N2SLN    FN22qj


    pair of horizontally polarized Cushcraft 3-element yagis


    Icom IC-706mk2G at 100 watts


The 6 meter spring sprint was sponsored by the personal contributions of K9JK and W4SHG. The rules and more info were provided here. Every year this single-band contest runs from 2300Z on a Saturday until 0300Z Sunday, and this year it was held on May 10-11, 2008.

I brought two mast systems. When I arrived at the hilltop early, I tried setting up the stackable mast sections first since they are larger diameter. But they don't have a keyway to prevent spinning, and I didn't feel like taping the joints to secure them (not knowing whether they would hold), so I took it down. I tried the telescopic mast and the largest sliding section would not pull out. Thankfully, there was enough mast left in the smaller sections to provide me with 12 feet of stacking distance. I got beam headings dialed in on the rotor using K1MS/B in FN42 and NL7XM/B in FN20, but both were weaker than expected. With a few moments to go before the start of the contest, I was able to take a few pictures since there was still enough daylight this time of year.

I started on time and enjoyed the usual flurry of activity that the first hour brings (33% of my contacts were in the first hour, 19% 2nd hour, 22% 3rd, and 26% 4th). I spent the next half hour swinging the beam through the "brick wall" to the north, but no luck. In fact, I didn't hear a single station from anywhere between northwest and northeast during the entire contest (not even from adjacent grid FN23). But it was still great to finally have a good antenna, good elevation, and no equipment failures. I heard KB8U EN71sw one time, which would have been my longest contact at 468 miles (753 km), but then he was gone immediately. It appears that my longest actual contact was with Maryland station K1RZ who put in a formidable 5x6 signal in such poor band conditions:

longest distances worked:
southK1RZFM19jh255 miles (411 km)
northeastK1TOLFN44253 miles (407 km)
northwestNQ2OFN13174 miles (280 km)
eastK1TRFN42170 miles (273 km)
southeastN2GHRFN30131 miles (211 km)

Here is a list of stations I heard but was unable to work for one reason or another: K3CB FM28ar, KB8U EN71sw, W3ZZ, K1IIG FN31, N1JFU, N1JEZ FN44ar, W1ZC, KA1OJ, and W3SO. I didn't hear anything out of FN01, 02, FN23, 24, and FN33. Notably missing was K1WHS. Most worked grid was FN31 (6 stations). Here is a chart showing how that the planetary-K index equalled 2 during the sprint. The X-Ray flux chart shows that X-ray emissions from the sun were down overall during the sprint. The solar flux was only 67.


              PTS.   GRIDS             PROVINCES
 50     27     27      15        8         0

          --- Claimed score = 405 ---


PH 2301    KJ1K/R     FN32    5x7, western MA
PH 2306    WA2FGK     FN21    5x8
PH 2325    W1QK       FN31gk  5x6
PH 2331    K1TEO      FN31    5x9
PH 2336    K3TUF      FN10    5x6
PH 2339    KW1AM      FN41ct  5x7
PH 2348    N8RA       FN31    5x5
PH 2348    KA2ILJ     FN22    5x3
PH 2350    KE2DN      FN12
PH 0000    N3RN       FN11wh  5x9
PH 0018    W1XH       FN32
PH 0028    KA2LIM     FN12    5x8
PH 0032    N2LID      FN12    5x5
PH 0035    K1TR       FN42
PH 0111    N2GHR      FN30    5x6
PH 0114    K1TOL      FN44    5x6
PH 0136    K1RZ       FM19jh  5x6, 255 miles
PH 0143    WB2RVX     FM29    5x6
PH 0149    WB2LEB     FN20    5x4
PH 0152    KC1V       FN31sx  5x1
PH 0204    WZ1V       FN31mp  5x9+10
PH 0208    K2TR       FN22    5x7
CW 0220    NQ2O       FN13    weak
PH 0224    WA2VNV     FN30    5x6
PH 0229    K2DBK      FN21xb
PH 0230    WB2SIH     FN31
CW 0234    K1SND      FN32sh  5x5

"If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the N2SLN rover team."