Yuma Hamfest Trip 2018

Posted 2/25/18



de WA8ZWJ - This will be a photo diary of my trip to Yuma, Arizona and back!

Friday, 2/9/18

I woke up early and could not get back to sleep so I left early and was on the road by 5AM!  It turned out that really helped because I made it though Indianapolis before rush hour!  

Here's a look at the ARCH in St. Louis as I went past...

Traffic was fairly light and I arrived in the Nevada, MO area much earlier than expected!

I first stopped at the fertilizer office to check out how things are going there!



  Then I went into Nevada and topped off the fuel in the van.  My timing was good at arriving at Bob and Sue’s because Bob had just returned from running some errands.

Here's my cousin Bob and Sue's place...

The weather was perfect for the trip as well!  I had sunshine and temperatures got into the upper 50’s!  That is a lot warmer than it was when I left home in the morning!

It was great to see Bob and Sue!

The evening was spent watching the opening ceremonies of the Olympics!




Saturday, 2/10/18

The forecast for the day was for freezing drizzle and a chance of snow showers as well.  We decided to take it easy for the day.  After playing a couple of games of Cribbage, Bob and I went to his brother, Ronnie’s for a visit.  

Here's Ronnie and Janet!

We stopped for lunch while we were out.

We watched more of the Olympics in the evening.


Sunday, 2/11/18

Well, it was cold and there was another layer of ice when we got up Sunday morning.  Bob heard that sections of I-44 had been closed because of ice!

Here's a sign in Bob's bathroom!

Ha ha!


Here are a couple of trees in Bob's front yard that were covered with ice!

Of course the grass is covered as well!


It was 18 degrees on the front porch!


Bob and I played some more Cribbage.  Later we went into town to run some errands and have lunch.  It was warming up enough by then that the roads were a lot better than they had been.

Sue spent the rest of the day packing for their upcoming trip and Bob and I spent the time watching the Olympics.


Monday, 2/12/18

I was up early and we had 8 degrees and heavy ice.  My departure was delayed some because the ice was heavy enough it didn’t want to scrape off so I let the van warm up some to assist with the ice.  Many thanks to Bob and Sue for their wonderful hospitality!

  I arrived at Joe - WA5FLT and Cathy’s in Calumet, Oklahoma around 11:30 AM.  

Here are Cathy and Joe - WA5FLT!


Before too long Joe and I headed out for lunch.  After lunch we paid a visit to the Bass Pro Shop in Oklahoma City.





  We managed to find a few items that we could not live without.

Here's Joe and Cathy's place in Calumet, Oklahoma!


We spent the evening watching some TV and visiting!  Truly a delightful day!


Tuesday, 2/13/18

We headed out to Weatherford, Oklahoma and took in Lucille’s Roadhouse on historic Route 66.

This is a reproduction and enlargement of a place that is still in existence on Route 66.

Joe in front of Lucille's...


Keith in front of Lucille's...


This is a mural on the wall inside of Lucille's of Historic Route 66!


  We ate brunch and then headed towards the Stafford Air & Space Museum nearby.





If you look closely you can see the vapor trail from a jet that has passed overhead...






What a neat collection of airplanes and space equipment!  It was truly a fun and informative afternoon. 


Wednesday, 2/14/18


Wednesday morning at Oh Dark Thirty and it was 42 with light fog.  I left Joe and Cathy’s and continued my trek west.  Since this was a new route to me everything was new.  As I got further west in Oklahoma the fog became rather heavy and the temperature went down to 39.  Finally the fog cleared about the time I was 10 miles from the Oklahoma/Texas border.  As I was venturing through the pan handle of Texas I saw a number of tumbleweeds.  I also saw a lot of wind generator farms.



By the time I got to Amarillo it was 54 and sunny.  When I crossed into New Mexico the temperature was up to 68.



After a while I left I-40 and went south on US-54.  Later I followed US-70 south.  I must say that those two roads have got to be the longest STRAIGHT roads I have ever been on.  


It looks like a Vice Presidential highway for sure!


Chas – AI0OK had anticipated my arrival and was in the parking lot waiting on me when I got to La Posta in Mesilla! 


Chas - AI0OK...


It was 74 degrees!  Chas and I did some shopping and then Dave – K3CRF joined us!




Dave - K3CRF...


Needless to say, we had a great dinner, fantastic visit and we all managed to get all fed up!



After all, the IOOK does travel on it’s stomach!  After dinner the three of us headed to Lordsburg for our overnight stay.


Thursday, 2/15/18


We had 50 and rain when we headed out at Oh Dark Thirty.  We stopped at the Texas Canyon Rest Area in Arizona and took a few shots of the fog and rain.







Here are a couple of panorama shots that Chas - AI0OK sent in.




