[3830] ARRL Aug UHF KB8U Single Op LP

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Mon Aug 9 22:58:30 EDT 2004

                    ARRL August UHF QSO Party

Call: KB8U
Operator(s): KB8U
Station: KB8U

Class: Single Op LP
Operating Time (hrs): 17

 Band  QSOs  Mults
  222:   41    22
  432:   41    21
  903:    8     8
  1.2:   13     9
  2.3:    7     5
  3.4:    2     2
Total:  112    67  Total Score = 32,160



Activity overall was up this year, but the Michigan microwave rovers WA8VPD and
NE8I had more than their share of equipment problems and were only on from one
grid.  As a result, my score was down about 20% from last year.

Saturday morning before the contest, the K3SIW 2304MHz beacon from EN52 was
heard at KB8U for the first time ever, and other beacons were much louder than
usual.  The Hepburn tropo forecast maps showed a promising yellow blob in the
midwest.  Unfortunately, by the time the contest started the conditions were
mostly back to normal 'dead band' conditions and the going was tough.  There was
a brief opening to the Hepburn forecasted area and K9AKS/R in EM39 made it into
the log on 222 from EN71 so it wasn't all doom and gloom, however.

Sunday morning, conditions were good and stations out to 200-300 miles made it
into the log on all bands through 2304 relatively easily.  I heard a CQ from
VE3AX (who has the best 222MHz station in Canada) S9... then he turned his beams
toward me.  Holy cow, he pinned my S-meter from 250 miles out!  I literally
could hear him Q5 without the 222 antenna connected (leakage through coax
switches, etc). We went to 1296 where he at first thought it would be necessary
to send just dashes to locate the signal, etc., etc.  He was S9+ there, I had to
laugh.  He said he wished he had higher bands, it would have been easy to
complete at that time.

Later, propagation again returned to normal and the rest of the contest was
spent slugging it out for the odd contact or two.  Thank goodness for those
casual UHF ops who get on and are there 'just handing out points'.

Hopefully the ARRL will continue to sponsor this contest and not cancel it due
to 'declining activity'.  Please send in your log! See you next year (maybe).

Russ  KB8U

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