I've enjoyed my N8A air time on 40 and 80 meters this week. Working QRP can be a real challenge sometimes but it offers great rewards for those that are persistent and apply themselves to this unique mode.
I don't think the bands can get much worse but I'm still having fun trying to make the best of my contacts. Yesterday was my most rewarding day this week.
It started off on my "morning" 40 meter excursion when a very strong K9ESE returned my pitch into the wind. Jeff is my third "ESE" station that I've worked the last few months.
His QTH was also Charleston WV......
I figured he was "mobile" and traveling along the interstate pushing a ground wave for a brief few minutes. But as we talked, it became apparent he was using a 20 ft. piece of wire for an antenna with his "home brew" ATS QRP radio. It seems we're only a living a few blocks from each other and we will have a "cup of coffee" the next day or so....
I've been hearing N1LU and N0A most mornings but not today. The band has shifted a little. I worked the N5A station this afternoon on 20 meters. He was SO strong (from Texas) that I couldn't tell his exact frequency. We had inadvertently transmitted on the same frequency and I moved up some to avoid conflict. (we're about a thousand miles from each other).
I also knocked myself out trying to work a station in the Canary Islands (off the coast of Africa) but just couldn't get him to hear me.
A few hours later I went "hunting" and worked a Special Event Station (K8A) in Mio Michigan. I chuckled and sensed a little hesitation when exchanging (1x1) calls both ways. He was transmitting from a Wildlife Refuge in Michgan.
About an hour later I worked VE2PID in Canada. Pierre and I have QSO'd several times in the past and I explained my NAQCC N8 call this time.
It seems (with the exception of the French and Canadian station) my distance is around 300-500 miles on 40 meters and 1,000 miles on 20 meters. I've worked several New York and New Jersey stations. This morning I worked K2MEN in New Jersey (neat call).
The 17 stations I've worked so far have worked really hard for the contacts.
This weekend there is another 8 station coming aboard from near Akron Ohio. I'm glad to see this since the bands have been so bad this week. It will give some club members and extra shot at the "rare" #8 contact.