I've had a lifelong interest in radio starting in the late 70's when I was 10 years old and my dad bought me a cheap 4w AM CB. I graduated up to a 240 channel SSB set and tasted my first proper DX. I was hooked! I was fortunate enough to experience the fantastic propagation of the early 1980s when it was possible to work the world with simple equipment and very low power. My main antenna back then was a homebrew Delta Loop for 11m which worked the world for me with just 12 watts of power. Later on I inherited an old Yaesu FT902DM and became an active SWL on the HF bands. Long periods of radio inactivity unfortunately followed during the 90's and 00's due to family and work commitments but radio is in the blood and I got the bug again when we settled in our current home, finally obtaining my full amatuer radio licence in July 2012. A lifetime ambition fulfilled!!
My main radio is a Yaesu FT 1000MP MK V which is a wonderful rig.
My main antennas are a Mosley TA33 JRN WARC yagi covering 20,17,15 12 & 10m and a sloping Delta Loop for 40m
I am a keen mobile DX'er and in my car I use the brilliant Kenwood TS 480HX 200w radio with various HF antennae including the Watson Multiranger 200 multiband vertical, Diamond HF40FX monobander for 40m or the MFJ 1979 Telescopic whip with Wolf River Silver Bullet Mini coil which works great on all bands.
I am very fortunate to live near the coast and this is the location I use the majority of the time when I am DX'ing from the car. Depending on the tides I can often get very close to the salt water which provides an extra few db of gain for free and a fantastic low angle of take off for long haul DX.
I live in Sligo which is located on the north west coast of Ireland in a beautiful but rugged part of the world. Sligo is a coastal town at the mouth of a long valley surrounded by high mountains and gentle hills. The surrounding countryside is dotted with lakes and rivers and the coastline boasts some of the most beautiful sandy beaches in western Europe (if only we had the weather hi hi ).
Sligo is also known for its long association with the poet William Butler Yeats and features strongly in some of his most famous works. The mountain pictured in my QSL card (above) is called Ben Bulben from one of his final poems titled 'Under Ben Bulben'. Following his death in 1939 W.B yeats was buried in Roquebrune, France, but in accordance with his final wishes, almost 10 years later in 1948 his body was taken back to Ireland and buried in a small church graveyard at Drumcliffe, Co. Sligo.
The pictures below are of Knocknarea, a large hill west of Sligo town. The 327-metre (1,073ft) high limestone hill is visually striking, as it is monolithic in appearance and stands in a prominent position on the Cúil Irra peninsula. At the summit is a large mound or cairn of loose stones. This enormous cairn is 55 meters in diameter by 10 meters high. Folklore says it was built for the mythical Iron Age Queen Maeve, whose father, the high king of Ireland, gave her Connacht as a gift. Archaeologists believe it may really date back to 3000 BC. It is considered bad luck to remove a stone from the cairn, and good luck to take one up the hill with you to deposit on it.
Apart from ham radio I have several other hobbies that keep me busy.
I am a keen fisherman and enjoy fishing for trout and salmon on our local lakes and rivers. The faded picture below was taken back in the early 1980's at a place called Glencar lake Co. Sligo. The guy standing in the water is my dad and I am the one looking out at him from the shore. The photographer actually worked for a postcard company and he told us he hoped to use the picture for their Sligo series. and so he did! This picture evokes alot of nostalgia and very happy memories for me !!
I am a musician and play bass guitar and double bass. I have played in some great bands with some very talanted musicians over the years and I consider myself very fortunate. In the first picture I am playing my Ned Steinberger CR4M electric upright bass in a real 'World Music' (I'm the only Irish musician!) band playing tunes from Ireland, Spain, Greece, Russia, Switzerland, Scandinavia, England, the USA and many other countries. the second pic is me playing my Lakland jazz bass with a pop rock band called Queen B where we have more fun than should be allowed!!
I am also facinated by history particularly the period covering the 1940's and the second world war. I am a member of a living history reenactment group and we portray different regiments who fought during WW2. Here are a couple of pics of me in my period gear with some aging applied to the images. the pic on the left depicts a sergeant in the North Irish Horse who as the name suggests were originally a mounted cavalry regiment but converted to armour (Churchill tanks) during the second world war and fought in the north African desert and during the Italian campaign. the pic on the right represents a captain in the Glider Pilot Regiment as he would have looked during the Battle of Arnhem in September 1944. As well as honouring all those brave men who had to fight the war (including both my grandfathers) we actually have great fun playing soldiers. my wife always tells me I've never really grown up!!
Thanks for checking out my QRZ page, I hope to meet you on the air very soon!
I PREFER EQSL BUT WILL ALSO ACCEPT BUREAU OR DIRECT (IF ACCOMPANIED BY SAE & SUFFICENT RETURN POSTAGE)
****For those interested in worked All Ireland squares my number is G63****
Last modified: 2014-03-04 19:50:07, 10302 bytes
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