Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

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Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

wayne burdick
Administrator
Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.

To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500 feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.

From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the opposite direction.)

This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.

Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting.

It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.

It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing rigs like the KX2.

73,
Wayne
N6KR








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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

Ken Arck
When we lived in SoCal, we used to spend just
about every summer weekend at the Isthmus or
Emerald Bay (we had a Catalina 36 sailboat and
did the backstay antenna thing).

Wish Elecraft was around back then <g>

Ken


At 10:21 AM 7/28/2018, Wayne Burdick wrote:

>Last week my family and I went to Avalon,
>Catalina Island, off the coast of southern
>California. What an awesome place! It feels like
>a coastal tourist paradise in another country,
>except that it’s just 26 miles from Long
>Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item. To recover
>from two days of gawking at beach scenery and
>tapping generous libations, I set off on a 6
>mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500
>feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
> From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley
>Memorial, then zig-zagged up the Garden to Sky
>trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a
>vista to the north that includes another of the
>Channel Islands. At this point I picked up the
>jeep road for another half mile, heading east,
>ascending even further to a gazebo overlooking
>the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The
>trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do
>it again, I’ll go the opposite direction.)
>This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the
>KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag and deploy the
>whip, which took all of 30 seconds. Aside from
>the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the
>joy of running 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip
>on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both acoustic
>and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded
>of a minor tinnitus condition. No wind, no other
>humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the
>radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I
>could hear stations that were merely thinking
>about transmitting. It would be tempting to
>weave a tall tale about DX worked from this
>idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for
>awhile, marveling at how sparkling clean
>everything sounded without the usual three coats
>of RF grunge we often suffer at home. The noise
>drops with any trip away from civilization, of
>course, but this was exceptional. It’s yet
>another reason to get out of the shack. And why
>we keep designing rigs like the KX2. 73, Wayne
>N6KR
>______________________________________________________________
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>mailto:[hidden email] This list hosted
>by: http://www.qsl.net Please help support this
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we offer complete repeater packages!
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Re: [KX3] Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

rich hurd WC3T
In reply to this post by wayne burdick
Awesome story.  Droolworthy to say the least.

I scribe this from my 2nd floor condo in Ocean City, MD that I've
whimsically (and perhaps accurately) renamed "QRM City."  We are setting up
for a week here. I am looking hopefully at the Nanuk case holding my KX3.
No AX1 to complement it, but here's hoping the wx holds at least partially
this week for a side trip to somewhere like Delaware Seashores State Park
for a bit of the Right Coast version of that kind of op.

On Sat, Jul 28, 2018 at 1:21 PM Wayne Burdick [hidden email] [KX3] <
[hidden email]> wrote:

>
>
> Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast
> of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal
> tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from
> Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.
>
> To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous
> libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500
> feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
>
> From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up
> the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to
> the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I
> picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even
> further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The
> trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the
> opposite direction.)
>
> This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag
> and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.
>
> Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running
> 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both
> acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus
> condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the
> radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that
> were merely thinking about transmitting.
>
> It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this
> idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how
> sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF
> grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from
> civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.
>
> It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing
> rigs like the KX2.
>
> 73,
> Wayne
> N6KR
>
> __._,_.___
> ------------------------------
> Posted by: Wayne Burdick <[hidden email]>
> ------------------------------
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--
72,
Rich Hurd / WC3T / DMR: 3142737
Northampton County RACES, EPA-ARRL Public Information Officer for Scouting
Latitude: 40.761621 Longitude: -75.288988  (40°45.68' N 75°17.33' W) Grid:
*FN20is*
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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

Joseph Reed-2
In reply to this post by wayne burdick
Sounds awesome, a great solo expedition.  But what did you work?

