webform at b4h.net webform at b4h.net
Sun Feb 10 21:11:59 EST 2008

                    CQ WW RTTY WPX Contest

Call: VA7ST
Operator(s): VA7ST
Station: VA7ST

Class: SOAB HP
Operating Time (hrs): 21

 Band  QSOs  Pts
   80:  115   446
   40:  158   650
   20:  323   690
   15:   16    39
   10:    0     0
Total:  612  1825  Prefixes = 258  Total Score = 470,850



N1MM Logger + MMTTY
FT2000 + SB221 
3 ele. CL33 @ 45'
40M half-squares (one E-W, one N-S)
80M delta loop

Score history:
Year  Qs    WPX   Score
2008  612   258   470,850  21.0 hrs HP
2007  972   420 1,154,160  28.5 hrs HP
2006  702   284   578,792  28.2 hrs
2005  584   264   422,664
2004  225   114    67,009
2003  344   149   147,212

Space Wx was the determining factor this year. Started out with not-so-bad
conditions ( SFI=71 A=4 K=1) but two G1-level events seemed to wipe out the
bands for many hours both days, including most of Sunday. Contest ended with
SFI=73 A=19 K=3. 

Needless to say, it was not a good contest weekend. This really is a black hole
for RF. At one point, during one of the blackout periods, I tried calling a
needed W4 more than 10 times over five minutes to see if I would ever get
through. I didn't. He was S9+, and answered VE6s, W7s in WA, even a VE7 from
south of here, but couldn't hear my KW. Awesome.

The only EU opening on 20M here was around 11 p.m. local, when EU and AS Russia
opened with raspy signals. Managed to snag a few WPX there, but hoped for much
better on Sat. and Sun. mornings. Saturday morning the opening was almost
nonexistant, producing only single Qs with 9A2, EA3, OH, GM and I. Sunday
didn't provide any workable EU signals here. So much for hopes of a
half-respectable mult count.

Pointed to JA a few times Fri. and Sat. early evenings and worked a trickle but
nothing compared to what was once a mighty river of JA stations. Sure miss that
easy-to-work honeypot of mults -- the only beneficial attribute that deep-woods
British Columbia offers for contesting.

I could have worked the full 30 hours in this one, but with the bottom of the
cycle here and solar storms (aren't we supposed to get a free pass from storms
at solarmin?), for hours at a time there just weren't any stations to work. So
instead I napped, read, watched a couple movies. Mostly I napped :)

Saw lots of spots for 15M but I don't know where you guys were finding the
stations. Sure weren't any there most of the times I was there. Worked 16

Should have gone to 40M earlier in the evenings. Even when I did go there, the
40M half-squares seemed ineffective even with nearly a kilowatt into them at
times. West <-- East one-way propagation only, until quite late in the evening.
Picked away at 40M and 80M, beating last year's Q total on 40M but down 11
mults. Didn't come close on Qs or mults on 80M. 

Tale of the tape really shows on 20M, though. 20M comparison:

      Qs   Points  Mults
     ---   ------  -----
2007 563    1,346    273
2008 323      690    150

The right-angle 80M delta loop has performed poorly for several consecutive
contests now, which will likely be its undoing (heh, look at me threaten an
antenna to do better next time. Desperate times call for... you know. ARRL DX
CW is next weekend, after all). It's fed 1/4-wave from the apex for vertical
radiation, and perhaps that low-angle choice explains its dog-like action
domestically but will work in my favor for the DX test. Sure didn't hear much
of anything this weekend.

Worked a few VE7s again -- VE7CC, VE7CF, VE7CUS, VE7UF, VA7RN, and saw VA7KOJ
and VE7KS on the spots, so the gang was out in force to make the mults easy to

Overall, a lousy outing in one of the great RTTY contests. Be back for more any
time, hi.

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