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ARRL Sections - Sacramento Valley

Sacramento Valley

Sacramento Valley

Contact Information

Section Name:
Sacramento Valley
Dr. Carol Milazzo, KP4MD
Daytime Phone:
(916) 782-3786
Evening Phone:
(916) 259-3221

Basic Information


Visit our Section website at for the latest updates.


October 2020 News

From the Section Manager

I sincerely regret the cancellation of our annual Pacificon Convention and so many other hamfests and in-person events, but above all send my condolences to those who have lost family and friends to the pandemic and wildfires. Our members and clubs have risen to the challenge of social isolation through amateur radio "health and welfare" nets and other technologies. We have innovated our outreach through virtual club meetings, virtual Field Days, online conventions and continuing licensing classes and VE sessions. Thanks to you all for keeping our Sacramento Valley section alive and strong in the face of this year's challenges!

An ARRL Sacramento Valley Section-wide net is scheduled this month for Thursday, October 15. On Thursday October 15, ARRL Sacramento Valley Section will hold an ARRL SECTION-WIDE NET, first on the WD6AXM repeater on 146.085 MHz +0.6 MHz offset CTCSS 127.3 Hz IMMEDIATELY after the 7 pm Yuba-Sutter ARES net closes, then followed immediately by an HF net on 3880 kHz LSB +/- 3 kHz. All radio amateurs are encouraged to participate. We will issue an Official Bulletin reminder to all section members during that week. For further details see

Neil Bossard, N6CNY Appointed Yuba-Sutter ARES EC

Welcome to Neil Bossard, N6CNY as our new Yuba-Sutter County ARES Emergency Coordinator effective October 1, 2020.  Thanks to Andy Boone KJ6IYM for his past years of service in that position

You can still send October news to This website is visited most during the first week of each month, but do check back as it is often updated with late breaking news.

Our Section website, Facebook and Twitter pages are a work in progress, and your suggestions and submissions are always welcome.

73, Dr. Carol Milazzo, KP4MD

American Radio Relay League Sacramento Valley Section Manager

You can always send compliments, suggestions and submissions for inclusion in our Section News to kp4md(at)



Section News:
Section Nets:
Sacramento Valley ARES:

Thanks to Greg Kruckewitt KG6SJT for maintaining our Section ARES web page and assisting with our Facebook page and Twitter feed.
Thanks to Les Cobb W6TEE for maintaining the Section Net list.

ARRL Affiliated Club web resources are now listed on this web page


Casey McPartland, W7IB Past ARRL SV Section Manager Casey McPartland, W7IB, Silent Key
posted September 17, 2020

Casey McPartland, W7IB, passed away on August 31, 2020 from complications of multiple myeloma. McPartland was ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Manager from 2006 until his resignation in 2007 due to a temporary move out of the section.


Casey discovered ham radio back in the late ‘50’s while tinkering around in a neighbor’s garage. The neighbor was a US Navy Commander stationed at Moffett Field in Mountain View, and many hours were spent in his shack during that memorable solar cycle. Twenty years later in 1978 Casey became licensed as WB1DYZ while living with his family in Hebron, Connecticut. Thirty years and many call signs later (including KA1BZ, NS6K and K6WJM) he was appointed Assistant Section Manager for the Sacramento Valley Section by then Section Manager Jettie Hill, W6RFF, whom he succeeded as Section Manager in December 2006. Casey brought many years of leadership and management background from his work in the Information Technology and Management Consulting fields.


Casey operated “about 90% CW” and enjoyed Field Day, DXing, ragchewing and serving as net control.  He and his wife Leslie, K7NYE, frequently volunteered communication support for the Tevis Cup Trail Ride, the MS walk and numerous bicycle events.


Casey was an ARRL Life Member, held an Extra Class License since early 1983, an OES appointment having completed all three Emergency Communication Courses, and was a long time member of FISTS (#9758), the Quarter Century Wireless Association, the Mother Lode DX Contest Club and the Sierra Foothills Amateur Radio Club where he had served as instructor, Volunteer Examiner, secretary, director, vice president and president.


[Thanks to David Jenkins, WB6RBE, and the Mother Lode DX/Contest Club’s September 2006 “Nugget” for contributing to this biographic information.]

California QSO Party California QSO Party October 3-4

The California QSO Party (CQP) is held every year on the first weekend of October. The first CQP took place in 1966. Since 1974, the Northern California Contest Club (NCCC) has sponsored CQP. CQP has traditionally opened the annual contest season by providing an opportunity for contesters to prepare for the ARRL November Sweepstakes since the format is similar.

