I learned/experienced a couple things during this operation. Before I started I thought I'd be able to make tons of contacts, with the thought that I'd essentially be driving along a mountain ridge, with lots of elevation to help out my signal. As it turns out, I struggled to net a total of 21 contacts - with a lot of very weak signal reports. The first thing I hadn't really considered, is that Skyline Drive, which we traveled, swings back and forth from one side of the ridge to other, so that motorists can get views of all directions.
For radio, this means that within a very short time periods (sometimes within 2 minutes) I would go from having a great signal path in a certain direction, to having it being completely blocked as we rounded a peak, to having it come booming back in again. On the FM repeaters we use the term picket fencing. Living in Lancaster County, we call the visual equivalent of this "corn flash", which you experience when driving past a cornfield when the sun is low in the sky. Maybe I just discovered a new phenomenon - "Mountain RF Flash" (although those that live in these regions are probably used to it, and already have a term for it...)
Even with those conditions, I was able to get 16 voice contacts fairly quickly, so that I could switch over to what I will claim is a first for NPOTA (until proven wrong by someone else..) PSK31 in Motion! As it turns out, digital modes fought me even more that day than voice did, but I managed to find 5 contacts before bagging it for the day. To be honest, I stopped operating a little before we hit the top of Skyline Drive, because we made a diversion to Luray Caverns so that our daughter could check out the caves. When I shut down prior to leaving the park to head over to Luray, I told my wife I'd drive the rest of the way home when we were done. (To be honest, staring at a computer screen while mobile was starting to give me a headache anyway!)