Hobbies on the Road
Amateur Radio W1AW
Day APRS-GPS Contacts
Reading Cycling Walking
Read about our travel and sightseeing on the Travel Log page.
Trip to W1AW, the other Ham Radio Mecca!
June 28 we left Madison CT and
went north the short distance to Newington Connecticut, the home of ARRL
(Amateur Radio Relay League, one of the main organizations of ham radio in the
USA) Headquarters. We got a tour of the offices and then a tour of the
"shack" and then we were able to operate the radios there, making
contacts as guest operators of W1AW. What a treat! We had a pileup right away!
Michael was impressed with how neat and clean and well-organized everything was,
and with the friendliness of the people there. He said that it felt like he had
come home. I was excited to see the graphic designers at work on their computers
designing covers and stuff for the ARRL publications. I also was impressed to
see Hiram Maxim's ARRL pin "which he wore proudly till his death in
1933"). We got to see THE ACTUAL wouffhoung. We bought a couple of books
and a field day pin and took a bunch of pictures.
Day! June 24 and 25,2000 was Field
Day for Amateur Radio operators in the US and Canada. It runs for 24 straight
hours with the goal of contacting and documenting as many other
stations as possible. The purpose is to practice and demonstrate our emergency
preparedness and also to showcase our hobby to the community at large.
Michael and I participated
this year in our own RV "shack". We were running 100 watts with
the TenTech Omni VI with the Outbacker antenna that Michael installed. The
radio station was completely battery powered.
made a total of 255 contacts on 10 meter, 20 meter, and 40 meter bands.
We talked to people from nearly all over the country! We made contact
with a station in Hawaii, several in Colorado, one in Oregon, one in western
Washington, and several Canadian stations. We contacted 55 of the 77 ARRL
sections in the US
are we, exactly?
The details about APRS* and GPS
automatic Position Reporting System, is a software package that enables us
to display our exact position as it is determined by GPS and transmitted
by packet radio.
is a digital form of amateur radio communication that uses airwaves to
transmit packets of digital information to other other amateur radio
packet stations. Some packet stations serve as gateways to the internet,
allowing us to display our current position on specific websites. The
position links that I offer here are links to one such website!
*APRS is a
software package and a registered trademark owned by Bob Bruninga, WB4APR.
Michael got on 20M and talked with Randy on Hatteras Island, Victor in
Louisiana, Grig, in Brest, Transylvania, and Nick in the Ukraine. He broke
through pileups for each of these on his first attempt! We are feeling like
quite the DX'ers!
Michael worked a Russian station and a station in Prague Czechoslovakia. Tried
to find Millard but were unsuccessful. I got on a 2M YL net.
am going to have to be content, for this month, to have Microsoft Image Composer
on Michael's laptop. No Photoshop! Well I guess, then, that I can say that I AM
roughing it! I'm doing
a bit of photo editing for this using Microsoft Image Composer, the software
that I used for all my editing and art between last June and January when I got
my new computer with PhotoDraw. I didn't get Photoshop till April, but I'm
starting to wonder how I SURVIVED without it! The dog photo is an example of my
retouching with MS Image composer.
you know me at all, you know how addicted I am to computer games. I brought
along my disk versions of Hoyle Word Games (including WordYacht) and
Hoyle Board Games. Also I have Boggle and FreeCell and Minesweeper. I
even got online a couple of days ago at Cherry Hill and played Wordox
with some people. (I missed you, Playmaker!) I enjoyed playing WordYacht
and Boggle with Auntie Dots during our visit.
FrontPage in Michael's laptop, I am keeping this site updated, uploading
changes whenever I can get a modem hookup.
lots of unique opportunities for photos! Go HERE
to see my gallery of nature photos from this vacation. Be sure to look
at Woodlands and Flowers both.
So far, our stack of
unread magazines remains pristine. We have mainly read how-to manuals for
the Kenwood radio (the one that is running APRS, see above), and Triple A
Pursuit of Fitness
So far, our
fitness pursuits have been limited to bran cereal, a bit of walking,
climbing up to adjust the Outbacker antenna, and the upper-body exercising
from opening and closing our vents.