Monday, February 22, 2010

Solo in ARRL DX CW

Rich KL7RA invited me down to participate in this year's ARRL DX CW, but work demands and outrageous air fares between Fairbanks and Kenai kept me grounded.  This was a pity, because I always enjoy operating CW with Rich and Wigi AL7IF.  As a consolation, I decided to press KL2R into service, going it alone.  At the start, I hadn't yet decided to go for single- or all-band entry, but the hopping bands soon convinced me the latter was the way to go.  I'm glad I did.

Band    QSOs Mults
160:      1     1
80:      19     8
40:     119    40
20:     755    58
15:     612    55
10:      12     6
Total: 1518   168
Total Score = 764,568

This was the first time ever KL2R had points on all bands. Conditions were unexpectedly good.

I was never able to hear a significant number of "workable" stations on Top Band. Propagation to the northwestern US seemed to peter out early in the evening. The brief, late morning/early afternoon openings on 10m gave some real encouragement to seek out multipliers, although I had to do it quickly, or overall rate would suffer. On Sunday, 10m seemed to be ducting to the Caribbean and South America with very few US and no Canadian stations heard at my QTH during my band checks.

Alaska was well-represented, especially KL7RA, AL1G, KL8DX, and AL9A loud and clear on most bands.

KL7RA and I had a funny, inadvertent duel of sorts on Friday afternoon. I was running about 130 per hour on 20m when KL7RA rolled in about 100 Hz up from me, apparently unaware of the action I had going.  Suddenly, I realized stations weren't calling me, but KL7RA instead. One CQ from the power house of Kenai, and they took my frequency AND my pileup as well! As I told them by email, I was glad I could "chum the waters" for them.

All in good fun, and I had a really good laugh.


  1. Great score, must have been a blast! And nothing like a good challenge. I had a similar experience and asked the other station if he could move a bit and he agreed which was really cool of him. He spoke to me for a few and explained he had his notch filters and such and respected my peaunut whistle station enough to move off freq a bit further. That was cool cause I was scared he might get upset of me asking. I was all jacked up from being so busy, it was really exciting for me being my first real contest and being way up on a mountain in the mobile running a paper log. Thanks for the great post and good job from the shack there! 73 de John k6lsn

  2. Thanks for the comments and words of encouragement, John. It never hurts to ask a station to move. Sometimes, there's a jackass on freq, but you've seen a great example of good sportsmanship. At least work them if you can for a point or two!

    73 Larry KL7/N1TX