A new venue for the PRA as we ventured out near Woodland Park to set up and operate for the 2017 ARRL Field Day. The weather was perfect, the campground did not disappoint with its amenities and options away from radio, such as trout fishing, hiking, or mountain bike riding.
The goal was quickly established…500 QSO’s, sideband voice, as 2A. Not only did the team smash that goal in the early hours of Sunday morning, but we recorded 557 sideband voice contacts. This smashed not only the goal, but the previous PRA QSO tally in 2015 by nearly 50%.
Veteran and rookie ham alike all walked away from Field Day learning something new; whether it was a new antenna design, navigation in a pileup, electrical engineering, QRP rigs, solar panel setup, antenna setup for next year, or a new joke to tell the family…this was a memorable weekend for ALL that participated. No matter if you were there for an hour or the entire weekend, we proved that amateur radio communication is reliable in less than ideal conditions; especially without commercial power. Even other campers came by and were impressed with the setup and were eager to show their children, “yes, communication around the world is possible without the internet…LOOK!”
The PRA’s newly acquired Icom IC-7300 performed flawlessly and became the new candy that a lot of members said would be their next purchase. Plans are already underway for Field Day 2018 and we look forward to continuing the tradition and keeping the squelch loose.