USA 2021 participants
Competitors and organizers of the 2021 USA ARDF championships before the start of the second classic event.  (Photo courtesy Imre Polik KX4SO)

The Twentieth USA National ARDF Championships
North Carolina, October 14 - 17, 2021

NC21 logoAfter being cancelled for 2020 due to the pandemic, the 20th USA ARDF Championships took place October 14-17, 2021 in North Carolina, sponsored by the Backwoods Orienteering Klub (BOK).  As always, the competitive courses were open to anyone of any age, with or without an Amateur Radio license.  Medals were awarded in six age categories for males and six for females, in accordance with rules of the International Amateur Radio Union.

In years when IARU regional championships are held, the USA ARDF Championships have traditionally had the added designation of the IARU Region 2 (North and South America) Championships.  Because of continuing restrictions on non-essential travel between the USA and Canada, that designation was not made for 2021.  Visiting competitors from outside USA are always welcome at the USA championships, but none came this time.

BOK required participants and officials to be vaccinated and to wear masks while indoors.  Attendees were mostly from North Carolina and nearby states.  Bill Wright WB6CMD of Winchester, California says that he was the only person who traveled by air, whereas the others arrived in their own vehicles.  Of the six age categories for males and six for females, there were competitors in all but three.

Activities began October 10 with practice at Carolina North in Durham.  Then at Eno River, also in Durham, there was informal practice on Oct 11 and 12.  On Wednesday the 13th, the activity moved to Asheboro where there was a model event at Gray Owl.  This included 80m, 2m, sprint and fox-O short courses.

Asheboro house
"Grey Owl," the home of Joseph Huberman K5JGH and Ruth Bromer WB4QZG in the North Carolina woods was headquarters for the 2021 USA ARDF Championships.  (Photo by Mike Minium)

Thursday, October 14 was the first day of competition.  The event was the sprint, which was added to championship ARDF in 2012.  The best sprint performance was turned in by Vadim Afonkin KB1RLI, who punched in at twelve foxes and finished in 15:41.

The first classic event took place on Friday.  There were two sets of transmitters in the woods this day, one on 80-meter CW and one on two-meter AM.  Persons in the three categories for men ages 21 through 59 sought the two-meter transmitters and the others looked for the 80-meter transmitters.

Alla Mezhevaya
Alla Mezhevaya approaches the finish line in the two-meter classic competition.  (Photo by Imre Polik KX4SO)

On two meters, Iurii Kolesnykov found his required four transmitters in 59:51 for the best time of the day.  Eduard Nasybulin had five required transmitters to find and he did it in 1:32:46.  On 80 meters, the best times were turned in by Nadia Scharlau KO4ADV for three required transmitters in 51:41 and by Bill Wright WB6CMD for four required foxes in 78:15.

Saturday's event was foxoring.  Norbert Linke found all ten foxes in 1:04:33 for the best performance of the day.  Sunday, the final day, featured another classic event.  Those who hunted on two meters on Friday sought 80-meter transmitters this day, and vice-versa.  On two meters, the best time for four required transmitters was 1:21:34 by Alla Mezhevaya.  For three required transmitters, best was Nadia Scharlau KO4ADV at 1:06:44.  On 80 meters, Norbert Linke found six required transmitters in 1:06:38 and Vadim Afonkin KB1RLI got five required foxes in 1:00:53.

Congratulations to these event winners, all of whom received commemorative coasters.  Congratulations also to the organizers for a very successful championships.  Meet director was Joseph Huberman K5JGH.  Registrar was Ruth Bromer WB4QZG.  Course designer for the classic and sprint events was Charles Scharlau NZ0I.  Course designer for foxoring was David Waller.

Medal awarding
In lieu of medals, Imre Polik KX4SO, Ken Harker WM5R and Joe Burkhead KE8MKR received commemorative coasters at the medal ceremony from organizers K5JGH and WB4QZG.  (Photo by Mike Minium)

Complete results are posted at the BOK Web site:

   Sprint results, Thursday, October 14
   Classic Day 1 results, Friday, October 15
   Foxoring results, Saturday, October 16
   Classic Day 2 results, Sunday, October 17

Portions of this report have been excerpted from my Homing In column in the February 2022 issue of CQ Amateur Radio magazine.

Joe Moell KØOV

Bob Frey WA6EZV
Bob Frey, WA6EZV was a medal winner at the first USA ARDF Championships in 2021 and has competed in almost every USA Championships since, including this one.  (Photo by Mike Minium)

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This page updated 10 April 2022