I bagged a new country today. I worked a Ham in Kenya; and this is the first time I've ever worked Kenya, either QRP or QRO! I was scanning the bottom of 20 Meters and heard a station working others quite rapidly. He was sending fast! He had to be going up past 30 WPM and the callsign was a blur. All I could tell was that he was NOT a US station!
So I followed the formula WFWL, or "Work First, Worry Later". After about the third call , he came back to me. I gave him a customary DX "599 TU" and before I knew it, he had acknowledged our brief QSO and was on to the next station.
Now to figure out who I had just worked! Fortunately, the band was open and his signal was not degrading. I was able to listen long enough to make out that it was 5Z4/9A3A. 5Z4 ???? Where's that? A quick click of the mouse to start up DX Atlas and I was able to find out that 5Z4 is Kenya! Hot dog!
He slowed down a bit in a few minutes to have a brief chat with the station he was currently working. Slowed down to maybe 28 wpm or so! Anyway, I was able to make out that his name was Ivo and that his QTH was Nairobi. I don't think he mentioned what rig he was using; but he did say he was running 800 Watts into a 3 Element SteppIR antenna.
I'm not a big DX Hound by any means. I'm sure I'll never make the DXCC Honor Roll like my friend Bob, W3BBO. But when I hear a new one, it's a nice feeling to work them, especially QRP. A rough guesstimate is about 7,200 miles; or about 1,440 miles per watt. I will check it out for sure, later.
73 de Larry W2LJ
Blogger's Note: Using the program DX Atlas, I was able to determine that the Great Circle distance between South Plainfield, NJ and Nairobi, Kenya is 7380 miles. At 5 Watts. that ends up being 1,476 miles per Watt.