Topband: Stew Perry from VK6VZ/6 at Cape Leeuwin lighthouse
vk6vz at arach.net.au
Mon Dec 19 19:43:01 EST 2005
This year's Stew Perry trip was limited to the first 11 hours of the
contest and unfortunately conditions were very poor towards North America
and poorish towards Europe.
VK6VZ/6 was operational from sunset on 17 December, prior to the start of
the contest, and only W8JI and some weak Japanese stations were heard
before the start of the challenge. In contrast, 18 and 14MHz sounded very
lively after dark, which was a bad sign...
The first few hours brought VK and ZL , plus N7UA, NL7Z (thanks for your
patience!) and W7AWA. Signals were very weak, with N7UA only S5 when Bob
is usually S9 from home (a much poorer location).
Europeans were audible from three hours before sunrise, but
unworkable. After about 30 more minutes, stations in eastern Russia
started to come back and by the time sunrise came around about 30 Europeans
were in the log, ranging from GM and OH as far south as southern France.
All contacts were 'Search and Pounce' - I did try CQing but no one came
back! Contacts often took several minutes to complete, owing to poor
signal levels and QRN at both ends of the path. QRT took place at sunrise
on the 17 Dec, to make the 300km-plus trip back to Perth.
Antenna was an inverted vee dipole at 120' (36 metres) above the sea,
after attempts to erect a delta loop failed (couldn't get the bottom wire
out of the scrub and into the air...)
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