by William Eric McFadden

Excerpts from the WMA's website:

Located north of US 23, on the eastern edge of the City of South Shore. Consists entirely of Ohio River bottomland. Twenty-two acres of seasonal wetland with the remainder being grassland and brushy tree rows.

Good opportunities for bird-watching and wildlife photography outside of the waterfowl hunting season.

Two shallow wetlands on South Shore WMA attract a wide variety of waterfowl, shorebirds, and herons fall through spring. Three waterfowl blinds are available for wildlife viewing and photography beginning Feb. 1.



Eric's station at the WMA sign On Sunday, September 16, 2019, one member of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team performed a successful activation of South Shore Wildlife Management Area in Kentucky as part of the Parks on the Air (POTA; link) program. Eric McFadden, WD8RIF, was accompanied by his wife Vickie, KC8MAJ, and their two small dogs, Theo and Mindy.

After a successful activations of Shawnee State Forest (link) and Shawnee State Park (link), the quartet arrived at the South Shore Wildlife Management Area at about 2100 UTC.

Because the WMA is open for waterfowl hunting, Eric had been concerned about the sound of shotguns disturbing little Theo-dog but, upon arrival, the parking lot was empty, the parking lot remained empty throughout the activation, and no sounds of waterfowl hunting were heard. (The website indicates waterfowl hunting season is November 15 though January 15 annually.) Eric and Vickie deployed Eric's 28½' wire vertical supported on his 31' Jackite telescoping fiberglass mast held upright by a drive-on base. Because there was no shade available, Eric chose to set up his KX3 inside the car for protection against the sun. Eric was on the air at 2118 UTC.

As at the previous two activations, Eric was able to send a text to his friend and fellow Radio Adventure Team member Mike, K8RAT, to arrange a QSO on 80m. A QSO with K8RAT was successfully made at 2120 UTC.

Switching to 40m, Eric's first QSO came at 2125 with K8MH and QSOs came quickly thereafter with Eric's sixteenth and final QSO coming at 2145 UTC with NS4J.

Because of the prospect of a long drive home, Eric didn't try to make any QSOs on other bands. Eric would have liked to explore some of the 98-acre WMA on foot but wasn't able to on this visit.

All of Eric's QSOs were CW and were made at the 5-watt level.

Vickie did not operate but helped with set-up and tear-down, helped with navigation, and took care of the dogs during the operation.

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.