2005 Results

What? Good Conditions?

Traveling down Route 14 in eastern Ohio on the Saturday morning of the 2005 Ohio QSO Party, the bands sounded like another typical OQP… uninteresting conditions where working fellow Buckeyes would be difficult at best. Half an hour before the start we heard W8FT in Findlay warming up on 40 CW, with a signal barely above the noise. Oh well. In the drizzle we found a good place to stop in western Mahoning county, and put up the DK9SQ fiberglass mast and 40 meter dipole to get our OQP Rover operation ready for the start of the party.

But in next 20 or so minutes a miracle occurred. Forty meters popped to life. In the few minutes before the start, stations called in with good signals from all over Ohio, including counties only 50 miles away. The contest started and those guys were worked for the contest, and lots others. Forty meters wasn’t the only beneficiary. Signals on twenty were loud and close, with lots of stations reporting cross state qsos on twenty. There were even reports of 15 meters being open to nearby states, though not much activity made it up there. Ten meters even showed signs of life with N8VW working KU8E on both modes in the first hour and as far north as VO2 in the early evening.

These great conditions didn’t hold up for the entire OQP period, though things still stayed in reasonable shape for the rest of the day. There were a lot of rain showers during the day, but thankfully we avoided the truly nasty weather that affected a lot of people in 2004.

When it all cleared, there were a lot of records left in the dust. For Ohio, only the multioperator class did not break the existing OQP record. On the other hand, the improved Ohio conditions and general low sunspot propagation contributed to the result that no new USA out of state or DX records were established.