David Johnston, W8XAL

CWops# 3416, from Greeley , CO , USA.---->View on Google maps

I would like to start by thanking my father Tom Johnston (KB8UVF) for introducing me to

amateur radio in the mid-90s. He was one of the first “no code techs” and I grew up with a radio in the car. I received my own license at Dayton Hamvention in 2005 and operated as KD8BQN until 2014 when I upgraded to General and picked up W8XAL as a vanity. In August of 2022, I achieved Extra class. As my Elmer Dan put it, “radio’s just too big a part of your life for you not to have the top license!” Well said.

I’d also like to thank my two biggest Elmers and advocates: Dan Magro (W7RF) and Chuck Cullian (K0RF). They have both encouraged me to never stop learning, pursue CW, and keep building and experimenting. Dan has taught me more about antenna design and theory than anyone else, and has helped me design both my mobile and home stations to work very well. Chuck has taken me under his wing with regards to contesting and tower climbing. I’ve learned so many new things from both of these men that there isn’t much I can put into words besides just saying THANK YOU!

Also, I would like to thank my wife Mindy (K9FEL) for her tolerance of all the antennas and “beeps and boops” that go with this hobby. Wy wife and I have been married for 3 years now, but we’ve been dating for about 15 years. We also enjoy showing Norwegian Forest Cats and Maine Coones in The International Cat Association. We have two Norwegians, one Maine Coone and a rescue cat that I fed from a bottle when he fit in the palm of my hand.

In my personal life, I am an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist ® and work as the Assistant District Manager for The Davey Tree Expert Company in the Fort Collins, CO office. I am also a Certified Tree Safety Professional. I went to college for Forestry at Colorado State University. I also enjoy bird photography and camping in my spare time. I have found that Parks On The Air and birding go really well together, as I usually only have a few hours where the lighting is good. After that, there’s usually plenty of time to play radio! POTA also was what finally gave me the courage to call CQ the first time. Once I ran my first pileup from my mobile setup, I’ve kept going without looking back!

I spend most of my CW time chasing DX, contesting or doing Parks On The Air. I am working to develop my ragchew skills. I have found great joy in CW, especially after a long day of talking with customers about their trees; it is relaxing and peaceful to sit quietly and talk with people all over the world while resting my voice. I try to be active in most major contests on both SSB and CW. I love collecting QSL cards and have incidentally started collecting stamps.

Hope to work you on the bands some time!

This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.

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