San Mateo Radio Club Scavenger Hunt

QST – San Mateo Radio Club Scavenger Hunt / thanks, Mike, N6IMY —

The San Mateo Radio Club is organizing a ham radio scavenger hunt. The event will be held in San Mateo on October 7th 2023 at 9 a.m. The scavenger hunt starts at the following place:

A radio scavenger hunt can be a fun and engaging way to encourage amateur radio operators to explore their skills and connect with other club members. The hunters gather clues to find the final meeting location, where hot coffee and doughnuts await you. The clues are scattered in 3 different places in San Mateo. You must use your radio and knowledge of the amateur radio rules and terminology to answer the riddles and collect the clues.

We encourage participants to use the 2m National Calling Frequency to help each other and the N6ZX repeater to contact the scavenger hunt organizers. We will also use the location service What3Words. What3words is a geocoding system that aims to simplify location identification by giving each 3x3m square worldwide a unique combination of three words. You can use What3Words on your cell phone via their web browser or install their free app.

We have limited the hunting area to a 2-mile radius to limit the time spent in a car going from place to place. The participants will use the 2m National Calling Frequency (146.520) to communicate with each other and the N6ZX repeater (145.370, -600, PL 107.2) to communicate with the organizers. It will be helpful to have these two frequencies programmed on your radio.

The rules can be found at the URL or downloaded as PDF.

Participation Requirements:

• The scavenger hunt is open to every ham radio operator. You don’t need to be a member of the San Mateo Radio Club to participate.

• Send an email with your name and call sign at [email protected] if you wish to participate.

• You will need to hold a valid technician license minimum. You must pair up with someone with a license if you are not a licensed ham radio operator.

• All participants, group or individual participants, must have access to an amateur VHF 2m radio transceiver with an appropriate antenna. A simple handheld will work just fine. Don’t forget to program your radio.

• The exact locations where the clues and riddles will be hidden, and their location can be found using the “What3Words” web service.

The What3Words service is accessible on your smartphone either on the web or by installing their free application:

Scavenger Hunt Items:

• The hunt consists of gathering words. Plug These words into the What3Words app, which will give you the next location where clues are hidden.

• At each location, you will find a passcode. Use your radio to send that passcode to the net control on N6ZX. The net control will ask you a riddle. You will receive a new word for each correct answer.

• Everyone will meet at the final location to share radio stories, experiences, doughnuts, and socialize.

• Using the radio on the national call frequency to help each other is encouraged. On the N6ZX repeater, the organizers will only give pieces of information in exchange for correct answers to questions.

Time Limit:

• This is not a race or a competition. You can take as much time as you want. We estimate the entire hunt should take roughly one hour.

Frequencies and Bands:

• We encourage the participants to help each other using the 2m National Calling Frequency (146.520) • Communication with the
organizers will be on the N6ZX repeater. The organizers will only answer your questions if you give them the correct passcode and answer a riddle correctly.

Code of Conduct:

• All the participants must follow good operating practices and all relevant amateur radio regulations and etiquette during the scavenger hunt.

• We encourage all participants to use their radio to help each other.


• We emphasize the importance of safety when operating mobile or portable setups. Participants should follow safe operating practices and prioritize their well-being.

Feedback and Improvement:

• We strongly encourage participants to provide feedback on the radio scavenger hunt, rules, and format to improve future events. Your comments can be sent to [email protected].