I had previously admitted to being an HF slacker…that is, I only really enjoy the high frequency bands when the DX is loud and plentiful on 15 and 10 Meters. For almost a half decade, I’ve listened to the True HF Enthusiasts say things like “move to the lower bands when the solar activity is weak.” Fortunately, things are starting to change.
This weekend was the CQ Worldwide DX Contest (SSB) and the propagation was outstanding on the higher bands. I heard some people say that 10 Meters was never this good before but I suspect their memories may be faulty. But make no mistake, conditions were really awesome. Here’s a report from radio-sport.net.
I was up at our cabin in the mountains, running the FT-950’s 100 watts into a trap dipole at about 30 feet. Clearly, this is not your Big Gun Station but I was able to make 177 contacts, operating most of Saturday and a few hours on Sunday. Mostly, I was just chasing DX and trying to pick up a few new countries. I have to admit that my memory had a little rust problem concerning international call sign prefixes (where is C5A anyway?) but the N1MM software helped me out.
In the end, I did contact a dozen or so new countries, ranging from Mongolia to Croatia. I sure hope these guys upload their logs to Logbook of the World. I really don’t want to be chasing down those QSL cards manually. As I said, I am an HF Slacker.
73, Bob K0NR