August 28, 2010
It was a beautiful day. The heat wave has cooled and temps were in
I set off on schedule for Kings to get an English muffin but that all
I had taped the roof plug with some low grade duct tape the month
(San Diego Free-for-all) and with all the heat for the last 3 weeks the
can loosened and was making the most obnoxious buzzing sounds. So I
Eggs and Corned Beef Hash for breakfast. Stopped at Home Depot on the
to the start and bought some gorilla tape and while sitting alone
start, I retaped the roof plug. Deryl/Ray, and Doug soon showed up and
proudly displayed my Lego toy Rubik cube solver.
The transmitter (T3) came on near 10:AM and had a bearing of 60 degrees
We mostly agreed that we were going to Big Bear. I had a plan about Big
It is a basin about 10 miles across and 20 miles long with some rather
reflectors all around the periphery. I have wandered around that area
hours and not found anything. The bearings all seem to go in every
I would take some “good” bearings before I got into the basin. So I
go up Hwy 330 to Hwy 18 in Running Springs and drive up top Keller peak
a bearing. This wouldn’t be a good cross with the start bearing, but it
be some 50 miles closer and outside of the basin. I got 65 degrees on
didn’t cross the 60 from the start but it clearly removed the south
side of the
lake and all the ski resorts from the hunt for T3. I could also hear T2
Keller, slightly south of T3.
Of to Big Bear and no decision off to Fawnskin at the dam. As expected
getting bearings to the east, north and south on T3 but the Keller
covered the Holcum Valley and this has lots of nice dirt roads. Little
know. I swung a left into the Holcum valley and went North for a
heard “snake” but T3 was definitely east so I turned east and was
along approaching the crossing of the Keller bearing and who should
but Don and Steve. We talked for about a half hour and I proceeded on
them following. After a mile or two I was getting a very north T3 and
didn’t seem to be anything like a mountain in that direction so I took
road north. They still followed.
The road was getting fairly lumpy with rocks and sand but it was still
low gear stuff. Biggest issue was the low hanging scrub oaks bending up
antenna (V-Pol). I found T3 but they had put it up on a rocky ledge
that was a
climb. I took a picture of Don signing in for me. Careful listening
another voice transmitter “meathead” was close and I found it.. Well
found it as it too was up a rocky hill at the base of a really gnarly
that I was very sure that the 4Runner wouldn’t like,. I could sorta see
there some 100 ft above my current elevation. Steve signed me in on his
T2 could be clearly heard from both T3 and “Meathead” and it held a
bearing to the SE. Don/Steve let it slip that this was the “Dinner” T
be last. They also said there were 5 Ts. I had not heard the fifth one.
found T3, and “Meathead” and heard “Snake” and T2. So it was time for
I thought the roads had been a bit rough up to now with some low
branches and 10
inch rocks, but things quickly accelerated. The rocks were getting
bigger like bigger than the 4Runner and what is more interesting is
that the road
I was on made turns that were suitable for vehicles with 4 ft axles, a
4 ft wheel
base and a 10 ft turning radius. I had to stop and walk to see if there
a road around the other side of the 10 ft rock. Snake was getting
louder than it should have for it is a little 50 mW transmitter that
some 20 years ago.
I was having trouble hearing it as it kept doubling with T3 which was
very loud at times.
Now, I was very close to “Snake” with 60+ dB of attenuator and full
scale and took a
“road” that went toward the transmitter but failed to have any
clearance and I snapped
off my antenna post all together. I was now without any bearing
capability other than
sniff. “Snake” was just up the original road about 50 ft and Don signed
It was now just after 5PM and dinner was being served at T2. I followed
Don/Steve to a
nice spaghetti/meatball feast with Scott and Tom who had found T2 and
waited for dinner
and Doug who finally wandered by, Lynn and Lynn and Dons friends who
own the cabin.
I didn’t sign into any transmitters although I was I had “found” three,
led to one and
as it turns out, the T3 that was bothering the “Snake” was really not
the same T3 as was
heard at the start and the first one I found but the fifth transmitter.
the group with the Rubik cube robot which didn’t fair well with all the
around and kept throwing the cube on the floor.
But the food was great, the people wonderful and the hunt most
delicious. I think the
4Runner enjoyed it the most. It got to stretch its shocks.