Last nights 144MHz UKAC Contest gave me the opportunity to try operating portable for the first time. Caravanning in the Lake District just outside the town of Keswick I had spent the previous evening preparing (see earlier post) and after a day out walking I set up the station in the awning.
I hoisted the 3-Element Delta Beam to full height and waited for the appointed time. The campsite was very quiet but I still attracted some strange looks as people wandered past!
In the end I struggled only making 6 contacts, I searched and pounced initially and then called CQ for a time with no response. The caravan site has a strict no-noise policy after 22:30 so shutdown and packed up just before 22:00 Despite the low number of QSOs I wasn't disappointed, given my location and low power (10W) I was glad of any contacts.
Earlier in the day my wife and I took the dogs on a walk to the top of Latrigg which is just to the North of the campsite and is one of the lowest fells in the Lake District at 381m asl. From the summit we could clearly see the campsite below at just 218m. So perhaps not the best spot to be operating from, being surrounded on all sides by mountains.
Next month I am away to the Isle of Skye for the UKAC 6m contest, encouraged by the Delta Beam I might have a go at constructed one for then (if the wife agrees)
In the meantime I have got the magitenna up for HF but haven't used it yet after all I am here on holiday and have to spend time with the wife and dogs!
Just a correction in my earlier post about passing my intermediate I neglected to acknowledge the help of Nigel (M0CVO) and SKARS for the assessments and organising the exam.