In all the years I have been coming to Yuma for the hamfest I have never seen it like that before!  It was still raining when we got to Tucson to meet up with Jim – AE8R and Sue – AI8Q for brunch!


Sue - AI8Q and Jim - AE8R with their IOOK mugs that Chas presented to them!




Needless to say, we had a great brunch, fantastic visit and we all managed to get all fed up – again!


After saying our goodbyes the three of us continued our trek west.  We finally drove out of the rain and drizzle around Gila Bend.  About 50 miles out from Yuma we encountered sunshine and 70 degrees!  It was great to see the sunshine!  When we arrived in Yuma it was 74 and still sunny!  Delightful!  After checking into the motel, we headed to the fairgrounds and checked in.  It was good to see BJ!


Here's BJ - KD7WBH checking me in...



Then we went to our flea market space and hung our IOOK banner as we always do!


We met Ti-Michelle – NJ6T at 4:45 for dinner!


Ti-Michelle - NJ6T


Joe – K0NEB and his friend, Jill – KD8QGA joined us as well!


Joe - K0NEB


Jill - KD8QGA


Chas - AI0OK


Keith - WA8ZWJ


Dave - K3CRF


After dinner, Ti-Michelle assimilated Joe into the IOOK as a Vice President!


Congratulations Joe!


We had a great visit and got all fed up!


Chas has presented Jill, Ti and Joe with their IOOK mugs!


After dinner Chas joined me for an after dinner nightcap!




What a pleasant evening!


Friday, 2/16/18


After breakfast we headed to the fairgrounds for the hamfest!  Here's a banner at the entrance!



Here's Jack - KC7DUU!


Dave and Chas visiting some in our booth after setting things up...


We are getting customers!


Here's Dave with Flat KBob!


This guy has been a volunteer for the hamfest for many years!


The sun has come out!  Here's a look at our flea market space!


Ti-Michelle has arrived!




Chas is experimenting with an idea he has for lunch.  Brats cooked on an electrically generated heating plate.  No open flame!


Joe - K0NEB, the new Vice President, has arrived!


Another one of the great volunteers that make the Yuma Hamfest happen!


Vice Presidential air cap...


Vice Presidential air cap...


Bruce - W6RBM has arrived!  Bruce and Keith go WAY back!


Keith - WA8ZWJ with Flat KBob!


Dave - K3CRF was appointed as the man to purchase Old Buzzard's BBQ dinner tickets for folks that gave him money.

He has just realized that he forgot to purchase his own ticket!


Keith was going inside to look around so he bought Dave one!  Too funny!

"Here's your ticket!"


Vice Presidential air cap...


Dave - W6EVO has arrived!


Dave won an hourly prize!


Joe won an hourly prize!


Chas has presented Dave - W6EVO with his IOOK mug!


Here's A.C.!


NJ6T hanging out...


Some of the guys hanging out while customers shop...


Ti and Bruce visiting...


Anne - KC7RAG and Hal - KC7RAF have arrived!


Dinner this evening was at the Village Inn Pizza!


NJ6T, K3CRF, W6EVO and W6RBM getting all fed up!


K7DRM, AI0OK and WA8ZWJ getting fed up!


Jack - KC7DUU, BJ - KD7WBH and Tim - KM6ISS have arrived!


After dinner Chas and Keith have an after dinner cocktail!



Saturday, 2/17/18


After breakfast we headed to the hamfest once again!

Once things were all set up Chas, Bruce, Dave and Dave had a nice visit!


A look at our booth Saturday morning...


Bruce and Keith looking at one of the sales items.




Hmm, let's have a look in this box!


Ah, it must be time for a cigar!


Doug - KE6JUK poses for his annual photo with Flat KBob, who's call was W8JUK when that photo was done, along with Keith - WA8ZWJ.


Jill - KD8QGA and Joe - K0NEB


Jack and Keith


Ti-Michelle - NJ6T and Puppet!


Gordon West stopped by the booth!



Here's a link to a Youtube video that Chas - AI0OK posted of the launch!



Dave and Jack discussing a piece of equipment that is for sale...


You have to love this T shirt!


Keith is answering questions about what the IOOK is all about!


Dave has won another hourly prize!


BJ and Tim out and about!


Charlie - NN3V has arrived!  We won't go into the battery problems he had with his car today!  UGH!


Lunch was IN-N-OUT!


After lunch it was time for our group picture!


Passing time in the booth...


Dave won an hourly prize!



We closed down the space starting around 5PM.  Most of the gang were already inside saving seats at the Buzzard's BBQ!


It is not uncommon for there to be 450 people who attend the BBQ dinner!


A blurry photo of the IOOK gang at table 2.


NJ6T and Puppet, KD8QGA, K0NEB, K7DRM, K3CRF...


WA8ZWJ, NN3V, W6EVO, AI0OK, NJ6T and Puppet...



