A made mention to some friends that I feel somewhat like a fish out of water. Being back in the lower 48, I see, hear and smell things I had all but forgotten about. As we made our way through the Yukon, British Columbia and Alberta Canada, I realized that there are many beautiful places just like Alaska. I was (am) running APRS as we make our way across many miles of pavement and unpaved roads. I was surprised at some of the coverage in some of the remote places of the Yukon, BC and Alberta! We entered back into the lower 48 through Montana and I felt like I was home again in Alaska. I would not have enough memory cards to capture all of the beautiful landscapes we have encountered on our vacation. Simply breathtaking and so much so, I nearly forgot about playing radio!
Okay, back on track. The things I've forgotten about was fields of cows! Something I did not see in my neck of the woods in Alaska. Also, realizing how polluted our roadsides are with advertising. Thankfully, you don't see that in Alaska as you can actually enjoy the landscape advertising free (almost). Traffic, lots of people and traffic and actually stopping at truck stops. Paying less than $4.00 a gallon for diesel fuel. I did however pay $1.88 per liter for diesel fuel in one location in Canada which cost me $234.02! So that was the most I've ever paid for a tank of fuel!
Our Ford truck has had the ability to receive Sirius satellite radio but it never worked in Alaska except in a few rare locations. When we hit Montana, I decided to sign up and I might add, listening to the same station across three states is pretty nice! Modern technology is a wonder.
I write this on the road from our campsite here in Salem, South Dakota. Seeing a big contest station just before our exit had me missing the hobby and realizing how much I will miss contesting from my home QTH. I was pretty lucky to have a nice path to the lower 48 and Europe. But now, it will be a different location and different propagation. I'm not ready for the city life but I will adjust, hopefully. In the mean time, I'm remembering how life was when we used to live down here. We have been treated to the aroma of an excited skunk now twice. And, it's strange to have it dark when it's warm outside. Right now, we would be experiencing the midnight sun in Alaska, 24 hours of daylight. It's strange to experience this again.
As we continue our road travels, I will ponder about my next station location and watch for ham antennas and other hams that I may pass on the road. I've only heard a bit of radio traffic on 146.520 and that was shortly after we arrived in Montana from Canada. But, APRS has been fun and I think our coworkers are enjoying our progress more than we are.