Yesterday I paid another visit to G/NP-003 along with a black Labrador whose mission in life is to eat.
I normally prefer walking the north Pennines in winter when the bogs are frozen, but we’ve had a long dry spell and the bogs were only slightly soft! The drive to this hill ranks as one of the most scenic (IMHO) from Darlington on a sunny day.
This was my first serious activation with dog (previously I’ve only taken a handheld VHF for some ad hoc calls during the walk). What did I learn?:
- Despite taking several litres of fresh water for her, water from streams and muddy puddles tastes much better.
- It’s easier with only 1 walking pole if attempting to manage a dog lead.
- Sheep shit makes a welcome change from her usual diet of cow shit.
- Attempts to lift her over a fence were regarded as being a game involving much wriggling and lying on her back for tummy rubs.
- Unpacking a rucksack to rig a radio etc is also an invitation for much excitement and requires extremely close attention from the dog.
- Despite the miles of territory on offer, the most comfortable place for a dog to sit is on top of the aerial.
- The only other people to be seen during the day arrive during an attempt to work S2S - triggering a renewal of excitement and activity from the dog who had previously managed to settle down in an air of resigned boredom.
Radio wise I struggled on 60m. I’d somehow narrowed the filter right down and it took me ages to work it out. I think I heard someone responding but it was totally unintelligible.
Thanks to those who managed to break through the K9 interference and apologies if my performance was a little less slick! Would I do it again?
73 de G6PJZ/P and K9DOG/highly mobile