Sunday, January 31, 2016

Winter Field Day 2016

What is winter field day? 
WFD is based on the same idea as Field Day. 

Its main purpose though is “To encourage emergency operating preparedness in the winter”. Of course taking into mind all safety concerns that go along with WFD should be priority, for us in the North it is hypothermia, for those in the South sunburn and UV is still a concern.

There are bonus points and multipliers and the scoring scheme is the same with callsign, category and section being logged and at the end a Cabrillo log submitted to the score keeper. Bonus points for this event are as follow:
1000 pts for if not using commercial power
1000 pts if outdoors
1000 pts if outdoors away from home
500 pts for working WFDA bonus station W8D.

My plan was to hike into my winter shelter that I have down Walker Road in Neebing Ontario. It is a 3km hike pulling my sleigh, radio gear and survival gear in. Well we had some heavy wet snow the Friday night and it made pulling my sleigh a challenge considering I would have expected some of the locals to be out with snow machines and the trail would have been packed. Well that was not the case, so after 30 minutes and only getting 1 km from the main road I hauled off into the bush and found a open area to call camp, get the fire going, set up the gear and get ready for the 1700 UTC start bell.

My gear consisted of the Xiegu X108G transceiver, Chameleon Hy-Brid Micro with 60’ wire and counterpoise, Emtech ZM2 tuner and P-Box battery box. Strung the wire in the tree, set the rig to CW and tuned up the antenna and was ready to go on CW operating QRP 5 watts. Issue was it was now +4c and had lots of snow and drops falling from the trees and onto my gear, so my wool blanket protected the gear.
   My Gear Set Up in Operation mode
Gear packed for travel in sleigh

Bands were not the greatest this afternoon, and I spent time calling CQ instead of the Hunt and Pounce method as there were other contests going on as well. I was able to hear Europe and South America on 20 meters as the day progressed. I kept the fire going and made homemade soup on the fire while watching rabbits frolicking in the great weather. I was able to make 6 contacts that afternoon during 3 hours of operation and achieve the main principal of WFD. My final score with bonus points was 3006.

I worked into KY(x2),NLI,NTX,GA and QC . The one station in KY was 1M or 1 operator mobile. The station in Quebec is the Nord DX Club and that contact can be seen and heard here on my YouTube Channel:

Here is a picture of me at the operating position of VE3FAL 1O ONN:

Was a super day outdoors as always, no mosquitoes, no ticks, warmth and of course radio. I hope next year brings good weather and good conditions as well, and maybe look to stay overnight in the bush and operate and keep up on my outdoor survival skills.
Take care everyone
Thunder Bay, Ontario

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