I have never had any desire to work an ARRL Field Day event. Not sure why, maybe it’s the same reason I could not understand the lure of the ARRL Sweepstakes when it rolled around. Field Day is not a contest, but it’s run just like a contest. The objective as stated by the ARRL, “To work as many stations as possible on any and all amateur bands (excluding the 60, 30, 17, and 12-meter bands) and in doing so to learn to operate in abnormal situations in less than optimal conditions.”
I decided to “GOTA,” get on the air today and make a few contacts on CW and SSB running 100w, using my home station and commercial power. If you worked me, I would give an exchange of ‘1D EB’ meaning 1 transmitter, ‘D’ is the designator for home station, commercial power and ‘EB’ is my ARRL section, East Bay.
Unlike I contest I started on 10M working CW, followed by SSB before moving to 15M and then to 20M in about 30 minutes. When I finally turned off the rig before heading to work I decided to tune 6M in the truck and see if I could make a few ‘FD’ contacts. I was lucky, worked 3 stations, including my first out of California state, Washington. When I got stopped in traffic, I quickly tuned 10M and proceeded to make some more QSOs, my first on 10M as a mobile or ‘1C’ while participating in Field Day.
Not sure I will put much more time into this operating event, but I can see how there would be a lure to an event, sponsored by the ARRL where hams gather, set up portable stations, BBQ, down some 807s and have a good time. It is also an event to introduce non-hams to the hobby and get them on the air.
I was hoping to get my 4 year old on the air, but he had more important things to do today, like see Buzz and Woody in Toy Story 3…again! Maybe we will have a chance before this event concludes tomorrow afternoon. Now to start considering a backup source of power for my station.