Hello TopBanders !
I would like to add my support to Steve's and Greg's posts.
Conditions were outstanding during the contest. An unexpected
cold weather pushed the noise level to S4 (what's almost incredible
considering we are in the hot summer in South America), and conditions
were good to EU and USA at the same time ! So good I could not
find a good spot to call CQ, and could not work most of the stations
I heard, as the were probably facing bad local QRM. Or may be they
were not pacient enough to spend some time to get the complete
callsign from the noise, or to ask a QRZ and wait for the QSB.
Yes, a long QSB was present on both nights.
I saw some stations from SA, like LU2EE, CX4CE and PY2NY
keep fighting to be heard until they simply give up and go to bed.
But conditions were really great. The sunrise peak on Saturday
morning was amazing. I could hear several west coasters like
local - K6SE, N6RO, W7RM and several others were 599
for more than 10 minutes. I heard KV4FZ 30 minutes after
the sunrise. I also heard D4B 20 minutes before the sunset.
I also worked JA6LCJ, on my first antipode QSO during a
contest - a 18.000km shot !
But we really need to find a way to keep the DX window
available for DX, even during contests. Perhaps changing
the number of points per QSO according to the continent,
giving to the hard DX QSO the correct weight would help.
Under my view the 10 point for another continent QSO is
not really fair when you compare continents with a large
amount of stations, like NA and EU, both under the low
noise of the winter, and a QSO between EU or NA with
continents facing a hot summer as OC, SA and most of AF.
What is easier in the US, for example: work five local stations
or work one OC or SA atation ?
73's and DX
Ronald J. Sekkel - PY2FUS
Grid locator: GG66pt