Thursday, August 3, 2017

4 More States - 17 Total

Good evening! Well, I've had five more QSO's including four new states since my last post that I am excited to tell you about. Again, all five QSO's were completed using the MFJ 9040 QRP rig pushing 5 watts up to my inverted L gutter antenna on the top of my house.

17 states down, plenty to go!

The first two QSO's were last night, the first being with Mike - WI5H from San Angelo Texas over 960 miles away and home of Texas Tech University. The band was very noisy last night but Mike and I were able to complete our QSO and exchange 73's through the noise.

About 30 minutes later I was able to connect with Alton - N4IDH from Dothan Alabama, just under 600 miles away in the southeastern corner of the state. Alton is retired now but has been a ham since the age of 13. He also served in the US Navy from 1978-1984 as a Nuclear Mechanic aboard the USS Daniel Boone.

USS Daniel Boone SSBN 629

Thank you for your service to our country Alton. It was my pleasure to have a short QSO with you, and I hope we get to do it again soon when conditions are better. Thanks for helping me with my goal of Working All States with QRP CW. 

Tonight I got home from taking our dog Cooper to his training class and had time to get on the air for an hour or so before going to bed. I was in luck, the band was in much better shape tonight even though it was still a little noisy. The first place the MFJ brought me to tonight was 250 miles to the northwest of Indiana and the banks of the Mississippi River in Bettendorf Iowa. 

Mississippi River in Bettendorf Iowa

In Bettendorf I connected with Mark - K0NIA who is originally from the State of Indiana about 30 minutes north of my hometown. Mark is a Hoosier graduate and a real joy to talk to on the air. Mark is really big into QRP and homebrew equipment. I knew I liked this guy for a reason, right? I told Mark about my "gutter antenna" and sure I got a laugh from it, but a homebrew guy like Mark understands the need to try something out to see how it works. I look forward to having the opportunity to talk with Mark more in the future. Iowa is now added to my list of states worked, thanks Mark.

Downtown Kansas City

Next QSO was with Joe - KF0XV from 440 miles to the west of me in Kansas City Kansas. I heard Joe earlier in the evening sending CW from his homebrew CW transmitter. By the time we connected he had switched back to his Flex 1500 QRP rig. There is definitely something rewarding about working a station QRP to QRP. Thanks for the QSO Joe and helping me Work all States by adding Kansas to the list.

Sweet Georgia Peaches

My last QSO of the evening was with Russ - KK4WX from Tifton Georgia, the friendly city. I've driven through the town of Tifton on I-75 many times, but never stopped. Southern Georgia, home of sweet Georgia peaches and pecans. I think I should stop next time I drive through, what do you think? Maybe Russ can send peaches up with his QSL card? I'd gladly send a SASE for some of those! Anyways Russ, thanks for the QSO and helping me Work all States by adding Georgia to the list.

Well, that brings my total up to 17 states worked now with QRP CW. I have two events this weekend that I plan to attend which will give me even more chances to get on the air. Saturday morning I am organizing a "Coffee and Donuts in the Park" event to invite other hams to come out and join the fun by starting their own Adventure with CW. The second is the NAQSO Party whch starts at 2PM local time here in Indiana. I am really looking forward to doing both of these events and I will absolutely post updates with photos on this blog. 

I think I'll end it here for now as my eyes are getting heavy, it's been a long week. I'm look forward to the weekend for sure this week. If you are interested in learning more about QRP CW, reach out to me anytime. 

72 for now, de W9ODX


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