Winter Field Day

January 28 & 29, 2023

Join us the last weekend of January for Winter Field Day! It’s a fun way to enhance your ham radio operating skills and compete for prizes.

Winter Field Day (WFD) is sponsored by the Winter Field Day Association, a group of amateur radio operators who believe that emergency communications in a winter environment is just as important as other times of the year, and that maintaining operational skills should not be limited to fair weather scenarios.

AHRN participation in WFD will be coordinated this year by @Phrepral (Owen). Please visit the WFD topic in the discussions section of the AHRN group for more information.

WFD Core Principles:

  • Natural disasters are unpredictable and can strike when you least expect them.
  • Your training and operating skills should not be limited to fair-weather scenarios.
  • Preparedness is the key to a professional and timely response during any event.

Ham radio operators should practice portable emergency communications in winter environments, since the potential for freezing temperatures, snow, ice, and other hazards present unique operational concerns. WFD is formatted to help increase your level of preparedness for disasters and improve your operational skills in subpar conditions.

The Winter Field Day exercise will enhance the skills of ham radio operators, including those who volunteer their time and equipment to help others in times of need. This is why WFD is open to all licensed amateur radio operators worldwide.

Purpose: To foster Ham camaraderie, field operation, emergency operating preparedness, and just plain on the air, outdoor fun in the midst of winter. Don’t let those winter doldrums keep you locked up in the house... get out and play some radio!!

When: Winter Field Day runs for 24 hours during the last full weekend in January (Jan. 28-29) from 1900 UTC (2pm EST) Saturday to 1900 UTC (2pm EST) Sunday. Station set-up may commence no earlier than 1900 UTC (2pm EST) on the Friday before. Station setup may consume no more than 12 hours total.

Bands: You can operate on the 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, and 10 meter HF bands and all bands above 50 MHz.

Modes: CW, Phone (includes SSB, AM, FM, DMR, C4FM, etc. If the end result is voice, it’s Phone), and Digital (includes PSK, RTTY, Olivia, Packet, SSTV, ATV, JS8Call and other soundcard modes. If the end result is text or a picture, it’s digital).


Official WFD Categories:

  • Home: is defined as any station participating from their permanent livable residence or within 500ft of their Home regardless of operating inside or outside.

    Indoor: is defined as any station operating away from Home but from inside an insulated, weather-protected building or structure on a permanent foundation. Indoor stations typically have plumbing, heating/cooling, and running water. Church, EOCs, a club shack, a cabin, and community centers are all examples that would be Indoor.

    Outdoor: Outdoor stations are defined as operating from a partly or fully exposed building or shelter that does not typically have plumbing, heating/cooling, or running water available. Operating from a picnic table, park pavilion, tents, or under pop-up canopies are all places that could be considered outdoor. These are locations where you may have to provide your own heat source and/or protection from the elements.

    Mobile / Mobile Stationary: These stations are defined as operations from a mobile or potentially mobile structure like an RV, car, van, sailboat, cargo trailer, mobile EOC, ETC. These are operating positions that may offer some sort of built-in heating/cooling.

For more information on how to participate, visit

Download the rules for WFD here: