With the help of the York Region Amateur Radio Club (YRARC) volunteers, Woodland Trails became York Headwaters’ JOTA HQ during our fall Scouts Skills Training Camp.
Since this is the 60th Anniversary of the first YHW JOTA and the first time in… heck, even Scouter Jim D. doesn’t remember how long… that YHW held a JOTA event, we went all out with a full radio activity rotation to go along with the knifing, axing, flaming and other activities.
YRARC brought out their Emergency Communications Trailer – fully self contained with backup generator, repeater and telescoping antenna. .
Scouts learned about Morse code, phonetic alphabet, and basic 2-way radio protocol.
We had two additional ham rigs. Scouts communicated with other Scout groups and ham operators as far away as Germany and Arizona. Big highlight was hearing the Governor of Bermuda – who is also the Chief Scout of Bermuda and participating in their JOTA.
We ran the radios on car batteries, but they didn’t last too long. Scouts were prepared, and we appreciate the loan of the generator.
Big thank you to: YRARC members Geoff/VA3GS and John/VE3IPS for organizing, bringing out so much gear, and sticking with us for the whole day, Steve/VE3UT for helping out and taking all these great pictures, and David/VA3DCY for trailer towing duties; all the Scout leaders who volunteered their time and equipment for all the other activities and great meals. All were rewarded with nothing but a lot of Scout smiles and enthusiasm… and a Scouts Canada JOTA/JOTI 2017 badge.
What will we do for JOTA/JOTI 2018? Dunno yet, but YRARC is offering to help out again.