From Del, N8OFP:
August 20 2016 SARA Fox Hunt:
Below is a recap of the SARA Foxhunt help on Saturday August 20th.
Despite the weather forecast of possible showers the day turn out bright and sunny. 24 people attended the event, 21 hunters in 6 vehicles and 3 Foxes.
The starting point was at the usual spot for SARA fox hunt, the north side of Buehler’s parking lot in Wadsworth. There was a good mix of a number veterans and first time hunter. A big thank you to Jim (N8PXW) and Mike (KD8TQU) for allowing some of the first time hunters to ride along with them. And great big Thank You to Carol (N8SIN) and Gary (N8OGK) for handling the starting line duties, another fine job as always!!
The hunters were to meet at the north side of Buehler’s parking lot between 9:00 and 9:30AM. And the fox (foxes) were on the air at 9:20AM.
NOTE: Because of the arrangements made for lunch this fox hunt had a finish time of 12:00 noon.
The closest fox was on 147.525 simplex and was running 5 watts into a J-Pole mounted 15 feet above the ground. This fox was located at the Wayne County FOP Lodge on SR585, about halfway between SR57 and Benner Road. A Big thank you to Mike (N8QQN) to helping secure the use of these facilities.
The next fox was on 147.515 simplex and was running 5 watts into a ¼ wave antenna on top of Steve’s (N8SRJ) van. This fox was located about 2.3 miles south east of the first fox at Johnson Woods State Nature Preserve http://naturepreserves.ohiodnr.gov/johnsonwoods.
The last fox was on 146.565 simplex and was running 4 watts into a J-Pole antenna attached to the bed of Fred’s (KD8GYS) pickup truck. This fox was located in Orr Park in Orrville Ohio http://www.orrville.com/DEPT/PARK.HTM.
The hunting vehicles and Hunter:
- Frank (W8EZT) and Ken (KA8OAD)
- Jim (N8PXW) and 2 others including Jeremy’s (KB8LFA) mom Patricia (KD8BIT)
- Carol (N8SIN) and Gary (N8OGK)
- Kevin (KE8EGA) and one passenger
- Mike (KD8TQU and two of Jeremy’s (KB8LFA) daughters Daleen (KE8EMS) and Samantha (KE8ENK)
- Maria (KB8ZHQ), Wayne (AC8RA), Patrick (KE8BJF) and the rest of the family.
The equipment used varied from two Doppler units (Jim N8PXW and Frank W8EZT), Quad and Yagi beams to a hand held and rubber duck (keep this in mind for later in the story)
The first car to find any of the foxes was Jim (N8PXW) and crew. They arrived at the FOP Lodge around 10 minutes after 10:00AM. They were then told that they were not done and that they would need to continue their search. They were told that the next frequency was +/- 10KHz from the frequency they used to find this fox.
About 10 minutes after Jim’s crew left the second vehicle arrived at the FOP Lodge location, this was Frank and Ken. They were also told that their hunt was not yet completed and that they would need to continue on their trek, and the next frequency was +/- 10Khz.
Nearly 30 minutes went by after Frank and Ken departed the FOP Lodge before the next vehicle arrived, this turned out to be Kevin (KE8EGA). Kevin was told that his adventure was not yet over and he would need to search for another fox the was +/- 10KHz.
Around 11:30AM the fourth and last vehicle to locate the FOP Lodge fox arrived. It was Carol (N8SIN) and Gary (N8OGK). Unfortunately because of other commitments they were not going to be able to continue the hunt. We had a good conversation about the remainder of the foxes and other topics until noon when it was time to turn the foxes off and head for our lunch.
During the time that I was talking to Carol and Gary I received an email from Steve (N8SRJ) saying that only one vehicle had found him and that turned out to be Kevin (KE8EGA).
None of the hunters were able to locate Fred (KD8GYS) in Orr Park, although Kevin gave it a heck of a try. As it turned out the fox box that Fred was using had two intermittent problems. First the SO239 to BNC antenna adaptor was defective (it literally fell apart in Fred’s hand when he disconnected the antenna) and the PTT / Mic Audio plug to the radio had an intermittent short. If the wire was moved or bumped the cable would short and the radio would unkey.
Usually the winner of SARA fox hunts is determined by the team who has the shortest mileage. But since no one found all three of the foxes (because of technical issues and time limitation) the winner was determine by who found the most foxes, and that turned out to be…
As the winner Kevin has the option of hosting the next fox hunt. He and I were discussing some ideas over lunch and let me say this…. Be afraid, be very afraid… Kevin has some very devious ideas…..
Now remember earlier in the story when I said to keep in mind that there was a HT and Rubber Duck as the only equipment… Well guess what, the person who didn’t have any special equipment turned out to be Kevin (KE8EGA) the winner of the hunt. Congrats to Kevin for a fine job!!
I would like to thank all who participated in the SARA Fox Hunt it was a very fun day.
Special Thank You to:
- My co-conspirators Steve (N8SRJ) and Fred (KD8GYS) for their help in setting up this fox hunt
- My very good friend Mike (N8QQN) for arranging the use of the FOP Lodge facilities
- And last but not least Carol (N8SIN) for being the starting point coordinator.
Thank you all and looking forward to the next SARA Foxhunt