Portable Operation

Winter Hill, IO83ro, 23 April 2016

Being in Lancs for the weekend, I spent an enjoyable day doing something I have not done for a long time - operating on the radio! With some excellent advice from Paul, G8AFC, I headed for the south side of Winter Hill. In preparation, I took my FT897, a short mast which could be clamped to an extension of the car roof bar, and antennas for HF, and 2m. Lurking in the back of the shed was a 4 el Tonna portable (which I'd never used, but had acquired many years ago), and I also took a mag mounted vertical. Power was provided by a 40AH golf trolley battery with a 600W inverter to maintain a good 13.8V during the day. I arranged for this to be charged off the trailer electrics on the car to keep independence between the main car battery and my operations.

I arrived at the site in glorious sunshine, but with a chill breeze blowing from the NE. Fantastic views of Manchester round to the N Wales coast over the cranes at Liverpool. The large dish at Jodrell Bank was visible to the south, and in the distant haze Mow Cop could be made out. I decided to set up on 2m to start with, and if nothing much was around then I'd get the HF antennas out. Suprisingly, I didn't hear much repeater activity in the FM segment, but there were a few simplex QSO's taking place, although the calling channel was fairly quiet.

Switching over to the little beam, heading due south, I heard G3SKY calling CQ, and he came back immediately on my response. From there on, operation remained on SSB. There was a steady response to my calls, and the occasional response by me to others calling. No need to go to FM or HF. After seeing Lyn's initiatives to get folks active on 2m, I was pleasantly suprised by what I found - I haven't operated on 2m SSB for many years now.

View of the portable station on Winter Hill

Portable log for 23/4/16 operation

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