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It was a lovely afternoon and I felt like visiting a park. Today I thought I would return to Kwomais Point as I really like the little park and it has some decent places to set up ones radio gear. I finished lunch, loaded the car and set out for the park. The drive went quickly and soon I was pulling into the park behind two others who just happened to be arriving with me. The lot was actually fairly full today but it still had a few open spaces. I parked, grabbed my camera and went for a stroll. I wandered along the southern fence and noticed a locked gate with a path beyond it through the trees along a narrow ridge to a cliff just hidden from view. It looked very inviting and as the fence next to the gate was cut open, I ducked through and went for a walk.
The path made its way south towards the cliff edge, it followed the ridge line and fortunately had ample space on either side. The trail forked off some other routes down the gully towards the shore line but I stayed on top. I arrived at the end where I grabbed a few photos. The trail continued down the cliff, here there was a rope in place to help with the steep grade. I decided to stay on top and get a few more photos. The earlier trail down looked much safer than this last one. After enjoying the view for a few minutes I made my way back to the fence and then further along it I gathered a couple more photos before heading back to the car for my radio.
I set up again in a grass area just north of the parking lot. Things went up smoothly and I started surveying the bands. I found a number of park activations but I could generally only hear the hunters calling them. I heard a strong station in Slovenia but was unable to reach him, the same with a Swiss station, that was disappointing. Fortunately, I did make contact with one in Poland. Then I moved on to an open frequency and put out a call. It took almost a half hour to get a response. Another park activator was calling and I had a park to park in the log. Ten minutes later I had a second. The activation was not working well today, I was thinking my antenna may be broken but then I could hear lots and was getting some decent signal reports back. Another 8 minutes went by I worked a two-person activation.
I moved to the 17m band and started calling again. I soon had a short burst of four more stations so I was up to 9 on the list but then it went quiet again. My friend Ralph texted me and I asked him to call on the handheld which he did and I was finally at the needed 10 contacts. I returned to the 20m band and called out some more this time two more park activators came by and I reached 12 contacts in two hours of operating. Not a good showing at all. By now I was getting chilled so I packed up and drove home. It was a nice day out and I did manage to get the park activated along with six park to park contacts which was a new high and also a Poland staion. Perhaps it was a better time out then one thought.
Later I did some tests on the antenna and determined that one side of the dipole was indeed broken. It was making intermittent contact and would have been the reason people didn’t seem to hear my calls. I did some solder work on the wire reattaching it and then I put some strong rubber around the joint to hopefully keep it from breaking again. Though a tough day on the radio, I did achieve a few new records and I found a lovely spot to take pictures at.