21st Century L.A.R.S. Lines

Special Foxhunt Editon **** October 16, 2000

Volume X,  Number 11
21st Century L. A. R. S. Lines, the newsletter of the Laurel Amateur
Radio Society, is published monthly as a service to
its membership and to the amateur radio community.

Officers of the Laurel Amateur Radio Society for 2000 are: Peter Rock (KJ4ND) ........................ President Carl Patton (K4QKS) .................... Vice-President Stanley Baker (KD4ERF) ................... Sec./Treas.

Special Report on the L.A.R.S. October 14 Foxhunt Activity

Peter Rock KJ4ND demonstrates some of his 2-meter foxhunting antennas and his attenuator...

       The day started slowly, with a few of the Hams gradually arriving .
  It was a beautiful warm Fall day .A perfect day for a Hunt .
       We started off with going over the antennas I had brought , and
  decided to begin.
       Stanley KD4ERF and Peewee KF4ZUX decided to be the FOX . They
  started off with a 2 meter HT as the object of the hunt . Peewee provide the
  ongoing "talk " to give us "hounds" a signal to lock onto .We tried all of the
  four antennas that I had brought , and Todd ,  KF4RRG, took one to start
  tracking the FOX . We also had attenuators , since the signals this close
  would soon be to strong for us to see a difference on the bar scale that is
  on the 2 meter HTs we were using for tracking. 
  We had started out at a picnic area and got a reading in one direction , and
  headed off.
       We next stopped at the amphitheater , and got another reading that
  indicated the FOX was in the western direction, and headed off again. Our
  next stop was at the Mill area, and once again, our antennas indicated the
  FOX was still further West.
  We next stopped at a building a little further down the road , and then at the
  tire repair place just before the railroad track . At this point I was a little
  confused by the readings, and had to consider the possibility the I had
  been misled by reflections, especially due to all the hills in the area . 
       This time the direction was more in an Easterly direction, and Todd
  noted that there was a side road over that direction to the left . 
       So we started down that road in that direction and quickly came
  upon the FOX, and concluded a successful hunt .
       We all had a good time , and celebrated with Lee 's chicken, and I
  hope we can do more hunts soon , involving more Hams in our area , and
  covering a larger area , say, a 15 mile radius .
  Peter KJ4ND

Another view of Peter KJ4ND and his 2-meter foxhunting equipment .....

THE FOX It was a beautiful early autumn morning in October as Peewee KF4ZUX and Stan KD4ERF accepted the challenge of playing the role of the fox in the Great Laurel Amateur Radio Society Foxhunt of the year 2000. The hounds led by Peter KJ4ND and Todd KF4RRG were present and eager to pit their hunting skills against the wiley fox. Being a sporty crew, the hounds agreed to give the fox a few minutes head start. They began assembling their antenna collection while the fox crew made a rapid get-away in a red Chevy Tracker. Cruising around the Levi Jackson Park area, the fox crew looked for a hiding place that would present some difficulty for the hounds preferably an area that would present objects capable of reflecting radio signal and thus creating false directional readings. Finally, finding an area that was not beyond simplex distances for a hand-held 2-meter radio, the fox pulled up a side road and had doubled back while circling to the northwest. Selecting an area near some trees for cover and with a good view of the area, the fox crew was ready to begin to transmit a simplex two-meter signal to the hounds. As Peewee talked on his hand-held he varied the position of the antenna and varied the output wattage in order to try to confuse the hounds. Listening on two-meters on a simplex frequency, the fox anxiously awaited as the hounds got a bearing on the signal and broke camp to move in on it. The process was repeated a few times as the hounds came at one time to within a few hundred yards of the fox, but cruised on beyond and setup camp near the railroad. Then getting a new bearing from this location, the hounds found that they had gone beyond the location of the fox, and immediately started moving again. This time one of the hounds observed a side road in the direction of the radio signal. Following this side road, within a few minutes the red Chevy Tracker of the fox was in sight. It had taken a total of 36 minutes for the L.A.R.S. hounds to find the fox! Then, the fox and the hounds all retreated to Famous Recipe for some chicken and a lot of good rag chewing and were soon making plans for another foxhunt in the future with a wider hunting area. If you missed this event, then you missed out on a lot of great amateur radio fun. Stan KD4ERF