[VHFcontesting] 222 Sprint
David Olean K1WHS
k1whs at metrocast.net
Wed Apr 20 15:30:37 PDT 2011
I have been very busy with work and had no time to assemble my station for the 222 Sprint. I have been walking up to the shack lately as it is very wet and the road is washed out and quite muddy in places. A truck would make things worse. On 222 MHz I was having trouble even finding my transverter up in the shack. Nothing was connected up. I did locate the transverter at 15 minutes after 7PM and started HSU*.
I was on the air by about 8PM. (0000 UT) I heard only a few signals including K1KG beating the band to death on CW. I had no logging computer and no log ook, so my log is on a piece of scrap paper I found. The band seemed to be in horrible shape with a wx front extending west to east and located just south of my location. Signals were so poor that I thought that the antennas were waterlogged as I had trouble even hearing the FN23 beacon. Normally it peaks up at S5 to S7. Many stations were clustered around .100 and made things difficult. I heard K3TUF call CQ at about S7 but could not call as another station came on at 59+40 calling CQ. I never did find Phil again. I tried calling W3GAB on SSB, but, as on 144 last week, he did not hear me calling. I really started to wonder if my stuff was even working. I parked down about 222.190 and made some noise and slowly started working stations. I was surprised to hear VE3ZV call in on SSB. I was using the LVA (8 X 5 el) and rapidly aimed the steerable array out west but had to complete on CW as the band faded. Still it was gratifying to get EN92 with such poor band conditions. Later on I worked W3ZZ in FM19, for my last contact with great signals. Gene was running about S5 and solid on CW for my best DX to the south. K1TR was super loud from the next grid, but I never managed to work him. I think Ed got tired of the lousy conditions and quit early too. I heard a few other 2 land stations working others, but never got them in my log.
I ended up with 25 contacts and 13 grids. Not much to show for, but I did quit about 0130 as I was getting tired, not working anything, and it started to rain and I had to walk home thru it. I figured I better leave before it got worse. April has been cold, gloomy and very wet. I hope things start to warm up. With temps under 40 degrees, it sure feels like winter still. I have some repairs needed on 432 as the array VSWR is infinite at the moment. I have a week to fix it.
*HSU= Hooking Stuff Up.
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