This weekend I got on the air for some relatively casual contesting. Friday evening the Makrothen RTTY Contest started. It is run over three 8-hour segments spread over two days. I like this format as it gives you some breaks for family. I was able to get in 103 QSO’s on 10 through 40 meters. I didn’t see a great deal of activity but 10 and 15 meters were working well. The scoring for the contest measures kilometers between stations. My total score was 474,920. Contacts with New Zealand, Japan, and Argentina helped a great deal.

On Saturday evening, conveniently between segments of the Makrothen, I entered the NA RTTY Sprint. In this four-hour contest you make one contact, can then call from that frequency for the next contact and once that is concluded you need to move on. So it is a great deal of dancing across the bands. I had hoped to enter in the QRP category and did for roughly the first 20 QSOs, mostly on 20 meters. Then a power outage hit. On start-up I continued to work several stations including some on 80 meters, which is usually pretty difficult with QRP into verticals. Then I discovered that the power had reset to 100 watts on power up. So, I was now entering in the Low Power category. Oh well, I was only able to generate 56 QSOs and that was challenging at times with many not hearing me at all.

All in all, it was a good contest weekend. Nothing too high pressure, but good to get on the air. Hope you were able to get on the air as well.

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Jim-K5ND

Freelance writer and active Scouting volunteer. Retired publishing and communication executive who writes for fun and to finance his hobby, amateur radio.

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