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 was a homebrew 1 element Delta Loop for 11m which worked the world for me with 12 watts. Around this time I bought an old Yaesu FT902DM and became an active SWL on the HF bands. Long periods of 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 a few years back, finally obtaining my radio licence in July 2012.
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 horizontal Delta Loop for 40m (if you look closely you can just make out the loop in the second picture).
I am a keen mobile DX'er and in my car I have a Kenwood TS 480HX radio with a multiband Watson Multiranger 200 antenna covering 20m - 10m and a Diamond HF 40FX antenna for40m.
This is the location I use the majority of the time when I am DX'ing from the car. I can get very close to the salt water which provides a fantastic take off for long haul DX contacts and an extra few db of gain for free !!
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 beachs 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 really enjoy fishing for both fresh and salt water species. The picture below was taken back in the early 1980's at Glencar lake Co. Sligo and featured on a postcard at the time. The fisherman standing in the water is my dad and I am the one looking out at him from the shore. This picture evokes alot of very happy memories for me.
I am a musician and play bass guitar and double bass. I have played with some great musicians over the years and I consider myself very fortunate. Here I am in a couple of very different bands. Trad Irish Folk & Pop Rock!!
I am 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 in the pics below you can see I am portraying a radio operator with the 1st Royal Ulster Rifles who were a tough Irish glider borne infantry battalion. As pathfinders the 1st RUR were among the first soldiers to land in Normandy on the morning of D-Day, June 6th 1944, in order to help clear a path for the huge seaborne invasion which was to follow.
Thanks for checking out my QRZ page, I hope to meet you on the air very soon!
****For those interested in worked All Ireland squares my number is G63****
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