K4UPG Back in Action!
Jun 6th, 2010 by kmack

Many work responsibilities have kept me off the air more than I’d like lately.

But we did manage to break away for a few days with family in Tennessee over Memorial Day. It was great to have an opportunity to get together with Chuck, AF4O the Hillybilly Bear and fellow Polar Bear QRP group member. We had an opportunity to work a bit of QRP portable in the Chickasaw State Forest in West Tennessee. It is a very natural and beautiful location and Chuck took me to his special spot in a very old and interesting cemetary set deep in the very tall hickory tree forest. Wow! I believe the latest date on the grave markers was 1927 and there were many from the early and mid 1800’s. It is a lovely and isolated spot.

K4UPG running a 30m EFHW sloper from the edge of the forest cemetary

Chuck said to bring along a screen shelter and I sure was glad I did! This was also a great spot for deer flies, hornets and other interesting biting bugs!

He had a nice setup and was running a random wire on 20m which he launched by throwing an antique glass insulator from an old telephone pole over a tree branch. He has a better arm than I do… think that heavy insulator would have broken my arm!

Back at the in-laws home in Jackson, I had some time to operate deck portable and was ably assisted by my niece Chloe. Conditions were horrible, but it was fun to be outside and hearing some sweet dits and dahs for a bit.

Now I am gearing up for the next outing of the Central Florida QRP group. The weather is HOT and the summer thunderstorms are back, but life and radio must go on… cu on the air!



AF40 downs a Mountain Dew and doesn't miss a character of CW

Chloe gives me advice on copying cw through the QRN

Polar Bear on Hontoon Island
Apr 1st, 2010 by kmack

Look out Hontoon Island the Polar Bear of Florida is coming your way! Good Friday, 2 April 2010 Polar Bear QRP member #173 (aka K4UPG) will attempt to qualify Hontoon Island as a US Island on the Air by making 25 contacts including at least 2 DXCC entities.

Main pic

Hontoon Island is a beautiful place for some QRP Portable Ops

Activity will start about 1400Z after the ferry ride over to the island. Plan is to use special callsign K4T for recognition.

Look for us on 30m cw (10.106-10.116 MHz) and 20m cw 14.050-14.070 MHz and on the hour we will check 15m 21.060-21.070. If anyone shows up to assist, will also attempt ssb on 14.250-14.260 MHz island corridor. All ops will be QRP so we’ll need your help to pull us out!


Hontoon Fishing spot

Fishing is good!

If things go well, our Central Florida QRP group may consider this as a new operating site! If you are in the area, come on and check it out with us.

Closing Time is Dusk

Hontoon Island closes when the sun goes down!

Thanks to Florida State Parks for the fine pictures!

P.S. We did it 4.2.2010!¬† Over 30 QSO’s update coming! I am TIRED!

Weekend Buildathon
Apr 20th, 2009 by kmack

Starting to look like something good!

Starting to look like something good!

Spent my weekend building my Wilderness Sierra kit! What a fun kit and a real looker too! Now to get the KC-2 installed and align and calibrate things! Yahoo! Stay tuned for updates.

Now that's a looker! Top view before KC-2 Install

Now that's a looker! Top view before KC-2 Install

Beautiful layout pre-KC2 install

Beautiful layout pre-KC2 install

Gorgeous packaging! Wait until the KC-2 is installed.

Gorgeous packaging! Wait until the KC-2 is installed.

A New Thing? Central Florida QRP Group is Forming!
Mar 14th, 2009 by kmack

This morning  14 March 2009, five Central Florida qrp ham radio operators met at a Perkins restaurant in Altamonte Springs at 0730 EDT. We were dreaming and scheming about getting a group together for portable ops, homebrew building sessions, elmer, and on-air cw practice and other activities. Some pretty sweet qrp rigs were on display too.

No officers, no members, no dues, just come and participate… any takers? Let us know and we’ll be glad to help you get hooked up. Contact K4AHO or K4UPG via the info.

More details to come soon.


Kelly K4UPG

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