May Afternoon at the Pond

May 1, 2011

I took a quick hike to the pond and cabin at
Knox Mountain this afternoon. I worked Italy,
Slovenia and a bunch of stations in the
Florida QSO Party. Two weeks ago there
was snow on the ground. Today there is
none to be seen and the walk is glorious.

It's the perfect time for hiking. Not too hot and
no bugs. The brook has settled down from the
raging condition of melting snow. Bird song fills
the forest and colts foot decorates the trail
with bright yellow flowers. The walk to the
pond and cabin is fantastic.

The sight of the pond and the cabin on the far
shore are a welcome sight in all seasons. It's
a perfect place to operate for a while.

I have brought the ATS-4, the T-1 tuner and
a spool of wire. I heave a line into the branches
in front of the porch and haul 28 feet of wire
into the air.

I plug in the battery pack of 8 AA cells and
20 meters comes alive. Right away I work
I5TYQ, Roberto, in Florence. "FB 3W Jim," he
sends. He gives me a 559.

Then I move up the band and work five stations
in the Florida QSO party. We exchange quick
599s. N4UU, N9CM, N4TB, K2EK and N4BP are
all very strong.

Before packing up, I drop back down below 14.025
and hear Dan S59N in Slovenia calling CQ. He
answers me and gives me a 559. "Nice CPY on UR
QRP Jim," he sends.

I'm happy and get ready to leave. I've only operated
for 20 minutes, but I feel like I've been on vacation
for a few days. I've hiked along a magical trail through
woods, alongside the most beautiful brook. And I've gazed
at the shores of a quiet mountain pond while making
contacts to the far ends of the world.