2011 ARRL June VHF Contest
The June 2011 VHF contest was a gratifying experience for me. My contest mission was built around three things I love: long car trips, the desert, and being the DX. First things first. Before the contest began, I stopped by the Post Office to pick up my good luck charm: A plaque for being the top-scoring rover in last June's VHF contest!
Then, I took off on a trip as an altruistic rover, mainly to give out multipliers. First stop was the rare grid square of DM24. Six meters was open and my fourth contact of the contest was with K1RZ...in FM19! That's double-hop E-skip from near Amboy! I went on to work stations in the Midwest as well as the Pacific Northwest. I headed North through DM25, then over to DM15 and DM14, then WAY North to DM16, south of Olancha. There, I worked W6YLZ in the Antelope Valley as well as N6VI on Frazier Mountain in DM04. A highlight was working N6NB from many grid squares on ten bands with relative ease.
On the way back from DM16, I caught the Southern California Contest Club rovers on 222 and joined up to work them on all ten bands in DM05. It was nice to find rovers in the total darkness of the Mojave desert after seeing absolutely nobody all day.
The next day, I was headed south through DM04 when I found out that N6NB and N6VI were missing some multipliers in DM03 and DM12. So, I headed south to Signal Hill near Long Beach, and after that, to Del Mar Heights in San Diego County. I finished up the contest on Signal Peak in DM13, working local contacts and some old friends. Total weekend accomplishments: ten grid squares, 873 miles, lots of multipliers to my fellow hams, one Yaesu FT857D with a blown six meter front end, and one broken 222 amplifier.
Thanks to N6NB for equipment support and thanks to everyone who worked me. A great weekend. 73!