This is another “straggler” QSL card as far as it being a rag chew CW QSO I had long before I even knew what being a DXer meant. Canoe, B.C and where John lives now – Golden – are stunningly beautiful places in the Pacific Northwest (Google these towns).
|NA||ITU Zone: 02-04, 09, 75||CQ Zone: 01-05|
Added to the DXCC List: on the original 1937 list. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada
Rareness Factor: “Garden Variety DX with a touch of howdy neighbor”. However, on the low bands – especially 160M, the QSO is very much appreciated since anything on Top Band from the West Coast seems rare – hi hi
Current Clublog Most Wanted (as of this writing): #328
DXpeditions: there have been some to the far northern islands – mostly for IOTA.
I was still living in San Francisco, but in the next year I would be very busy looking for a house in Lafayette, CA. I know that I looked on the Peninsula (Belmont – Davis Drive area – and San Mateo – Bunker Hill mostly) and in Marin (San Rafael, San Anselmo and Fairfax). I almost put an offer on a house in Fairfax, but tried the morning commute starting at 6 AM – and fuggettaboutit! I found what was back then a very little known oasis in the East Bay called “Lamorinda”. That stands for Lafayette, Moraga and Orinda. It had creeks, redwood and old oak trees and rolling hills like Marin, but better public schools, and BART. At the same time – work in my field was starting to shift a bit – you see – back in the day, if you were in IT – it was either the South Bay or maybe the Peninsula. I was the 127th employee at Oracle from 1984 – 1987 and 30th employee at Gupta Technologies from 1987 – 1991, and it seemed that all of my work at database software companies was in Menlo Park. In 1991 I took a job with the City and County of San Francisco. I lived in SF from 1984 – 1994 and usually commuted from the Sunset District (47th and Irving or 21st and Irving) back when 280 had no traffic. I could get to Menlo Park faster than taking the “N Judah” from the Sunset to Civic Center.
N6KR Designed SST – Photos by Wilderness Radio
I’m glad that I used a “pre-DXCC” QSL card because there is one “clue” on the card that brings fantastic memories back. Notice that John congratulates me on my 2 watts. Oh yeah – that was a phase I went through, my “QRP Phase”.
The unveiling of the Elecraft K2 at the California Burger in Pleasanton, CA (bottom). Sierra, NorCal40A and SST above that
Back in 1992, I used to go to the Livermore Swap Meets on Sundays at what is now Chabot College. It used to be a Community College called Las Positas. My parents lived in Pleasanton, and my twin brother lives in Livermore – so I would go to the swap meet and visit with family.
I clearly remember after just a couple years calling CQ and having CW rag chews – mostly on 40M with the Icom IC-725 that it got boring fast. While working at the City and County of San Francisco, one of my clients was the OES, led by two guys who were ex Navy who brought in help from the Navy after the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake. Fun fact – I moved to London and completely missed that earthquake. When I returned, everything was cleaned up.
Anyway, I did try EMCOMM, and helped get ham radio stations in every SF Fire Batallion station in the City, but even that didn’t stick.
For a few years I did build QRP rigs, and especially remember the SST. I remember meeting Eric, N6KR and Wayne, WA6HHQ of Elecraft fame and even Tom, N6BT of Force-12 fame at the Livermore flea market. I had no idea one day I would become an avid DXer and become much closer to all three.
My fondest QRP memories was meeting others at the California Burger where it was an informal “show and tell”. It was a total “Maker” meeting way before Maker was coined as a thing. But I also am loving building stuff with the new Maker driven parts and ethos because Maker embodies the same camaraderie as we had at those NorCal QRP Club meetings.
DXCC Entity “Vital Stats”
20M QSO – QRP and easy since we were so close
The QSO was made during the West Coast mid day, on the Short Path, and the solar conditions were:
|Cycle 22||Start 1986.8||Number 12.3||Peak 1989.6||Number 158.5||Years to Rise 2.8||Years to Fall 6.8||Cycle Length 9.7|
The mean for 1993 was 94.5 – so we were about 5 years away from the bottom of the cycle and also when VK0IR would activate – which in many ways was a major “watershed” DXpedition – and one where my future fate would cross paths with one of the principles of that DXpedition.
This was a fun QRP QSO – just for fun – not for any DX related activity. I still had my old WA2QHN callsign even . .
Important DXCC Resources
- ARRL DXCC Standings – http://www.arrl.org/dxcc-standings
- LOTW – https://lotw.arrl.org/cgi-bin/lotw_page_auth/default
- Clublog – https://clublog.org/index.php
- The History of the DXCC by (me) – History of the DXCC
BTW – I think the best DXCC List is either found at Clublog or in LOTW. The ARRL DXCC Desk and other parts of its web site regarding DXCC almost look abandoned. Luckily, LOTW and their standings lists look well kept, supported and looked after.
- Rusprint QSL cards were legendary and a standard way back when
- I have a really great spot in my heart for the QRP Community. They were Makers way before there were Makers, and they were always a lot of fun to hang with. Wayne Burdick is a true blue QRP-er – I saw his presentation at Pacificon and he is a SOTA kind of guy. He loves his KX2, and its an amazing lineage from the rigs you see above