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Soapbox for 2018
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Tnx qsos, CU next year. 73 de URE HQ TEAM
Icom IC706MKIIG,Heil Pro Micro Headset using Vox,Vectronics HFT-1500 manual tuner,and a 90 foot long ZS6BKW (modified G5RV) up 50 feet,running North-South at an elevation of 6,053 feet from Grid DN-71 in Laramie County Wyoming.I made 521 contacts to 21 countries in 16 hours of operating time in this contest.I could not commit to a full 24 hour effort in this one.Sunday evening produced S8-10 over S9 QRN from surrounding thunder storms making 40 Meter contacts tough to copy at times.I avoided 80 Meters because the QRN was even worse on that band.61% of all contacts were made on 40 meters,37% on 20,and 15 and 80 meters made up only 1% of total.I averaged 32.7 contacts per hour in this event,and had some great runs,especially on 40 where my 20 min. rate exceeded 100 contacts per hour average more than a few times.As always in the IARU Contest,I had several drive by Ops who answered my CQ Contest call,but who were clueless regarding what ITU Zone they were in.I'll gladly pay for a tattoo indicating their ITU Zone number,if that will help them remember their zone for next year! My 100 watt/single wire antenna RF signal traveled a total of 136,797 miles around the globe for this contest,and the average distance for all DX (outside of North America) contacts was 3,337 miles.I just could not hear the IARU Event Ops who were in Germany this year,but did manage to make contact with others Ops in Venezuela,Mexico,Argentina,Aruba,Austrailia,Bonaire,the Canary Islands,Chile,Croatia,Curacao,the Dominican Republic,France,Japan,Puerto Rico,Serbia,Slovenia,and the U.S. Virgin Islands.I worked 14 Ops in Canada,5 in Hawaii,and 2 in Alaska.I had a few Ops get within 2 KC of of my occupied Run frequency,but all but one moved further away when they were told in a civil mannor that their signal was causing buckshot on my Run Frequency. Although I made a much higher score than last year in this event,I am nowhere near my 10th place finish (for US and Canada) in 2014,5th place finish in 2015,or 4th place finish in 2016, which I can only assume correlates with the deteriorating solar conditions that we are now experiancing as the current sun spot cycle continues to bottom out. I would love to do this contest from a real station using a beam and amplifier someday.Still a fun event,with a chance to hear many familar calls.The high point of the 2018 I.A.R.U. HF World Championship contest for me was working 13 year old Faith Hanna,(AE4FH),who was part of the WK1DS Multi-Single Low Power Team in Northern Florida.I love the YouTube Amateur Radio videos that feature Faith,her younger sister Grace,and their father.Please check them out on YouTube,as this family of hams is doing much to bring younger blood into Amateur Radio,and the contesting realm.Thanks to all that heard and worked me in this event.Another 100 watts and a Wire Adventure is in the books for this 61 year old boy at heart.