Hello everybody and welcome back to Everything Hamradio! One of the major reasons that I got into this hobby was for public service. One of the aspects of this hobby that I love is storm spotting, or Skywarn. I got involved with Skywarn about 8 months after I got my license, right after I took my first Skywarn class. I have always loved the weather! With Skywarn, I actually know what I’m looking at and can do something with what I’m seeing.
I have gone up to my local National Weather Service office in Ft. Worth, TX a few times. Every time that I go I see something new that they have or something I didn’t see before. I would volunteer there if it wasn’t a nearly hour drive to get there, through downtown traffic. I’m a country boy and don’t particularly like driving in big town traffic, I will, but I don’t have like it.
I recently saw that on December 5, 2015 is the 2015 Skywarn Recognition Day! I’ve been involved in Skywarn since about 1996, Skywarn Recognition Day started in 1999 and this is the first I remember hearing anything about it. Is that sad or what? I think in years past, I haven’t been really keeping up with what is going on in the world of amateur radio like I do know that I have this site.
So what is Skywarn Recognition Day? According to the National Weather Service website:
SKYWARNTM Recognition Day was developed in 1999 by the National Weather Service and the American Radio Relay League. It celebrates the contributions that volunteer SKYWARNTM radio operators make to the National Weather Service. During the day SKYWARNTM operators visit NWS offices and contact other radio operators across the world.
Even though the objective of this event is to get as many contacts as you can with other NWS stations, it is not a contest. NWS stations will be working on several different bands and modes that can include 80, 40, 20, 15, 10, 6, and 2 meter bands plus the 70 centimeters. Even FM repeater contacts are allowed in this event. Some NWS stations will even have Echolink, IRLP and DStar stations. So there are plenty of opportunities to make a contact.
The event will run on December 15, 2015 from 0000 UTC to 2359 UTC.
I Made A Contact, Now What?
Like with other on-the-air events, there is a exchange that needs to be made. Take Field Day for example. During a Field Day exchange, you would give your Callsign, Class and Location. Anything else is just extra and I have even heard frustration in some peoples voices when people try to give to much information.
During Skywarn Recognition Day, the exchange goes as follows:
- Call sign
- Signal Report
- QTH(Where you are at)
- A one or two word description about your current weather conditions(sunny, partly cloud, windy, etc)
Which Offices are Participating?
There is currently 27 NWS offices that are participating this year. Surprisingly Ft Worth office is not on the list. Last year, the Fort Worth office has the fourth highest number of contacts with 557 contacts. Melborne, FL was #1 with 1294. Lincoln, IL was #2 with 620 contacts and Kansas City, MO was #3 with 607. Click here to see the full stats for last year’s event.
Click here to see what NWS stations are participating this year.
Click Here is the official page for the 2015 Skywarn Recognition Day.
Are you going to participate in this event? I might log into a couple of the echo link stations on my phone since I don’t have a station in my house anymore.
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Until next time…
73 de Curtis, K5CLM