Typically, when I do field activations while on vacation, I squeeze them in and around our family activities and travels. This is quite easy to do because our family enjoys a good hike and we love our parks.
On July 4, 2022 (Independence Day in the US!) my wife and daughters had their own activities planned for the day which opened up nearly a full day–at least a good 5-6 hour window–for me to do park activations solo.
I had numerous park choices in/around Québec City–an area rich with POTA sites.
I thought that I could either spend the day hitting one park further afield or hit multiple parks clustered together.
I chose the latter, so I started researching the POTA Map for Québec City.
In truth, pretty much any of the parks in Québec City could have been pieced together for a multiple park run. In fact, there are a number cluster in the city center and in Old Québec, but I was keen to explore a little cluster of parks I noted in the Saint-Foy area west of Québec City:
The map below shows just how close these four parks are to each other. Very doable!
These parks were so close to each other, I considered parking in the middle and simply walking to each site, but after reviewing the distance between the potential activation sites at each parks more carefully, I realized I wouldn’t have the time to activate all four parks if I walked it.
It was this activation that reminded me how brilliant it would be to own a folding bike like by buddy Jim (N4JAW) uses on each of his nearly daily POTA activations. With a bicycle, I think I could have actually activated these more quickly than I could with a car because there’d be no need to find a parking spaces at each site.
I decided I’d try to hit my four parks in this order:
- VE-0970 Parc de la Plage-Jacques-Cartier Provincial Park
- VE-0964 Parc Cartier-Roberval Archeological Reserve
- VE-0956 Boise de Marly Provincial Park
- VE-0958 Boisé des Compagnons-de-Cartier Recreation Park
The only park I’d visited in advance was Parc Cartier-Roberval so I knew I’d need a little time to find activation sites, etc. at the other three. If the activations took longer than expected to validate with 10 stations logged, I might have to skip the final park.
Interestingly, three of these four parks were ATNOs (All-Time New Ones) thus had never been activated for POTA. Continue reading Poor Propagation: Can the Elecraft AX1 handle band conditions during this urban POTA activation?