Early Summer on the Pemigewasset
by Jim Cluett, W1PID
Sometimes in the late afternoon the greens are
radiant with life. The woods and trees and grasses
are bursting with light. It was one of those afternoons.
Even better, there was a wonderful breeze that made
the mosquitoes disappear.
I rode my bicycle down to the Pemigewasset River
and operated for a while. I worked four countries
in about a half hour. It was glorious.
I rode about a mile and a half down to the old bridge abutment.
The bridge afforded a shortcut to Hill Village years ago.
Now the place is quiet except for the occasional cluck of
a red wing blackbird, the sound of crickets and the hush
of the breeze in the nearby pine trees. I set up on a knoll
about 25 feet above the river.
I used the ATS-3 with a half wave vertical wire over an oak branch.
20 meters had been quiet all day, but was just coming alive as I
began operating. I started tuning up from 14.000 and heard
OX3XR call CQ from Greenland. Peter answered me. He was a 589
and gave me a 559. I was running about 4 watts.
Here's a picture from Peter's QRZ.COM page. It's 50 miles from
his QTH and it couldn't be more different from my location on
Tuning up the band I answered S51WO, Sam in Slovenia. We have
worked many times recently. Sam gave me a 589. "UR QRP doing
FB job," he sent. He was a 599.
Next I worked PJ2/N4QQ in Curacao. We exchanged quick 599s and
I tuned up further to hear GD/SM5BFJ. Leif was portable on the Isle of
Man. We exchanged 599s.
I packed up my gear and looked around. I had left no trace except for
a noticeable indentation in the grass where I sat. The only other mark
I had left was thousands of miles across the ocean in the logbooks of
my fellow ham operators... seemingly worlds away and yet so near.