Friday, 15 January 2010

North York Moors

I'm in Middlesbrough tonight and today I'd planned to walk up to the highest point on the North York Moors, Urra Moor. After a long drive (I'd read that the A66 over Stainmore was closed so I went down the A65 and via Harrogate and then up the A1/A19) I parked at the top of Clay Bank on the road between Stokesley and Helmsley. The road was clear of snow but the snow on the hill was deep and it was raining so didn't like the idea of being sat at the top of there for any length of time. I walked a little bit up the hill and turned back.
Instead I tried using WSPR in the car with my laptop and a wire antenna going up the hill from the road. I got some reports on 10 MHz. Used the Edirol UA-25 USB audio which I normally use at home, because the rig interface has 1/4 inch jack plugs. No serial port on the laptop so had to use a USB-serial adaptor to operate the PTT (I used the 6 pin data socket on the FT-817 instead of the mic socket, like you're supposed to).
Tomorrow I'll try Gisborough Moor, which should be more sheltered as most of the climb is in trees. On the way home on Sunday I might try one of the hills near Skipton like Sharp Haw or Cracoe Fell.
Ordered an APRS tracker with built in GPS receiver and 2 other GPS units.
Cross Country Wireless APRS TNC - I'll connect this to my radio in the car and it will send APRS messages with my location.
Globalsat BU-303 - USB GPS for software which uses serial GPS data
Emtac Mini S3 - Bluetooth GPS
I should have the TNC on Monday so watch out on 144.800 for M1AVV-9.
From what I've seen so far, there isn't any other APRS activity in Cumbria - at least that which is being received by one of the I-Gate stations. The nearest station to Barrow which gateways APRS messages is G7HEJ in Blackpool, and further south there is G1EUH in Ormskirk. There are probably some mobiles going along the M6 through Cumbria too.

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