Hunting For Lighthouses – Weekend Amateur Radio; 18/19 August 2012

Going into the weekend, I was hoping to put more stations in the log than what I did but between thunderstorms both afternoons and the North American QSO Party (which I wasn’t aware of until it started!) I guess I didn’t do too bad.  This post is probably going to sound anti-contest to some, but it really isn’t.  I don’t have a problem with contests, they just aren’t my cup of tea.  I use the DX contests to add to the logbook and hunt for new countries but I can really only take them in short doses.  Otherwise I pretty much avoid them. 40 and 20 Meters seemed to be in decent condition whenever I was on the air but I only caught 15 Meters in good condition briefly, working stations in Bosnia and the Canary Islands.

I was able to find five of the special event stations that I posted about on Friday although I’m sure I would have been able to find more if not for the contest.  Once the contest started the bands were just too congested for my idea of radio fun.  I did accomplish one of my goals, which was to log the Indianapolis Motor Speedway MotoGP weekend special event station; I’ve worked the Indianapolis 500 and Brickyard 400 special events several years running but somehow always missed out on the MotoGP weekend.  Another highlight of the weekend was working both the London and Wales special event stations for the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics.

My primary interest for the weekend was the International Lighthouse and Lightship Weekend (ILLW) and I found ten of them on the air.  Most of them I came across were east coast lighthouses but I’m sure had I tried to persevere through the contest stations on Saturday I would have heard more European and west coast lights.  I’ve become quite interested in the lighthouse stations; like museum ships on the air it has become a way for me to combine interests in history and military/maritime communications.  I’m thinking of suggesting to the local radio club that we set up a station at the Tybee Island Lighthouse or maybe even ask permission of the National Park Service to operate near the Cockspur Island Lighthouse for the 2013 ILLW.

Lighthouses
KP3ER – Punta Borinquen Lighthouse
W9CQO – Port Washington Lighthouse
KC2YYL – Fort Niagara Lighthouse
W2T – Tucker’s Island Lighthouse
VE3RAM – Cape North Lighthouse
W2GSB – Fire Island Lighthouse
N1QLL – West Quoddy Head Lighthouse
W1SYE – Rose Island Lighthouse
K2EC – Montauk Lighthouse
W6A – Point Fermin Lighthouse

Special Event Stations
W9ISF – Indiana State Fair
W9IMS – Indianapolis Motor Speedway, MotoGP Weekend
VX3FAIR – Hymers Fall Fair
2O12W – 2012 Olympics & Paralympics – Wales
2O12L – 2012 Olympics & Paralympics – London

 

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