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[VHFcontesting] W9SZ January VHF SO QRP Portable

To: VHF Contesting Reflector <vhfcontesting@contesting.com>
Subject: [VHFcontesting] W9SZ January VHF SO QRP Portable
From: Zack Widup <w9sz.zack@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 1 Feb 2016 10:18:49 -0600
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                    ARRL January VHF Contest

Call: W9SZ
Operator(s): W9SZ
Station: W9SZ

Class: Single Op Port QRP
Operating Time (hrs): 2

 Band  QSOs  Mults
    2:   2      2
  222:   1      1
  432:   2      2
  903:   1      1
  1.2:   2      2
  2.3:   1      1
  3.4:   2      2
  10G:   1      1
Total:  12     12  Total Score = 624

Club: Society of Midwest Contesters


I guess this was my "token effort" for this contest this year. I haven't
been in the January contest in a few years, so I thought I'd get into this
one. I only had Sunday available. I knew the temperature was supposed to
get into the 50's here. That can be a good or a bad thing in the winter. In
this case, the top of the hill in EN50rl that I use was a muddy swamp. I'd
rather have had it a little below freezing.

Not only was it a swamp, but the wind was ferocious on the hill. My
microwave dish blew over twice (without feed, fortunately) and my 902
antenna blew down once. I found I had serious problems with my 144 and 222
MHz transverters and/or antennas. Stations that would usually pin my
s-meter on those bands were barely audible. I only worked two stations in
the contest. I could hear one just above the noise level on 222 and the
other I couldn't hear at all, although he could hear me.  So I have some
troubleshooting to do before the next contest.

After a couple hours of slogging through the mud and getting all my antenna
cables, the inside of my car (and me) full of mud, I gave up and packed up
and went home. I just wasn't hearing anyone else on 144 and 222 MHz. I
didn't hear anyone calling CQ on the bands that did work.

This was one of the worst VHF contests I've been in. I can think of one
that was far worse and one that was comparable. I hope the rest of the year
goes better than this.

73, Zack W9SZ

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