We participated in the CQ World Wide DX SSB Contest last weekend from the station. I (WA2JQZ) came at the start on Friday evening (Oct. 24 00:00 UTC) and operated a few hours on 15, 20, and 40 meters. 15 meters was wide open to the Pacific in the early evening. I heard DU7JAY in the Philippines and AH0K in the Mariana Islands. But the propagation shifted before I had a chance to reach them. I did work many Japanese stations. Then I shifted to 20 and 40 meters, and worked stations in Europe and Latin America. I heard a station each in Kuwait and Bahrain, but the wait seemed long and I moved on. I spent time to get a few QSOs on 40 meters, as I figured we would not be able to use the lower frequency bands on Saturday during the day. On 15 and 20 meters I used our new HyGain TH-11-DX directional antenna. For 40 meters I used our 40 meter dipole.
Rob KB5EZ came at noon on Saturday and operated a couple of hours on 10 and 15 meters, also using the TH-11-DX. For the first hour and a half, he pointed the antenna towards Europe, working Europe, Canada, and some of Africa including D4Z in Cape Verde. He kept hearing South American stations on the side, and so for the next half hour turned the antenna towards them and worked them.
Matt KA0S and I came around 2 pm. We took turns working more of 10, 15, and 20 meters. During the afternoon, 10 meters was open just to Latin America and Canada. 15 also gave us Europe, plus KL7RA in Alaska. And 20 meters gave us more of Europe too. We heard several French island special event stations, but offhand didn’t know exactly where they were, except for their CQ Zone information. Matt was able to look up a couple on his smartphone: TO4K was on St Barthelemy Island in the Caribbean (southeast of St. Martin), TO2M was in Martinique. Matt worked some countries that we usually only hear during contests: Luxemburg LX7I , Morocco: CN2AA CN2R CN3A, Barbados 8P5A, and Peru OA4SS.
I came back to the mike later in the evening. 10 meters opened to the Pacific: I worked many Japanese stations with some Australian and Canadian stations. And on 10 meters I finally worked AH0K. Then I switched to 15 meters. I no longer heard western Europe. But I did work again many stations in Japan, plus more in Australia, in Hawaii, four in New Zealand, a few in Asiatic Russia, and one in Kazakhstan UP2L. And I worked AH0K again, AH2R in Guam, and after a lot of patience, V73D, a German DXpedition in the Marshall Islands. I finished by getting a few QSOs on 80 meters as that band started to open to DX. Then I was ready to go home.
By the end we worked 297 international stations, located in 55 countries and territories. We earned over 200 multipliers, and claimed a score of about 168,000, in the “Multi-Operator, Single Transmitter, Low Power” category. I believe we all had fun. The new beam antenna was definitely an asset. I think it made a difference in reaching some stati0ns, including to Latin American, the Pacific, and Asiatic Russia.
73, Gary WA2JQZ
New DXCC entities confirmed from this contest:
- AH0K Mariana Islands
- GI6K Northern Ireland
- TO1E Saint Martin
- TO4K Saint Barthelemy
Some of the eQSLs we received so far: