Tuesday, 6 March 2018

ARRL International DX Contest - SSB

Not a bad weekend on the bands, even if the propagation numbers were not the best.  We started off Friday night very slowly, contacts on 40m and 80m could be heard, but they where way down in the mud.  In fact it took about an hour before things got better, but for most of the weekend I had a S7 to S9 background noise.  They recently built two new houses across the road from me, and boy are they RF dirty!!

Saturday morning we awoke to SFI = 66, SN = 11, A Index = 6 and the K Index = 1, no different from the night before at 0000 UTC.

Given the late date in the current solar cycle there was lots of good DX to be had out there.  Both Saturday and Sunday the go-to bands where 15m and 20m.  The majority of my contacts where on 15m....I had a great run there.  Lots of EU and Russian stations in there as well as most of the Caribbean islands.   The EU stations where in there early in the morning and late in the afternoon, the remainder of the day it was the Caribbean and South Americans who kept me busy.  No new countries in the log this weekend though.

As usual, the downside was the usual large crop of "tuner-uppers" doing their business right on top of the DX - I guess these LIDS just don't know enough to move off frequency a couple of Kc and do it there.   On the plus side I didn't hear any band police out and about - how refreshing.

All-in-all a great weekend, over 200 contacts in the log, and now we wait for the last weekend of the month when we have the CQ WW WPX DX SSB Contest, and get to do it all over again.