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Soapbox for 2021
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AA6XA   Contact Moderator
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.
 
AB2GD/R   Contact Moderator
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!
 
AC4G   Contact Moderator
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.
 
AC9EZ   Contact Moderator
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
 
AG6NS/R   Contact Moderator
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"
 
AJ4LJ   Contact Moderator
All contacts used FT-8
 
AJ4W   Contact Moderator
Lots of fun few band openings. enjoyed contest !
 
AJ6T   Contact Moderator
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.
 
AL1VE/R   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K0BAK   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K0NR   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K1HC   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K1MD   Contact Moderator
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
 
K1PDY   Contact Moderator
This file generated by home brew
logging program written by K1PDY

01234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890123456789
 
K1ZK   Contact Moderator
Temporary antennas only this year; hopefully better gear in 2022.
 
K2JB/R   Contact Moderator
Operated on five different SOTA summits and two grids during the contest with 10 watts or less.
 
K2MTS   Contact Moderator
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!
 
K3FR   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K3GM   Contact Moderator
I MISSED THE FIRST DAY OF THE CONTEST AFTER BEING HOSPITALIZED FRIDAY
 
K3IUV   Contact Moderator
Good to be well enough again, to get back on the Jan contest.
 
K4YRK   Contact Moderator
Fair activity.  Good FT8 activity on 6m
 
K5SRT/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
(no comments)
 
K5ZD   Contact Moderator
Happy to make 1 CW QSO.  Rest of activity all
seemed to be on FT modes.
 
K6ARK   Contact Moderator
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.
 
K6CLS   Contact Moderator
Alinco DJ-G29, DJ-G7, Yaesu FT-4X.  5 watts on all, but 1 watt on
900MHz and 1296MHz
 
K6EL   Contact Moderator
Squeezed in VHF contacts while activating SOTA summit
 
K6VHF/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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
 
K6XSS   Contact Moderator
Not sure why people were using 146 if it was a valid frequency for the contest.
 
K7EME   Contact Moderator
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!
 
K7IW   Contact Moderator
Working QRP from home this year, but still make some good progress.
Hope to get back to making it a SOTA event next year!
 
K7MDL   Contact Moderator
After 4 years without a rotator, installed a makeshift one for the contest.
 
K7SMA   Contact Moderator
Thank God for 2 meter simplex!
 
K7TEJ   Contact Moderator
Enjoyed working the contest and the SOTA Summit to summit action
 
K7XC   Contact Moderator
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!
 
K7YO   Contact Moderator
YO on the Radio 2021
 
K8EG   Contact Moderator
Good times!
 
K8GP   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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)
 
K9WKJ   Contact Moderator
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!
 
KA0CRO   Contact Moderator
Fun to try for the DX in January.
 
KA0PQW   Contact Moderator
kind of slow contest but was good to see some openings on six meters on sunday morning. Thanks 73
Matt ka0pqw
 
KA1SU   Contact Moderator
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
 
KA7RRA/R   Contact Moderator
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
 
KB0MRK   Contact Moderator
Fun to get on the air for a short time.
 
KB8W   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KC0P/R   Contact Moderator
Nice to have temps in +20's
for January rove in Minnesota !
 
KC2IEB   Contact Moderator
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!
 
KC6ARY   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KD5IKG/R   Contact Moderator
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
 
KD6EFQ/R   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KD7WPJ   Contact Moderator
Operated from grid DM07at near Sawmill Mountain, Tuolumne County, California. Elevation
approximately 5000 feet. It is just few miles from Yosemite National Park entrance.
 
KE0MHJ/R   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KE9EX   Contact Moderator
Listened for hours; Nobody on.  One QSO with someone about a mile
away.
I certainly hoped for better.
 
KF5RRW   Contact Moderator
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
 
KF7NP   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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
 
KG2AF   Contact Moderator
It sure was Rough!  The most difficult contest I ever had.
 
KG5EIU   Contact Moderator
My 2nd VHF contest -fun times!
 
KG5HFO   Contact Moderator
Great first contest! Looking forward to June!
 
KG5WJW/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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)
 
KG6BXW/R   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KI7OFL/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KJ7NOY   Contact Moderator
Sota activation from W7A/MN-057
 
KK4BZ   Contact Moderator
Tough operating conditions. Saturday night was very cold outside.
 
KK4ZUU   Contact Moderator
Good contest, people there is more than just digi
 
KM4KMU   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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
 
KM5RG   Contact Moderator
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!
 
KN6FKQ   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KN6MGZ   Contact Moderator
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
 
KO4HMB   Contact Moderator
First Contest!
 
KS1PPY   Contact Moderator
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.
 
KX7L   Contact Moderator
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!
 
N0HZO/R   Contact Moderator
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 !
 
N0JK   Contact Moderator
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 !
 
N0JYZ   Contact Moderator
My first contest in over 20yrs! Love the pace of VHF+ contests!
 
