Winter Field Day is this weekend. Full rules can be found at the Winter Field Day website at https://www.winterfieldday.com. The event starts at 2:00 PM EST Saturday and goes until 2:00 PM EST on Sunday. Available modes are SSB, CW, RTTY, PSK31 and other conversational digital modes–not FT8 or FT4 according to their rules.
For the last several years we have joined with our friends at the Clearwater Amateur Radio Society and the Upper Pinellas Amateur Radio Club at the Clearwater Fire Training Center to setup for Winter Field Day. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are not setting up there and instead people are operating own their own. However, just like the past ARRL Field Day, there is an allowance in the rules this year to add your score to your favorite club. More on that process later.
Many people participate in Field Day (both summer and winter) by coming out to help setup or operate but may not be familiar with setting up the logging aspects. A few weeks ago, I conducted a Zoom session to show attendees how to setup various programs for Winter Field Day. I covered TR4W as well as the N1MM logging software. You can see a video of that session at the following YouTube link: https://youtu.be/F7CSWfjFzfA
As mentioned earlier the rule change that allows home stations to send their log in with a club name so the score is aggregated to that club. But this requires the submitted club name to be exactly like everyone else in the same club submits their log. To aid in standardization, I would recommend one of the following depending upon which club you want to submit your score under (spell it exactly like it is here):
- Clearwater ARS/St. Petersburg ARC/Upper Pinellas ARC (This is the tri-club effort which I use).
- Clearwater Amateur Radio Society
- St. Petersburg Amateur Radio Club
- Upper Pinellas Amateur Radio Club
- Aardvark Wireless Group
It is imperative if you want your score to count properly that you spell this the same as everyone else in your club of choice. SPARC, St. Pete ARC, St. Petersburg ARC and St. Petersburg Amateur Radio Club will all end up in separate “buckets” and will dilute the club’s score. Spelling counts!
Another thing that is missing in doing Field Day at home is the social, camaraderie aspect. To help with that a bit, I have a Slack channel setup on the UPARC Slack channel we can use. Please feel free to join the UPARC Slack channel and stay in touch during the contest. Check here for more info: https://join.slack.com/t/w4afc/shared_invite/zt-hz1v87k7-E9BDIkOXjm4IUypQm4EyGA
Of course, everyone is welcome to setup in the field as you would do for any Water Field Day. You can still setup in a park or even your backyard. Again, read the full rules to understand he categories and other details about Winter Field Day.
Finally, I am planning a session in two weeks to show people how to submit their logs. This again follows the idea that not many people have experience with the particular quirks in submitting a Cabrillo log for Winter Field Day. You have just over 30 days to submit the log for Winter Field Day so this leaves us plenty of time. More info on that session will be shared later.
While it is not the same as being there, hopefully you can get on the air this weekend and make some contacts. That’s a 2:00 PM Saturday start time so “see you there”.