Sunday, December 6, 2015

ARRL 160 meter CW contest final comments

The ARRL 160 meter CW contest finished up today and it was a blast! I decided to go QRP this year and was starting to get discouraged when I only had 10 contacts on Friday night. I know that 160 meters is mainly a nighttime band but I guess I gave up too early on Friday night.

On Saturday evening I got started around 8PM (0200z) and there were more stations for my search and pounce approach. I noticed at 10PM (0400z) that some stations that could not hear me earlier I could work now. So the real fun began for the next 3 hours. I wound up with 88 contacts and a score of 6512.

Some things I learned and already knew. 

Learned:

I learned that 160 meters continues to get better later into the night and that I need to plan accordingly.

Timing is key for QRP operation during a contest.


Already knew:

My inverted L that slopes to the southeast needs to be improved. This is my second season for this antenna and the 3rd contest. It is clear that this is mainly a NVIS antenna for the midwest and strongest signals coming from the southeastern states. I only heard one 6 land call and that was at 1AM (0700z).


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