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Soapbox for 2021
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Went up to SOTA peak Loma Alta (W6/NC-350) in Marin County. Very warm day, and excellent for sitting on the summit and playing radio. No one seemed to have 902, so I missed out on the contacts and mults there, but plenty of people on the other bands. Check out my blog (http://longgreentunnel.blogspot.com/) or Instagram (aa6xa.radio) for pics and more thoughts.
This was my first time participating in this contest and I decided I needed to get out of the house during these trying times. I didn't use any fancy equipment or antennas - just a 2 meter fm rig with a mag mount antenna, but I had a lot of fun making contacts while parked in different areas!
Band patially opened Saturday night, otherwise QSOs made with several in-state and with surrounding states. Six meter band partially open to NE. No time to operate on Sunday. Maybe more time and better band conditions in upcoming VHF contests.
Another enjoyable contest. Conditions were up and down on 6m with my small 2 element yagi, but ended up working a few grid squares at least. 73 and hope to work everyone in the June VHF contest! de Jim ac9ez
It's not clear to me how I can specify my "Rover Limited" (RL) class in this cabrillo file. Also the "Rover Limited" class has band limitation (lower 4 bands) and I don't know I should say "CATEGORY-BAND: VHF-4-BAND"
All contacts used FT-8
Lots of fun few band openings. enjoyed contest !
Sad to see such little SSB and CW activity. I could not get N1MM+ working with WSJT-X so I had to just log in WSJT-X. Low power with a dipole is not a way to have much fun in this contest. Adding a high power category to the single operator three-band class would spice up VHF contests quite a bit...and that is sorely needed.
Saturday was better than Sunday. PSKreporter indicated I was being heard all across west. Too bad I didn't work any of the stations reporting. Never worked any stations outside of WA, OR or BC.
Covid and an injured back forced me to operate casually at home on 6m rather than operate as a 10-band QRP rover like I usually do. All I have for VHF at home is 6m, forced into a 40m doublet. FT8 only, although I did check a couple times late in the contest for SSB or CW ops. Only a handful of grids outside my local area; fortunately my local area is rich in VHF operators.
This contest entry represents two hours of operating from a SOTA summit. I would have entered as Single-Op Portable but I ran 50 watts PEP at times. It a combination VHF contest, SOTA and POTA event for me.
I sure wish the contest rules would be amended to allow multiple mode contacts on each band. It would encourage use of SSB and CW and keep those portions of each band active while still allowing digital mode contacts.
I enjoyed the contest but somewhat dismayed at the lack of CW and SSB activity...This contest is turning into a FT8 event. SUGGESTION: Would contest committee consider a rule change to allow 1 contact per band PER MODE......This might increase CW and SSB activity. K1MD
This file generated by home brew logging program written by K1PDY 01234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789
Temporary antennas only this year; hopefully better gear in 2022.
Operated on five different SOTA summits and two grids during the contest with 10 watts or less.
Another fun VHF contest. Would have liked to have worked more SSB contacts but family responsibilities kept me out of the shack. 6 meter openings were very short but I did not see anyone trying FT-4. Had a couple nice chats with local operators on 2m SSB. Looking forward to June!
Wow, it was nice having 6m and digital available to me for the first time. Now I have to fix up the system integration issues that messed up my first 3 hours on Saturday and most of Sunday morning; I'm guessing that I gave up at least 2000 points to fixing my configurations! The top thrill of the contest was working VO1SIX late Saturday on 6m FT8. Note, I live in a condo where outside antennas are prohibited - all antennas are inside!!!!! See the photo.
I MISSED THE FIRST DAY OF THE CONTEST AFTER BEING HOSPITALIZED FRIDAY
Good to be well enough again, to get back on the Jan contest.
Fair activity. Good FT8 activity on 6m
Happy to make 1 CW QSO. Rest of activity all seemed to be on FT modes.
Had a blast operating portable for 5 hrs 38 min from the summit of Palomar Mountain, SOTA summit W6/CT-020. Once editing is complete, a video will be posted at https://www.youtube.com/k6arkportableradio.
Alinco DJ-G29, DJ-G7, Yaesu FT-4X. 5 watts on all, but 1 watt on 900MHz and 1296MHz
Squeezed in VHF contacts while activating SOTA summit
It was my first solo VHF contest as a Classic rover. Usually I work in Unlimited rover class. Because of Covid situation we couldn't operate as a team so I decided to participate as single rover station. I had a lot of fun especially working on 10GHz from Arizona desert. I set my own record of distance of 10GHz - 135 miles reflected from the mountain. I really enjoyed the contest and looking forward to participate in June VHF contest. 73 de Alex K6VHF
Not sure why people were using 146 if it was a valid frequency for the contest.
