Sunday, February 11, 2007


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.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous3:39 PM

    I am a purist when it comes to CW. It is the mode of operation that Marconi used when he transmitted his first tranmission to europe. While it's true, we might eliminate CW from licensing requirements, but I can tell you there is a lot of pride in being able to master and use CW, It is perhaps the earliest form of digital communication aside from light and smoke signals. It gets thru when modulated voice transmissions fail. To me it's not outmoded, it's like leatninganother lanquage but mot for everone. Some hams like slow scan TV and others like moon bounce, I applaud their interest as being a benefit to amateur radio. We all have our personal likes and interests. Amateur radio shall continue with pride