by William Eric McFadden

From the park's website:

A total of 2,606 acres of uninterrupted hardwood forest sprawl over the many hills and coves of Strouds Run State Park. The rugged terrain and scenic lake provide visitors a unique wilderness escape in southeastern Ohio.



Eric operating -- click to enlarge On Saturday, April 18, 2020, one member of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team performed a successful activation of Strouds Run State Park in Ohio as part of the Parks on the Air (POTA; link) program. Eric McFadden, WD8RIF, performed the activation at the park's Horseman's Area while maintaining proper social distancing during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis on a lovely spring day. Eric was accompanied by his wife Vickie and their two small dogs, Theo and Mindy.

Eric and Vickie had, at this point in the COVID-19 crisis, been working at home for more weeks than could be easily counted and the lovely spring day begged for a trip afield for a POTA activation of Strouds Run State Park. Eric chose to operate again at the Horseman's Area because of it was most likely to be empty of other people and because of its high elevation and ease of access. Upon arriving at the Horseman's Area, Eric and Vickie found the place to have several parked cars but the cars' occupants seemed to all be on the hiking/bridle trails, so social distancing was easy to maintain.

Eric, Vickie, and the dogs arrived at the Horseman's Area at about 1945 UTC and Eric deployed his 28½' wire vertical on his 31' Jackite telescoping mast supported by drive-on mount. Eric set up his Elecraft KX3 for the first time inside his new 2018 Honda Fit and was on the air by 2007 UTC.

Eric's station -- click to enlarge Eric started on 80m in the hope of working his good friend and fellow SEORAT-member K8RAT, but no QSO with Mike was made. Eric did make a QSO with KE4WTI at 2014 UTC.

Switching to 40m at 2022 UTC, Eric's first QSO there came at 2027 UTC with N2IGW. QSOs in response to Eric's calls of "CQ POTA" came quickly, with Eric's 9th QSO on 40m coming at 2042 UTC with N0TOP.

Switching to 20m at 2045 UTC, Eric's first QSO there came at 2050 UTC with N8TE in New Mexico. This was followed in short order by QSOs with AG7P, N6AN, and W6LEN, and the final QSO came at 2056 UTC.

Eric operating -- click to enlarge Eric returned to 80m for a short while, but no additional QSOs were made there. Eric also sent several minutes on 30m, but no QSOs were made there.

In all, Eric made fourteen CW 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. although he didn't make enough QSOs to to achieve a valid activation within the program which requires 44 QSOs be made. However, the WWFF program allows these 44 QSOs be made over any number of visits so a valid activation within WWFF is still possible if subsequent visits to the park are made.