Winter Field Day (WFD), which has taken place annually on the last full weekend in January, since 2007, has continued to grow in popularity each year. In 2022, the Winter Field Day Association processed over 2500 logs. This year’s Winter Field Day takes place January 28th – 29th.
Clubs and individuals from around the world activate for the event, many using it as an opportunity to practice portable emergency communications in winter environments, since the potential for freezing temperatures, snow, ice, and other hazards present unique operational concerns. Winter Field Day is formatted to help radio amateurs develop a higher level of preparedness for disasters and improve operational skills in subpar conditions.
Winter Field Day is a communications exercise that can be worked from the comfort of your home or in a remote location. Amateur radio operators may use any mode that can faithfully transmit the required exchange, on HF, VHF, or UHF bands. Like the ARRL Field Day, bonus points are earned in several ways, including for using non-commercial power sources, operating from remote locations, making satellite contacts, and more.
Complete rules can be found here. Combining this with the ARRL’s ongoing Volunteers On the Air operation is a great way to make contacts and get new operators on the air.
On the weekend of July 28-29, the Wireless Society of Southern Maine Emergency Communications Team will take part in their fifth Winter Field Day, operating as an outdoor station from the Cumberland County Emergency Management Agency (CCEMA) communications trailer. We’ll be setting up portable antennas, and run the entire 24 hours on emergency power.
Prior to the event, on Saturday, the WSSM-ECT will also be taking part in an emergency communications exercise, checking into the Maine Emergency Net, and exchanging simulated emergency traffic with adjacent counties and the Maine Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), in Augusta.