Last August, operating portable from Aylmer Island I participated in the Summer version of the NA QSO Party (https://thewakesileave.wordpress.com/2015/08/21/aylmer-island-on-295/). In that event, and according to the preliminary results posted at the NCJ site (http://ncjweb.com/naqp-scores/preliminary/naqpssb2015augprelim.txt), I have good chances of finishing first in Canada in the “Single Operator QRP” category. The QSOs logged in the NAQP SSB on that opportunity were also instrumental in getting Aylmer Island qualified as “ON-295” in the registry of the “Canada Island Activators” Program (http://veislandactivators.blogspot.ca/2015/08/a-successful-first-activation.html).
Yesterday, Saturday January 16 2016, this time from the comfort of my QTH, I tried my luck at the winter version of the NAQP SSB. I used the ICOM 703+ at 5W with an old Heil Traveler headset, which first I had to fix since the coax shield had broken at the Push-To-Talk switch.
It worked as it used to with the ICOM 706MKIIG a decade ago. With it I was able to log 25 QSOs (had I been on another island it would have been another qualifier expedition…!). Some of the phonetics used in the contest were far from orthodox, but with some luck I should have most callsigns and names with their correct spelling. Hopefuly, most would also have correctly received my exchange, as this time I was operating as “Joe” instead of my usual and exotic “José”. After all, “Joe” was how I was known at home during my early childhood…!
Here is the log:
Twenty-five QSOs and 16 SPC multipliers allowed for a claimed score of 400 points, which, all things considered, it is not bad for only 5W, a long wire, some poor propagation and an old voice behind an old microphone… With a tuneable multiband antenna at my disposal (see: https://thewakesileave.wordpress.com/2016/01/05/a-new-random-wire-antenna-goes-up-the-maple-tree-in-the-backyard/), this time I was able to make contacts in 4 bands. This provided for further multipliers as some states were logged in more than one band (TX in 20m and 15m, GA and MN in 40m and 20m) and near-by, albeit rare, VT and MD states were logged in the 80m band. It was also nice to match human voices to several of the callsigns that I had contacted in CW in the past.