DXing Campout/North Am QSO Party, What is it? (by KZ6T)
Take a little bit of Field Day, add DX, and combine it with camping.
In 2010 I was looking for a way of combining my new found hobby of radio, my long standing love of the outdoors, and create a unique SCRA social event that others could experience. I considered a full DXpedition but those take a lot of funding and intricate planning. The alternative was to mount a miniaturized version, AKA DXing Campout/North Am QSO Party.
For year #1 we had a clear defined mission. To activate a highly prized grid square. Northern California is home to one of the rarest grids in America, CM79. Activating a grid square means transmitting from that grid square so that “chasers” can collect it and add it to their list of squares. The holy grail is to collect all 488 squares on 6 meters. Only 7 have done it to date. CM79 its located in the Lost Coast where no roads, or electricity exists. All supplies and gear had to be packed in. Our group carried, radios, feedline, antennas, batteries, tables and chairs, miles into the Lost Coast to make a few chasers very happy.
For year #2 we moved the event to the northern Sierras We setup camp at Bucks Lake and enjoyed a much less intense operating weekend with friends and family. The focus was just on having fun and enjoying the company of others. Prerequisites were set for future event locations such as clean grassy areas, showers, flush toilets, and more temperate weather. Scouting began and a new location was found. A.W. Way Park along the Mattole River in Humboldt County has been our QTH ever since. This is a County Park pretty far off the beaten path so it is not subject to the massive summer invasion of tourists seeking the Redwood forest.
The 2017 mini DX will take place on August 18th,19th, and go home on the 20th.This year mini Dx will be in conjunction with the SSB part of the North American QSO party. This will be at the Ocean Cove campground. This is a private facility located on Highway 1 about 1.5 hours travel time from the SCRA monthly meeting building on Yulupa in Santa Rosa.
From US 101 in Santa Rosa take River Road exit and continue West to Jenner. On SR1 turn North and continue North of Ft Ross, and about 2 miles South of Salt Point. The Ocean Cove Store will be on the right, and the campground will be on the ocean side of SR1.
This year reservations have been made fo 2 nights camping. This fee has been paid in advance for the group campsite. Overnight sites are $26 per night, and day use is stated to be $7, and a $2 fee for dogs. As of June 20th there are 9 members, 6 guests and 2 kids attending. There is room for more at the campsite,so advise Doug, KF6LMB if you are planning to attend.
For a view of the surrounding area Google “Ocean Cove Campground” on the internet. 88 pictures are available.
For more information on DXing Campout/North Am QSO Party for 2017, please contact Doug Payne KF6LMB