Joe N9JR

> On Jul 28, 2018, at 12:21 PM, Wayne Burdick <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.
>
> To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500 feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
>
> From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the opposite direction.)
>
> This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.
>
> Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting.
>
> It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.
>
> It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing rigs like the KX2.
>
> 73,
> Wayne
> N6KR
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> ______________________________________________________________
> Elecraft mailing list
> Home: http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/elecraft
> Help: http://mailman.qth.net/mmfaq.htm
> Post: mailto:[hidden email]
>
> This list hosted by: http://www.qsl.net
> Please help support this email list: http://www.qsl.net/donate.html
> Message delivered to [hidden email]

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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

Bill Cobb
Bravo Wayne - great story with a great moral. Thanks for reminding us to get out of the shack and enjoy this great country! Catalina is a great place to do so ...

Bill K4YJJ
ex Huntington Beach resident

> On Jul 28, 2018, at 3:49 PM, Joseph Reed <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Sounds awesome, a great solo expedition.  But what did you work?
>
> Joe N9JR
>
>> On Jul 28, 2018, at 12:21 PM, Wayne Burdick <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.
>>
>> To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500 feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
>>
>> From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the opposite direction.)
>>
>> This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.
>>
>> Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting.
>>
>> It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.
>>
>> It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing rigs like the KX2.
>>
>> 73,
>> Wayne
>> N6KR
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> ______________________________________________________________
>> Elecraft mailing list
>> Home: http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/elecraft
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>> Post: mailto:[hidden email]
>>
>> This list hosted by: http://www.qsl.net
>> Please help support this email list: http://www.qsl.net/donate.html
>> Message delivered to [hidden email]
>
> ______________________________________________________________
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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

Elecraft mailing list
In reply to this post by wayne burdick
“I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting”

Yes <3  This is what it was like when living off the grid in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula years ago.  Now, living in Seattle, it is only during occasional off-grid campouts that my KX2 gets to do this as well!  Tnx fer the story = FB es 73  de KX2CW Joan    e e

Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra, said Piglet.
Shaka, when the walls fell, said Pooh.

> On Jul 28, 2018, at 10:27, Ken Arck <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> When we lived in SoCal, we used to spend just about every summer weekend at the Isthmus or Emerald Bay (we had a Catalina 36 sailboat and did the backstay antenna thing).
>
> Wish Elecraft was around back then <g>
>
> Ken
>
>
> At 10:21 AM 7/28/2018, Wayne Burdick wrote:
>> Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item. To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500 feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op. From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the opposite direction.) This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds. Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting. It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from civilization, of course, but this was exceptional. It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing rigs like the KX2. 73, Wayne N6KR ______________________________________________________________ Elecraft mailing list Home: http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/elecraft Help: http://mailman.qth.net/mmfaq.htm Post: mailto:[hidden email] This list hosted by: http://www.qsl.net Please help support this email list: http://www.qsl.net/donate.html Message delivered to [hidden email]
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> President and CTO - Arcom Communications
> Makers of repeater controllers and accessories.
> http://www.arcomcontrollers.com/
> Authorized Dealers for Kenwood and Telewave and
> we offer complete repeater packages!
> AH6LE/R - IRLP Node 3000
> http://www.irlp.net
> "We don't just make 'em. We use 'em!"
>
>
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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

k6dgw
A group of us activated Alpine County for the Cal QSO Party for 10+
years.  We gave up when we realized we were way too old to be that
isolated, and we were tired of getting beat up by the weather.  Our camp
was about 2 km south of the summit of Monitor Pass, at about 8,500 ft. 
The noise was S0 [except for precip static when it snowed], and it
seemed we could hear folks as it began to cross their minds to turn on
the rig!  It's truly amazing how quiet it can be when there is no grid
or other stations or SMPS around you for what seems like forever.

