This past weekend was the 2009 CQ WW RTTY contest, one of the big RTTY contests over the course of the year.
I got a late start on the first night missing the first couple hours because of family obligations so I spent a couple hours on 40m and 80m making contacts before calling it an early night.
Saturday I was able to spend a good part of day on the radio and worked 20m throughout the day switching to 15m occasionally. 15m is a weak band for me on my G5RV but I can usually make a few contacts local in the US or to Central/South American stations that are strong. More then anything, 15m is good for multipliers and occasionally a country I don’t have on 20m or 40m. I saw some new DXCC’s on 20m on Sat but they had big pile ups and with 100w I decided to just move along and come back if they were on later. Other then a couple of brief attempts in Run mode with not enough activity to warrant the effort, I did S&P mode for most of the contest.
As the sun started to get low in the sky I alternated between 40m and 20m as 20m was still active. As the evening was in full swing I alternated between 40m and 80m and occasionaly 20m to see if anything new popped up. Though this is a DX contest, there are multipliers for each US State on each band so it is worth working local contacts as well. I didn’t stay up late and even took breaks in the evening to watch a movie.
Sun morning I woke up and for most of the day I was able to be on the radio, working 20m and switching from time to time to 15m to see if anything new could be heard. Before noon I emailed a nearby club member working the contest and we were about neck and neck. I did notice he had more countries on 15m then I did even though he had less 15m contacts showing that maybe a dedicated 15m dipole or one string in a different direction might help vs the G5RV. He was heading out for a while but I was going to keep going for a couple hours before the NY Giants football game started. When the game came on, I watched it for about 3.5 hours before getting back on the radio. I worked 20m again until dusk and then started switching to 40m and then to 80m again as I did the day before.
When the whistle blew at 00:00z I had logged 578 contacts and ended up with 343,840 points beating last years totals (see CQ WW RTTY Contest post). After reviewing the log I ended up logging 69 different DXCC entities, 20 different zones, 478 unique stations, 41 US states and 9 Canadian Providences. It doesn’t look like I logged any new entities this time around.
I logged 6 Alaska stations that were all booming into NJ on Sunday. One even commented on how strong I was. I also logged 3 Japanese stations over the weekend which is always a nice treat. I find it funny how I can log 6 stations in Alaska yet it wasn’t until 45 mins left in the entire contest that I logged a station from Georgia – go figure.
I worked 2 stations on all 4 bands I operated and 13 stations on 3 bands. Of the 578 total contacts with 478 unique stations, 334 were non-US/Canadian stations and 178 I had previously worked giving me a contact with 156 new DX stations. Germany was the non-US/Canadian country with 31 contacts followed by European Russia with 21 and Italy with 16.
I really enjoy RTTY contests whether they are 2 full days or a couple of hours long. It is a fun mode and with my modest 100w station and a G5RV wire antenna it provides a tremendous amount of excitement. Many thanks to all the operators both US and international that pulled my weak signal out to allow me to log another contact. After the contest I uploaded my logs to eQSL and LoTW and there were already many that were confirmed with about 100 confirmed on LoTW within 3 hours of the contest ending and even more this morning when I checked before heading off to work.
Band QSOs Pts Cty ZN Sec 3.5 52 76 9 7 22 7 128 218 34 14 38 14 350 834 65 20 32 21 46 100 17 11 11 Total 576 1228 125 52 103 Score : 343,840