No radios were injured during the production of this contest! Managed to stay up for all but 2.5 hours. Thanks to all the rovers who made us all look good! My best contact was with KJ7OG, only about 20 miles and a mountain range away, on 222. Ilearned that Steve was using his dummy load by accident. Nice!
Working QRP from home this year, but still make some good progress. Hope to get back to making it a SOTA event next year!
After 4 years without a rotator, installed a makeshift one for the contest.
Thank God for 2 meter simplex!
Enjoyed working the contest and the SOTA Summit to summit action
The bands were pretty active for Saturday thru noon Sunday after which it slowly grew very quiet. Still not a bad score for a traditionally dead event. Happy to work several people on 2M CW/SSB/FM again. Sunday AM the rocks were fairly plentiful allowing several MSK144 QSOs to be had. IC746, 100W 6 & 2, 6ele DK7ZB 7.2M boom 6M Yagi at 24 ft, 16ele 2M yagi @ 22ft. Not bad considering most of my contacts from the 4000' valley floor are from stations to the South & West that are blocked by nearby 5000ft to 9000+ft Mountains. Thanks for all the Qs!
YO on the Radio 2021
Terry W8ZN and I set up a small 2-op, four band station at the workshop he's built for his DSE antenna biz, on property (FM09te @ 2300') he expects to retire on in the next few years. We each had K3s in an SO2R (Single Op 2 Radio) configuration which allowed us to run SSB/CW/FT8 on 144 & 432 MHz and 50 & 222 MHz respectively with ~1000W per band. I had a third radio, a TM-721A triband 146/223/446 MHz radio that allowed me to work the FM mode with 25-50W. We used single yagis on the bands and a triband FM vertical supported by a tripod on the roof and the pneumatic masts of the K8GP rover parked out back. As typical for a January VHF contest, conditions were flat to depressed. No tropospheric enhancement on 144 MHz and above as expected with dry, cold weather. There were a few short lived eSkip openings (<30mins) on 50 MHz which reached out north to VE1 Nova Scotia and south to FLA. Meteor scatter using the MSK144 mode added a few QSOs and new grids out to 1000+ miles on both 50 & 144 MHz in the late night and early morning hours. We did use a fair amount of FT8 on all bands during this contest, which at least on 222 & 432 MHz allowed us to work into VE3 Ontario and North Carolina, which we couldn't have done with SSB or CW. Unfortunately we worked many locals on FT8, which should have been unnecessary, as QSOs could be made much faster using SSB & CW. We did make many (180) QSOs on FM thanks to the work of John KM4KMU sparking activity on that mode with his pre-contest emails and announcements. To see our contest station set up and our 50, 144, 222 & 432 MHz grid maps, check out my pix album here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/G3M17vuBCpN59ene6 73 andyz - K1RA @ K8GP (L/M)
tough going 6 just would not behave and 2 and 432 were super spotty I hope better luck in June and folks clean up your signals! messy!
Fun to try for the DX in January.
kind of slow contest but was good to see some openings on six meters on sunday morning. Thanks 73 Matt ka0pqw
We operated 6, 2, 220, 432, 902, 3.4 and 2304 bands in the contest. Several different modes from USB, CW, FM, FT8, etc. Bob, KB1QV and I (KA1SU) operated for approximately 12 hours and Beth, N1GHE helped us with the logging and submitting the logs to ARRL. We had a "Blast" (Technical Term)! 73, DE KA1SU, KB1QV ES N1GHE
I had a lot of fun being a rover. I need to get better organize, inside my rover rig Also I need to get a better antenna for when I'm on 220megs,and I need to find a better location to operate from when I'm in CN98,and CN86 For the June contest I'm planning on starting down South in Oregon, or California and work and work north back towards CN88
Fun to get on the air for a short time.
My first January VHF QSO party entry. Had good Es opening Sunday morning to East Coast. We are living Florida for the winter, change of location from our Michigan permanent residence.
Nice to have temps in +20's for January rove in Minnesota !
This was my first VHF contest, and despite only having an end-fed antenna for 6m and an omnidirectional loop for 2m, I had a blast making contacts. Major thanks to everyone who participated!
