2004 10 GHz Contest "Second" Weekend 18/19 September

The August weekend was spent on Lake Superior and a success--but with challenges. This year it was time to push our "overland" abilities and successes. WZQ led an expedition of five operators to Sisseton, SD EN15kp. Glen, KCIYT, and I decided to rove in the Red River Valley in eastern North Dakota working primarily the Sisseton Group but also Wally, WPHD and Bill, KAWU operating at Warren, MN and Barry, VE4MA in Winnipeg, MB. The first four images were constructed in RadioMobile and depict which connections we made. All images may be clicked on for a larger jpeg.

Red River Valley


  • Glen at Grafton
  • Bruce at Nekoma Pyramid
  • On the Dike Berm near Grand Forks
  • On Dike Berm looking north towards Winnipeg
  • On the Dike Berm looking south to Sisseton
  • Waving Grain at EN08to
Wow! Glen had a good report of what we did. I'm so glad Barry, Wally, and Bill were on.

Yes, the wind was fatiguing. But it was a beautiful warm, sunny day and I really enjoy driving around up there. The wheat harvest was going on and I find the colors beautiful at this time of year. The gold of the wheat, the bright green of the rushes/reeds around pothole lakes and the beautiful blue of the sky and the darker blue of the water.

Saturday, the RRV worked so well. And it probably would have worked Sunday if we just would have stayed in the valley :-) . Unbeknownst to me, as we worked west into EN08 (and intending EN-07) we took ourselves right out of the good angles from Sisseton. We were gonna be heroes for supplying those rare grids. Next time, we'll stay in the valley. Also, if something isn't working, we should have made a more profound change to get back making Q's of some type with Sisseton. So when the first spot didn't work, we should have started south--instead of west--to regain contacts with Sisseton. Again, the only motivation for going west was to be heroes in EN-08/07.

I thought Liaison worked reasonably well in a mix of .260 and cell phone.

We had 85 Q's the first day and 19 Q's the second day (thanks Gary and Lenny). For me, I had 400 unique points and 18671 distance points for a grand total of 19071 for the 2nd weekend.

Longest distance was 324km from EN18jn to EN15kp. Tried with Mt Tom, W0GHZ, and W0JT once each during the weekend unsuccessfully.

Would I do it again? Most certainly! If conditions were really good, I'd still try the hero effort to EN-08/07. But if it's normal or poor, I'd stay in the valley and push back to where Q's can be made.

Oh, we wasted some time on slow gravel roads. Next time I think I'd be a bit more efficient in travel times. It all comes down to experience.

Thanks to Sisseton for "being there". Ya know, if the fixed stations weren't there, there'd be no point in roving--so I'm glad you guys waited by your radios.

Bruce Richardson - W9FZ

w9fz (at) w9fz.com