The first came at lunchtime on the 10 Meter band. After working some DX, I decided to go to the watering hole of 28.060 MHz. There I heard a weak CQ - DF7IS, Klaus in Kandel, Germany. Klaus was running 5 Watts from his Icom IC-703 to a sloper. I just love 2X QRP QSOs, especially 2X QRP DX QSOs! We gave each other 559 signals and copy was solid, even though QSB was a little trying at times. But the KX3 pass band tuning really helped me notch Klaus's signal and I had great copy throughout.
The second gem came after I got home. With dinner done and a Harold walk yet to come, I decided to hit the KX3 in my basement shack before the sun set. 10 Meters was a bit disappointing. I heard a station from Guinea- Bissau, but the pileup was intense, and his signal was dropping like a lead balloon. 10 Meters did not seem as promising as last evening, so at that point I decided to switch over to 15 Meters.
At 21.020 MHz, I heard JA1NUT calling CQ. I knew that this was Shin, because my bud W3BBO just worked him a few days ago, and I have heard of him many times before. Shin has the reputation for being a top notch CW operator, a sort of Amateur Radio celebrity, a Ham's Ham. Nobody was answering him, so I threw out my call. Shin came back to me, and I gave him a 589. His signal was warbly, like it was coming over the pole. I've heard polar flutter before, and this sounded exactly like that.
Shin was running 500 Watts to a 4 element Yagi, and said he was trying to study the effects of the CME. I knew immediately what he was talking about. I learned about yesterday's CME from Fr. Z's blog of all places. We exchanged other pleasantries and when it was my turn, I told him I was using an Elecraft KX3 to a vertical.
That's when I got "KX3 THATS 5W RIGHT?"
I answered "YES 5W QRP TO A VERTICAL"
Shin came back again "AMAZING 5W UR 549 BUT SOLID CPY ALL THE WAY. ENJOY UR MIGHTY 5W LARRY".
Wow - how cool is that? Another walking on air moment! Amateur radio doesn't get too much better than this.
Before I close for the night, I leave you with a video that was mentioned on the CW Ops e-mail reflector. Can you imagine having an antenna farm like this? I have passed K3LR's aluminum ranch several times on the way to and from Dayton. This is the first time I've ever seen a grand view like this!
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!