An ARRL repeater system (PAPA System), a SOTA group (SoCalSOTA 130 members) and a yacht club (SDYCARG) walked into a contest, hoping to cross promote activity to their members, but... the boaters can't compete unless moored/docked, because tho moving they are not /R unless they cross a grid square boundary. We propose rules change for VHF contests as follows-- Current rule wording: VCAT.5.1.1. A rover is a station that moves among two or more grid squares during the course of a contest. Proposed rule wording: VCAT.5.1.1. A rover is a station that moves and makes contest contacts from outside the 500-meter-diameter circle specified in rule STTN.2 during the course of a contest. The argument / logic is as follows: 1) Under the current rules, there is no category under which a locally mobile station can enter. 2) Under the current rules, a station prevented by adverse road conditions, access restrictions or other impediments from making contacts from a second destination grid square is prevented from counting some or most of the contacts made while traversing the original grid square (this applies also boat which are prevented by WX or sea conditions from crossing a gridline). 3) A geographically disadvantaged station may need to relocate once or more within a grid square in order to access populated areas otherwise blocked by terrain. Doing so under the current rules means excluding contacts from the submitted log contacts made from one or more operating locations. 4) a maritime mobile station may be unable to hold its position to within the 500-meter-diameter circle specified in rule STTN.2. 5) Allowing rover status for a one-grid-square station poses absolutely no scoring advantage over multi-grid-square rovers; just the opposite is true. The single grid-square rover is at a scoring disadvantage but would accept that handicap in order to make enough contacts to warrant entering the contest at all.
Was a fun contest, meet a few new rover from Oklahoma before the contest, met in neutral turf of North Texas, then they went northg to OK and we went south to STX
VHF radio propagation conditions on 2m and 222 were not very good, possibly due to dry desert winds which raise static noise and displaced reflective and refractive qualities often present along the southern California Pacific coast. COVID travel restrictions in CA constrained rover route. Lower than typical operator activity was observed by my station. FM phone contestant activity was very congested at 146.52 FM. Contest stations could coordinate different frequencies for FM phone contest exchanges for better results and avoid impact to non-contest stations, I think. Very little activity heard on 223.5 FM.
Operated from grid DM07at near Sawmill Mountain, Tuolumne County, California. Elevation approximately 5000 feet. It is just few miles from Yosemite National Park entrance.
Casual 460 mile Rover. 6m just would not cooperate for me. Not sure why. Good support from a few big stations in the area. Hope as I am out more there will be others that will notice I'm working on being a regular.
Listened for hours; Nobody on. One QSO with someone about a mile away. I certainly hoped for better.
First time submitting contest logs. Was excited to get as many contacts on simplex as i could around the area. Used an icom ic-211 and yeasu ft-8800r interchangeably with a 7 element beam on 2 meters. Hope im not too late and did this correctly :3
I was operating portable from SOTA summit W7A/MN-125 in Arizona. It was still dark when I started the hike to the summit and it revealed a great sunrise near the top. There were also many other SOTA activators on Sunday morning during the contest. This made many of the frequencies very busy either working the contest or just activating the summit. I would like to thank all the contest rovers which accounted for about a third of my contacts. A great time was had by all the contesters and SOTA activators. Hopefully some of the new SOTA activators will make the contests a regular event to participate in. Burke KF7NP
It sure was Rough! The most difficult contest I ever had.
My 2nd VHF contest -fun times!
Great first contest! Looking forward to June!
First weekend operating rover and first contest. Great weather, good contacts, had a lot of fun. Thanks! (I may not have suffixed /R on all contacts. Didn't realized I needed to when operating as a Rover)
Laptop died part way so no FT8 for part of the trip also had to log contacts by hand so I might be off by a minute or two.
FIRST TIME ROVER, STARTED WAY WEST IN DM31OX AT THE ARIZONA MEXICO BORDER. TWO CONTACTS IN AN HOUR TO PUT THIS GRID ON THE MAP. SIX GRIDS TOTAL TO INCLUDE DM31OX, DM32, DM33XD, DM43AD, DM42DX, DM41MX.
Sota activation from W7A/MN-057
Tough operating conditions. Saturday night was very cold outside.
