April 24th 2010
All Night Transmitter Hunt

Hiders: Don KF6GQ and Steve KD6LAJ

Here is The story
Location of main T N 35.1361 W 117.260

After visiting Black Mountain Black Canyon northeast of Barstow, Ca. area in February with my wife KA6TAS, I found several places in the area that would make a good hide. We thought that we would make the hunt a little more than just a conventional hide. This area has several Geo-cache locations, and some native American petroglyphs. We chose several of the T-hide spots at these locations.

The main T, T3 KF6GQ, was set up on a little knoll, within Black Canyon, with line of sight to the San Gabriel mountains through a saddle of a ridge about a mile in front of the antenna. Hopefully this would get a signal to the start point without herculean efforts. Also if successful, would cause some hunting difficulties to the hunters as they approached the area. T3 had a 14 element beam, running about 10 watts. I asked N6AIN if he would get up to the start point early enough so we could test the location and power requirements necessary for the signal. At the appointed time we started calling Deryl, with no response, we have no cell service anywhere in the canyon, so I could check to see if a signal could be heard. I continued to call still with no call back. So we moved up to the very top of the knoll to continue calling. Well, it seems that Deryl got a bit sidetracked and forgot that I was to have this test! After about 10 min. Of calling Deryl finally called back. He told me that I could be heard at the start with no problem So we moved all the stuff back to the original location and set the power level back down to 10 watts. The report was the signal was still copyable at the start. So we left it that way.

After we set up the main T, we went to find the first Geo-Cache, so we could hide a T near it. This should be the first T that will be found by the hunters, if they come in from Hinkley. As we left the main T, we went in front of the beam pattern, and noticed that the signal went down into the noise, as we rounded a couple of corners away from the main T. This canyon just sucks up the RF from the transmitters.

So we need a layout of the rest of the T's so the next one in line would be able to be heard from the last found. All the transmitters were hidden along Black Canyon Road. We put out six T's the last being at Inscription Canyon, an protected area that has many Petroglyphs. We hid a T on the plateau above the Petroglyphs. If you checked out the Glyphs, you would of noticed one of them stood out more than the rest, because if has been done recently, it is a schematic of a variable capacitor. We placed the T directly above this particular Glyph!

About 2 pm. We left the canyon to see if we could get into a cell site, and contact the hunters. I had luck in getting hold of 4 of the teams hunting. Deryl seemed to be the closest, he was driving north on Hinkley Rd. We figured he was about 1 hour out. He was the first to get to the area. We proceeded  to follow him as he went to find each of the hidden T's. About half way we bumped into N6MI and his ride along Jack. They had come into the area the back way, over some real nasty back roads over the volcanic hills. So they had seen the Petroglyphs and checked into our talking T "NO LAVA LAVE ROCK" T. This one had been put out also as a stepping stone to link the Petroglyph T with the in canyon T's.

At this time I'm waiting for N6MI to send me the sign in sheet of T8 the last one he found, and the first one all others found. Jippy called in about 4:00pm to tell us he was quitting, not being able to hear signals very far from each other, he must have been in the same canyon as us! He indicated that he hadn't seen a paved road for the last several hours, well neither had we!

Bob N6ZHZ was the last to get to the area, and we followed him in to pick up the T's as he found them. He found the last about 8:30pm. It took us about 1.5 hours to get back to Barstow for a meal, before heading home. See T-hunt site for some pictures.


T8 GeoCashe
Team         time    Miles
N6AIN        4:30PM  239.6
WA6RJN       5:53PM  211.1
N6ZHZ        6:42PM  204.1
N6MI/N6LN    7.25PM  189.1
WB6JPI       DNF

N6AIN        4:50PM  240.7
WA6RJN       6:05PM  212.1
N6MI/N6LN    6:55PM  188.0
N6ZHZ        7:04PM  205.5
WB6JPI       DNF

N6AIN        5:28PM  243.5
N6MI/N6LN    6:20PM  183.8
WA6RJN       6:50PM  214.9
N6ZHZ        7:45PM  207.9
WB6JPI       DNF

T "Stupid Rocks" Geocashe
N6AIN        5:45PM  244.5
N6MI/N6LN    5:48PM  182.8
WA6RJN       7:03PM  215.9
N6ZHZ        8:00PM  209.0
WB6JPI       DNF

T "Not a Lava Lava Rock"
N6MI/N6LN    5:30PM  180.0
N6AIN        6:14PM  246.6
WA6RJN       7:39PM  218.9
N6ZHZ        8:30PM  210.9
WB6JPI       DNF

T Capactor near Petroglyphs
N6MI/N6LN    4:30PM  175.0
N6AIN        6:40PM  250.9
WA6RJN       8:15PM  221.8
N6ZHZ        9:15PM  214.2
WB6JPI       DNF  

End Mileage
N6MI/N6LN   189.1
N6ZHZ       214.2
WA6RJN      221.8
N6AIN       250.9

Winners N6MI Scott and N6LN Jack

Jippy's Report