2020-06-28 Future cycling goals (2) 11 months ago
As I mentioned before I have some future cycling goals which include some form of long-distance cycling journey, with serious influences from the book Computing Across America. Naturally amateur radio will play a part in such a cycling journey, just as Steven K. Roberts had on his trips. Via the german amateur radio club DARC I found this bit in the "Deutschland-Rundspruch 24/2020":DK3JB erreicht erstes Ziel auf seiner Funk-Fahrrad-Reise Hans-Gerhard Maiwald, DK3JB, hat nach mühsamer und beschwerlicher Fahrt, teilweise auch wegen schlechter Radwege, am 15. Juni gegen 21 Uhr sein erstes Ziel, Kappel im Hochschwarzwald, erreicht. Dabei legte er ohne E-Unterstützung 580 km mit seinem 40 kg schweren Radanhänger zurück. Dem 72-jährigen OM geht es gesundheitlich gut. Hans-Gerhard gelang es, den weitaus größten Teil der Strecke permanent mit seinem TH-D74 in APRS aufzuzeichnen. Dabei hat sich der 1200 g schwere 12 V/20-Ah-Lithium-Ionen-Akku sehr bewährt. DK3JB hat zahlreiche Verbindungen in FM und D-Star vom Fahrrad aus getätigt. Durch Ludwigshafen wurde er von mehreren Funkamateuren gelotst und seine Route mitverfolgt. Hans-Gerhard bleibt bis Sonntag in Kappel und radelt danach vorerst an den Bodensee weiter.And I found out more about the cycling tours between Siegen and Friedrichshafen in Germany via Funk-Fahrradtouren of DK3JB and it is very inspiring to me. There is also an article DK3JB wieder mit dem Fahrrad unterwegs nach Friedrichshafen - funkamateur.de with information about this tour in 2020 (all in German, which I can read but not really write). He has done this tour several years already, I found an article from the June 2008 trip: Mit Fahrrad, Zelft und FTM-10SE durch Süddeutschland (pdf). After having read a book about cycling through Europe with the Rhine as one possible route, this confirms my earlier thoughts. Combining recumbent cycling, amateur radio and a nice ride through Europe is the direction I'm thinking.
2020-03-02 Back from snowboard holiday 1 year ago
Last week we were on a wintersport holiday in the Montafon region of Austria. I went snowboarding and had fun. There was enough snow at higher levels when the week started and later in the week it started snowing giving fresh snow which I really like for snowboarding. Driving to Austria and back home through Germany went fine, no huge traffic jams or really bad weather. There is still a lot of work on the German Autobahns but less than one or two years ago. The lane departure warning system in our car still doesn't like the mix of orange and white lines on the road when lanes are shifted for work.
2019-09-03 Back from holiday in Austria 1 year ago
We went on our summer holiday to the Montafon area in the Voralberg province of Austria. This is an area that can be reached within one day of driving. We went camping and stayed at the Aktivcamping Montafon in Schruns-Tschagguns. This is one valley away from the campsite we visited in the Summer of 2018. Activities included lots of walks in the mountains and a few "klettersteig" (also known as "via ferrata") routes. I tried climbing and abseiling with the right equipment last year and learned that it's something I can do. We did a three day tour of mountain huts (sleeping in those huts for two nights). Staying in mountain huts makes more remote areas reachable.
Flag of Austria, cc-by-2.0 license James Cridland
2019-03-04 Terug van snowboard vakantie 2 years ago
We zijn een week op wintersport vakantie geweest naar het gebied van Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis in Tirol. Ons onderdak was een leuk appartement in Ladis, vlak aan de piste en we hebben ons prima vermaakt met snowboarden en een dag bergwandelen. Na een onderbreking van een paar jaar kan ik nog goed snowboarden en heb me ook weer vermaakt met boardercross en mooie afdalingen.
2018-07-10 Found the original article about Steven K. Roberts and his recumbent bicycle Behemoth 2 years ago
I noticed the Nomadic Research Labs site was cleaned up a bit more, so I searched again for the article that I read in August 1995 about Steven K. Roberts and his recumbent bicycle Behemoth: "Big Electronic Human-Energised Machine ... Only Too Heavy". The scans are at BEHEMOTH in Kijk – Dutch Magazine. Interesting detail is that the top left text refers to a picture of a Challenge recumbent. I recently ordered a new Challenge recumbent! Maybe I should find out whether I can find that page of that magazine. Several things can be related to seeing this article: buying the book Computing Across America, selecting a recumbent bicycle later in life and this idea in the back of my head of future recumbent cycling trips.
2018-07-05 Future cycling goals... 2 years ago
I had a serious case of 'ooooh shiny' today. I browsed a bit of Northern Canada news from CBC and found the article Dempster Highway drivers flock to new destination — the Arctic coast about the new Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway which connects the Dempster Highway all the way to Tuktoyaktuk on the northern arctic coast. So I started wondering whether people are cycling the Dempster Highway. Yes, they are. I found several travel stories, Cycling the Dempster Highway to Inuvik, Cycling the Dempster Highway Part 1: Hungrier than the bears - Tasting Travels and Dempster Highway to the Arctic about one cyclist who cycled from Vancouver to Inuvik on a recumbent. I may have found some future cycling ideas there. Those ideas aren't really new, from time to time I get back to thinking about Computing Across America and Steven K. Roberts.
