Fox Hunting

No not the fox hunting done with dogs and horses but fox hunting where somebody hides a transmitter and then there’s a race to find it. I’ve participated in a few of these over the years and a well-placed transmitter can be really hard to find. Most of the fox hunting I’ve done has been on two meters and the transmitters were homebrew units capable of transmitting a CW identifier signal every few minutes. If somebody duct tapes one of these boxes, that are virtually invisible until you practically step on them, to a bridge abutment or hangs one from a tree in a valley following the signal can result in a lot of driving and walking around.

In Europe fox hunting is often done on 80 meters using very different techniques and equipment. We got a note about the preparations for Amateur Radio Direction Finding contest (ARDF is apparently different from fox hunting according to an article on the RAC website)

Preparations for ARDF World Championships Sept. 13 to 18, 2010 in Croatia.Preparations for ARDF 2010 in Croatia – June 10, 2010 interim report.

FARSC continues to have twice-a-month practise sessions, and we have also participated in an ARDF event held in Surrey May 1 hosted by Surrey Amateur Radio Association. At that event, our participation included an outreach program where we were paired with novice hunters to show them how the game works.

Also at Surrey, we met another person with experience in ARDF who is joining the Canadian Team–Les Tocko, VA7OM. His addition has just been accepted by the Croatian organizing committee.

This past weekend, June 7, the Victoria group hosted an 80m hunt for 4 visitors from Vancouver, including Amel and Les of the Canadian team. So far, the Vancouver groups have not got a set of 80m gear, but we have loaned them one Tx and a receiver for demos/practice. Les has built his own 80m receiver and proved its effectiveness last Saturday.

ARDF is a strenuous sport but I see that the international committee has just announced two new categories of competition. The first for YLs over 60 and the second for OMs over 70 so there’s time yet to build your 80 meter receiver and get into shape.

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