This past Sunday, the weather was supposed to be in the mid-40F range and clear with something call “The Sun” in the sky. I seemed to remember this yellow orb from my childhood and thought that it might be worth getting outside to check it out. It was a good call!
I arrived at Cuyahoga Valley National Park – K-0020 in the late morning. It was very quiet at my normal picnic table. I was going with my very stock setup of the Chameleon vertical and the IC-705.
It’s a very open field and normally when I’m there, I have to position the tablet in a specific way to keep the glare off. This was no exception. The sun was quite bright and it really made me want to turn the table a bit. But I like to leave things as I find them.
When the sun was out, it was quite warm. I took off my coat and basked like some kind of weird lizard in the sun. But if the breeze picked up and the sun dipped behind a cloud? It got less comfortable quickly. We’re still in that space in the early spring where the temperatures go from comfortable to not with only very subtle shifts in the clouds.
17 meters was the place to be. I got my activation contacts on FT8 pretty quickly. Even hit Columbia. When I looked at the QSO Map after the fact, it definitely seemed that whatever setup I had running was favoring the southwest. I haven’t seen this kind of directionality before out of my vertical, but I’ve made a note. I remember how I placed the radials. I’ll keep that in mind for the future.
With enough FT8 in the log, I switched to SSB to do some hunting on 17. I managed to get KG5LRB down in Florida at St. Joseph Peninsula SP – K-1918. Then I poked around a little more and couldn’t grab MD or anything east that I was hearing. Looking at the pattern of contacts from the QSO Map this is no longer confusing to me. I called CQ for a bit and picked up one contact from OK. With that in bag and nothing else heard, I packed up and went home. It was a great time out in the sun.
Here’s what the QSO Map looked like.