Jack is serving up the BBQ!


Those who wanted them got to have seconds!  So, if you didn't get fed up it was your own fault!  Great dinner!


The Old Buzzard!


Now it's time for prizes!


Joe has won another prize!


Keith won a prize as well!  That was prize 62.

It is Pina Colada Flavored Dip Mix and supposed to be a good dietary choice!


Joe - K0NEB won the 5th prize!  It was a Kenwood TS-590 G!


Many thanks to all on the Yuma Hamfest committee for a great time!


Yep!  After dinner cocktails!


Sunday, 2/18/18  

Sunday the guys met for breakfast before they headed out of town.


Here's the T shirt that Dave - K3CRF was wearing Sunday morning!






For me it was a catch up and R&R day.  I worked on photos from the hamfest.



Oh yes!  Here a souvenir that Joe - K0NEB was giving away.


It was a gorgeous day!


Here's what it looked like to the west from my hotel room in the afternoon!


Yes, it got up to 80 degrees!  FANTASTIC!


Then in the evening I met Jack – KC7DUU and family for dinner.


As usual, we met at Tacos Mi Rancho there in Yuma!


Tim - KM6ISS and Jack - KC7DUU


BJ - KD7WBH and Keith - WA8ZWJ


We had a dandy visit and wonderful dinner!  Many thanks to them for all they do!


After dinner I got an e-mail from Dave – K3CRF about the winter weather advisory for northern Arizona and northern New Mexico.  He had gone that way after breakfast and the forecast for Monday along that route was not good.  So, I worked on an alternate route for my trip back to Oklahoma.


Monday, 2/19/18

Happy Presidents Day!

It was 55 degrees when I headed out at Oh Dark Thirty.  As I drove eastward I could see really heavy clouds to the north.  That was undoubtedly the winter storm that had been forecast.  As I approached Tucson I saw heavy clouds to the east.  That was to my advantage because I would not have to drive looking straight into the sunlight because the clouds protected me.  As I got east of Tucson I could see evidence of recent rain but there was nothing falling.  About the time I reached Texas Canyon it was 48 and it started to drizzle and before long I had pretty steady rain.  The rain continued and was heavy at times as I continued east.  When I crossed the state line it was partly sunny with no rain and 60.

My first stop of the day was in Lordsburg for gas.  When I continued east there was a heavy wind out of the south.  Even though I had researched it, I let the GPS decide the path towards WA5FLT’s.  What is really funny is the GPS chose the same route I had chosen!  Heavy crosswinds continued.  I left I-10 in Deming and headed northeast for a ways.


I believe I have found another Vice Presidential Highway!  No one but me here!



I believe this was in a small town called Hatch just before I got onto I-25.


Before too long I headed north on I-25.


I have heard of it but never been past it before...


Look at the elevation here!  This is 15 miles before I was to turn onto I-40.

Yes, I was doing 80 MPH in a 75 MPH zone!


The biggest thing was there was no wind!  As I was approaching Albuquerque I realized that I had only used one half a tank of gasoline!  I checked and I had traveled 300 miles since I had fueled up in Lordsburg.  I learned later on the radio that we had had winds of 35 to 50 MPH.


This is on I-40 Eastbound.  Check out the elevation here!



The cross winds were prominent again when I got on I-40 eastbound.  My next stop was Tucumcari for fuel again!  So, the tail wind really helped!  When I got back on the road I called Joe - WA5FLT and made a decision to go ahead and finish my trip to his place this evening!  The projected arrival time was 10:15 PM!  As it was I arrived a little before 10PM!


Another look at wind farms in the Texas panhandle...

The wind has changed direction and I have tail winds once again.

This was taken after my call to Joe.


This was taken looking at the clouds as the sun was setting behind me.


Tuesday, 2/20/18


It turned out to be really lucky that I had gone ahead and finished the trip to Joe and Cathy’s instead of staying overnight because in the early morning there was freezing rain across the area that I would have had to drive through!  I was thinking that the good Lord had been watching over me!

I went out to get something out of the van and it turned out that the driver’s door was frozen shut.  I got in the passenger side and crawled across and managed to open the driver’s door from the inside.

Joe and I spent the morning visiting and watching the weather.  We went out for lunch (he drove) and had no difficulties even though there were a couple of semis that had slid off the highway and caused major backups!

We spent the afternoon working on a computer project and managed to get Ubuntu and Xastir back up and running here at Joe’s.  Now we need to choose a radio and do the wiring to interface the radio to the TNC.


Joe has put the working hard drive in a working computer!  We are up and running!


We have moved the computer to another location in the ham shack and I am helping with set up chores of Ubuntu and Xastir.


Wednesday, 2/21/18


Wednesday morning it was 19 and breezy.  The good news is there was no precipitation and none was forecast until much later in the day.  I decided to warm up the van and clear off all the accumulated ice on the windshield.


