1290 miles to WD0T DN94 (S9+20 at one point)
In last year's version of this event I was running the amplifier at the low end of the input range. I did some testing in the months afterward and discovered that raising the transceiver power from 15 to 30 percent power raised the amplifier to 190 watts output, a good number for keeping under the 200w limit for the ARRL limited rover category, but more importantly, for keeping the 60A fuse happy and keeping the alternator safe.
After traveling an hour and a half east, I arrived on the hilltop a bit earlier than usual and leveled the van. I had just finished assembling the yagi and looked up to see the state police arriving. After explaining that I was planning on taking part in a ham radio communication exercise, they asked if a license was needed, so I showed them my FCC license. They were concerned about my possibly interfering with other communication systems, so they asked to see my drivers license and wrote down my information, explaining that they would be back if they received any reports of interference. I'm not sure how they would know it was me causing it, but nonetheless I agreed to shut down immediately if I saw them again.
The first contact was W1AW/1 FN44 answering my CQ, so I knew this was going to be a good sprint. The "fabulous first hour" lived up to its name, as 2/3 of my QSOs would happen in the first hour. The second hour brought a few new grids, including the first foray into the FM field and the first station from normally-hopping FN31. The horrendous third hour arrived and I made only two contacts, but thankfully both were new grids. At 0200Z I left my run frequency in order to check 50.125 and heard a station giving out DN94. I continued to listen and it was WDØT in South Dakota calling CQ. It was right at the beginning of the band opening for my area, so his signal was weak and I had to give my call a few times, but we completed the unusually long 1290-mile single hop contact. Fourteen minutes later his signal had built up to 5x9+20. Around 10:30 he was still coming in 5x9+ so I made an MP3 recording. With a signal like that, I decided to keep my beam pointed west to work all the other stations that would surely be coming in strong. Unfortunately, the only other distant station I ended up hearing was Wyoming station K7TNT DN74 but I couldn't get through the lightning static crashes that he had to his east. So I ended up with only two contacts in the final hour as well, but the state police did not arrive again, so I guess I'm transmitting a good clean signal while having good clean fun. My most worked grid was FN32 (5 stations). I did not hear anything out of adjacent grids FN23 and FN33 nor did I work any VE's. The only Perseids meteor scatter signal I heard was someone saying "EN52" just as I was tuning past their frequency (and it was probably KO9A--I worked him via MS during the same event two years ago). Results are here.
BAND QSOs QSO UNIQUE PTS. GRIDS --------------------------- 50 29 29 17 --- Claimed score = 493 ---
UTC CALLSIGN GRID -------------------------------- PH 2301 W1AW/1 FN44 PH 2302 WA1NPZ FN43 PH 2304 N2NEH FN32 PH 2305 KD2DKR FN32 PH 2307 KT1J FN34 PH 2309 NA2X FN13 PH 2311 KU2R FN12 PH 2315 AI2T FN12 PH 2317 KØBAK FN20 PH 2319 W3MEL FN10 PH 2323 WA3SRU FN20 PH 2325 K8ZES FN02 PH 2331 AB1MI FN32 PH 2344 K1SIX FN43 PH 2351 K2CZ FN22 PH 2351 WW1M FN43 PH 2353 KM2KM/1 FN32 PH 2358 W1BS FN32 PH 2359 W1ZC FN42 PH 0000 K1TR FN42 PH 0005 K3EOD FM29 PH 0007 KB1JEY FN20 PH 0030 KC3BPZ FN21 PH 0033 W3BMM FN21 PH 0035 W1VD FN31 PH 0117 K1DQV FM19 PH 0126 N3RN FN11 PH 0200 WDØT DN94 PH 0230 WB2OEE FN21