When C.A.T.S. and PIGs Play


The title of this story says a lot if you are a member of our local Clarksville Amateur Transmitting Society aka:C.A.T.S. Be that as it may we decided at our last outing at Jefferson Davis Monument to head out to another local landmark called Port Royal. Port Royal is located near Clarksville Tennessee and is one of our local attractions. Info on Port Royal can be found at:   http://www.tn.gov/environment/parks/PortRoyal/

 After meeting at one of our local McDonald s, KF4WK-Lewis, N5HOT-Terry, KT4FQ-Jim (our local C.A.T.S. club president), and myself KM6NN-John enjoyed a warm cup of coffee and a quick bite and off we went on another QRP adventure.

The plan was to meet a couple of our other ham friends at Port Royal as they live just a few miles from that location. Flying Pig and C.A.T.S. club member AA4AE-Frank and C.A.T.S. club member KI4ZQL-Don were to arrive at 1600Z and hook up with us for antenna duty. In no time we arrived at the ranger station and set out on foot looking for a good location to put up our Mystery Antenna (W5GI.com). It did not take long in the 23 degree WX to do a quick scan and find the best place to park and set up our rigs. While looking around Don and Frank arrived and pointed out a nice parking area near the river that was perfect for our outing. After parking next to our operating location we went to work setting up our stations. Setting up with a group of guys who know each other is great as we all know what is expected of each other and setting up takes only a short time. This set up was a lot faster when you are freezing which is a great incentive to get the leg work done.

N5HOT-Terry brought his K3 and power supply (with the VOX turned on) and Frank brought a backup Yeasu FT 817nd. While Terry set up the K3 and power, Frank and I set about throwing up the lines for the Mystery Antenna. Like I said with cold weather as an incentive you move fast to keep warm. In no time we were on the air. NV4T-Doc (Boss Hog of the FP club) was not able to be with us on this outing so I was at the rig to make the first contact. I started out on 20 meters listening for Special Event Stations commemorating Pearl Harbor. I found W2W on 14017. He was not bad for being in Baltimore but about five thousand other hams were trying to contact him, no doubt with a lot more power than our 5 watts. No joy here so away I went to 40 meters for a look see. KD7MTI- Bill in Brentwood TN was in a QSO with another station and it was on the verge of a Rag Chew award, so I rolled off and looked around a bit more. Almost every station on 40 meters I found that sounded good was in a long term QSO so back I went to 20 meters to look for some quick DX. The 23 degree WX was a large incentive for making short contacts so I could put my hand back into a glove and warm it up.

Checking around 14020 up and down a little I found II1TLA-Gary calling CQ

(http://www.talloneeditore.it/) . I did the K3 tune thing and on the first call back to him he gave me his report. We were 599 into Alpignano, Italy. Wow now that is cool. I gave him our QRP info and his report was FB into Italy. He was coming in 599 to our location. With the first QSO in the log I felt better about being so cold. Next up a short distance down the band I heard VE3VJC-Dibagh Chauhan in a QSO with a ham in California. I could only hear VE3VJC so I moved up a bit and found K1PUG-Henry in Harwinton, CT in QSO with D18LX-Heinz in Germany. I wanted to contact D18LX but he faded out before he finished with K1PUG. Moving around a little I found F5JU- Jean-Yves in Hemitage, France. He was 599 and he gave us a report of 569. Not bad for 5 watts. Jean gave us a FB and congrats on our DX QRP. I was shaking with anticipation for our next contact..... Or was it the 23 degrees WX... I was not sure because of lack of circulation. LOL Just when I thought we were done I ran onto OK3AA-Milan in Havana Cuba. Now we were talking. My blood got a little warmer just talking to someone in a warm climate. His report was 559 and ours was 459. I can handle that report. Shaking right along I moved a bit and found CO2KK-Prof. Arnaldo Coro Antich also in Havana Cuba. All of a sudden I smelt smoke. I thought I was getting so good on the radio that I was smoking hot. A quick look around and I found that it was not my operating skills that were smoking hot but a small warming fire being built by my not so warm fellow Flying Pigs. With the fire calling my name I stood up and turned over operation to anyone who was willing to take the key. You guessed it NO TAKERS..... Looks like it is time for me to get close to the fire so 72 from the Cold Cuts Flying Pigs of North Central Tennessee. Here is hoping more C.A.T.S. can come out and play with us on our next QRP adventure.



Thanks for checking out our story and we hope to see you on the air. 72, John-KM6NN and the Flying Pig Gang....