A Hunting We Will Go

Radio Direction Finding (RDF) is a method used to find sources of interference to communications equipment such as broadcast radio, two-way radio, television; and telephones. It can be utilized by Search and Rescue workers to find persons in distress or to assist in the tracking and finding of stolen cars or other property equiped with Emergency Locator Transmitters. Amateur Radio (Ham) operators can use Radio Direction Finding (RDF) to track illegal or jamming stations, but more often, we use it just for fun.

Fun. Did you say fun. You bet. Hidden transmitter hunting has been an aspect of Ham Radio for over fifty years and it still has it's place in the hobby today. A Mobile Transmitter-hunt; Mobile Bunnyhunt or Mobile Foxhunt refers to hunts involving hams driving in vehicles equipped with Radio Direction Finding (RDF) equipment searching for another ham (aka .. Transmitter, Bunny, Fox) who is transmitting from a fixed hidden location. It is best described as a large area hide and seek game. When you start out on one of these mobile hunts have plenty of gas cause you will not know where you'll wind up or what tricks the hunted has in store for you.

Mobile hunters will proudly display the custom antenna systems they have made for Mobile Hunting. Antenna's like "what is that on the roof loops", "tape measure yagis", "trailor hitch quads, "dopplers" and "time-difference" to name a few, as well as "homemade attenuators" for zeroing in for the catch.

Yes, transmitter hunting might seem like it's one of the best kept secrets in Amateur Radio, but here in the Shenandoah Valley it isn't. The Foxhunters are always planning another hunt even before the previous tall tails have had a chance to cool off.

Everyone is welcome.

The pictures below are from a collection taken during various fox hunts in Augusta County, located in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

Give a HAM a sharp stick .. a piece of metal ... or even plastic pipe and he will either poke himself in the eye or he'll make an antenna.

Kneeling left to right: (KR4VL), (John-N3GLZ), (Joe-KD4FKT) Standing left to right: (Brad-KG4YLE), (Neil), (Ray-KE4HVR), (Jason-KG4YLG), (David-AD4TJ), (Benny-N4BCC), (Bob-N4JGO), (Clint-KB4OLM), (Brian-N4IRT), (Jess-W4PQK)