In the last couple of posts, I’ve talked about searching for salt water as something I’m planning on doing for contests. Or…may do for contests; it’s not really decided yet. What are the reasons? Here’s the recap:
- DXpeditions are expensive. Yes, it really does cost dollars to go to places, even places where the antenna infrastructure is already set up.
- Airline travel is a hassle. Carrying radio equipment and amplifiers is a hassle. Not so much, so far, from the customs people for the equipment — I carry the FCC license and the DXpedition license and clearly label stuff and their purpose for security (Security — Morse Code telegraph key: high speed key for sending Morse Code). Rather, the weight of the package is the issue. I was OK with the Costa Rica trip, but it was a total update from the Bermuda trip.
- My personal vacation time. I get 15-days. Period. I chewed up eight of those days — over half — on the TI trip. That leaves less than a week and change for anything, including a vacation alone with the XYL. I could use eight vacation days by taking Fridays off for contests with my XYL using an RV and verticals on salt water. And, no customs/weight limit hassle to boot.
My new house really offers no opportunity for Ham Radio. Putting up a vertical means I’m twenty feet from my neighbors house — and the house is on a hill where my entire eastbound signal goes directly into dirt — and it is just not my idea of having a great location for radio.
I can practice my simulated contests with my PC. But, to me, my choice is salt water on a beach, or continue DXpeditioning. Right now, I’m exploring salt water on a beach — because we have some here in Seattle-land.