ARRL Field Day 1998: To contact as many amateur radio stations as possible and, in doing so, to learn to operate in abnormal situations under less-than-optimum conditions.

Longs Peak (14,255') ARRL Field Day 1998

Field Day Station K0IW
Operating from the Boulder Field on Longs Peak (12,700')
Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Where: The Boulder Field on Longs Peak (12,700') in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
When: 12:20pm local time on Saturday June 27 to 12:38pm local time on Sunday June 28, 1998

Steve, John, Doug, GeorgeW, GeorgeL Team Members

From Left:
Steve Waltman, N6TKA (Pack horse, up)
John Nogatch, AC6SL (Operator)
Doug Young, K0DUG (Operator)
George Watson, K0IW (Operator)
George Lehmkuhl, W0NFW (Pack horse, up and down)

 

American Radio Relay League The Event

1. Eligibility: Field Day is opened competitively to all amateurs in the ARRL/RAC Field Organization (plus Yukon and Northwest Territories). Foreign stations may be contacted for credit, but are not eligible to compete.
2. Object: To work as many stations as possible on any or all amateur bands (excluding the 30, 17, and 12-Meter bands) and, in doing so, to learn to operate in abnormal situations under less-than-optimum conditions. A premium is placed on skills and equipment developed to meet the challenge of emergency preparedness and to acquaint the public with the capabilities of Amateur Radio.
3. Date and Field Day Period: Always held on the fourth full weekend of June. Begins 1800 UTC Saturday, ends 2100 UTC Sunday (June 27-28, 1998).

(Read The Complete ARRL Field Day Rules)

The Plan:

Sat 6/20/98 6:00am GKW sets out for summit with 2 big batteries
Sat 6/20/98 6:00pm GKW returns
Tue 6/23/98 6:00pm Final dinner meeting at GKW's, gear check out
Fri 6/26/98 6:30am Team meets at GKW's house
Fri 6/26/98 7:30am Team reaches trailhead
Fri 6/26/98 8:30am Team leaves trailhead for Boulder Field
Fri 6/26/98 2:00pm Team done with base camp set up; Team leaves for summit
Fri 6/26/98 4:00pm Team arrives summit, caches battery, antenna and water
Fri 6/26/98 4:30pm Team departs summit for base camp
Fri 6/26/98 6:00pm Operating team hunkers down, packhorses depart for home
Sat 6/27/98 9:30am 1st shift (John, GKW) sets out for summit
Sat 6/27/98 12:00pm 1st shift arrives summit, sets up station, On The Air! (noon)
Sat 6/27/98 5:00pm Doug leaves for summit, John departs summit, cross paths enroute
Sat 6/27/98 7:30pm John dines at base camp, Doug and GKW dine on Summit
Sun 6/28/98 12:00pm Tear down station, back to base camp
Sun 6/28/98 2:00pm Leave for trailhead.

(Read The Complete Plan)

Steve, GeorgeW above treeline. Longs Peak is in the middle behind Steve, and Mount Lady Washington is behind George on the right Getting There

We left the trailhead as planned, and made good time getting to the Boulder Field.

Unfortunately, we were unable to post our radio gear on the summit of Longs Peak as we had planned. We were fatigued from carrying the gear 6 miles and 3300 vertical feet up to the Boulder Field, and the snow conditions on the Cables Route proved to be unstable late in the day.

(If you click on the picture on the right to see the full-size image, you can just barely see two small figures on the snow field in the lower-right. They are working their way up the lower portion of the Cables Route.)

Longs Peak. The Diamond is the sheer vertical face dominating the east side of the summit. The Cables Route is on the right.
GeorgeW operating, John logging Being There

However, we had great success operating from our base camp at the Boulder Field. We could operate in close proximity to our tent and cooking gear, and the scenery was quite spectacular.

The radio, the antenna and the batteries all performed well.

The biggest operating challenge was exposure to the elements. The wind tore the pages from our logbook and upended our tent. It got chilly at night, and some of us got quite sunburned from operating the radio and keyer in full daylight.

Doug operating
John operating The Results

Overall, we had a great time, and the event was a huge success.

Check out our station log. We made 160 contacts, including much of the United States, Hawaii, Canada and even Poland!

Also, check out our official ARRL contest submission.

The Pictures:
There are 2 rolls of film here, 325186 and 325185. Please note that, due to processing order, 325186 actually comes before 325185 chronologically.

325186/IMG07A.JPG At the trailhead
325186/IMG08A.JPG Steve, GeorgeW, Longs Peak
325186/IMG09A.JPG Doug, GeorgeW, John
325186/IMG10A.JPG Resting, Longs Peak in background
325186/IMG11A.JPG Steve carrying tripod
325186/IMG12A.JPG John, GeorgeW (fg), Cables Route (bg)
325186/IMG13A.JPG John and Doug at Chasm View
325186/IMG14A.JPG John and Doug at Chasm View
325186/IMG15A.JPG Doug, base camp in distance
325186/IMG16A.JPG Lambs Slide, Broadway on Longs Peak
325186/IMG17A.JPG Broadway, the Diamond on Longs Peak
325186/IMG18A.JPG Lambs Slide, Broadway on Longs Peak
325186/IMG19A.JPG North Chimney on The Diamond
325186/IMG20A.JPG The Diamond and the Cables Route
325186/IMG21A.JPG GeorgeW (op) and John (logger)
325186/IMG22A.JPG John, GeorgeW, and the antenna
325186/IMG23A.JPG John, GeorgeW, Storm Peak
325186/IMG24A.JPG GeorgeW, John, the 25lb batteries
325185/IMG0.JPG John operating
325185/IMG01.JPG basecamp (fg), Longs Peak (bg)
325185/IMG02.JPG basecamp (fg), Longs Peak (bg)
325185/IMG03.JPG Doug operating
325185/IMG04.JPG Doug operating
325185/IMG05.JPG Doug, night ops
325185/IMG05A.JPG night ops
325185/IMG07.JPG night ops
325185/IMG07A.JPG GeorgeW operating at sunrise
325185/IMG08A.JPG Perth antenna with base and groundplane
325185/IMG09A.JPG John, with GeorgeL operating
325185/IMG10A.JPG John, with GeorgeL operating
325185/IMG11A.JPG GeorgeL (op), GeorgeW looking on


Doug Young, K0DUG, dougy@cortexnology.com

All Text and Images Copyright 1998 by Douglas M. Young. All Rights Reserved. No content may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in articles and reviews.

Last updated August 24, 2001

"I think this plan is doomed, and that is why I am so interested in it" -Steve Waltman