This summer (2023). I am more active than ever portable.
At the beginning of the season I started with my IC-705 to get out and work QRP.
At the same time I have also been able to play a lot with various antenna systems to see what works well at which location, and what kind of system is needed to make a certain type of connection.
Personally, I have always been a fan of 40m and 20m. These are almost always active bands, where DX can be worked as well as NVIS (local EU).
Mainly 40m is always a band where there is something to do at any time of the day.
So if you go Portabel, make sure you can always get out on 40m 🙂
And then 20m. Since I always get up early (05:00 local time). Working DX is one of my favorite activities around this time. Usually around 06:00 UTC in the summer period, VK/ZL (Oceania/Pacific) works quite well, provided you are in a location where you have virtually no interference.
Because what I have learned all these years with DX, even though you receive the station softly, it says nothing about your signal on the other side of the pond.
That said, the IC-705 is a QRP radio with a maximum power of 10W. And in terms of an average DX QSO, this always remained a challenge.
That is also why I purchased another Icom IC-7300 last August 2023 for a little extra power portable.
Lately I have found some nice spots around my QTH. One of my favorites is the field at my former model flying club MVC Pegasus in Enkhuizen. Simply because it is always pleasant there and people like what I am doing.
I also found a nice spot on the edge of the large lake in the middle of the Netherlands, the IJsselmeer. Near Wijdenes.
Easily accessible public place, with plenty of room for experiments.
And especially important, no interference at all on any amateur band.
Since this spot is located directly on the water, I also use it. The verticals and the combination of the water create a perfect signal takeoff/reflection.
2 Atennas that I like to use are a Deltaloop powered so that I can work NVIS with it at 40m. This antenna has also proven itself during the past field day contest, an endless stream of connections were made with it. with almost all of Europe.
For 20m I now use a quarter-wave vertical antenna, with floating radials.
Almost every morning when I have set up and connected everything, the first connections to VK / ZL are made in no time.
I now almost always have these 2 antenna systems with me.
The great thing about these 2 antennas is that they can be made with 1 telescopic fiber mast.
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