Calgary Amateur Radio Association

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  • 16 Sep 2021 12:22 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    The rally date is just a couple of weeks away, now!

    Undoubtedly, most people heard the announcement from our premiere and provincial chief medical officer of health, yesterday. The COVID-19 virus continues to be a major factor in our daily lives and something we need to take into account when planning our rally. Since the rally is an outdoor event, we should be able to proceed under the current rules. Nonetheless, appropriate precautionary measures are still appropriate.

    The updated pandemic protocol (see below) provides guidance on protecting ourselves, and each other, from the spread of the virus.

    All rally radio operators are required to review this protocol and take reasonable steps to implement its guidance. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Dana or me.

    Please download a copy via this link:

    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 12 Sep 2021 6:01 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    The Rocky Mountain Rally is just three weeks away!

    It has been over a year since our last full scale event, so we're all a little rusty at this. Below you will find a link to the Radio Operations at Rallysport Events '101' Guide. Please take the time to download a copy and review it prior to the pre-op briefing.

    This document was written to help our radio operators get comfortable with common rally terminology. While the guide is oriented at people who have had little exposure to rallysport, everyone who is considering participation in the upcoming event is encouraged to review it. The pre-op briefing will assume that everyone is familiar with the contents of this guide.

    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 31 Aug 2021 12:15 AM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Hello Rally Radio Operators!

    To help you get ready for the upcoming Rocky Mountain Rally, here is a link to the updated packing and preparation guide for radio operators. This guide is primarily oriented at new or returning folks. Given that we have not held a rally for over a year now, even experienced operators will benefit from a quick read of this material.

    Not everything listed in the guide is a requirement for participation as a radio operator. However, this list is based on the experiences of operators who have completed many prior rally events.  Please consider the material covered by this guide as you make your own preparations.

    Keep checking this blog regularly. As the event approaches, there will be other materials and information posted here that you'll want to review.


    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 28 Aug 2021 10:33 AM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    A rally radio operations pre-op briefing meeting is planned for:

    Wednesday, 29 September 2021
    19:00 to 20:00 hrs
    Zoom virtual meeting (Link to be provided later)

    We will be covering a variety of topics including emergency procedures. All prospective RMR radio operators are requested to attend. If you cannot make it, please let Dana (VA6DJH) or me know beforehand.

    More preparation and training material will be posted in this forum between now and the training session. Please check this forum regularly to ensure that you have the latest information prior to the meeting. In the interests of time, it will be assumed that all radio operators are familiar with the RMR 2021 materials posted to this forum prior to the meeting.

    Hope to see you there!

    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 26 Aug 2021 9:23 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Hello Rally Radio Operators;

    Dana and I received input suggesting that some operators would appreciate additional guidance on preparing their vehicles for a rally event. For those who may be looking for something like that, here is a set of helpful checklists.

    The contents of this document are condensed from various sources. It includes material provided by two of our most experienced and mechanically adept field radio operators (Harry, VE6HRY; Dave, VE6DED).

    This guide covers a wide range of topics that affect the reliability of a vehicle and its usefulness to a radio operator at a rally. These checklists are not requirements for participation as a volunteer. Rather, these are items that each operator should think about and make appropriate choices. You know your own vehicle, your own driving style, and your own needs best. Use these checklists to help you.

    I hope that we'll see you at the upcoming Rocky Mountain Rally!

    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 25 Aug 2021 5:05 PM | Dana Harding (Administrator)

    Registration Now Available!

    The Rocky Mountain Rally volunteer registration webpage is now available. Here is the information you will need to sign up as a radio operator for this event.

    Here is a final shortcut:

    When you visit this URL, a unique tag is generated.  If you bookmark the link, with that unique tag in the URL, you'll be able to go back to your registration record and make updates later.

    Note that clicking on this link more than once means that you are signing up more than once! does NOT send an email confirmation to you about your registration.  To check if your information was saved, or to modify the registration - visit or reload the URL that had the unique tag.

    If you are considering coming to volunteer as a radio operator, then please complete the signup page. If you're not sure you can make it, then indicate in the Comments text box that you are "tentative" for now, but please do sign up. If we have no registration information for you, then it's difficult to assign a role or to contact you if there are urgent changes.When indicating the radio equipment that you plan to bring to the rally, try to be as generic as possible. It's much easier to deal with "50 watt mobile radio with APRS and a quarter wave magnetic mount antenna" than a bunch of make/model numbers with which we may not be familiar.

    Please double check that the email address and phone number(s) that you enter on the registration form are correct. Messages that bounce back at us are not getting to you! It's also important to have valid contact information, should a change occur at, or just prior to, the event.

    There are two dates listed on the signup form.

