Winter Field Station QRP Portable @ 65° North

Hello Operators
Just in case you havn’t seen my latest video, I’m posting it here along with my field notes on the blog. In this video I take the all-weather solar powered field station out for winter deployment at 65 degrees North. I’ll take you through the entire process, hiking to location using a pulk sled, setting up the shelter and wood stove, setting up antennas, radio, and computer so that we can operate SSB and digital modes on 40, 30,  20, and 17 m.

I also discuss some of the difficulties of deploying a field station in Arctic weather. Also touch on why I use the tipi tent shelter, and the importance of the titanium wood stove for an Arctic Field Station.

Field notes
More capable radio I realize sometimes there’s going to be a need for a more capable radio. Operating qrp is definitely an amazing experience and challenge which I readily accept however. I can usually work most of Europe and Scandinavia at qrp levels, but to consistently get into North America, it will require a combination of more efficient antenna system, and sometimes more power. We originally mentioned a more capable radio for the solar powered Field Station, so it’s time to start considering that Yaesu FT-857D. I certainly don’t need a 100 watt radio, but 20 watts with the existing terminated dipole, gets me into North America consistently during testing. I started a GoFundMe campaign to augment the cost of this radio.  Everything helps!

Snow/Ice anchors Another topic to consider is how to deploy the spiderbeam 12 meter mast on combination of snow and ice. This is a problem I didn’t foresee, and it’s related to anchoring the tipi tent as well. The ground is Frozen as solid as concrete in winter at 65 ° north. This means I need snow and ice anchors, as well as a hatchet with a blunt end to drive them into the ice.  I think I’m going to go ahead and order a Fiskars Hatchet, and use the same ice anchors from Shelby Outdoors for the guying system on the spiderbeam 12 meter mast.

Portable headset It’s also time to start considering a proper headset for voice Communications while operating in the field. I wanted the Heil Traveller, but it is no longer available. Perhaps I’ll need to adapt something from one of the active military headsets, eg. Sordin. I’ll also take a look at Ham Radio 2.0 and the other field operators to see what they’re using.

Mentioned in the video

– If you’ve found this episode useful, consider dropping a buck in the tip-jar. It helps pay for all the components and consumables you see in the videos.

– if you’d like to support the all weather solar powered Field Station project specifically, you can do so by visiting my GoFundMe page

– Shopping at Amazon? Take a look at my Amazon Shop:

Julian oh8stn