Good contest, people there is more than just digi
Holy Cow!!! Non stop FM action from 2pm Saturday until 11pm Sunday (it did slow down from midnight to 5am Sunday). The four National Calling Frequencies (NCF's) were full of people taking part in the contest. 5W HT's up to 1,500 Watt big dogs, it was insanity. You could call CQ Contest on 146.520 and get a half dozen replies instantly. 446 was a bit slower, taking a few seconds, with 223.5 and 52.525 taking minutes, but those were most QSY freqs. Contacts were available almost as fast as you could type them in. I worked over 150 separate stations (360 QSO's) and didn't come close to getting everyone available in the log. I have never seen it before but this weekend with all the activity, the FM capture effect was a BIG problem. The little guys got crushed and were hard to work unless you cleared the frequency for them or shifted them to 505, 535 or 550 where there was less activity and you could work them. Sharp beams were a big help. Given the intensity of 520 ops I suprisingly did not hear any complaints on all of us using it. The Sunday morning "drive to church nets" shifted to 565 or 580 (they knew in advance what was going to happen) and then after getting home most got on 520 to enjoy fun. Generally (but not always) when someone got on 520 and called CQ vice CQ Contest people stood aside to let them set up the contact and QSY up or down the band before going back to contesting. Almost every QSY got piggy backed with as many as 5 stations wanting to work up and down the bands with you. This was especially true when working THE BIG ROVER KM4OZH/R who drove and communicated brilliantly. Gil ran the regional Grids and knew all the high spots. He was very popular. 12 other Rovers (mobiles) got on the air working multiple grids in the car or from home as well. I never have had so much fun. No time to eat other than 3 Tuna snack packs and half a bag of Skinny Pop all weekend. I am so glad I worked from Freeze Land Road at 2,400ft (only 26 degrees, no wind) versus Reddish Knob at 4,400ft (16 degrees, 50 mph winds) that was 80 miles further from DC. The HT and mobile/base 50W omni turn out was huge and I would have missed many of them if I was further away. I am grateful to K1TEO for the 300 mile Q's on 3 bands and N2NT for the 250 mile Q's on 4 bands. KM4OZH/R was exceptional. N3GOV again worked me from home and then jumped in the mobile to hill top in a new grid and provide high band contacts. Gotta get those rare FM multi's to do well. FM activity in Northern Va has crossed a threshold. We had at least half a dozen that stayed on the air for the full contest calling CQ contest and many many more who worked a few hours took a break and then got back on to enjoy the fun all weekend long. I started emailing all previous FM contacts in 2016 with the list getting bigger every year, 400 this January, maybe 500 for June. In 2016 people got on the air to work me and then get off. Now many people get on the air and work everyone they can, some all weekend long. I don't need to carry the load to keep things rolling, the action is self sustaining now. When I work W4IY Multi-Op instead of SOFM and I dont send out the "email blast" I get a lot of people asking why I did not remind them of the contest and telling me how much they missed it. Once folks get involved they really like the contest weekends on FM. It takes some effort to make this kind of turn out happen but if you stick with it you can create a regional QSO rich environment. FM will never get the big multiplier numbers of SSB but you can pull in A LOT of QSO's on FM if you make the effort to get people on the air. I may suggest this strategy to W4IY in June, link the FT-8 and SSB "grid getter" capabilities with the QSO rich FM environment. 73 John KM4KMU
6m was dead Saturday. Had to leave Sunday just after the band opened up. By the time I got home again, it was closed down. Oh well. Still fun!
Good fun. 2m/70cm: IC-2730A, and MR-77 magnetic mount in the attic. My thanks to the 220 operators for their patience with my signal; yet still impressed with what this Baofeng BF-R3 and stock antenna can do regardless.
I have 10 QSO on 144 MHz with grids (DM12 and DM13), 8 QSO on 432MHz (with 1 DMR Simplex on 441.000) Times to UTC from GMT-8
First ever contest. I wish there was a Rookie category. I am by no means a major competitor given the number of contacts I was able to make on short notice of a contest and my experience as a new HAM. But I had a great deal of fun and learned quite a bit.
This was certainly pretty active for a January contest. I got a late start, but one of my first QSO's was with KA6BIM in CN73, so that was a good start. There seemed to be some kind of opening to CA on Sunday afternoon, but wasn't solid enough for me to capitalize on. Had lots of fun though, thanks for all the QSO's!
Nice to have temps in +20's for January rove in Minnesota ! Fun to run the family station with Husband, Son & his Wife, four Larson's, what a Hoot !
Single op portable challenging in January. Snow on the ground and windy at times in northeast Kansas. Sunday high wind blew down the 2 element yagi twice, second time broke the feed point and thus QRT. Meteor scatter fair Sunday morning. I was able to log a loud W5EME (EM32) and a patient XE2OR (DL98) with the MFJ-9406 @ 10 watts. Decoded many stations. Some Es Sunday around noon to Georgia - W4ZST, and south Texas - W5PR and K5NZ. All contacts digital. Meteor scatter is challenging with only 10 W. W5EME was hitting 10 - 20 dB+. I noted many odd "failed decodes" this time on 6. I would see traces pop up, but no decode. Most were weak, perhaps meteor scatter or weak Es. Nice to have Es in January, a treat !
My first contest in over 20yrs! Love the pace of VHF+ contests!
N0LD/R, K5SRT/R, KB0YHT/R, KD5IKR/R, KA5D, W5TN/R, and K2EZ/R all merging our efforts together for the Texas Rover Convergence 2021! The OKRovers and the TXRovers worked together to make this real. All QSOs were made with no more than 100 watts of power.
