Brainerd Area Amateur Radio Club
Fox Hunt, Summer Picnic, & Club Meeting
August 26, 2000
The Brainerd Area Amateur Radio Club will held it's August club meeting in conjunction with a picnic. This meeting replaced the August 31st club business meeting. The event was held at the Loren Thompson Park in Baxter, MN. This is the first time in recent years that a club picnic has been held. The project was the idea of BAARC Secretary Shirley Doree, KCØDCW.
Terry May KIØFW started the activities at 10:30 AM with a fox hunt. He transmitted a low power signal on 146.60 MHz one minute out of each five minutes from a location about three miles distant from Loren Thompson Park.
Photo by Lyle KØLR
At 11 AM, the team of Club President Mark Persons WØMH, and Club First Lady Paula Persons WØHA took first place by locating Terry at the Trail's head parking lot. This is the south end of the Paul Bunyan Trail. It is just north of the Westgate Mall. The antenna they used was a 5 element cubical quad. This antenna had been made as a club project about three years ago when Brian Wermager KØEOU was President. Names were put in a hat and the antenna was given away to Mark. An RF attenuator, made by Mark, was used to get the signal level to mid-scale on the Icom HT they used as a receiver.
Photo by Mark WØMH
Taking second place in the fox hunt contest were Club Secretary Shirley Doree KCØDCW and her husband, Club Vice President Al Doree WØRC. They used a 4 element Yagi antenna with a step attenuator to control RF going to an HT radio. Al rigged dual handles on the rear of the antenna so he could use it vertical or horizontal.
Following the fox hunt, there was the August business meeting of the club at 1 PM followed by a picnic at 1:30 PM.
Photo by Mark WØMH
Everyone brought their own food. (We found out what hams eat on a picnic). A charcoal grill was setup for everyone to cook on. Bob Feuer, WØZPE brought 'Linguisa,' which is a Portuguese sausage. Everyone was invited to try some. It is a delicacy which he ordered from his former home town of San Louis Obispo, California. About 22 people attended the event. A fun time was had by all.
the Fox Hunt was Won
by Mark WØMH
hunters showed up at the park just in time to hear Terry transmit contest rules
and instructions on the fox hunt frequency of 146.60 MHz.
Terry was transmitting from a location about three miles away.
The power level was high enough so that we could hear it on our 2 meter
mobile radios. Remember, this is
point to point simplex with antennas less than six feet above the ground on both
First Lady, Paula WØHA, and I were one of the fox hunt teams.
The antenna we used was a five element 2 meter cubical quad, which is
fairly directional and is both vertical and horizontal polarized.
It was built as a club project about four years ago when Brian Wermager KØEOU
was Club President. Brianís
presentation, to the club, showed how an inexpensive antenna could be built in
just an hour. Call signs were put
in a hat and mine was the lucky one drawn to take the antenna home.
Everyone participating signed their names and call signs on the wooden
transmitted for one minute every five minutes with voice, and then CW.
Paula and I used the antenna along with a hand held 2 meter radio which
has a bar graph signal strength meter. We
also carried a variable RF attenuator to bring high level signals to within
range of the signal strength meter.
attempt, at the park, to find the fox transmitter was typical in that we found
signals coming from the northeast (toward Brainerd) and the north (toward the
Baxter School). After moving about
10 feet, we found an even stronger signal to the southwest.
Paula and put the antenna in the car and drove to the southwest to a
baseball diamond where we ran into a group of amateur rocket experimenters.
We looked at them and they looked at us with equal wonderment.
A reading there showed the strongest signal was coming from the north to
to an area close to the Baxter School and took another look.
At that point, we determined the strongest signal was coming from the
east in the direction of Brainerd. We
drove into Brainerd and could not get out of the car in time to catch the next
transmission, but did listen on the car radio and had a full strength signal at
the Paul Bunyan intersection. We
continued on into Brainerd and turned left to a location near the Westgate Mall.
Meanwhile, we saw the team of Al Doree,WØRC, and Shirley Doree, KCØDCW,
head further east into Brainerd.
stopped in an empty parking lot and found the strongest signal was coming from
the direction of the Arboretum. We
drove into the Arb and found a spot where we were a long ways from any large
metal objects. This attempt pointed
us to the northwest so we realized that we had overshot the target.
So, we left the Arboretum and headed east again on the road that goes
along the north side of the mall. We
were just going by the Trailís Head area when the next transmission started.
Paula said, ďJust swing into the parking lot and letís look.Ē
Sure enough, there was Terry transmitting from his car. We waved and he acknowledged that we had found him in about
30 minutes of fox hunting.
been my intention to go to the Brainerd Golf Course to get another bearing.
So we went there anyway and did get a good bearing to the east again
confirming Terry was between the golf course and the Arboretum.
learned is that there can be a lot of misleading reflections because the
antennas are low and that objects as small as six feet across can reflect a
signal causing us to be misled.
team had ranged further than us and was circling back to the Trailís Head when
the fox was over. They had really worked hard for an hour and a half.
I really look forward to a fox hunt next year.
We may face even more difficult competition because Terry plans to
compete rather than be the fox.
Back to the BAARC Main Page
This page was last updated 12/19/2006