2010 IARU HF Ham Radio Contest Summary

Saturday morning through Sunday morning was the 24 hour IARU HF ham radio contest. It ran in conjunction with the WRTC competition. I started about 1 hour after the contest got underway (1300z)  and I finished just after midnight local time (0413z). In between I had a few errands to run and other family items to do so I was off for a few hours during that time. The contest allows for SSB and CW contacts. Because I used the cluster, I am classified in the multi-one category. This category also requires you to stay on a band/mode for 10 mins before switching.

Points to stations in my same ITU call area are worth 1 point, but other ITU call areas in the US are worth 3 points. DX contacts are worth 5 points. HQ stations are worth only 1 point. Overall, conditions weren’t very good. 10m was quiet and 15m wasn’t very strong either. I was hoping 15m would be better as it would allow for a lot more contacts during the daylight hours but 15m only gave me US contacts and South America contacts. 20m was the best band for me this weekend both on CW and on SSB. When i switched to CW I was able to do a nice sweep up the band and log contacts quickly.

I did notice what seemed to be less then normal number of European stations on. I worked the following  number of unique stations which seems very low – 1 Spain, 2 France, 2 England, 5 Germany & 5 Italy.  Just before 0100z I was able to work 4 Asiatic Russian stations on 20m that were coming in strong along with a Hawaiian station. I then switched to 40m and then 80m to work as many stations there as I could. I then switched back to 20m and just before 0315z I worked a New Zealand station on phone and then at 0350 I worked another ZL station on CW. I finished the night up just after midnight local time with 311 contacts.

Some notables beyond what was mentioned above is I worked W1AW/8 a total of 8 times working then on SSB on 10m, 15m, 20m, 40m & 80m and on CW on 20m, 40m & 80m. W1AW/8 was operated by the Southwest Ohio DX Assoc. I worked NU1AW 3 times which I think was operated out of W1AW in CT. 40m and 80m were very noisy. We were supposed to have a bad weather day for the entire day but it wasn’t really bad at all, at least on the ground. The noise on 40m and 80m was high and I cranked the RF down on 80m until I could only hear the CW and my S meter was showing a 9. CW works through the noise much better then SSB. The log shows 53 different DXCC’s worked for the day’s effort.

The logs have been sent in to the WRTC competition for them to use and the IARU for my contest log submission. They have also been uploaded to LoTW and eQSL and I’ve even written out the QSL cards for those I wanted to send out. I finished up the QSL cards this afternoon after I returned from the largest hamfest in the area (about 1 hour away). Below is my score summary followed by a map of the contacts based on grid locators.

Next up is the NAQP RTTY contest that starts Sat afternoon and goes through Sat night. You can work 10 of the 12 hours that the contest is on so I’ll probably run it from 2pm local to midnight local time. Get on and hand out some Q’s.

Score summary:

Band  Mode  QSOs    Pts  Zon   HQ
 3.5  CW      11     13    0    1
 3.5  LSB      5      7    2    2
   7  CW      21     45    4    1
   7  LSB     15     31    5    5
  14  CW      90    212    2    7
  14  USB    139    361   21   22
  21  USB     28     60    5    1
  28  USB      2      2    1    1
Total  Both   311   731   40   40
Score : 58,480

Map of contacts (click to enlarge):


2 thoughts on “2010 IARU HF Ham Radio Contest Summary

  1. David,

    a good summary of your contest experience.

    You mention the poor European activity. Maybe the World Cup soccer had something to do with that! It sure would have kept the EA & PA ops off the air.

    73s Paddy

  2. That could be one of the reasons! Maybe everyone was resting up for the match since the contest was over before the match began.

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