The van covered with ice before it has defrosted...


Then I took it into town to fill up the gas tank in preparation for Thursday’s trip to Memphis.  I actually saved 25 cents a gallon by making the trip to El Reno instead if filling up in Calumet.

Lunch was in El Reno (Joe drove) and the food as great and service was great as well!  We also managed to get all fed up!  

Early in the afternoon we started to get some more freezing rain and sleet.  We did a fair amount of running around and the roads were slick at times.

We spent the evening in R&R mode.  We both have major travel days tomorrow.  Many thanks to Joe and Cathy for their generous hospitality!


Thursday, 2/22/18


When I left Joe and Cathy’s and headed east it was around 30 degrees.



My first stop was just east of Little Rock, Arkansas and filled up with fuel.  The temperature was up to 50 degrees.  In eastern Arkansas I encountered light drizzle that continued until I got to Memphis.  Along the way it was quite evident that they had gotten a lot of rain recently.  All the fields had standing water. 


About 3:45 PM I arrived in Germantown, Tennessee.  I chatted with Max – K1MAX on a local repeater.  I got checked in and my luggage unloaded.  After a short while Max picked me up and before too long we met Tom – W5KUB for a great dinner!




Here's a selfie that Tom took.


We had a fantastic visit and Tom had a coupon that saved each of us $5 off our dinners.  Yes, we also got all fed up!


After dinner Max dropped me off at the hotel.

While I was outside having an after dinner cigar I saw this call sign on APRS!

Surely you have never heard any BS on the ham bands!  Now you have seen it!


Friday, 2/23/18


Around 8:15 Friday morning Max picked me up and we headed out to meet a group of hams for breakfast.  Max had coffee and I had soda and we refrained from breakfast because of lunch plans.  It turned out to be quite a group gathered there!



Max says it is not uncommon for there to be 25 guys at the breakfast!



Jim - KI4I - He has been to HamVention with Max.


Some of the guys had gotten there as early as 7:30.  We had quite a series of visits with guys from around the area.  Of course, since I am from the Dayton area, there were a lot of questions about HamVention that I could not answer. 


Around 10 we headed out and ran a couple of errands and then met Jim – KI4I, Ann - WB4FAA and Dan – NE7JN for lunch!


Here's Max and Dan...


A group of ladies were passing by and wanted to photo bomb our picture session!


Ann, Jim and Keith


Then one of the ladies volunteered to take a photo of our group at the table!


We had a great visit and got all fed up!  After lunch we ran a couple of more errands and then ended up at the Bass Pro Shop nearby here.


Here's Max by the boat!



Around 3PM Max dropped me off and he headed back home for a bit of R&R.  About 5:45 he and Lee picked me up and we met up with some of Lee’s family at a nearby church catfish fry!


Lee and Max


It was really well attended!  If you didn’t get all fed up there it was your own fault because repeated trips through the serving line were encouraged!  It was a great dinner and we had a nice time.  It was after 8PM when Max dropped me off at the hotel.


Wow!  What a day!  Lots of ham radio related activities and fantastic visiting with Max and the gang!  Many thanks to Max for his great hospitality!


Saturday, 2/24/18


I was up early and managed to be on the road by 5:40 AM Memphis time!  It was 64 and we had rain.  As I continued east I saw more standing water in the nearby fields.  About 6:30 the rain stopped.  The good thing was, again, since I was headed east the skies were overcast so I would not be staring into the rising sun.  As I approached Nashville it was partly sunny and 68 degrees!


Once I got to Nashville I turned north.



I encountered evidence of recent rain, even though it was partly sunny, as I approached Bowling Green, Kentucky and it was 66.  30 or 40 miles south of Louisville I drove into steady rain again and it was down to 50.


My first and only stop was in Carrollton, Kentucky for fuel.  While I was filling up the rain stopped!


Standing water in the fields behind where I filled up with gas.


It was 55 and overcast in Cincinnati.



I ran into more rain as I came into Dayton and it was 51.  North of Dayton where I turned onto I70 west the rain stopped.  I was surprised by all the standing water as I got closer to home.  Obviously they have had a lot of rain here too!

I arrived at home around 2:30 and it was 50 degrees!


It was good to be back home!

Here's Marian - WD8CJD and I!


I am really grateful that all that rain wasn't snow!

I am also very grateful that our sump pump is working well!

Many thanks to all for their hospitality while I was on my trip!

It was fantastic to visit with so many friends and relatives!

Many thanks to the photo contributors for this web page.  They are AI0OK, K0NEB, K3CRF, W5KUB and WA8ZWJ.

Thanks to you for taking the time to look through all these photos from my trip to Yuma and back!

73, Keith - WA8ZWJ