[3830] TxQP NO5W Multi-Op Mobile LP

webform at b41h.net webform at b41h.net
Tue Sep 29 10:09:21 PDT 2009

                    Texas QSO Party

Call: NO5W
Operator(s): NO5W, K5OT, W5ZL
Station: NO5W

Class: Multi-Op Mobile LP
Operating Time (hrs): 16

 Band  CW Qs  Ph Qs  Dig Qs
   40:   266     5      0
   20:   846     5      0
   15:     5     0      0
Total:  1117    10      0  Mults = 78  Total Score = 301,938



Score includes 39,000 points for activating 39 counties with five or more QSOs.

 K3, Little Tarheel with MFJ Controller
 Navigator USB Interface by US Interface
 Garmin GPS-18PC DLX driving CQ/X
 Pharos GPS driving Streets & Trips
 CQ/X Mobile Contesting Software
 Nissan 2002 Pathfinder -- 105K mostly QSO Party miles

We enjoyed the well-run railroad comment by K3TN -- and John didn't even see
the red headlamps that K5OT and W5ZL donned after dark. However the well-run
railroad got seriously off the track at the beginning of Saturday and if it
hadn't been for the perseverance of K5OT and W5ZL the train would have never
left the station. 

We had only punched a dozen or so QSO tickets in our first county when the main
40M antenna, a Hi-Q 4/80, developed high SWR. After several tests with an
analyzer whose batteries seemed to be going fast we determined that it was
indeed the actual antenna rather than the feed line. Disappointing because that
antenna usually puts out a good signal, but not to worry we thought, we would
just maintain our multi-two plans by putting K5OT's spare Little Tarheel on the
vehicle. Murphy says nope, it's not to be, that Little Tarheel's got problems
too. We found out Murphy was right after several attempts and lost time trying
to get it going.

So our multi-two had suddenly become a multi-single but we pressed on, feeling
like NO5W/Murphy rather than NO5W/Mobile, about two hours behind schedule after
having conversation with an interesting Mason county codger and on-looker of our
attempts at fixing the two antennas -- "what you boys up to with those antennas
and all that gear, you radio hams?" Yes sir, we're in a Texas road rally for
hams and right now we're in deep stuff.

Fortunately that was the last major visit by Murphy although there were other
small problems along the way. We were able to make up some good time on some of
those wide-open spaces of the Texas plains -- beautiful scenery to go along with
some great pileups, and some dirt roads to nowhere except the next county line.
Saturday night we rolled into Post, TX founded by cereal mogul CW Post of
raisin bran fame, right at the closing bell having missed only three of our
proposed Saturday counties but seriously behind where we planned to be QSO-wise
with only about 600 Qs. 

Sunday was a beautiful cool crisp windy day in Post and we got away right on
time to make the run across Garza county and all the way to the Kent-Fisher
county line for the start of the session. To give you an idea of the remoteness
of Kent county we only saw three other vehicles during that fifty mile trek
across Kent. So there was definitely not much traffic to contend with and by
midday we were ahead of schedule by about 30 minutes. The railroad was rolling
and we had a great time cutting corners of counties, stopping for a stop and
run, stopping for a "whizzle stop" and a few photo-ops among the windmills,
using the software to keep everyone advised of where/when the railroad would be
stopping next, and to keep us on schedule. 

The worst part of the weekend was our lost time in getting the train out of the
station with all the antenna problems but the ending easily made up for all
those troubles. We had put Williamson on the route as a "time-permitting"
stretch at the end and as we came down through the town of Lampasas with a
number of stop lights and emerged from Lampasas county into Burnet with only 20
minutes to the closing bell not one of us thought there was a chance for making
Williamson 20 miles on the other side of Burnet. But the railroad kept rolling
and ZL at the wheel kept us on track and out of trouble with the trooper that
had passed us and seemed to be maintaining a pace about half a mile ahead. OT
kept filling the log with Qs, and with 1 min 14 seconds to go the software and
county marker clicked over to Williamson and the pileup began. Seventy-four
seconds later OT had nine WMSN QSOs in the log. Now that's mobile contesting!

Of course none of that excitement would have been possible without some
dedicated well-behaved followers who created the pileups, stayed in the chair,
and kept coming back for more Qs in the next county. Here's the stations whose
tickets were punched 10 or more times by the conductors: N6MU(40), NT2A(32),
N8II(30), N1LN(29), WA3HAE(28), KV8Q(25), W4IX(21), NO3M(20), AA6YX(20),
ND3R(19), W0GXQ(19), DL3DXX(19), VE3OM(17), NN9K(16), K8DD(16), N8NA(16),
K8QWY(16), WA6KHK(15), N3RJ(15), KM1C(15), W7GVE(15), K9CW(14), N3UM(14),
W4UCZ(13), VE3KP(13), K2SX(12), HK3Q(12), K3TN(12), WK5X(10), AB7RW(10),
N4CD(10), K4LRP(10), KB9BIT(10), and DL5AWI(10).

In a state with as many counties as Texas it's not an easy task to activate all
counties on a single weekend. Prior to the event it looked very promising for
doing that this year but the logs will tell the tale of whether that was
actually accomplished -- darn-it sometimes work and other commitments get in
the way of plans at the last minute. So we'll have to wait and see how we did.
But what can be said, from what I've read on 3830, is that Texas mobiles and
fixed stations really came forward to put on a lot of QSOs in a lot of counties
-- I saw that N8II had 182 counties in his log and I'm sure there are others
with big county numbers. Many thanks to all those Texas stations that
participated, fixed and mobile. Hope you'll be back again next year.

In addition we had a lot of help from our neighbor and almost neighbor to the
north -- namely OK and KS. Thanks to the following operators for helping out. 

K5YAA/OK keeping the bug alive and filling in some northeast Texas for W3DYA
who had a 20 year county hunter reunion to attend in Tennessee 
WW5X/OK reeling off the Qs in the panhandle 
AF5Q/OK putting some panhandle counties on filling in for another regular,
N4CD, who also attended the county hunter reunion 
K0RU/KS who drove all the way from Kansas City area to fill in for W0BH who had
a 100 year college celebration to attend. 

Fortunately 100 year college celebrations and 20 year reunions come even less
frequently than sunspots so we're looking forward to Bob, Norm, and Bob being
back next year and hope Rob will continue coming down from KS to sample the BBQ
and 807s at Amarillo's Red Barn.  And of course the guys from OK are always
welcome to help us out. If we get everybody back, including K5NA who was at a
50 year high school reunion, and we do a little more recruiting in Texas, heck
we might have 40 mobiles traveling Miles and Miles of Texas next year. Now that
would be awesome.

Thanks to all for the Qs and your support of the Texas QSO Party.


Chuck - NO5W
Gary - W5ZL
Larry - K5OT

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