2018-03-04 Trying a bit of radio at a holiday park 3 years ago
Last week we were staying in a holiday home in the Ardennen area in Belgium. Temperatures were constantly below zero which can make my fibermast break easily according to the instructions. I also forgot to bring a side cutter so setting up the fibermast with the rubber profile at every level would be hard to take down again. This made it a bad idea to leave it up overnight. Due to the cold and me having a serious cold as well it took a few days before I got around to a bit of amateur radio. When I got around to setting up the mast it went reasonably well. The ground was frozen so I needed a hammer to get the pegs into the ground for the guy wires. The foot of the fibermast decided to slip away and the tip fell against a wall, but no damage. When the mast was up and the dipole hanging the local RF noise turned to be at the same S8 level I am used to at home and it was very hard to make a contact. I tried 40 meter FT8 with transmit power dialed back to 25 watt since the radio itself started showing signs of RF interference. One partial contact was made (no full exchange of signal reports). And then I noticed gardeners working on pruning bushes everywhere and working in my direction so I disassembled the mast again and took all the parts back in. For next time I may find some plate to anchor the foot of the fibermast so it can't slip away. Maybe a plate with a big hole in it for the mast and two small holes for tent pegs.
2017-08-20 Terug van vakantie in zuid-Duitsland en Oostenrijk 3 years ago
We zijn terug van bijna 3 weken vakantie. De planning was om dit keer naar zuid-Duitsland te gaan. We zijn terecht gekomen op Schwarzwald camping Altensteig en na een week doorgegaan naar Kaprun in Oostenrijk naar Camping "Mühle". Veel leuke dingen gedaan, onder andere ook bergwandelingen op de Kitzsteinhorn gletscher waar we met de lift snel naar hoogte konden om dan daar te wandelen. Hoogste punt bereikt was 3029 meter boven zeeniveau. Daar konden we in de sneeuw een stukje slee rijden. Bij Kaprun dacht ik toch direct aan de Kabeltreinramp in Kaprun op 11 November 2000. Ter plekke kon ik weinig sporen meer zien van de aanwezigheid van die kabeltrein maar volgens de wikipedia pagina had ik iets verderop langs de parkeerplaats nog wel het herdenkingscentrum bezoeken. Het enige wat ik aan de onderkant kon zien was een stukje ontbrekend bos onder een afdichting in de bergwand. Bovenaan in het Alpine center zat een schuine uitbouw aan het gebouw. We hebben een keer lunch gegeten in de Krefelder Hütte (een berghut in Oostenrijk gebouwd door de afdeling Krefeld van de Duitse alpensport vereniging) en volgens de kaart van openstreetmap loopt de tunnel van de kabeltrein recht onder die hut door. Bergwandelen is ons goed bevallen, misschien volgend jaar weer!
2017-03-05 Back from a short holiday where I was active with amateur radio 4 years ago
We stayed in a holiday park in Germany for 6 days and I decided to bring radio, tuner and the 6-40m antenna. So I was DL/PE4KH for a week and operated PSK modes a few times. In total I made 11 contacts. The 'radio environment' was about as noisy as I am used to at home so no improvement there. Disconnecting the power supply for the television and the cable modem in the bungalow helped a bit in reducing the radio noise. The interesting part was on Thursday evening when I only heard noise on the 40 meter band and decided to give 80 meter a try. It was active with PSK signals, including from callsigns I recognize as regulars on 20 and 40 meter PSK. My best guess is that 40 meters was unavailable for others too! The interesting part was that the antenna tuner was able to tune the LW-10 antenna for 80 meter. I do guess a lot of power was lost in the tuner as I only was able to make contacts with stations that came in very strong for me. For the next time:
- Make sure fldigi on the laptop knows about all possible PSK and RTTY home frequencies, including those on bands I don't use a lot.
- Both batteries I brought got depleted really quick when transmitting with 50 watts. I need more battery capacity.
2016-10-13 A few pictures added to The Transmission Gallery 4 years agoItems with tag holiday before 2016-10-13
I am a fan and regular visitor of The Transmission Gallery and a photographer. But it is not very often I can submit pictures for The Transmission Gallery as it is aimed at transmitters in the United Kingdom. But on our recent holiday in the UK lake district I noticed on one campsite I had a direct view of a TV transmitter tower. And good, fast mobile data from the same tower. So I took a walk to photograph the transmitter so I could add something to The Transmission Gallery. So, now available to the general public: Keswick - Pictures taken August 2016 - The Transmission Gallery. My previous addition to the gallery was in 2010: Wooler - The Transmission Gallery. We have visited the United Kingdom a few times in between but never got close to a transmitter site or the weather hid the site completely in clouds or fog.