    The main event is on Saturday October 2.  This is the primary day where volunteers are needed.     You also have an option to indicate availability on the Friday October 1st - there are some course setup and recce traffic (open road - no racing) happening the day before the main event.  If you indicate availability on the Friday, the event organizers may ask you to also fill a role on this day.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

    We hope you'll be joining us for a great time at the Rocky Mountain Rally!

    Dana, VA6DJH
    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 25 Aug 2021 5:04 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Once again we regret to say that an event has been cancelled. This time, though, it was not directly due to the pandemic. There were insufficient rally team registrations for this Test Day to be viable, so the Calgary Sports Car Club decided to cancel the event.

    Those who signed up should have already received a cancellation notice by email.

    Note that the August Test Day is NOT the same event as the Rocky Mountain Rally (RMR). RMR is still scheduled for 01-02 October.

    Garry, VE6GDS

  • 18 Aug 2021 1:26 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Test Day Radio Operators;

    Below is a link to an overview map for the 2021 August Test Day on the 29th of this month. This map should hold no surprises for those who are familiar with the Kananaskis Jumping Pound Demonstration area. If you are new to the rally scene, this material is intended to help you navigate at the event. It is recommended that all operators have this map available on Test Day.

    This is a .kml format file. It is not an image file. This file is intended to be loaded into a GPS device, APRS software, or GIS software such as Google Earth, Google Maps, Bing Maps, etc. If you want to make a printable image, then load this file into the software of your choice and print your maps from that point.

    For those who load these maps into GPS devices, it is suggested that you disable direction instruction features while at the event. Reading and understanding the map yourself tends to work much better in these isolated areas. Radio operators have reported that GPS devices frequently provide distracting, erroneous, or even dangerous directions in remote rally venues.

    This map does not contain the radio operator assignment locations. For such a small event, these are often finalized close to, or even on the day of, the affair. Should we receive these details ahead of time, we'll post them to this blog. Otherwise, check in with the event officials on Test Day (likely at the marked Service area) and they will help to get you to your assignment.

    Here is the link:


  • 11 Aug 2021 10:53 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Attention Rally Radio Operators;

    There is going to be an another event!

    The Calgary Sports Car Club (CSCC) has advised us that they have another Test Day planned for Sunday 29 August in Kananaskis. If you are looking for an opportunity to get out and practice your radio operation skills ahead of the big event in October, then here is your chance.

    A Test Day is a more modest undertaking than a full rally. These events make good opportunities to get experience with the rally scene before taking on a regional or national level event. The atmosphere is relaxed, but safety is still a priority.

    Detailed information can be found at the CSCC website:

    The signup form can be accessed from the above link, but it takes some hunting to find it, so here is a shortcut for you:

    Remember that Alberta Parks has implemented its new Kananaskis Conservation Pass policy.  Be sure to read the instructions provided by the event organizer about this matter.

    Dana and I will post any further information about this event that comes our way.

  • 04 Aug 2021 11:00 PM | Garry Spicer (Administrator)

    Attention Rally Radio Operators!

    Planning for the Rocky Mountain Rally (RMR) is underway.

    Organizing this event continues to face challenges from various angles. The COVID-19 pandemic (which we hope is finally waning) does continue to influence our lives. The fires in British Columbia have also affected event timing this year.

    Given the recent lifting of pandemic restrictions here in Alberta, we are proceeding with the assumption that there will be no Health Emergency restrictions to prevent holding the rally. However, as experience has taught us a few times now, we will have to monitor the situation and deal with whatever comes along. If anything changes on this front, updates will be posted here to the blog.

    Originally, the Pacific Forest Rally (PFR) was planned for 01-02 October. RMR was slated to happen the following weekend on 08-09 October. However, the extreme forest fire situation in British Columbia this year has caused the event planners to swap these two event dates. The objective of this move is to allow the PFR organizing team an extra week to deal with any fallout from the fires.

    The Rocky Mountain Rally is now planned for 01-02 October, 2021.

    This means that we have just over eight weeks to get ready!

    With the date swap, RMR is now one week ahead of PFR. The planners are hoping that this will make it easier for Eastern teams to attend both events. If this strategy works out, then this could be an event with a full roster of rally cars. The long Powderface Trail with extra rally cars on it could make for a busy day of racing!

    As noted in an earlier post, this RMR event will displace the usual Kananaskis Performance Rally (KPR) that has typically been held in the autumn. This means that there will only be the one performance rally event in our area this year. After waiting for so long, I am sure that we're all ready to get back out on the course roads again.

    More information and Instructions for registration will be posted to this blog as soon as they are available. Check back here regularly for updates!

    Dana, VA6DJH
    Garry, VE6GDS

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