Stations outside of California, worldwide, work stations in California only. The 58 counties of CA are the multipliers. California stations work all stations in or out of CA. The 50 US states and 8 Canadian areas are the multipliers. Stations outside of Canada and the US add to one's QSO total but do not count as multipliers. See the CQP Website for more details.

Jamboree on the Air Scouting's Jamboree on the Air Set for October 16-18

Jamboree on the Air (JOTA) and Jamboree on the Internet (JOTI) will be held this year on October 16, 17, and 18. Register online as an individual or as a group.

Jamboree on the Air is the largest Scouting event in the world. In a typical year, more than 1 million Scouts participate in JOTA, with over 11,000 stations operated by 20,000+ young radio amateurs from 150+ countries around the world.

JOTA details are available on the K2BSA website. The website menu will direct users to additional supporting information. K2BSA’s Jim Wilson, K5ND, says many locations are already offering virtual radio merit badge classes “and no doubt will be using similar approaches for Jamboree on the Air.”


Northern California Wildfires Sacramento Valley ARES Responds to NorCal Wildfires
Posted September 7, 2020

Saturday, August 15, 2020 The Sacramento Valley and other parts of California suffered from an unprecedented Electrical Storm that started approximately 30 fires or “complex of large fire starts, over 300 total new starts. Northern California alone, including the Sacramento Valley, had approximately 12 fire or “complex of fires” starts.

Sacramento Valley ARES teams were activated in a stand by capacity. Over 100 members from Sacramento North to the Oregon boarder volunteered to assist. Several of these volunteers were personally affected by the fires by being either evacuated, or in an area where they may have to evacuate at any time.

The primary reason for the activation was to assist the American Red Cross with potential Sheltering operations. I was not notified of any government activations to support the fires. The American Red Cross opened three (3) shelters in the fire zones. Most of the evacuees were able to be placed in hotels.

Sacramento Valley’s ARES teams were stood down on Saturday, August 22, 2020. The American Red Cross leadership in the area said that the situations were stabilizing and they would not be needing to use ARES. The teams were thanked for being ready and stood down.

At the time of this writing, most evacuations have been lifted. I do not know if any of the ARES members had loss or damage.

Michael Joseph KK6ZGB
ARRL Sacramento Valley ARES District 3 DEC & Public Information Officer

LNU Lightning Complex Fire at N6ICW Repeater Site

LNU Lightning Complex Fire Damages N6ICW Repeater Site atop Mt. Vaca

In this video, Phil Sittner, KD6RM, and Chris Huber, N6ICW, describe the damage that the LNU Lightning Complex Fire caused on August 18, 2020 at the N6ICW repeater site atop Mt. Vaca.  The surveillance video starts at September 17 ARRL Section-Wide Net Report

The ARRL SV Section-wide nets were held on Thursday, September 17. Andy Boone KJ6IYM opened the VHF net on the WD6AXM 146.085 MHz FM repeater at 7:20 pm PDT after the Yuba-Sutter ARES net signed off.

Here is the VHF net check-in list: KJ6IYM (net control), KP4MD, KG6SJT, N6SNO, WB6VYH, KJ6HHY, KK6MVJ, N6SAC, KF6HHH, KD6LOK, K6CEL, KE7EL, N9BD, KM6RIW, W7XZ, KK6SOZ, K6VNR, WB6DNL, KN6GTN, KE6RMN, WA6OHP, KE6EDG, KK6TBJ, and W6SOM.

At 7:40 pm PDT, ARRL SV Section Manager Carol Milazzo, KP4MD, called the SV Section HF net on 3883 kHz LSB. Propagation was good and KP4MD (net control),N6SAC, WB6VYH, N9BD, K6GCN, K6CEL, WB6DNL, W7XZ, KC6NAT, K6WK, K6KN, WA6OHP, KN6GHM, N6VN, KF6HHH, and KM6MFI checked into the HF net.

Thanks to all who assisted and participated in our September Section-Wide Nets!

ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Nets are conducted only on months when announced, on the third Thursday of that month following the 7 pm Pacific Time Yuba-Sutter ARES net on the WD6AXM 146.085 MHz +0.6 MHz offset, CTCSS 127.3 Hz FM repeater, followed by the HF Section Net on 3880 kHz LSB +/- 3 kHz. During spring and summer months the HF net may be conducted on 5330.5 kHz USB as propagation permits.

All Sacramento Valley Section radio amateurs are welcome to check into our Section Nets. The nets carry announcements of interest to our section and test our section-wide station communication capabilities.