73,

Fred ["Skip"] K6DGW
Sparks NV DM09dn
Washoe County

On 7/28/2018 4:54 PM, Joan via Elecraft wrote:
> “I could hear stations that were merely thinking about transmitting”
>
> Yes <3  This is what it was like when living off the grid in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula years ago.  Now, living in Seattle, it is only during occasional off-grid campouts that my KX2 gets to do this as well!  Tnx fer the story = FB es 73  de KX2CW Joan    e e
>
>

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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

Christopher Hoover
In reply to this post by wayne burdick
I did much the same with my KX2 on Santa Cruz Island (part of Channel
Islands, 20 miles off the coast of Ventura) two weeks ago.   Definitely
recommended.

73 de AI6KG


On Sat, Jul 28, 2018 at 10:21 AM, Wayne Burdick <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast
> of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal
> tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from
> Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.
>
> To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous
> libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500
> feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
>
> From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up
> the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista to
> the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I
> picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending even
> further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below. (The
> trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the
> opposite direction.)
>
> This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40 bag
> and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.
>
> Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running
> 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both
> acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor tinnitus
> condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and the
> radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that
> were merely thinking about transmitting.
>
> It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this
> idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how
> sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF
> grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from
> civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.
>
> It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep designing
> rigs like the KX2.
>
> 73,
> Wayne
> N6KR
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> ______________________________________________________________
> Elecraft mailing list
> Home: http://mailman.qth.net/mailman/listinfo/elecraft
> Help: http://mailman.qth.net/mmfaq.htm
> Post: mailto:[hidden email]
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Re: Catalina island with KX2: spoiled by super-low noise floor

ae5ka
Same thing on many (not all!) of those SOTA peaks. I keep giving 599's to
stations that I know would only be 339's to me at home.

Chip
AE5KA

On Sun, Jul 29, 2018 at 11:25 AM Christopher Hoover <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> I did much the same with my KX2 on Santa Cruz Island (part of Channel
> Islands, 20 miles off the coast of Ventura) two weeks ago.   Definitely
> recommended.
>
> 73 de AI6KG
>
>
> On Sat, Jul 28, 2018 at 10:21 AM, Wayne Burdick <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> > Last week my family and I went to Avalon, Catalina Island, off the coast
> > of southern California. What an awesome place! It feels like a coastal
> > tourist paradise in another country, except that it’s just 26 miles from
> > Long Beach. Definitely a bucket-list item.
> >
> > To recover from two days of gawking at beach scenery and tapping generous
> > libations, I set off on a 6 mile solo hike to take in the view from 1500
> > feet. And to sneak in a little stealth radio op.
> >
> > From downtown Avalon I walked to the Wrigley Memorial, then zig-zagged up
> > the Garden to Sky trail for 1.2 miles, where I was rewarded with a vista
> to
> > the north that includes another of the Channel Islands. At this point I
> > picked up the jeep road for another half mile, heading east, ascending
> even
> > further to a gazebo overlooking the Hermit Gulch campground far below.
> (The
> > trail down from here is very steep; if I ever do it again, I’ll go the
> > opposite direction.)
> >
> > This gazebo was the perfect spot to break the KX2 out of its tiny ES40
> bag
> > and deploy the whip, which took all of 30 seconds.
> >
> > Aside from the obvious (gorgeous WX, killer view, and the joy of running
> > 10 watts hand-held to an AX1 whip on 15/17/20), I was blessed with both
> > acoustic and RF noise floors so low that I was reminded of a minor
> tinnitus
> > condition. No wind, no other humans, the occasional cry of a hawk, and
> the
> > radio equivalent of a peaceful, easy feeling. I could hear stations that
> > were merely thinking about transmitting.
> >
> > It would be tempting to weave a tall tale about DX worked from this
> > idyllic overlook. Truth is I just listened for awhile, marveling at how
> > sparkling clean everything sounded without the usual three coats of RF
> > grunge we often suffer at home. The noise drops with any trip away from
> > civilization, of course, but this was exceptional.
> >
> > It’s yet another reason to get out of the shack. And why we keep
> designing
> > rigs like the KX2.
> >
> > 73,
> > Wayne
> > N6KR
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > ______________________________________________________________
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