Well it finally happened as my bread and butter band, 6 meters was shackled for the entire contest. A very bad wind storm took part of the reflector off the 6m antenna making it an onmidirectional beam. The last 46 years N0LL has been successful in making a good effort and winning Kansas and most of the time the Midwest Section. Not this year. Guess it is about time for someone else to be the top score out here. And I was really looking forward to and expecting rewarding contacts in the ARRL January VHF Contest.
N2DXT Limited Rover category (worked 3 bands for limited, 2m, 432 and 6m) (occasional 1296 contacts for other stations but not for limited category submission). roved 4 grids - fn20 on 1/16. fn31, fn31, fn21 then back to fn20 on 1/17.
poor band conditions
It's been 22 years since Bruce (WA2TMC) and I operated this contest as a team. Conditions were down from last year when I operated SO. My opinion is this contest in turning into an FT8 event. It's ruining passing and working stations above 144 MHz. FT8 should have it's own VHF contest.
Everything, and I mean everything went wrong. Computers would not interface with radios, backup computers were dead, I had a terrible stomach ache, wifey wasn't feeling well....but boy did I have a ball! The original plan was to operate portable, but as it was I wound up at home which was fun too because this was the first contest with my new IC-9700, yagis, and big 902 transverter. Well the IC-9700 was not cooperating with my raspberry pi or my netbook so that was put to the side and I wound up on my good old IC-706MKIIG (how is that thing still going after 20 years including a bunch of digital?) run by a modified MFJ-1234 on FT8. 902 and 1.2ghz were not in the cards for me this time. I LOVED seeing what I could do with the home antennas, my first yagis at home (previously only yagis portable). There is something to be said for having a rotator and a comfortable chair or couch! Best DX was probably 271 miles to K8GP on 70cm while I was only running 20w, WOW That might be my best ever 70cm land based DX! Unfortunately with all of us under the weather and the equipment problems I only got to operate some hours on Saturday, but I loved those hours! 73 & thanks to all for the fun! Tom, N2YTF SOTA W1 Area Manager
Morning snow squalls cause high SWR and RFI Light ice accumulation had materialized overnight from Friday and heavy snow began sticking to antennas and accumulating around the 10 a.m. hour Saturday, I sat and watched the SWR climb slowly up and knew that this contest was over before it even started for me. By afternoon, we had snowfall of 2.7 inches and SWR touching 3:1 on 2 meters and higher on other bands, temperatures did climbed above freezing by midday or so but not enough to thaw out antennas, additional snow fell through Saturday night and more snow showers all day Sunday. The high SWR was causing RFI on 6 meters to the point where it was interfering with the COM ports and shutting down communication between N1MM and the radio prompting error message: N1MM Logger Lost Communication with Radio 1 - Radio # 1, FT-847 on COM 5 is not responding., I spent more time resetting com ports than operating. My adrenaline was pumping and my knees were shaking as I pushed the radio to the limit, even at reduced power levels of less than 10W the radio was getting hot and causing drifting issues... Despite what seemed like a death sentence for the this contest, I did manage to scrape up a few QSO's and grids later on Sunday into Sunday evening... So as I close this chapter of the January VHF/UHF Test, its time to look forward to June... I will say 73s and catch you down the log.... N3AAA Art Send comments and corrections about this page to Bruce Horn, WA7BNM
I used a new rig (ICOM IC-9700) and a hastily erected 5-el yagi with a shakey rotator.
Everybody is doing digital these days. Where are the SSB and CW ops???
Thanks to all the rover and portable mountain top stations who operated during the 'test.
The band just wasn't open for very long at any time that I was on.
RoverLog is terrific!
