by William Eric McFadden


Southern Ohio RATpedition, Day 2

Tom operating -- click to enlargeI> Three members of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team succeeded in activating Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument as part of the ARRL's year-long National Parks on the Air (link). Eric McFadden, WD8RIF; Miles McFadden, KD8KNC; and Tom Witherspoon, K4SWL, activated Charles Young Buffalo Soldiers National Monument, MN18 (link) in Wilberforce, Ohio.

As at previous activations, Eric's station consisted of his Enhanced KX3 Travel Kit, his MFJ-1910 33' fiberglass telescoping mast, and a custom clipboard. Tom's station consisted of his Elecraft KX2 and LnR EFT Trail-Friendly end-fed wire supported as an inverted-vee by a 20' telescoping fiberglass mast. Because of the cold temperature, Eric and Tom chose to operate inside the McFadden van. Eric and Tom were on the air about 1826 UTC.

Tom operated only SSB on 20m and quickly made enough QSOs to validate his activation. Eric operated only on 40m and made his first QSO came at 1829 UTC with W9AV. QSOs came steadily and quickly and Eric's 29th and final QSO came at 1854 UTC with K1EFI. All of Eric's QSOs were CW at the 5-watt level. Both Tom and Eric used bandpass-filters to prevent interfering with each other.

Miles did not operate but was instrumental in set-up and tear-down and did much of the activation photography.