Amateur Radio WB3GCK Wellesley Island
State Park

August 1999
Craig LaBarge, WB3GCK

In August of 1999, I spent a great week camping on Wellesley Island in the Thousand Islands region of New York State. Wellesley is designated as Island NY010R in the U.S. Islands awards program. In between fishing on the St. Lawrence River and sightseeing, I managed to get on the air for a bit each day.

The first QSO of the trip was with fellow EPA-QRP member, Carter, N3AO, on 30 meters. Carter was also one of the last QSOs of the trip. We connected up on the last day on 40 meters early in the morning. For both QSOs, Carter took a proactive approach to finding me. Rather than tuning around listening for me, he started calling me on the QRP frequencies during the times he knew I would most likely be on the air. His strategy worked! On both occasions, I had just turned on the rig and was tuning around looking for an open frequency when I heard him calling me.

Although band conditions weren't too great, my homebrew "Pop-up Vertical" antenna mounted on my pop-up camper did a respectable job. One of the highlights was being called by a French station who was also on a camping trip outside of Paris.

The rigs used on this trip included my trusty old MFJ-9030 (3W on 30M) and a Small Wonders SW-40 (950mW on 40M). The rigs were powered by a 7 A-H gel cell battery.

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Coffee and radio early in the morning


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WB3GCK's "Summer Home"

Here is my log from the trip:

Band:  30M
Mode:  CW

DATE    UTC     CALL        RST-S   RST-R   QTH                 NAME
8-9-99  2024    N3AO/QRP    579     599     Paoli, PA           Carter
8-10-99 0009    F6GYH/P     569     549     Nr Paris            Bernie
        1113    KA0YXX      599     579     Des Moines, IA      Bill
        1152    K9SK        599     589     WI                  Dale
        2128    AE0V        569     339     Grand Island, NE    Rich
        2213    WB9JOX      559     539     Burbank, IL         Ted
8-11-99 1249    K2PTS/QRP   559     589     Chicago, IL         Steve
        1304    KE4QZB/QRP  579     569     Charlotte, NC       Brian
        1323    NG9B        599     559     Chesterton, IN      John
        2219    WA8KOQ      579     559                         Wink
8-12-99 1235    WA4YGN      589     349     Vinton, VA          Paul
        1924    W3PA        579     339     Bedford, PA         David
        2155    F5SGI/P     569     449                         Jean
        2220    WN9U        589     559     Nr Milwaukee, WI    Gary
8-13-99 1927    NG1A/VY2    579     579     PEI                 Fred
8-14-99 1253    WN9U/QRP    549     549                         Gary
        1936    W4LVP       589     339     Johnson City, TN    Bill

Band:  40M
Mode:  CW

DATE    UTC     CALL        RST-S   RST-R   QTH                 NAME
8-14-99 1103    N3AO/QRP    599     589     Paoli, PA           Carter

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