazed that you can copy my tiny signal so well! Finally the QSB arrives and you drop down to 549… Surely you can not copy much of what I am sending at the end… You send, “So now I have got some QSB x Perhaps conditions are changing.” With that we say goodbye. What a wonderful contact half way around the world.
Before packing up, I go to 17 meters and make a quick contact with OV1CDX on Sjaelland Island in Denmark. Frank is 599 and he gives me a 559. I am overjoyed and walk down to the old bridge site to take a picture.
I drink in the view, being careful to avoid the poison ivy! It’s everywhere here. And I walk back to the operating position and pack everything away for the ride back.
Peter, I hope you can now imagine how much fun I have on these radio outings. What could be better than a ride through glorious countryside… add to that a QSO with DF1LX and a perfect afternoon is guaranteed. Thank you, my friend. 73 Jim W1PID