N0LD/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N0LL   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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/R   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N2SFS   Contact Moderator
poor band conditions
 
N2WK   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N2YTF   Contact Moderator
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
 
N3AAA   Contact Moderator
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
 
N3FJ   Contact Moderator
I used a new rig (ICOM IC-9700) and a hastily erected 5-el yagi with a shakey rotator.
 
N3JNX   Contact Moderator
Everybody is doing digital these days.  Where are the SSB and CW ops???
 
N4DLA   Contact Moderator
Thanks to all the rover and portable mountain top stations who
operated during the 'test.
 
N4YHC   Contact Moderator
The band just wasn't open for very long at any time that I was on.
 
N5BNO/R   Contact Moderator
RoverLog is terrific!
 
N6NB/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N6RH/R   Contact Moderator
RoverLog is terrific!
 
N7VD   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N8GA   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N8KH   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N8VWY   Contact Moderator
IC-7100, HENTENNA OR LOOP, SINGLE PADDLE, ARDUINO KEYER. TU ALL GL 73.
 
N8WNA   Contact Moderator
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.
 
N9JIM   Contact Moderator
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
 
N9YK   Contact Moderator
I sure miss the phone use during the contest. Nobody there only on Ft8. You can't ask them to work
other bands.
 
NM1S   Contact Moderator
MORE 52.525 & 927.5!
 
VA3ASE   Contact Moderator
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.
 
VA3NW   Contact Moderator
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
 
VA3PAF   Contact Moderator
Performed at HOME, Constrained by Ontario's Covid-19 Lockdown.
 
VA3RKM   Contact Moderator
Stood beside the car with snow falling.
 
VE2HAY   Contact Moderator
Phone only!
 
VE3BFU   Contact Moderator
Thanks 73s.VE3BFU
 
VE3IPS   Contact Moderator
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
 
VE3IQZ   Contact Moderator
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
 
VE3OIL/R   Contact Moderator
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
 
VE3RKS   Contact Moderator
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.
 
VE3SMA   Contact Moderator
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
 
VE3ZY   Contact Moderator
Didn't work (or even hear) anyone outside of my grid, but at least made some noise on 6 and 2m.
 
W0BL   Contact Moderator
Almost all MSK144 contacts. Worked my own grid for a change.
 
W0KI   Contact Moderator
SOTA Activation of Genesee Mountain, W0C/FR-194
 
W1HS   Contact Moderator
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.
 
W1QK   Contact Moderator
Thank you for sponsoring the contest.
 
W2EV/R   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
W2ODH   Contact Moderator
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
 
W3ATV   Contact Moderator
A few Es openings on 6 meters made this contest a blast to operate. Looking forward to the June VHF
contest! Jim, W3ATV.
 
W3HDB   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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
 
W3SEN   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
W4SLT   Contact Moderator
Operation /P Loc Sassafrass Mtn. SC
 
W4TM   Contact Moderator
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!
 
W5AAG   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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.
 
W7QH   Contact Moderator
Rotor and clock battery on laptop failed, but 'twas fun
 
W8KNO   Contact Moderator
.
 
W9SAN   Contact Moderator
LIMITED BY POOR ANTENNAS!
 
W9VW   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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).
 
W9WB   Contact Moderator
Hilltop in truck, FM Only, 3-Bands
 
WA1LBK   Contact Moderator
Poor conditions & low activity compared to Sept. contest - only bright spot some E-skip in 6 M. Sat
afternoon.
 
WA2CLP   Contact Moderator
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....
 
WA2VNV   Contact Moderator
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.
 
WA3NUF   Contact Moderator
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.
 
WA3RLT   Contact Moderator
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
 
WA4DYD   Contact Moderator
All using halo antennas.  Mo significant openings observed during the contest.
 
WA7JTM   [photo/doc]   Contact Moderator
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
 
WA8TWM   Contact Moderator
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
 
WA9DU   Contact Moderator
checklog
 
WB1AJJ   Contact Moderator
Ironically, the strongest signals heard were FT8. Beautiful location,
nice wx, but more mic and key activity would have been more fun.
 
WB2AMU   Contact Moderator
Similar to last year, conditions on the bands were poor with no
enhancements during the daytime.
 
WB3JKQ   Contact Moderator
Poor band conditions
3 EL 6M, 5 EL 2M, 10 EL 70 CM
 
WB6WGM   Contact Moderator
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
 
WB8WUA   Contact Moderator
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.
 
WD5AGO   Contact Moderator
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.
 
WD5BJT   Contact Moderator
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
 
WF1L   Contact Moderator
Had equipment and cockpit issues. Both need work.
 
WF4R   Contact Moderator
i MISSED ALL SATURDAY DUE TO COCKPIT TROUBLES. -BAMD CONDX  SUNDAY WERE HORRIBLE.
 
WG8S   Contact Moderator
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.
 
WQ6D   Contact Moderator
First time contesting in over 30 years!
 
WX3K   Contact Moderator
Rig problems this time around. Ug