Operating 1C in Field Day 2014

Brunswick – I don’t know about other parts of the country, but here in the southeast it just isn’t Field Day without a Thunderstorm (or two). For me, that thunderstorm came Saturday afternoon just as I was waking up (after working the midnight shift) and getting ready to fire up the gear to get on the air. I went out and grabbed a bit to eat while the storm subsided then turned on the mobile station to see what I could do in Field Day as a 1C station. With the storm eating up part of the late afternoon/early evening it didn’t leave me much time to operate, but I did pick up a few stations on 20 Meters and 15 Meters. On the other hand, the storm did cool things off a bit and the temperature wasn’t quite as oppressive as it could have been. After work on Sunday morning, I turned on the gear once again, adding to the log from 40 Meters, 20 Meters, and 15 Meters. All total, I put 44 contacts in the log despite what amounted to challenging conditions for my small station.

Band conditions on Saturday just didn’t seem all that good. Most of the stations I worked were on 20 Meters with a few on 15 Meters. I tried 40 Meters but there were so many stations so close together that I found it practically impossible to get through with the mobile station; it doesn’t help that 40 Meters and 80 Meters are my mobile antenna’s weakest bands. On Sunday morning, I decided that my best strategy would probably be to pick up some stations early before most operations woke up and got back on the air. As a result, it was easier to pick up some stations on 40 Meters but most of the contacts were from 20 Meters. I also made a few 15 Meter contacts, but once again 15 Meters wasn’t as open as I would have liked it to have been. Overall, I think band conditions were better Sunday morning than they were on Saturday evening. On both Saturday and Sunday I checked 10 Meters and never did find it open. I was hoping one or both would have been because those are the bands the mobile antenna works best on.

The log showed some interesting results. I worked 30 different ARRL sections, mostly from the Midwest and Northeast, although I did work a number of west coast stations on Saturday evening. I heard Hawaii on Saturday evening (15 Meters) and Sunday morning (20 Meters) but I was never able to make contact with them.

  • CO – Colorado
  • EMA – Eastern Massachusetts
  • ENY – Eastern New York
  • GA – Georgia
  • IA – Iowa
  • IL – Illinois
  • KS – Kansas
  • KY – Kentucky
  • LA – Louisiana
  • LAX – Los Angeles
  • MDC – Maryland/DC
  • ME – Maine
  • MI – Michicgan
  • MO – Missouri
  • MS – Mississippi
  • NC – North Carolina
  • ND – North Dakota
  • NE – Nebraska
  • NFL – North Florida
  • NH – New Hampshire
  • NLI – New York Long Island
  • NNJ – Northern New Jersey
  • NTX – North Texas
  • ONG – Orange (California)
  • OR – Oregon
  • STX – South Texas
  • WI – Wisconsin
  • WMA – Western Massachusetts
  • WTX – West Texas
  • 40 Meters – 8 contacts
  • 20 Meters – 30 contacts
  • 15 Meters – 6 contacts

I was hoping to work the Savannah Field Day operation and the Effingham County Field Day operations on Sunday morning but there didn’t seem to be any good short 40 Meter propagation, it all seemed to be fairly long. I missed talking to the local folks but I couldn’t be too disappointed since the band was open and working. The highlight of my Field Day had to be working WW1USA on Saturday evening. WW1USA is a special event station operating from the National World War I museum and it was appropriate to work them on the centennial of Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s assassination by Gavrilo Princip, the event that helped spark World War I. It’s also worth mentioning that I worked both ARRL centennial stations currently active – W1AW/9 in Illinois and W1AW/3 in Maryland. Altogether, it was a good Field Day and I thoroughly enjoyed getting on the air as a 1C (mobile) station.

 

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