2022 ARRL International Digital Contest

The ARRL has added a new contest for non-RTTY digital modes. This gives the RTTY enthusiasts and WSJT enthusiasts separate spaces to play. Or, if you’re like me, it means that you get two ARRL digital contests instead of one!

Full details at this link

  • Start: Saturday, 2022-06-04 at 1000
  • End: Sunday, 2022-06-05, 1600
  • All times are Alaska local time

I’m going to take advantage of all the activity and attempt to activate a few POTA units that I ran into trouble with last year:

  • Hatcher Pass State Natural Area (K-6332)
  • Independence Mine State Historical Park (K-7212)
  • Summit Lake State Recreation Site (K-7224)

Each of these sites is up in the Hatcher Pass area. This gives some elevation advantage, but the road-accessible areas are still deep down in the canyons. Getting signals in and out can be challenging.

Feel free to contact me if you’re going to be out and about, or would like assistance setting up your own digital/portable stations.

Portable Operating Pages

I have finally finished working on the Introduction to Field Operating pages. The idea for these started out as an introduction to SOTA series, but I later decided to expand them to cover portable operating in general, with an emphasis on POTA.

Each of the four pages covers a different aspect of portable operating, and the information progresses from less complex to more complex. They are meant to be accessible to new amateurs, and emphasize technique over gear (budget friendly):

Busy weekend of updates

If you haven’t been to the site in a while you will probably notice a lot of changes to the layout. As I’ve added more and more content the menus were getting a little cumbersome. To make the site easier to navigate I did a major rearranging of the Amateur Radio pages.

Where the Summits in the Air activation reports used to be in the main menu, they are now accessed from a single landing page. This tidied things up nicely and allows for more expansion later on.

I’ve also added a brand new section with an Introduction to Field Operating. The landing page has links to a series of four instructional pages, each of which walks you through how to operate in the field. The instructions start with simple handheld stations and finish up with full digital HF setups.

I also added a new landing page for Parks on the Air Activations, but at this point it is still just a preview of what is to come. I am hoping to build out the pages for each activation in the next week.

New Material Coming Soon

I’ve been slacking when it comes to updating the website, but a lot of work has been happening behind the scenes. I finally got around to going through all my old photos, logs, and projects with the goal of identifying new material to add to the site.

In a week or two there will be a lot more material on the site, especially with the amateur radio sections. Some examples:

  • Base station antenna builds
  • Field antenna builds
  • Parks on the Air activations
  • Guides to portable operating

Most of the pages will be the standard style I use, with text and images that tell the story of the event or the project. That seems to work well for my instructional-type pages. The tricky part is that I’m going to have to rework the menu structure of the site. With all the new material I’m going to have to rearrange and consolidate pages into sub-menus.

Another project on the back burner is working on ways to add video content to the site. That project is a bit more complicated, so I’m leaving that for later. I know how to do basic video editing, but really want to make sure that anything I publish is well polished. In the meantime I’ve been getting video wherever possible as events happen, so at some point in the future I’ll be doing another major update with embedded video content.

Good things happening all around . . . .

Backcountry Communications Pages Live

Hello world,

I’ve finally finished off a series of pages covering radio communications in the backcountry. The pages go through a handful of the most popular methods of reaching out to the world while you are out in the bush, and include some context and advice for when to choose each method. Happy reading.