by William Eric McFadden

Support-Your-Parks Summer 2020 RATpedition, Day 2

From the park website:

Located in southeastern Ohio, the 2,983-acre Lake Hope State Park is a natural paradise. The entire park lies within the 28,614-acre Zaleski State Forest in the valley of Big Sandy Run. It is a rugged, heavily forested region traversed by steep gorges and narrow ridges with remnants of abandoned mining and iron producing industries. This eye-catching scenery offers many opportunities for photographers, hikers and historians to enjoy.



A view of Lake Hope -- click to enlarge On Sunday, July 19, 2020, on the second day of the Support Your Parks Summer 2020 Event, one member of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team performed activations of three POTA units in southeastern Ohio. Eric McFadden, WD8RIF, performed activations of Lake Hope State Park (K-1968), Zaleski State Forest (K-5455), and Lake Alma State Park (K-1967) as part of the Parks on the Air (POTA; link) program.

The first stop was Lake Hope State Park, K-1968.

Eric arrived at Lake Hope State Park, after stopping twice on SR278 to move turtles off the road, at about 1345 UTC to find a nearly empty parking lot overlooking the lake. After choosing a parking spot that provided a little bit shade, Eric deployed his 28½' wire vertical on his Jackite 31' telescoping fiberglass mast and drive-on mount. To help ensure proper social distancing during the continuing coronavirus pandemic, he set up his KX3 inside his car and was on the air by 1404 UTC.

Eric was disappointed to find he had insufficient cell-phone signal to self-spot himself on POTA Spots, or even to view spots on the website. However, he did have just enough signal to be able to send short SMS texts to his good friend K8RAT so that he could make the spots for Eric.

Eric began operations on 80m and at 1406 UTC made a QSO with K8RAT in central Ohio.

Changing to 40m, Eric's first QSO there came at 1411 UTC with VE3LDT in Ontario, who asked Eric to return to 80m to attempt a QSO on a second band; at 1412 UTC that QSO was successfully made. Back on 40m, QSOs came quickly, with Eric's twenty-seventh QSO on 40m coming at 1452 UTC with AB4WL in Alabama. This run of QSOs included a park-to-park (P2P) QSO with K0BWR who was activating Hillsdale State Park (K-2340) in Kansas.

Eric's station -- click to enlarge Changing to 20m, Eric's first QSO there came at 1500 UTC with VE9VIC in New Brunswick. QSOs came quickly, with Eric's seventh QSO on 20m coming at 1507 UTC is K8TE in New Mexico. This run of QSOs included a P2P QSO with N9MM who was activating Sam Houston National Forest (K-4417) in Texas.

Changing to 30m, Eric made only one QSO, at 1512 UTC, with N3XLS.

In all, Eric made thirty-seven QSOs including two P2P QSOs. All of Eric's QSOs were CW and were made at the 5-watt level.

Eric also submitted his log to the World Wide Flora and Fauna in Amateur Radio (WWFF; link) program.