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KA3UNQ USA flag USA

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QSL: ONLY DIRECT WITH S.A.S.E OR VIA BURO

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Ham Member Lookups: 40071

 

QSL INSTRUCTIONS FOR LIGHTHOUSE AND ISLAND CONTACTS:

NO  LOTW, eQSL or QRZ.com LOGBOOK !

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Please QSL ONLY via the address above WITH a Self Addressed STAMPED Envelope (S.A.S.E.). DX stations, an S.A.E with ONE greenstamp is fine or via the Buro. Various travel expenses, such as fuel, highway/bridge/tunnel tolls and overnight stays, are incurred putting on these lighthouses and islands. Having to provide your return postage and envelope should not be one of them. Thank you for your thoughtfulness and consideration.

GENERAL QSL INSTRUCTIONS:  

I am OK via the Buro or Direct with an S.A.S.E and proper return postage.  I DO NOT participate in LOTW nor do I respond to QRZ.com LOGBOOK requests or eQSL requests. Sorry, but life is far more simple this way.

 

FUTURE ACTIVATIONS

Keep an eye on this space for announcements of future lighthouse and island activations.   

QUICK SUMMARY:

On Saturday, Sept. 30, Dan/KD3CQ and I activated three lighthouse from the grounds of Point Lookout State Park in southern Maryland. They were POINT LOOKOUT LIGHTHOUSE, ARLHS USA-628, SOLOMON'S LUMP LIGHTHOUSE, ARLHS USA-767 and POINT LOOKOUT LIGHT, ARLHS USA-1409. IMPORTANT:  Remember to send your QSL requests to the station you worked.

We split the duties: Dan started out on 20 meters while I held down the fort on 40. At the start of the days session, around 1330 UTC, band condtions seemed fairly decent, especially on 40 where I was working pretty much the whole east coast and into Canada. Dan mentioned later he did work one or two European stations while on 20, and when my opportunity came to work 20, I did as well. We even worked a few stations out on the west coast, which is something we haven't been doing for some time now. Lets hope it's a sign of things to come.

Weather-wise, it was a very nice day with sunny skies, temperature around 70 and a stiff, cool breeze kicking up the Bay from the NorthWest. If there was one sour note, it was the presence of all the flies, especially where I was located. The parking lot I was using was also used by a large cadre of local fishermen and, I guess, over the years, they gutted their catch nearby, hence the huge fly population. They were a constant bother and distraction. Note to self: don't go back until the dead of winter when there are no flies! 

I managed a total of 70 contacts for the four hours, while Dan's total was around 55 or 60. All in all, not a bad morning's work. For me, it was my first outing since the beginning of the year and it really felt good to be out at a light speaking with all my lighthouse friends. Speaking of friends, our thanks to all who took the time to post us on DX Summit and the ARLHS BeaconBot. No doubt it helped our QSO count considerably.  

 

A SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:

It is with a very heavy heart and profound sadness that I announce the passing of my buddy, my pal, Dozer, the Radio Cat in mid-September. Dozer's countenance has graced my station QSL card for many years and his daily presence here in my shack is sorely missed. I had the great pleasure and joy to share his companionship for 17 of his 22 years and will miss him dearly.

 

 

 

My adventures in radio began in the late 1950's when I spent countless hours shortwave listening in front of a Hallicrafters S-38E receiver (which I still have), later up-grading to the SX-110. Following high school graduation in 1962, I enlisted in the United States Coast Guard where I served ten years as a radioman (ZUT #1044) in such places as South Florida (NMA27, NOM), Washington, D.C. (NMH) and Honolulu, Hawaii (NRPY, NMO). Once settled down following my discharge from the service in late 1972, I resumed SWLing for a time, but really missed working CW. The only way to fix that was to earn my Novice ticket, which I did in October, 1989. My very first contact (on CW of course) was a DX station and I've been hunting DX ever since. Following my up-grade to General, island and lighthouse hunting have become my primary interests.

My current equipment is rather modest; an Icom 756 PRO III running barefoot to a tower-mounted Cushcraft MA5B Mini-beam about 30-feet above ground. Although a victim of antenna restrictions for many years, I've done rather well, having confirmed over 305 DXCC entities, 668 IOTA islands and 675 U.S. islands. My lighthouse collection has grown as well, with 1,318 confirmed thus far.

I have enjoyed island activating here along the East Coast for both IOTA and the US-Island Award Program for some time now, but recently my focus has centered on activating lighthouses for the Amateur Radio Lighthouse Society (ARLHS Member # 278). On these outings, I currently operate portable using an Icom 7000 transceiver (replacing my venerable and ultra-reliable Kenwood TS-50/AT) with a Hustler mobile antenna system mounted on an Alpha-Delta Outpost tripod. This arrangement has worked out really well, allowing me to make contacts with such far away places as Australia, South Africa and parts of Asia. To date, I have activated over 35 islands and 80 lighthouses ranging from Massachusetts to Virginia. At the 2009 ARLHS Convention, I was the proud recipient of the first ARLHS Activator of the Year Award. The gentleman seated making the presentation in the photo above is the former President and founder of the ARLHS, K2JXW, Jim Weidner. The two goofballs in the adjacent photo are Dan Hatcher, KD3CQ and I at FrostFest held every February in Richmond, VA. Dan and I have collaborated on a number of lighthouse activations here in the Chesapeake Bay area.  In March of 2016, I achieved what I consider to be a milestone in my affiliation with the ARLHS....my 200th lighthouse activation.

The radio box shown lower left contains the now-retired TS-50/AT with a Kenwood 2-meter rig on the shelf above. Thats me in the truck working portable at some lighthouse, doing paper logging as usual. You can see the radio box on the passenger seat while a Die Hard battery rests down in the footwell providing power. The next photo shows the Hustler antenna system configured with resonators for 80, 40 and 20 meters sitting atop the Outpost tripod. The Magnum no longer makes the road trips....its been replaced by my old Dakota pick-up seen upper right. (No, my call sign is not stenciled on the side of the truck.) That handsome young man seen on the far right is yours truely getting in some code practice while home on liberty from USCG Radio School way back in 1963. The radio I'm listening to so intently is a Hallicrafters SX-110 receiver. (I was only an SWL back in those days.)

 

A Rhode Island native, I now reside in Maryland in a small town just west of Annapolis. In early March of 2006 I retired from Honeywell, the last of several aerospace contractors I worked for during my thirty-one years at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. My last position was as a Flight Operations Director for two earth-orbiting satellites: the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) and the Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer/Earth Probe Satellite (TOMS/EP). The UARS spacecraft, placed in earth orbit from Space Shuttle Discovery in late 1989, was turned off in mid December, 2005 following fourteen years of collecting critical scientific data pertaining to the Earth's atmosphere. The disabled spacecraft eventually returned to Earth, disintergrating in a huge fireball over the South Pacific Ocean in late September, 2011.

Seen below are several NASA and U.S. Coast Guard patches I've managed to save over the years. Below them are examples of home-made certificates I issued for a number of lighthouse and US-Island Award special event stations I've done with several partners.

 

Thanks for reading and I hope we meet soon on the air.

73, Jim UNQ

 

8374283 Last modified: 2017-10-07 16:32:36, 15726 bytes

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