IARU R1 144MHz 2018
This was my first entry in the September 144MHz contest for many years, probably since the days of G4MRS/P in the 1980's! It was a good opportunity to try out the SSPA in a big event. It came through with flying colours, the heatsink didn't even get warm to the touch even in the most intensive contest use.
Conditions were respectable but not exceptional at the start, then improved during the evening to the east, with several OK's worked in the late evening, then SN7L at over 1000km, finally going QRT at 0100z. I concentrated on working as many DLs as possible during this period as solar panel QRN makes beaming east almost impossible during daylight hours.
After a short sleep I was in the shack at 0430z to work more to the east before the noise started again. LA0BY was worked shortly after at 1058km, but there was little activity otherwise from Scandinavia. As morning progressed and the sun hit the solar panels I concentrated on looking south, and was rewarded with a good haul of French stations and a surprise call from EA1SA at 1034km with a good signal. I had listened to EE2R a few times but he was quite weak and buried in QRM from nearby stations, so was not expecting much from Spain. Immediately after EA1SA an even bigger surprise was being called by EA2AGZ in IN91, at 1152km my best DX. F6KEH/P in JN02 provided another 1000km plus contact in this period from 0800 to 0900z.
From then on I was mainly looking inland around G/GW/GD/GM and picking up backpacker stations in their contest from 1100z to the end.
Total valid QSOs 315
Claimed points 121281