I had almost the same score this year as in last January's VHF contest, but it was a very different kind of contest. Last January we were still free to travel, shop and dine indoors. Then the pandemic hit. This year my rove was contrary to California's voluntary travel restrictions (i.e., we're supposed to avoid traveling more than 120 miles from home now). I ignored that, but my doc said no one in my high-risk demographic should stay in a motel or even visit a public restroom right now. I followed those instructions, driving an extra 120 miles to stay at my own vacant house in Shell Beach instead of a motel along I-5. We all missed Erik Scott, NI6G, who had a fatal heart attack at age 53 a month after last January's contest (in which he was fourth nationally as a rover). We also missed having Pat (W6YEP) on Bear Mountain signing W6TV this time. Last year he worked our four rovers on 10 or 11 bands in six grid squares on his way to #1 in single op low power nationally. This year he was reluctant to be inside a building shared by other users of the site. We also missed Arnie (N6HC) being at my hill house. He, too, was hesitant to be a guest operator in a house where someone else was living during a pandemic. On the other hand, Carrie (W6TAI) had her sister Marie (W1TAI) visiting from Boston. Marie flew out in early December, quarantined for two weeks, shared the holidays with us and roved with Carrie in the four L.A. grids, making up for some of the Qs we missed with Erik, Pat and Arnie. Being on the central coast overnight made it feasible to outfit Donna (WB6IDK) with a 10-band station in her new Prius. She lives in CM95. John, K6MI, came down from Fresno to join Donna and me for CM94 and CM95. John used his own complete 11-band station for the first time--and it performed flawlessly. In Kettleman City (CM95, CM96, DM05 and DM06), Allen (WA6IPZ) again met us for a very fast four-grid run. Thanks to everyone for sharing in this venture. Another big difference this year was having three transceivers for 122 GHz, something beyond my wildest dreams a year ago. Carrie and Marie used one unit under the family rule and John took a second one. I had the third one. We had about 22 more multipliers this time (12 extra ones from CM94 plus the mults from 122 GHz). Thanks to VK3CV and VK2XAX for putting so many hams worldwide on the 2.5 millimeter band. When the contest ended at 8 p.m. local time Sunday night, I was in DM07 again and I faced the same dilemma as in several past years. Do I drive the 275 miles home overnight or do I stay somewhere else? I drove home--again wondering how much longer I can do this kind of thing.
RoverLog is terrific!
No 6m opening in the contest was a bummer but the SOTA guys helped ease the pain. Also ran FT8 on 6M for a few extra points. A big thanks to all the Rovers for their tireless effort as well.
Another mostly FTY-8 contest! It's great to work DX on VHF/UHF, but hard to roll up QSO points due to speed and 'up the band' liimitations. Saw very few stations on SSB/CCW except for a few on 6m at start.HOPefully someday there will be a broadly acceptable solution proposed that resolves those difficulties.
Continued use of FT8 when 6m wide open was, once again, very discouraging. Switch to a faster mode like SSB or CW!!! FT8 has ruined VHF/UHF/microwave contesting.
IC-7100, HENTENNA OR LOOP, SINGLE PADDLE, ARDUINO KEYER. TU ALL GL 73.
While FT8 has likely increased activity on the 50 & 144 MHz bands, activity on the higher bands is almost non-existent. I found no FT8 and minimal SSB & CW activity on 222 MHz and higher bands. Prior to FT8, operators using SSB or CW would "run the bands". That does not occur using FT8. Without more activity on the higher bands we will likely loose them.
Great fun operating from Mt Umunhum in the SF Bay area on microwave. Also made some QSO's (not logged) on 144,432,1296 FM & SSB. Jim
I sure miss the phone use during the contest. Nobody there only on Ft8. You can't ask them to work other bands.
MORE 52.525 & 927.5!
This was my second "serious" VHF contest entry and I'm pleased with my results. Conditions were up and down but I managed to keep a regular trickle of QSOs happening on 6m. At times I was working stations as far as southern Florida and Louisiana and at other times I could barely get outside southern Ontario but that kept things interesting. While I focused on 6m I had a regular stream of QSOs on 2m as well via FT8, SSB or FM. Lots of local chatter on FM simplex was a nice surprise. During slow times my son brought his lego over to the station and we built lego cars and trucks together while calling CQ on FT8. Overall a nice way to spend a quiet weekend.
Empty. I think everyone is on digital. For those of us who do not want to go digital, these contests, especially VHF and UHF are ruined. I will no longer participate in these contests, unless they are separated. This is rediculous. John va3nw
Performed at HOME, Constrained by Ontario's Covid-19 Lockdown.
Stood beside the car with snow falling.
Lots of fun up on the hill with -15 deg C windchill so operating time was just over an hour but enjoyed a nice 76 mile contact. The Icom 705 is a brilliant field radio for these contests
FT8 IS KILLING SSB IN THE VHF CONTESTS !! I have been VHF contesting for 44 years and see a drastic drop in SSB activity since the FT modes were introduced. I only worked 5 ssb stations outside my grid. Before FT8 I could get 15 to 20 ssb contacts on 6 and 2 metres up and down the bands, calling CQ and S&P. Where were the CT, VT, PA, OH, IL grid square stations that I regularly worked before ft8 ? Now, they were sitting on ft8, on a single frequency, watching a chat page, picking off stations as they scroll by on a waterfall. Separate FT modes from the VHF contests, Create FT mode only contests on a separate date and get SSB,CW,and FM participation in the less populated areas back up where it used to be. Only activity will keep the vultures from looking at taking all or part of our VHF bands. REMOVE THE FT MODES BEFORE ITS TOO LATE!! VE3IQZ
BAND QSOs MULTS 50 44 0 144 42 0 222 6 0 432 11 0 902 1 0 1.2G 1 0 2.3G 0 0 3.4G 0 0 5.7G 0 0 10G 0 0 24G 0 0 LIGHT 0 0
With Ontario in a "Stay-At-Home" order I did this from my home station. 6m was poor, and my antenna is not great, so I only got a fee FT8 contacts and a couple on 2m FM.
