Endicott Rock Parks on the Air K-8017 Activation – Delicious Warmth & Sun
Today was another stunning late-winter day here in New Hampshire. I was sitting at a picnic table just 20 feet away from a solid granite structure that protects and preserves the infamous Endicott Rock for future generations. The temperature got up to 62 F. To put this in perspective, it could just as easily have been 20 F and snowing.
I’ve become active again in Parks on the Air and to the best of my knowledge, I’m the first ham radio operator to activate this entity. You need to complete a minimum of ten conversations with other radio operators to officially activate it and I logged fourteen in just over an hour. The band conditions were not the best, to put it mildly.
Spotting – It’s Critical
I was scheduled to be on the air at 1 PM Eastern Time or 1700 UTC. I made it with one minute to spare. I texted my mentor, Jim Cluett W1PID, to have him spot me on 20 meters at 14.062 MHz.
He was successful and a few other POTA operators found me. I was hoping for ten or fifteen operators trying to reach me at once, but only three or four were there. I could tell it was going to be a little bit of work to get to ten contacts!
I exhausted the few contacts on twenty meters but still was far from my minimum goal of ten contacts. I switched to forty meters and Jim re-spotted me. Once again I got a small handful of POTA chasers who were at home looking for activators like me out in the field.
DX on a Sunny Day
I was quite lucky to log three international (DX) contacts. Actually you can say I had five as I scored two Canadians. But for me, Canada is closer to me than Pennsylvania so they just don’t feel like DX.
The first was DL8ZT, Wolfgang in Germany. Next up was CU3BL, Manual, in Portugal. He is a POTA chaser I’m quite sure. Thirty-five minutes later I logged Dr. Ian, G4MLW in the UK.
It’s always a thrill to communicate with other operators thousands of miles away using just enough power to illuminate two standard night lights. Jim tells me it’s magic and I have to agree.
I got just two more contacts after Dr. Ian, KC4TVN and KU8T. Ignore the K after the T in that call sign in my logbook.
I decided to pack up and head home to enjoy more sunshine on my own deck. I ate a Honeycrisp apple and a naval orange once I got home. I think there’s an old radio saying, “An apple a day keeps the bands alive.” We shall see.