Steve's trip to Seattle for DCC

The route...

In September and early October I took a cross-country trip to the Digital Communications Conference in Seattle, passing through Mt. Rushmore and Yellowstone, and then to Southern California to visit friends and family. The total trip was 8730 miles, and I had a great time.
Among the highlights were the meetings with several APRSers along the way, namely Ralph N4NEQ in Atlanta, Jim KU0G in Kansas City, and Bill WB6LPG in Half Moon Bay just south of San Francisco. The biggest surprise of the trip was that the San Diego HF Gate (KI6MP) is 10 houses away from where I lived for three years while in medical school. The scariest moment was getting caught in the first snow of the year in Yellowstone. I've been in South Florida too long to enjoy getting blown around an icy road with 2000 foot cliffs. The beauty of Yellowstone made me forget the few minutes of terror I experienced in getting there.

It was cold, but the beauty of Yellowstone after the first snowfall of the year was worth it.

After the conference in Seattle I headed south along the Pacific Coast Highway, a trip I've made before, but always worthwhile...

You can also see my trip to the 1995 DCC in Dallas here.

Trips like these require a special vehicle. I drive a silver Ford E-250 van with a load of electronics onboard. I have built cabinets inside, and installed plenty of toys to fight the monotony of the road. Here's a picture that Greg Jones took of me in the back of the van.

The highlights...two HF radios (one voice, one for APRS), 3 VHF/UHF dual banders (voice, APRS, and packet), two KAM TNCs, Motorola GPS, audio CD changer, and cell phone. A laptop computer sits on the center console in easy reach, and can be moved back to an operating position in the rear of the van. A deep cycle battery provides the juice for operating when parked, and there is a battery charger which allows me to run off AC. Add a cooler full of Diet Coke (I'm seriously addicted!) and I'm ready to travel.

Here is a javAPRS applet that displays the track as well as the stations I heard along the way, all 407 of them. Even with duplicate packets and all non-position reports removed, the file is still 1 megabyte (raw log was 4.3 MB), so it will take a while!

Sorry, your browser doesn't do Java!

javAPRS Commands (Case Insensitive)
zooms up (wider view)
zooms down (narrower view)
lists stations heard to the Java console
lists only weather station reports to the Java console
lists beacons to the Java console
lists ID reports to the Java console
lists last 25 messages to the Java console
centers map on clicked location
zooms in on clicked location
Arrow keys
scrolls map

Clicking on a station shows its information in the status bar

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