My transmitted mode is shown for cross-mode contacts Log includes 2 duplicate QSOs not counted toward claimed score Equipment - 50 MHz Elecraft K2+xvtr+amp 80W, attic dipole 144 MHz Elecraft K2+xvtr+amp 110W, 5 el Yagi @ 25' 222 MHz Elecraft K2+xvtr 20W, 7 el.indoor Yagi 432 MHz Elecraft K2+xvtr 10W, 10 el. Indoor Yagi 903 MHz Elecraft K2+rx conv., homebrew tx, 5W, 7 el.Yagi 1296 MHz Elecraft K2+xvtr+amp 6W, 10 el. Indoor Yagi
Didn't work (or even hear) anyone outside of my grid, but at least made some noise on 6 and 2m.
Almost all MSK144 contacts. Worked my own grid for a change.
SOTA Activation of Genesee Mountain, W0C/FR-194
Not great band conditions, but an enjoyable contest none the less. I did an all digital effort this time around, though there were a few phone signals heard here that I could have worked. I was able to get a lot of clean up work done in the shack while calling CQ and waiting for someone to answer, or waiting for a call I hadn't yet worked to decode.
Thank you for sponsoring the contest.
Way too much fun! We've had a very easy winter up until the contest's Saturday afternoon. Go figure. In fact there was no snow on the ground at lower elevations. The W2EV/r and KV2X/r arrived in the FN22 highlands of Western NY and *POW*...winter wonderland! Picture attached.
In the middle of a move from DM24 TO EM12. Operated from my mobile with verticals mount on the roof of my car parked in my daughter's driveway in the middle of Garland, TX. Hopeful by June contest I'll have my towers back up with my Yagis. Still house hunting with tower land. 73 Jim, W2ODH
A few Es openings on 6 meters made this contest a blast to operate. Looking forward to the June VHF contest! Jim, W3ATV.
My first time submitting logs to Jan VHF Contest! I entered as Single Op FM operating out of my QTH in FM19KA. Had a lot of fun and was surprised at the number of Qs I was able to make on 446.0 FM. Even more so at making my first ever FM phone contact on 927.500! Cheers! Dan W3HDB
Second log uploaded - one contact made while mobile. should be CATEGORY-MODE: FM not MIXED. All Station contacts were FM. Do not know if this should be scored or not - if so, assuming score would only be 2 points.
Operation /P Loc Sassafrass Mtn. SC
K4FJW Bristol VA (220 mi) was my best 70cm SSB DX yet from this QTH with my modest power and antennas. Nice 6m activity Saturday afternoon and evening. I heard but I missed 5 new grids on 6 due to the very short sporadic nature of the openings, often 4-8 seconds, not enough to decode FT8 - I'd like to try FT4 to mitigate the phenomenon, anyone up to create more FT4 activity on 6m in June?) WB8LYJ/R did another great job activating South Georgia rare grids for the fourth consecutive VHF contest weekend, thanks Jeff!
An interesting observation: Looking at a 24-hour PSK Reporter display for my station during a portion of the VHF contest period shows reception of several distant stations. My guesses on the propagation mode are either meteor scatter or very-sporadic E.
Rotor and clock battery on laptop failed, but 'twas fun
LIMITED BY POOR ANTENNAS!
Ran the entire contest from Florida remotely with 3 computers 1100 miles away from the station location in Indiana (2 radios & controlling 4 antenna arrays).
Hilltop in truck, FM Only, 3-Bands
Poor conditions & low activity compared to Sept. contest - only bright spot some E-skip in 6 M. Sat afternoon.
Had a lot of fun operating my FT-818 with just simple antennas at 5 stories up. I should have set up my FT-8 especially on 6 meters. Well maybe next time. I got my 432 vee dipole SWR down to 1:1 by moving into a Vee config with 90 degree angle. If only there was more activity n 432....
