Doug (WA6RJN) and David (KG6KZF) Story
It had been 6 months since we had gone hunting. We had been too busy hiding them. Now where did I put all the hunting equipment? I just knew it was going to be one of those hunts again. We arrived at the starting point about twenty minutes early only to find a signal and several hunters. We took bearings on T-9 and T-8 – 350 degrees. We headed off toward the mountains north of Santa Clarita. Going up the 405 in the San Fernando Valley the Ts got much stronger and there were now more of them. We took another reading on the fly and now had 25 degrees! We exited the 405 at Nordhoff St and make our way to Little Tujunga Cyn. I had not been in this area since the old Saturday evening San Fernando Valley T-Hunts 30 years ago. I did remember Contractors Point so that's where we were going.
Not long after entering the canyon we heard T5 and JPI's voice telling us this T was for our "seeking pleasure". Went to get the sniffing gear and found that I had grabbed the wrong tape measure beam. This was the one with the severed element. First T and already we were fixing the equipment. While at T5, N6MI came along with his camera. This delayed us just long enough to get caught by SNE while sniffing out the T. Continuing up the canyon we came the to first summit. After taking a few readings on the many Ts we were hearing there, we went up the road to T9. At the abandoned car we took more readings but didn't know that T9 lay at the end of the road and turned around.
Continuing north up the canyon we heard T10 and tracked it down (didn't need to sniff it). The new hunter (AE6GA) was already there and another hunter left just as we arrived. From there we made our way to Contractor's Point where we found GQ/LAJ taking readings. We took reading on T2, T4, T6, T7, T1 and T9 while we were there. Most of the readings pointed east or south east. T9 appeared to be on the ridge to the south. T2 and T4 were very weak and covered most of the time. They pointed east. Hmmm, T1 was very strong here. Found T1 and headed off for T6 which as also very strong. We stopped in several places thinking T6 was near by but every time we ventured more than half mile from Contractor's Point the signal would disappear. This was perplexing. Maybe a different location would give us a better idea so we decided to try the road to Magic Mt. As we reached the entrance we waved at N6MI. After climbing up the road to a point where you could see to the west, I noticed the main receiver frequency had been bumped to 146.580. Just as I re-tuned to 146.565 T6 came on and required much attenuation. We stopped to take a reading a decided it was right next to us. David got out and found it (no sniffing again). Before we could sign in GQ/LAJ came down the road. Fortunately we had no sniffing gear and tried to look like we were just enjoying the view. Talked to them a minute and they drove off. We wanted to sign in and leave before they returned but they returned before we could escape. Why is it that we don't see any other hunters until we were just about to find a T?
With the readings we had collected, we knew the T9 had to be a the ridge south of Contractor's Point but how to get there? It must be from the road the we had been on earlier and turned around. Back we went. On the way we heard T7 get very strong and pulled over. David got out and found it (again, no sniffing). Nice antenna. How did we miss this T the first time we went by? Headed back up the road (3N32) we had been on hours earlier only this time we were going to the end. Not long after passing the abandoned car we encountered other vehicles coming down. Had to back up to find a slightly wider place to let them by. The driver thanked us and said there were 3 more cars at the top with antennas like ours. Must be on the right road! On the way up we passed AIN. At the top we found a couple hang gliders getting ready to takeoff and N6MI. We knew T9 was there but decided to watch the gliders take off first. OK, back to the hunt. One of the ladies with the glider group had been watching these funny looking cars checking out the bushes a little down the road. She had become curious enough to check it out and had also found T9. She was kind enough to point out the bushes but we ended up having to sniff it out.
While at T9 we got a bearing on T8 which was about 180 degrees. We hadn't heard T8 since we entered Little Tujunga Canyon so I figured that T8 must have been hid on the south side of the next hill to the south and off we went down 3N32 toward Sugarloaf. As we approached Sugarloaf T8 became very strong and then diminished quickly. Oops, must have gone by it. We back tracked a bit and came down the road again. It become very strong again. David, from the other seat, exclaimed "found it" (as he seems to say increasing these days). GQ/LAJ found it only 45 minutes before we did. This was the first T we hadn't been 4th or 5th on the sign in sheet.
OK, found T1,5,6,7,8,9 and 10. Where were T2,3 and 4? Hadn't heard much of them. Can't hunt 'em if you can't hear 'em. Since our only bearings for T2 and T4 at Contractor's Point were east and south east, we decided to circle around and go back up the canyon and check out a couple of roads to see if we could hear the Ts. None helped. We ended up back at the summit at the road to T9. Still could not hear the Ts but did give directions to a tow truck driver that was there to collect that old abandon car. After that, the new hunter (AE6GA) showed up. We chatted for a bit and told him a couple areas he might want to check out. Since we couldn't hear any more Ts we hadn't found we headed home.
Thanks Bob for a great hunt. It was fun and challenging.