I was chasing on Jan.1st and activating on Jan 2nd. The hook was set and it was constant chasing whenever I could find time. I would chase during much of my free time when I should have been doing things around the house. Chasing happened during lunch from the work truck using a IC-706 seating on the seat with a hamstick on the roof.
Kudos to my family who understood that I was having fun and politely smiled every time I told them, "I got a new park"! I am sure it got old to them as I complained about band conditions or "I just can't hear any new parks". Thanks family!
People along the way
I met and worked with many local hams during the various activations including N0KTK, WX5CW, N0SSC, KE0HXL, K0KEV, KE0TT, and KT4FQ.
Special recognition for Kyle N0KTK. I had never met him or talked to him until sometime in the spring after I was approached by the folks at the Gateway Arch about doing an activation. After meeting with the Arch folks I knew I could not do it alone so I put out some feelers about getting some help. Some folks were interested if they had nothing going on but I needed a firm commitment! I had run across one of Kyle's YouTube videos showing his ILQP portable outing. I could see from his blog posts that he enjoyed portable operations. I sent him an email asking if he was interested in helping with the Arch and we quickly set up a meeting. The Arch activation took place on April 23rd.
Since then we have worked on different activations through the year. I could learn a lot from Kyle on logging, PC networking, video editing and organizational skills. This guy is organized!
Also a special thanks to all the parks folks I interacted with through the year. Tim Good and Julie Northrip were always helpful at the Grant House. I approached Tim in earlier Nov 2015 about the NPOTA program. At that time the word had not come down from the top of NPS organization about what the NPOTA program. I went armed with all the ARRL NPOTA documents and put together an information packet. Tim quickly embraced the NPOTA idea and we started working through the permitting process.
My final numbers for NPOTA:
351 NPS units contacted as a chaser.
10 activations from 6 different locations.