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9ACW 2020

Not much to say about this one. Yes it was fun. As always: the first half is more exciting than the second half when you run out of people to work in these smaller contests.

Yes I did better than my previous best. Best in QSO and score. The real time score board keeps you in the chair. It least: it does that for me.

Propagation was OK up to 14 MHz. On 15m it was not too bad but the skip seemed long and the bulk of the participants was in EU so that was not good. Ten meters was a wasteland – again. Just like last year ON5JT agreed to move to 28MHz for the country multiplier. Thanks Jean!

I worked 141 Americans which seemed few but I only had 126 in 2019. There was also the RAC Winter contest going on and that had many USA and VE stations working each other. Problem one: it kept them away from the 9ACW contest. Problem two: when one did call, it’s a cross contest QSO and if it was a VE giving me ON, and no number, what to do? The QSO did take place but I didn’t get a number? Oh well, the same situation for everyone.

Nothing else to  say about the contest. But I do have a general observation that has been confirmed once more. I have been quite active on weekdays and no-CW-test weekends and it’s hard to get people to reply to a CQ. The Reverse Beacon Network shows that the bands are open but there is no one around. Once the CW contest weekend is there, there is tons of stuff to be worked from all over the world. It seems that people leave the bands to the FT8 droids during the week and we all get out for guaranteed CW fun in the contest. As long as we can keep this up, it’s fine by me. CW Contesting is my favorite aspect of this hobby of ours.

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