Locations of Web SDR receivers.1. W6DRZ Receiver at Half Moon Bay2. Northern Nevada Receiver3. Northern Utah Receiver

Don't have an antenna or HF radio?  Click a link
and Listen to our HF net on a web receiver.

W6DRZ receiver at Half Moon Bay 3880 kHz 5330.5 kHz WO7I receiver in Northern Nevada 3880 kHz 5330.5 kHz Northern Utah web receiver 3880 kHz 5330.5 kHz

Hourly Northern California NVIS Observations
Current NVIS Observations
This chart shows colors that represent the recommended HF frequencies for contacting stations for a particular hour. Both stations should use the SAME frequency denoted by the color at the location of the target station. The chart is in Universal Time (UTC). More information at

Pacificon 2020 2020 ARRL Pacificon Convention Cancelled
from the Pacificon Committee June 25, 2020

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March, the Mt. Diablo Amateur Radio Club has been monitoring events, hoping that the pandemic would come under control in time for Pacificon to proceed unaltered. But it is not to be. After full consideration, we simply could not find a practical scenario that would bring all the many factors together to produce a successful Pacificon this year. The government restrictions on travel and large group gatherings, continuing level of infections occurring in the pandemic, and the increased level of risk by a substantial portion of our attendees are just a few of the factors we considered. So with considerable regret, Pacificon 2020 will not be held as an in-person event.

Although we’re very disappointed, we intend to focus our plans on making Pacificon 2021 the best ham radio convention in the western U.S. We look forward to seeing all of you in person at the San Ramon Marriott Hotel, Oct. 15-17, 2021.

All is not lost for this year, however. The Pacificon Committee is investigating the possibility of having a virtual convention, on-line. No details yet, but we hope to make some announcements next month. Please keep checking our web site at; or send us an email with any questions to

 EmComm=Emergency Communications 

Winlink Sacramento Valley ARES Uses Winlink during NorCal Wildfires
Posted September 16, 2020

The American Red Cross supported three Temporary Evacuation Points (TEP) in Northern CA. Winlink was used to send messages to the Red Cross Disaster Operations Center (DOC) in Sacramento CA.

Communications were Voice where available, and Winlink. Winlink was used to to send ICS-213, ICS-205, ICS-210, ICS-214 forms.

Most messages were sent via VHF packet through Winlink. In the other part of California near the Oregon border the TEP/Shelters up there sent FLMSG forms ICS-213 via NBEMS to a station who attached the FLMSG data to a Winlink message for sending to the Red Cross DOC. Winlink HF was used in the northern part of CA to reach gateways in Oregon.

During the Camp Fire in 2018 the Sacramento Valley Section supported five shelters. Winlink was used extensively then. Daily shelter Reports and communications of needed materials were passed via Winlink when voice comms were not available.

When Red Cross logistics had questions and needed specific info from shelters, the Winlink operators at the DOC were able to quickly create a Custom Winlink Templates to request the info they needed using TEXT based templates with insertion tags.

We have found Winlink to be a great asset for communication during these disasters.

Greg Kruckewitt, KG6SJT
ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Emergency Coordinator

Sacramento Valley ARES Participates in Red Cross Radio Drill
Posted September 7, 2020

On Saturday, May 30th 2020 members of the Sacramento Valley and San Joaquin Valley Sections of the ARRL participated with the California Gold Country Region in the Coast to Coast Red Cross Radio Drill.

32 Amateur Radio Operators from throughout Northern California participated. The operators sent 35 voice messages using California Amateur Radio Linking Association (C.A.R.L.A.) and 66 digital messages using both HF and VHF gateways to a simulated Red Cross Operations Center.

With current events on our mind, the operators were emailed the messages to be used early Saturday morning. They used FLMSG, FLDGI and Winlink to return their digital and as mentioned, C.A.R.L.A. for voice messages to the operations Center. A total of 101 messages were received.

Amateur Radio Liaison Jim Piper from the American Red Cross wanted to thank all operators that assisted. A video meeting was held later that week but he stated that many important lessons were learned from the event taking place. The Red Cross will be putting some changes into effect immediately.

Michael Joseph KK6ZGB
ARRL Sacramento Valley ARES District 3 DEC & Public Information Officer

Assisting at American Red Cross Shelters during COVID-19
Posted September 7, 2020

During large disaster responses the Red Cross may need to open shelters, the operations Center, distribution centers and assist in a new location called a Temporary Evacuation Point (TEP). The California Gold Country Region will be asking for Amateur Radio support in many of these locations. Info you should know...


Sacramento Valley Section Facebook Page, Sacramento Valley Section Twitter Feed, Sacramento Valley Regional ARES, Sacramento Valley Section Nets

Sacramento Valley Officials