Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2017

Veterans Day-flag

Happy Veterans Day. Si vis pacem, para bellum.  Photo by M. Hohmann

 

National Veterans Day Ceremony

The Veterans Day National Ceremony is held each year on November 11th at Arlington National Cemetery. The ceremony commences precisely at 11:00 a.m. with a wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns and continues inside the Memorial Amphitheater with a parade of colors by veterans’ organizations and remarks from dignitaries. The ceremony is intended to honor and thank all who served in the United States Armed Forces.

 

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Arlington, VA  Photo by M. Hohmann

 

Additional info at: https://www.va.gov/opa/vetsday/

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Fall GOTA Event, 10-28-17

RARC GOTA Event 10-17

Richfield Amateur Radio Club (RARC), Fall GOTA Event (Get-On-The-Air)

 

The forecast was for rain, possibly snow, for Saturday’s ‘Get-On-The-Air’ event our radio club sponsored on Saturday, October 28th this year. The Richfield Historical Society (a suburb of Minneapolis) was letting us use a small shed out back to set up our radios, and we could run our transmission lines out a window, to the nearby trees just outside the building. It’s a small building we’ve used before; it’s tough to set up a few radios and get a dozen people inside, but it works -especially in bad weather. We plugged in a small space heater, and kept our jackets on. It sure beat the alternative -standing/sitting under a tarp in the cold rain. We were out of the weather, warm, and had commercial power readily available, or batteries. Many thanks to the Richfield Historical Society for hosting us!

We got no snow on that Saturday morning, just a light rain. Life was good! We initially set up two antennas outside – 1) an off-center-fed (10-40 meter) dipole, and a home-brew (10-40 meter) fan dipole. Propagation was poor in late morning, but got better in the afternoon, with most activity in the 20 and 15 meter bands. A second radio showed up in the afternoon and there were about 25 people present at one time or another between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. There were a few new faces along with some familiar ones -as usual, at such events.

For some unknown reason, I can’t get photos to upload. I’ve never had this problem before! I’ll add them in a future post. My apologies.

73 de Mike, KEØGZT

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Hiking the woods, meadows and bogs

The summer flew by so quickly, and the fall seems to be doing likewise. I know time flies faster as we age – I’ve experienced it. I realize that is not consistent with scientific fact, but several friends agree with me! Others might call it ‘fake news.’  😉

Yesterday was a beautiful, sunny day, and I just had to get out of town and take a walk in the woods. However, my time was limited. I decided to head out to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum -for a few hours of mid-day hiking, thus avoiding morning and evening rush-hour traffic. The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is part of the University of Minnesota, and it was named the #1 Botanical Garden experience, by a USA Today  Readers’ Choice Poll earlier this year -beating out the New York Botanical Garden and the Chicago Botanic Garden. It boasts over 5,000 plant varieties.

The Arboretum is about 30 miles west of Minneapolis, in Chaska, MN, and it encompasses just over 1200 acres. There are exceptional gardens, many of which change with the seasons, and a new addition this year is the Chinese Garden. But I didn’t go to see the gardens. I went out to simply hike several trails around the outer-reaches of the property -visiting deciduous trees sporting their bright, fall colors; grassy prairie-meadows with seed pods bursting; and several boggy wetlands, ripe with mature cattails and other wetland reeds -and, yes, red-wing blackbirds, as you might expect. I may stop out again in a week or so just to check the gardens with my wife, before they disappear and get covered over for the winter.

Without question, most visitors to the Arboretum come to see the beautiful flower gardens, with relatively few finding their way to the more distant outer-trails and meadows.  The photos below will provide a sampling of what I found on my Fall visit.

 

Hiking near Meadowlark Trail

Hiking near Meadowlark Trail, Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17.

 

Hiking near Meadowlark Trail, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Hiking near Meadowlark Trail, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Albino squirrel, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

This little fella was easy to spot on the tree trunk, but hard to follow through the brush. He/she was a welcome surprise, but a good 50 yds distant. I snapped about a dozen shots and these two were the best. I use a small pocket camera – a Nikon Coolpix S7000. I like traveling light on any trail, but such a camera does pose problems on occasion.

 

Albino squirrel on forest floor, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Fall colors, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Fall colors (2), MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Grassy meadow, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Oak in the meadow lands, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Fall colors among meadow grasslands, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Colorful grasslands, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Grassland meadow, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Green Herron Pond surrounded by wetland bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Cattails in bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Wetland bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Wetlands bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Wetland bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Cattails in bog, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Wetland bog around Green Herron Pond, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Ridge Trail SW of Green Herron Pond, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Fall colors along Ridge Trail (1), MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

More Fall colors along Ridge Trail (2), MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Spring Peeper Trail, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

More meadow lands, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Birch and Poplar trees, MN Landscape Arboretum, 10-’17

 

Yes, the Arboretum is a great resource, and it is not far from home. I’ll likely get back again in a few months and do some snow-shoeing, and take some winter photos. Watch for them here in December, January or February -maybe a couple of snow-shoeing posts from a variety of locations. Maybe even some cold-weather radio!

Now I must get back to some radio work… my attic install of the Alpha Delta DX-EE dipole antenna, and the slow but sure prepping for my FCC General Radio License exam.

73 de Mike, KEØGZT

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