2019 Skeeter Hunt

2019 Skeeter Hunt Summary – Once again, in Buschman Park in Port Orange, FL.

Steve – WB4OMM – FL
Skeeter # 99 – All CW
Single Op
Skeeter QSOs – 4
Non-Skeeter QRP QSOs – 0
Non-Skeeter QRO QSOs – 1
S/P/Cs – 3
Station Class Multiplier X4
Logo Photo Bonus – 100 points

SOAPBOX:  Got a little bit of a late start at 2:00 PM EST.  Setup in the same park as last year, but got smart this time and wound up under a pavilion and out of the sun!  It was still pretty warm at 94 degrees and 80% humidity, but compared to last year, it was a cake walk!  Band conditions were horrible.  Worst I’ve seen in any operating event in a while.  I used the same rig, an Elecraft K1 running 4W to a different antenna, a 31-foot end-fed wire into a tree.  I also used a lithium-ion battery this time with more capacity (10AHr).  S7 noise on 20M….very few signals anywhere in the CW sub-band.  40M was worse (if it could be any worse)….not a peep except for one or two really weak signals at the bottom of the band.  I went back to 20M and it took 48 minutes for me to hear a signal I could work – NN9K (IL) – and the QSB dropped his first transmission to nothingness.  Got it all on the second.  30 mins later, I heard W3AQC (PA – my NAQCC buddies) up and down with QSB from nothing to S5, and managed to work them.  10 minutes later I could hear K9CW (IL) good enough for a Q.  Hunted around for then next 45 minutes…heard KD3CA several times, but never strong enough (and long enough!) to work him…..ditto NE5DL and W3GW.  Last QSO was with a non-skeeter, W9RAC (IN) who was booming in some 20 KHz down…as he should be with 100W!  Had a nice Q with him, but had to make it short as my laptop battery was just about gone.  5 QSOs in 4 states…..in just over 2 hours.  Not a great rate!  BUT….like always, I had fun, was out of the house and playing QRP CW.  The Best!  I have attached the required “selfie evidence photos” with the Skeeter logo at the station and another shot of the station setup.  72/73 to all, see you skeeters next year!  Steve WB4OMM

Maryland Sprint!

Yep!  On the road again this month…….to historic Emmitsburg, Maryland.  I’m working at the National Emergency Management Training Center for a week.  Last night (Tuesday August 13th) was the monthly NAQCC Sprint, and I sure didn’t want to miss it – so, my trusty KX-3, Code Warrior Paddle and Hamsticks were in the field (parked on the roadway actually).  Started out slow and really noisy (so what else is new?), but I made a total of 10 contacts in the following states:  NC, IN, GA, NC, MI, IL, NH, SC, and MS.  Pretty good for 90 minutes of 5W to a hamstick!  Weather was threatening rain, but it held off until the end of my session after I “packed up”.

My location is on Silo Hill Parkway in the City limits of Emmitsburg; the grid is FM19iq.

Here’s some photos……

GPS makes it easy to locate! (and a breeze to identify the grid…..)

The WB4OMM “in the car” station.  The cup holds unsweetened Iced Tea, just in case you wondered……

Sitting on the side of the road operating out of the car.  Hamsticks are amazing!  That’s Liberty Mountain in the background, part of the Catoctin Mountain Range. 


Another 13 Colonies Sweep!

Once again, the propagation gods looked down upon me with generous luck!  I was able to work all of the 13 Colony Stations except the Bonus Station on the day the event opened.  Then got the Bonus Station early in the afternoon the next day.  Worked them on FT8 digital, SSB, and CW.  Worked all 13 states, the WM3PEN Special Event Station, the GB13COL Special Event Station and the K2Z Bonus Station. Always a fun challenge!  Here’s the sweep certificate: