[amsat-bb] Back from VE8

Gabriel Zeifman gabrielzeifman at gmail.com
Tue Feb 7 18:17:37 UTC 2017

Hello fellow bird trackers and sky talkers,

I have safely returned to EM15 from the reaches of the sub-Arctic. What a
great trip with 1,140 contacts in the log (over 900 already with
confirmations in LoTW).

The trip started out very well filling in many holes in holes in many
people's 488 maps in DN land and a bit of EN land.

After crossing the border, many never before heard grids were activated.
The real fun began after crossing the 60th Parallel into the Northwest
Territories and into DP land, a field that most people had never worked.

The conditions were great, temperatures weren't absurd (don't get me wrong,
still damn cold). The Winter Roads I did get on were great (lots of fun
working from the Detah Winter Road on Great Slave Lake in DP22). Nothing
greater than working across the Atlantic while on an ice road under the
northern lights... DP00 was definitely the most absurd grid I visited, on
the Trout Lake Winter Road. Next time I'll have to go further and get into

Everything seemed to go very well up until around day three in VE8 when all
of my coax jumpers began acting up. I still managed to get on some passes
with this setup and make some great contacts. It eventually got bad enough
where I had one jumper that seemed to work alright and the whip on my car
and used that for 2m, basically limiting me to FO-29 (where I was very
quiet most of the time).

Upon getting into BC, John K8YSE found Tim VE7XIX (former VE5SAT, AC2GK). I
met up with Tim in Fort Saint John, BC and he had everything we needed to
make a temporary repair on two of my jumpers. Thanks to Tim the portion
between BC and Portland, OR was saved (solder and lots of gorilla tape).

Upon reaching Oregon and California, thanks to Clayton W5PFG and Steve N9IP
I was able to get some new coax jumpers.

The drive down the coast and through the desert was great, many rare grids
activated. A memorable time was driving through LA and listening to the
147.435 repeater and checking into the "Bong Hit Net" at 4:20PM.

It was great to meet many hams throughout the trip, in both the US and
Canada. Especially fun was attending the Palm Springs Hamfest and meeting
many SoCal sat ops (and a certain displaced 9 lander). My buddy Ethan also
passed his tech at at the hamfest and will soon be KE0xxx and hopes to get
on the birds soon. Was great to meet John K8YSE in Mesa and get EN91 as a
/r grid (easiest /r grid I've ever gotten).

All contacts are uploaded to LoTW. If you are missing anything, now would
be a good time to start emailing. Big thanks to Dave KG5CCI, Fernando
NP4JV, and Paul N8HM for being my QSL managers. Those three received my
logs via Iridium messages and uploaded. If you enjoyed receiving instant
QSLs from the sub-Arctic out of range of any terrestrial networks, thank
those three, it wouldn't have been possible without them.

Thanks to all for all the contacts, it was a ton of fun and I look forward
to the next one (I'm itching to use V31NJ, hint hint)!


More information about the AMSAT-BB mailing list