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Are you going to UARC Field Day 2024?

It's getting to be that time of year again - when, in remote green pastures one can find, during a certain weekend in June, antennas, towers and RVs sprouting up where none had been before: It's Field Day!

ARRL Field Day is the time during which amateurs in North America drag their gear out into the fields and set up antennas to practice doing the very thing for which many amateurs get licensed: Operating in the field as one would for Emergency Communications! This annual event - which occurs during the fourth full weekend of June (which will be June 22 and 23 in 2024) is being conducted by UARC in the same place as it has been for the past years: The meadow near-ish the Payson Lakes campground in Payson Canyon which (as you might guess) is above Payson along the Mount Nebo Scenic Loop.

If you plan to come to UARC's field day, consider letting us know on the UARC Field Day Sign-up sheet.. If you don't wish to add your name to this list, don't worry - we'll be happy to see you that weekend!

Where is it, and how do I get there?

In 2024 we'll be returning to the site used in previous years and we will be operating from a clearing on the Nebo Scenic Loop Road, just a half mile south of the Payson Lakes campground entrance (not the picnic area).

Here is how to reach UARC's Field Day site:

If you see the giant push-pin, you are getting close!
If you see the giant push pin, you are getting close!
  1. Starting from the Salt Lake Valley, go south on I-15 to the first Payson exit, exit 250. Take the exit.
  2. Go left at the end of the exit ramp which should put you on Main Street (aka SR-115). (You are really going south at this point although it may seem like east.)
  3. Turn left on 100 North, aka SR-198.
  4. Turn right on 600 East, also called "Peteetneet Boulevard." This turn is at the top of a hill at a picturesque old school. Be careful to observe the speed limit!
  5. Follow 600 East until it takes you to the mouth of Payson Canyon. At this point note your odometer reading or reset your trip odometer.
  6. Watch for landmarks at these approximate mileages from the canyon mouth:
  7. According to Google Earth, the coordinates at the UARC Field Day site are: 39° 55' 31.11" N., 111° 37' 53.06" W
    • In decimal degrees: 39.925308° N. 111.631406° W. .
    • In decimal minutes: 39° 55.5185' N. 111° 37.884333' W.
    • If you use the app What Three Words, the left turn (if you are heading south/uphill) is at "SUCCESS.HELPER.RESPECTING". In the meadow north of where you turned off the main road you'll find the crowd of UARC folks at "PLASTER.LAPTOP.PADDING"

There is usually a sign placed by UARC along the road indicating where to turn - and if you pass a large, yellow "push pin" (like the one that you see on Google Maps) then you are in the right place: Following the road will lead to an open meadow, and depending on when you arrive you should see an assemblage of trailers - possibly including some with towers on them.

Do I need to have a General class license - or any license at all to operate?

The quick answer is NO. Operations during Field Day will be under UARC's call, W7SP. Since there will be a "control operator" on site at all times, ANYONE may operate - whether you have a license or not.

If you have never operated HF - or even talked on the radio before - consider this a really good reason to show up and dip your toe in world of HF operation.

When should I show up?

The first of the folks will be arriving sometime on Tuesday the 18th, but the gathering will begin in earnest starting on Thursday the 20th, at which time the plans are to bring up UARC's larger antenna trailers. It is on this day (Thursday) that set-up can actually begin and from then through Saturday we'll be getting things set up gradually: If you will be up there on Thursday or Friday, we would be happy to get any help that you can provide!

Having said that, many people show up Friday and Saturday as well based on their schedule and when they can get away - and we'll be happy to see you whenever you can show up!

See below if you aren't planning to camp and/or can make it for only part of the day.

When does Field Day start?

In this time zone, Field Day starts at 12:00 Noon on Saturday the 22nd and we continue until noon on Sunday, operating all night. Even if you can't stay overnight, you are more than welcome to drop by to operate, view the scenery, escape the heat, or whatever.

If you can't stay overnight, make it a day trip!

While we encourage you to be adventuresome and camp overnight (see details below) we understand that this isn't for everyone. If you can only make it for the day - or part of the day - here are a few options:

What to expect if I stay up there.

  • You are welcome to camp (or "glamp", as is your pleasure) on site - but keep in mind that you will be "dry camping" in that there will be no hook-ups: You should bring enough water for your needs. The club will provide porta-potties (which should arrive by Wednesday) and once the main generator is set up (possibly on Thursday evening - but certainly by Friday) you are welcome to plug into it, provided that you aren't planning to run anything like electric space heaters!
  • While it may reach well over 100F in the valley during the day, it typically stays below the 80s at that altitude (about 8200 feet) and at night it can dip into the 30s, so be prepared for late autumn weather when you show up - and if you are bringing a trailer, make sure that your heater works and that your propane tanks are adequately topped off.
  • If you are tent camping, most of the above applies: Be prepared for cool weather.
  • As with any camping outing, you should be prepared to be fully self-sufficient in terms of food, water, clothing and sleeping arrangements. It's worth noting that if you do need supplies, Payson is an approximately 30 minute trip down-canyon to the grocery store.
  • If you or others that come along with you don't want to "play radio" the entire time, there's Payson Lakes itself where you can go boating and fishing plus a lot of hiking and scenery.

    May I bring my own radio?

  • The club will supply the antennas, power and radios - but if you really want to bring your own radio when you operate, feel free to do so - but keep the following in mind:

    If you plan to come to UARC's field day consider letting us know on the UARC Field Day Sign-up sheet.. If you don't wish to add your name to this list just yet, don't worry - we'll be happy to see you that weekend!

    Please join us for the Field Day UARC meeting on June 13 in person - or on the UARC YouTube channel (or watch it afterwards).

    We hope to see you there!

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