On Sunday, August 11, the sun was shining brightly and the temperature was darn near perfect. With just a few puffy white clouds in the sky, it was a great day to be fox hunting. Two teams, Charles Ward, KC9MUT, running solo, and the team of Linda, W9LAN, Steve, W9SAN, with their grandson Alex, were at the starting point ready to charge after the sly fox. Filling the roll of sly fox was newbie hunter Bill Hopkins, K9WEH, who had chosen a shady and pleasant location on the back side of Shoaff Park in Fort Wayne, a stones’ throw from the St. Joseph River. Bill was sitting at a table hiding in plain sight under some trees with a small vertical antenna and battery power supply.
At 1:30 pm, Bill accidently started transmitting on the input to the ’76 repeater, but quickly changed to the 146.43 simplex fox frequency, and the hunt was off! Both teams headed to the north-northwest, and the strength of the fox rose rapidly. Upon arriving at the entrance to Shoaff Park, the extreme signal of the high-power fox was apparent. However, the direction indicated required driving on the one-way loop inside the park. The Nardin team started around while Charles was set upon by a curious park goer asking questions.
So intent was the Nardin team on finding the high-power fox that they simply drove right past Bill. That ‘hiding in plain sight’ thing was really working for Bill! Realizing their mistake, on the second trip around the Shoaff Loop, they spotted Bill and saw Charles in the woods rapidly dissecting an entire fallen tree!! When Alex and Steve arrived at the tree, which was almost reduced to toothpicks by Charles, they triangulated the micro fox to a small area, which Alex jumped right into. Steve continued searching when he noticed that Alex was literally standing on top of the fox! Before Steve could get the words out of his mouth, Charles saw the micro fox under Alex’s foot and shouted “there it is!!”.
So, Charles gets the first place for this hunt and will serve as the fox on September 15th. The late date for the next hunt is due to the first Sunday being Labor Day weekend, and the next Sunday is the Findlay Hamfest and VHF QSO Party.
With the hunt coming to a quick conclusion, the fox and hunters drove over to the Canterbury Green shopping complex and hit the Dairy Queen for refreshments. Tall tales were swapped over banana splits, blizzards, and cheese curds.
Why not plan on joining us for a fox hunt? You can receive a free tape measure three-element yagi for participating in one hunt.
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