After condx went up dramatically during the last few days my decision to do the contest on 10 m was quite clear. Of course I did not expect to do as many QSOs as during the last few years but thought 800 should be doable. How wrong I was …
Saturday started quite well. The band opened early and I had some nice runs into Japan. Had the first call from the U.S.A. around 12z. Running like mad, best 60 min rate was 188, not too bad. Unfortunately condx detoriated quite a bit after 14z and almost all QSOs into North America afterwards needed to be done on scatter beaming to the Caribbean. Thus missing quite a number of contacts although there was quite good activity from the LU’s and PY’s in South America, too. Good thing is my goal of 800 was already in when the band closed Saturday, went to bed with 887 QSOs under the belt.
Unfortunately I couldn’t get much going Sunday morning. Needed over 4 hours to do 100 QSOs! Condx seemed still good but there were no answers to my CQs and S&P potential was limited, too. It took until 13:30z for the NA opening. But it stayed open until 17z this time so after all about equal time both days when NA was workable. Nevertheless 3 to 3,5 hours is certainly not enough for big QSO numbers and to be honest, the U.S. is where the majority of contacts come from (besides Europe on backscatter, of course).
While it was only East Coast on Saturday the band opened a bit further west from here on Sunday so I could work a handful of Ø’s, too, although not many. Heard only one z3 station but despite having a good s5 signal on a clear frequency W7FSL was deaf as stone so missed that zone mult. Under these condx to work z1 and z2 on 10 m is illusory. Fourth zone missing was z31, i.e. Hawaii and all of the Pacific Islands. Worked a little less than 100 JA’s which is just about 1/3 of what can be worked during good years.
Finished the contest with 1.400 QSOs so about 1.000 less than we did from this location during the last 4 years. Amazing to see that Matthias, DL5L/DG0OKW, did 600 QSOs and 2 zones more (he did work z2 & z3) from 350 km south-westerly and Tom, DK3T/DK3EE, even did 1.100 QSOs more and worked 39 zones from 400 km westerly. It seems the band was open 3-4 hours longer overthere judging from their op times which is almost unbelievable. Yes, location makes a difference, especially under these condx! Nevertheless it was fun and good to have another CQWW SSB with decent 10 m propagation, certainly nobody anticipated that.
CQ Worldwide DX Contest, SSB
Class: SOSB(A)/10 HP
Operating Time (hrs): 25
Band QSOs Zones Countries
10: 1417 36 155
Total: 1397 36 155 Total Score = 608,908
Club: Bavarian Contest Club
Now keeping fingers crossed condx will be equally good for CQWW CW in 4 weeks …