PW 144MHz QRP Contest – Sunday 13th June 2021

As COVID-19 restrictions have relaxed somewhat, the club took part in the Practical Wireless 144MHz QRP Contest this year.

We’ll assembled at the usual spot at the quarry off the summit of the Ettrick “Middle Swire”, between Yarrow and Kirkhope (W of Ettrickbridge).

Note: COVID-19 precautions were taken, and we were well short of the 12-person outdoor limit. All attendees were fully vaccinated.

Warm in the sunshine, but a persistent brisk wind and increasing cloud meant that we had to shelter between the vehicles for ourselves and to protect the mic from wind noise.

It stayed mostly dry with just a spot of drizzle late on, so we were able to operate outside with no interruptions.

We made almost 30 contacts over the day, reaching from Fife down to South Wales, and from the Isle of Man to Yorkshire, including one contact from the summit of Mount Snowdon.

Not quite the lift conditions we’ve experienced on some contest days, so no Irish, continental Europe or south of England.

Spot the not-so-deliberate mistake. Hint: Is that plug not meant to be connected to something? This was when the 10m mast was fully erected and guy ropes all perfectly tightened. More reconfiguration was done at the same time as fixing the error.

(“Not the first time and won’t be the last…”)
George GM1OPO doing a bit of listening on 2m…

…before moving to some HF operation.

Always useful to have a reminder of your callsign and other details in case your mind goes blank when keying the mic.

So much for the hot sunny weather we were forecast. This is the drizzly rain coming over the hills towards us in the afternoon.
Indications of how conditions can vary. We heard the other contact a strong clear signal while he was struggling to copy our details with local noise. Also how easy it is to be distracted with getting a contact that you forget to give the required information.

Despite the slightly disappointing weather, we had a good day out and it was good to meet up with other club members again seeing as our weekly club nights have been suspended since March 2020.

Here’s hoping we have more days out, hopefully with slightly better weather.

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