This past weekend was the ARRL 10m contest. It starts to become a tough time of year with the holidays approaching to spend a large chunk of time at the radio. Last week I wasn’t home all weekend and couldn’t operate, missing out on the TARA RTTY contest and the inaugural 10m RTTY contest. For this weekends 10m contest you can work any station anywhere as a contact. Each phone/SSB contact is 2 points and each CW contact is 4 points. Multipliers are US States, Canadian Provinces and Mexican States as well as each DX entity (outside of the US, Canada and Mexico). I operated both CW and SSB though more on SSB.
Friday night I didn’t turn the radio on at all, but things were pretty good on Sat morning after I woke up. Conditions seemed ok, but not the great 10m conditions from the contests in November. I make a comparison like that, but I don’t even have to back a year and 10m was completely dead, so I am thrilled with the current conditions. About 3pm I needed to head out for some holiday shopping and after I got home I only made a few additional contest contacts.
At 7pm ET (0000z) on Saturday night, I stopped contesting, fired up the DX cluster and noticed a spot for Ethiopia. I was able to make my first contact with a station in Ethiopia with ET3SID on a DXpedition. It wasn’t a contest contact but I got them on 20m phone on Saturday for a new one in the log. According to the N2OO QSL page, N2OO will be handling the QSLs for ET3SID and ET3AAA during the November 2011 DXpedition. There’s an OQRS link near the top of the page if you want to go that route.
Sunday I got on a little later in the morning and conditions seemed a bit worse than they were on Saturday. I heard fewer European stations and just fewer stations in general. It did seam like almost every other contact was with a station in Texas. I ended up logging 34 contacts with Texas ops. California was 2nd with 23 Qs logged and Colorado with 17 Qs. Two surprisingly active states were 6 Qs with ops in Montana and 5 Qs with ops in Wyoming. I eeked out a couple of contacts with nearby states but just 1 each with West Virginia and South Carolina which were the only Southeastern US states I logged and not east of Texas/Kansas/Minnesota either.
I finished up with 348 contacts that made up 63 DXCCs. That is more DXCCs logged on 10m in a few hours than I worked in my first 3 years of operating combined. You can see almost a vertical line where the contacts to the East (Europe and 1 in South Africa) were and nothing was past there. Nothing past Hawaii either and I don’t think that was a very easy contact at the time either. I did happen to follow a fellow NJ operator K2DLS a couple of times and maybe he followed me a couple of times. Sometimes logging K2DLS and then K2DSL trips up some ops, but I didn’t notice any hesitation when it happened this weekend.
Map of all contacts (click to enlarge):
Map of continental US/Canada contacts (click to enlarge):
Here’s my score summary. Mults are the US/Canadian/Mexican States + DX Entities:
Band Mode QSOs Pts Mult 28 CW 87 348 43 28 USB 261 522 88 Total Both 348 870 131 Score : 113,970
1 radio, 100 watts and a 10m wire dipole is sure a lot of fun!
73 and Happy Holidays!