Contest         : ARRL International DX Contest
Callsign        : OG8X
Mode            : CW
Category        : Single Operator (SO)
Band(s)         : Single band (SB) 20 m
Class           : High Power (HP)
Zone/State/…  : KW
Operating time  : 25h40

160       0         0         0       0
80       0         0         0       0
40       0         0         0       0
20      1260   59      12    3780
15       0         0         0       0
10       0         0         0       0
TOTAL  1260   59  12    3780


Difficult. Very difficult. That was the situation in Northern Finland this time. The lack of sunspots hurt my score badly and although we didn’t experience bad aurora, the band didn’t seem to be nearly as good as from Central or Southern Europe. 100w was often enough to beat me from those latitudes when I was doing S&P.

I also apologise for my clumsiness at times, since I’m still quite inexperienced contest operator and not too familiar with Win-Test. The good news is that at this point the learning curve is drastic but the bad is that one has to suffer the initial painful steps. That’s why I decided to work some QSO’s outside the contest when the band wasn’t open to the US, as I felt I needed to devote more time learning to use the equipment properly.

The highs:
1. Everything worked well. No technical problems whatsoever, no real interference from the 80m station (Veijo OH6KN working as OH8X).
2. Seeing the 10Q rate climb to nearly 300Q/h when I had my one and only real pile-up.

The lows:
1. Couldn’t get a decent run going for long, no matter what I did. The band was also extremely crowded.
2. The bands closed at night earlier than I had hoped and didn’t open up too well. Sunspots? Something? Anything?
3. Seeing that there is still quite a lot of room for improvement on the operator side: using software, contest technique etc.

My sincerest thanks to Juha OH8NC and Veijo OH6KN for the opportunity to work from this fantastic station, and my YL and little child for their support :)
CW is!