W6YX Hiking Trip to Black Mountain

April 28th, 2024


We had a great time on our hiking trip to the summit of Black Mountain on Sunday, April 28th, 2024. We brought a QDX radio, an End-Fed three-band antenna built by KO6ECC, and a laptop computer running WSJT-X and GridTracker. The portable End-Fed antenna was supported on one end by a rope tossed over a tree branch. The other end was connected to the QDX radio resting on the ground.

The 10m band was working well that day. We called CQ on 10m FT8 using KO6ECC's and KI6Q's call signs. PSKreporter showed our signals were received as far away as Australia. The maps below show all the stations that reported hearing us.

Several stations replied to our CQ, and we also tried replying to CQ's from other stations. We were able to make contacts with the six stations listed below.

Call Location Sent Rcvd Station Mode Band Time
KF9UG EN71 8 -6 KO6ECC/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 19:45:15 UTC
K4NAL EM60 6 -21 KO6ECC/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:05:45 UTC
KB4WT EM95 -6 -12 KO6ECC/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:12:00 UTC
K0ZS EM48 8 9 KO6ECC/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:27:45 UTC
CO2LKY EL83 8 -8 KO6ECC/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:38:15 UTC
KJ5EJV EM00 -3 -20 KI6Q/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:43:00 UTC
KF9UG EN71 8 -8 KI6Q/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 20:51:30 UTC
KF9UG EN71 15 -9 KG4UHM/P FT8 10m Sun 28 Apr 2024 21:05:15 UTC


The map below shows the locations of our six contacts, highlighted in yellow. Our location was grid square CM87, highlighted in orange.

Below is a screenshot from the laptop showing our contact with CO2LKY in Cuba. The program on the right is WSJT-X. The yellow highlited lines are the signals that we transmitted. The red highlighted lines are the replies to us from other stations.

Overall it was a fun day and great opportunity to learn about HF propagation, test our radio skills, and experiment with homemade radios and antennas.