Radio Goals for 2024
Laying out radio goals last year seemed to work really well. It provided a place for me to look as I moved through the year to compare what I said I wanted to do with what I was doing. It all seemed to track pretty well. I got deeper into CW, stuck with POTA, moved from Digital Modes in my activations to CW, and did OSPOTA as predicted. What should the goals be for this year?
My QTH has an attic dipole antenna. It’s…marginal. From where my house sits, it’s difficult to come up with a really great solution to the antenna problem. My conclusion is that I’m going to set up a veritcal beside the house and try to get a little more serious about radio from home. This solar cycle isn’t going to last forever so I should make the most of it. Besides, I’ve always wanted to dig 100 little trenches for radials. Maybe.
I would really like to hit a Kilo at West Branch State Park in 2024. That seems like something that could happen in short order. I’m already an Oasis Activator for that park and I’m over the 500 QSO mark. That’s one fish that should jump into the boat.
Getting a new state or two in the log would be great as well. Along with that would come hitting the 30 Parks Activated award. I have access to a number of parks nearby that I’ve yet to visit as well as some in Western Pennsylvania that I could get to from here rather easily. Lots of options!
Given that going to the park is almost a weekly certainty for me, I wouldn’t say that there’s much else to a POTA goal other than to keep it up. I have a lot of fun with it, so I will get outdoors and watch my silly numbers roll on the POTA site.
The 100 Days of CW never really ended. I’m still practicing regularly. My facility for POTA exchanges is solid at close to 20 wpm. That said, a free-form QSO or rag chew is out of my league mostly due to the fact that my ability to head copy is about 4 characters at a time before I start to lose them. If by the end of the year I can hold a QSO without a POTA style formulaic exchange, I will consider myself a success. I think I will give some of the slow speed nets a try as well. The K1USN SST looks good.
Playing with keyboard modes like Olivia has been on my list for a while. I think I stayed clear of it because Fldigi always feels so clunky to me. That’s not very charitable as it’s a really robust and capable piece of software, but that’s been my take. Given the interest of some fellow operators from the online world, I think I’ll dig in here. Maybe even put together a weekly net based around the mode.
There has been a resurgence in packet radio of late – at least in the online sphere in which I participate. Hearing about people setting up BBSes and pulling together networks makes me want to get involved. I’ve not logged in to a packet station outside of Winlink transactions before, so perhaps this is one that makes the list.
More Of The Good Stuff
I think the most important part is that I will keep doing the stuff I like the most and poke at things that are interesting and new to me. OSPOTA will still be a thing and I’ve got the club newsletter to work on. Plenty of radio fun to keep me engaged and busy. The fun will be seeing what comes up along the way.