Welcome to my amateur radio BLOG. Here at N1CLC.com (aka HamNinja.com), I hope to cover my exploration of ham radio, summits on the air (SOTA) and general RF geek stuff. My other BLOGS focus on technology (cloudrant.com), photography (cameraninja.com/blog), and life (thethroboflife.com). QSL via QRZ, LOTW, cards.
I wanted to hike Middle Peak again and try
going up the north side for the final summit push.The last time I was up there, 11/25/2018, I
went up the south side based on the best topo research I could do.It’s been activated a few times so I knew it
was doable.During that last hike, I
followed a false trail and ended up in a horrid bushwhack to the activation
zone, followed by a horrid bushwhack back to the road.After that trip, my SOTA Yoda, K6ARK, said I
should have gone to the North side and used the unpublished trail.So that was the mission of the day.I charted out a new course on Alltrails in case I missed the
The weather was beautiful up there today,
starting with clear sky then moving to partly cloudy.There was a slight breeze keeping it cool but
not cold.I could see the clouds moving
up the mountain from the coast.It was
nice to be out in the sunshine not freezing my tail off.I found the cairns that marked the trail to
the summit (lat/long of 32.98287, -116.60007) and the tail to the summit was
10,000 times easier.For one, that side
of the mountainwasn’t nearly as
overgrown as the south side, and there was a cut trail that has been heavily
used.It’s beginning to get overgrown
but not bad.A huge shout out to Adam,
K6ARK, who told me about the alternate route.
I'm starting a Digital Mobile Radio (DMR)
tips series. In the spirit of being digital, I thought I would start with post 0 (zero). In this installment, I’ll cover one of the most important things you
should know how to do, getting important details about about a repeater that
you would like to use. Obviously, you
need to know how to connect to it like any other repeater, but you can get a
lot of other great information that is very specific to DMR. This includes things like what DMR talk
groups the repeater is subscribed to all the time (static talk groups), or how busy the repeater has been, or what
timeslot you should use for groups that are configured on it. All of this information is LIVE!
(NOTE: If you don't know what DMR is, take a look at my post "DMR Defined")
Today’s hike was up Viejas Mountain (W6/CC-039 - Viejas Mountain). I contacted Adam (K6ARK, AKA the “SOTA Yoda”) yesterday and we hatched a plan to be on the summit at the same time as Jamie (N6JFD) would be on Boca Hill (W6/NS-264) summit north of Lake Tahoe. Jamie was just about to cross over to “Goat status” by racking up a 1000 activator points and he was also going to crest 1000 chaser points at the same time, thus earning the “shack sloth” award. Adam knows him pretty well so he wanted to make sure he was able to contact him on the big day.
I attended an ARES meeting this morning but
decided to get a walk in with the dog.
There is a small hill not too far from the house in 4S Ranch. I last did this one in 2017 and you can read
about it HERE.
It’s been rainy for the past few days but
today it was mostly cloudy to partly cloudy but no rain.I was nice to be able to get a quick hike
in.The RF fishing was poor today and
I’m not sure why.You get a day like
that once in a while.While I goofed
around with the radio, Sulu took a nap. I struggled to get 4 contacts on 20
meter and then went over to the 40 meter band and got a couple more, nothing
like the pileup that I had in 2017.The
signal reports that I got varied from OK to poor.My SWR meter indicated that I didn’t have an
optimal antenna setup for sure.
“DX” is term used by ham operators to mean a
contact made outside of one's own country and today I got quite a few DX
contacts. I was itching to get out and
do a little hiking. It rained all day
yesterday and although it threatened to rain today, I thought I’d hike up to
San Marcos Mountain, W6/SC-331. There
was a world-wide
contest going on today so it allowed me to contact a lot of long
distance stations that may not normally be up.
That’s because contester’s have some really nice directional antennas
with tons of power. The large antennas
allow them to hear me and the power definitely helps me hear them, and the
contest keeps them up and on the air all day.