Well, none of that scares me! I'm a big bad ham radio operator. Because I spent the whole first day getting there, setting up Monday night had to be done in the dark. Thanks to my incredible bravery I was able to set up my antenna by flashlight, unload the rest of my gear and set up the operating position where I was going to have to brave the next 3 nights of ham radio activation:
It's all in how you spin the story isn't it? So, where in Cuyahoga did I find such a great operating position? At a Bed and Breakfast inside the park! The accommodations couldn't have been more perfect! The place I stayed was The Inn at Brandywine Falls which is a great place, run by Katie and George. I found the Inn through the National Park Service web site for Cuyahoga Valley National Park the last time I was in the area, so I had decided that when I needed to come back I was going to make reservations, so that I could activate in the evenings, from a comfy spot! I e-mailed the owners to let them know what I wanted to do, and they were very accommodating. While it wasn't snowing at the time I was there, this would be an awesome spot for anyone wanting to activate this winter, who doesn't want to be stuck out in the cold....the picture from their website below says it all:
The Radio Stuff
Outside the window, at the other end of my coax, in the big grassy yard, was my Buddipole Mast. I used several configurations throughout the 3 days. In band order (but not necessarily the order I operated in) I used the standard 20 meter dipole configuration, my home-made NVIS wire with the VersaT as the feed-point, and something that I rigged up on the spot with no prior testing - an 80 meter NVIS antenna. You might notice too, the caution tape to warn any unsuspecting wanderers of the wires on the ground, and in the air.