I'm drinking Starbuck's Pikes Peak coffee this morning out of my lucky contest mug tattooed with Dash! The Dog Faced Ham. Our G4 star seems to have awoken from its fusion slumber as stellar numbers greet the weekend. I spoke with QDH earlier in the week and the current Cycle 24 upward tick is currently stoking Five Cities DXers.
It is a weekend made for chasing DX!
The hour before shackadelic sunrise is quiet when most if not all are asleep including Radio Dawg however DX never sleeps. The time is now when one can populate their computer log with wireless signals harvested from far and distant lands. It is a dramatically different age for ham radio given Internet integration into virtually every hamdom activity.
There are countless channels for DX information and my favorite is DX World. This website enhances my wireless experience providing pathways to information that did not exist when I was a novice. Today, thanks to the efforts of the DX World team, I can customize my operating schedule, view videos, and listen to soundbites.
One of the favorite DX feeds in the Five Cities is DX Summit. Typically, I open DX Spots in Firefox browser and watch the waterfall of DX information. I have, in some respects, retired from the days of spinning the dial searching for DX opting instead for the menu of DX choices provided by DX Summit.
Chasing and logging DX is fun and I'm having more ham radio fun than ever before as a direct result of DX World and DX Summit.
I'm in the operating chair this morning after logging T32C on 20m while enjoying the holiday. It's a bonus day extending the weekend and shortening my work week. I wanted to catch up on my 10,000 Hour RadioSport Challenge with the completion of the North American CW Sprint and California QSO Party.
2011 North American CW Sprint
My lesson learned and experience gained was calling stations on frequency then logging a second station before moving to the next frequency. It finally hit me like a Tesla bolt of electricity that one gains 2 Qs when calling a station versus 1 Q when calling CQ then moving to the next frequency.
A complete rhythm may comprise the following action -
Call Station A on his/her frequency followed by Station B calling you on the same frequency. One's couplet is completed.
Then QSY potentially to the high end of activity for a clear channel CQ using N1MM dialog box ideally another station answers the CQ.
Three Qs are logged completing one's Sprint rhythm.
I want to remember my rhythm going into the next Sprint event because I need to improve my first hour rate.
2011 California QSO Party
I'm learning that the early hours of RadioSport are important to one's score. Rate is everything for hours one, two, and three. I need to learn how-to get out front early that is, at least for me, understanding propagation as a competitive edge. If one chooses the wrong spectrum space then operating at a catch-up pace is a real drag on the score.
Additionally, I noted that sending my callsign after each Q, was a real drag as well. Instead, opting for TU after Q with a brief pause, it only worked when a swarm of two or more stations materialized on my calling frequency. I logged each successive Q sending TU until the last station was heard, then, I sent dit-dit followed by my callsign.
The result was my first 80-plus hour on 40m on Saturday night.
I'm chuckling too because I owned the longest CaQP CQ in the history of the event. Let me say, I can't let go of KA3DRR because, because I don't want to go through the hassle of making a change after 25 plus years.
Lastly, I want to thank fellow blogger's Dan, KB6NU and John, AE5X as they went into the CaQP log. I smiled, gave a thumbs up dudes, as we completed our exchanges. Right on, brothers!