Saturday, May 22, 2010

Welcome mail

I’m sure the hoards of amateur radio operators who follow this blog are often wondering what kind of rare DX I’m able to work with my 100 watt windom-equipped superstation. Well, a couple of packs of QSL cards recently arrived in the mail via the bureau, so I thought I’d share.

The first pack contained a number of cards for VE3GJS, my original call…so I knew these were hanging around the QSL bureau’s in-box for some time! Sure enough, most were for contacts made in 2001 and 2002 (I acquired the VE3CH call in 2004). The second batch of cards that arrived just a few days later was for more recent contacts. Last year I blogged speculating whether hard copy QSL cards were a fading aspect of the hobby. I’ve never been an overly active QSLer. While I do my best to respond to cards sent to me, and will take the effort to send a card when I’ve worked a new country, I’ve not felt the need to collect as many as possible. I’m not an award chaser, so maybe that’s part of the reason for my lackadaisical attitude towards QSLing. None the less, it’s always a nice little surprise to get a pack of cards in the mail. Better than the other pieces of mail which seemingly consist of only bills.

I think this is only the second time I’ve received a card from an SWL. I wonder why someone would be so into confirming amateur communications they’ve heard, but not pursue getting a licence of their own. Now-a-days it’s pretty easy to get a licence, but perhaps that’s not the case in Italy.

A big gun station whose log, I’m sure, makes mine look like....well, an amateur amateur.

Emmanuel from Guatemala is one of the more common DX stations often spotted on the digital modes. I have him in my log a few times, this one for a PSK31 contact. With over 115,000 look-ups on, obviously he’s very active!

Hmmm….those Slovenian ham shacks are a little rustic, aren’t they?

Technically not DX, but a neat card for a neat station. One time, it would be a lot of fun to work from one of these true superstations. VY2TT is available for rent…hmmm, maybe one day!

I always love working stations in warm places…especially if it’s winter at this QTH. It’s pretty much the next best thing to being there. J39BS is from the “Island of Spice” (Grenada)

These next few are actually cards received via direct post.

My one, and so far only contact with Australia took place in March of 2009. After hearing Gerry making QSOs on 40 meters over a couple of days (and not hearing a response to my call..due to the competition), I emailed him and arranged a sked. Read more here. VK is routine for some hams, but was pretty special to me…especially on phone.

John is probably one of the most active hams from the Northwest Territories, and although it’s in the same country, I do consider contacts with Canada’s arctic region to be DX. VE8EV is also quite active putting special event stations on the air and maintains an interesting blog of his own.

I love Halloween…and I always like working any special event station associated with this holiday. What better place to have a Halloween special event station than Transylvania (Louisiana).
This is definitely not DX. In fact, Mike, the operator of this particular special event station to mark the 225th anniversary of the settlement of Fredericksburg, is less than an hour away. But the unique four-letter suffix caught my attention on 40 meters PSK31 one night. Mike just recently gave a talk to our local ham club about his special events and call signs he’s used. More on his website.

Well there you have it. No super-rare QSLs, but cards worthy of any collection none-the-less. Now, I must remember to respond to those marked “PSE QSL”!

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