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CQWW WPX Contest, CW   2017   May 27   Claimed Score

Click on a call below for a list of all the contests for which that call sign is listed as an operator. Click on the [email] link to send an e-mail to the contester who posted the claimed score.

Call: WC1M
Operator(s): WC1M
Station: WC1M

Class: SO(A)AB HP
Operating Time (hrs): 20.75
Location: USA
Radios: SO2R  

Summary:   Compare Scores
Total:1772Prefixes907Total Score5,504,583


Club: Yankee Clipper Contest Club

Comments:     [email]     2017-05-29 13:01:13
A little over half a contest is better than none! Had intended to do a full 36-hour effort this year, entering as Assisted using only my local Skimmer spots. Unfortunately, I lacked the usual motivation leading up to the contest and didn’t prepare well. Didn’t get enough sleep during the week, and though I tested the station on Wednesday, I procrastinated on Friday to the point of getting on the air a few minutes late and then running into some configuration problems with my complex SDR setup that cost me the first 20 minutes of the contest, or about 40-50 Qs at the most important time. That hurt the motivation as well. Nonetheless, had a very good 6-hours or so and hit a decent number of Qs and mults before 40 gave out after the EU sunrise opening. I was feeling very good, not tired at all, and in retrospect I should have continued straight through the morning runs. Always afraid to do that, fearing a collapse during the high-rate first morning. Instead, I took a sleep break, even though I saw the unusual late EU sunrise opening on 20. By the time I got back on at 1000z, 20 was already wide open. Probably missed at least an hour of good rate. That’s when the fatigue really hit. The rate suffered and I was feeling really terrible. As the rate on 20 wound down late morning, I seriously considered quitting, or at least converting to a casual operation. It was a tough decision because I've always done very well in this contest and my score was still pretty competitive. I took another 3.5 hour break, gambling that the rest would outweigh taking a break during a potentially high-rate time, and that I could make up the Qs later (generally not likely because participation falls off dramatically on day 2.) Got back on by 1800z, and had a decent two-hour run on 20, after which the rate dropped through the floor. That was the start of the solar event that wiped out most of day 2. I saw the K-index had spiked (I think it was 4 or 5), and checked the propagation alerts, which reported a significant solar event. By 2300z 20 was virtually gone and 40 wasn’t open yet. Took another 1-hour break, which used up all but about three hours of my remaining break time. Came back to 40 at 0000z and had a mediocre run of 120 Qs in 2 hours. By that time the K-index was up to 6, a level I’ve rarely seen. Conditions just didn’t warrant knocking myself out all night with no workable EU on the bands, so I pulled the plug, watched some TV with my wife, and went to bed for a good long sleep. Figured I was done with the contest. Woke up unexpectedly at about 6:30 AM local (1030z) and checked the band scopes and band maps. 20 wasn’t open at all and the band maps were nearly empty, with no EU at all. So I went back to bed. I was going to call it a contest, but when I got up in the late morning 20 had opened and I decided to operate casually and see if I could add enough to what was still a decent score to make the top ten. I CQed on one radio, which didn’t produce much EU rate, and not as much US rate as I’d expect. Grabbed mults and any new EU I could find on the other radio. The K-index had come down to 2, and while conditions were better, they still weren’t great and there weren’t many EU stations on. I suspect a lot of earlier participants had pulled the plug. Lots of QSB and band noise made copying the low power stations quite a challenge. Never considered dual-CQ, but I’m not sure it would have helped the score as much as grabbing mults off the band map. 20 and 40 were barely open at the same time anyway, and certainly not to EU. All that said, I still had quite a few hours of fun and enjoyed not having the significantly greater fatigue that comes from operating SO2R unassisted. Can’t say I’ve converted to Assisted permanently, but it’s a nice alternative when I don’t have the motivation or stamina to be a boy and his radio(s). Next year our 25th anniversary falls a couple of days after WPX CW, so we might be on the road that weekend. If not, will see you in that one! 73, Dick WC1M