The Covid19 had me still isolating up in Long Island QTH this winter so I got to run the 'test with my usual station. In past years, as a snow bird, I would be at N4BRF station near Delray Beach, Fl. Conditions flat with a little Es opening to SW on Sat evening. I would check 2 & 6 SSB frequently for activity to run my lower 6 bands but not much luck so my grids on 902 & 1.2 count was not the usual 5 or 6 grids for good multiplier points. Lots of activity on FT8. This was 1st time on FT8 on 2m & up, I got the computer keying & port conflicts resolved running with my Rig Blaster & WSJT. 6M was with my '7300 for SSB & FT8. Since I run low power class, I tend to hunt for grids and FT8 was good for that to improve the score. It's strange to work guys off the back, or side of the beams sometimes on FT8. I also tried FT4 mode, called CQ several times with no responses or activity. I wish we could come up with a compromise method of operating so we are not just stuck watching the screen. Maybe activity hours? Tnx to N2DXT/r for being out there for more grids and braving the cold Wx. However, this year, not so cold and no snow up here in the NE. BTW, Looks like I got 8th place in Sept VHF contest. Nice way to get re-energized. 73 & See you in the Sprints & June.
Another dissapointing VHF SS. Although activity was relatively high the majority of stations quickly moved to FT8 leaving the SSB and CW frequencies abandoned. Without some rational intervention this contest will soon end up being a 6 and 2 meter event not what the early organizers and the ARRL intended.
Got home from work with 30 minutes left in contest Almost no phone or cw activity at end of contest Calling CQ on phone & cw did not help much
All using halo antennas. Mo significant openings observed during the contest.
Busiest January contest ever. There were lots of Rovers, Home Stations, and around 20 SOTA operators on SOTA summits all over the state. To say the least it was very busy. I operated as a QRP Portable station from SOTA Peak W7A/MN-119. I hiked up in the dark to the summit with my 40 pounds of QRP radios and Six Yagis (one on every band). Best DX was over 140 miles distant, and that was on 1296 FM! The activity was even better than last year, and I was hard pressed to handle the total chaos, QRM, and the huge pileups on all bands at times. I missed working a lot of stations in my 5 hours on the summit, but I did as well as I could with manual logging and dupe checking. All contacts were made on FM or SSB. The only major issue I had other than contest QRM was the FT-817 power plug failed on me. I had to resort to using dry cell batteries in the internal case to continue the contest, so that cost me a few QSO's. Anyhow, lots of fun, my feet hurt, my ears are ringing a bit, and I got a little red from the sun...a normal Arizona problem. So great fun, great conditions, and my best score as a QRP Portable in January! Thanks to everyone who worked me...c u next year! 73 Pete WA7JTM/QRP and SOTA Portable
VHF contesting using SSB and CW has drastically dropped since everyone is on FT8. Maybe it would be advisable have two weekends one for FT8 and one for SSB and CW or give more points for SSb and CW. A lot of us VHF'ers like to work each station on all bands one after another which is hard to do on FT8. 73, Don WA8TWM
Ironically, the strongest signals heard were FT8. Beautiful location, nice wx, but more mic and key activity would have been more fun.
Similar to last year, conditions on the bands were poor with no enhancements during the daytime.
Poor band conditions 3 EL 6M, 5 EL 2M, 10 EL 70 CM
This was my first contest, just spend a few hours in spare time to see what it was like using my new IC9700. Quite a challenge with everyone on the simplex channels. Robert, WB6WGM
The VHF and UHF ground waves were quite poor, and there was no open skip activity heard on 6 meters. I still had fun - I got Steve again from Austintown : SSB on the 2 meter band, and then CW on the 432.10 MHz band. Unfortunately I never heard W3SO. Thanks for the contest.
Had a good time working microwave DX thanks to Rovers, however, some of the poorest conditions ever witnessed (difficult to work tropo past a 75 mi circle) and no 6m DX.
MY SCORE WAS BETTER THAN LAST YEAR'S EFFORT. THE ANTENNA IS A 4 ELEMENT YAGI UP 10 FEET. LOTS OF FUN, BUT STILL CLEANING TREE AND YARD DEBRIS FROM HURRICANE ZETA. SEE YA'LL IN THE NEXT VHF CONTEST. 73-CHARLIE WD5BJT
Had equipment and cockpit issues. Both need work.
i MISSED ALL SATURDAY DUE TO COCKPIT TROUBLES. -BAMD CONDX SUNDAY WERE HORRIBLE.
Did not have the openings like the June contest. However, there was enough activity Saturday that it was fun! Sunday, with no openings, the challenge was to find new local stations. I recently had COVID, and this contest was a nice distraction to have my mind on something I enjoy! 73, Kim - WG8S.
First time contesting in over 30 years!
Rig problems this time around. Ug