2M0SDV: QSO’s – 1507
MS0YHC: QSO’s – ~1800
On Friday 29th July 2016 I embarked on my first DXpedition activation to the Orkney Islands. This came under the IOTA group EU009 as I was staying and operating on Orkney Mainland. I travelled from Birmingham Airport to Kirkwall via Aberdeen. Flybe offered a great service and I’m pleased to say a comfortable start to my trip.
When I landed in Orkney I was greeted by my host Dave MM0EAX. He took me back to his place and showed me where I would be sleeping. But more importantly he showed me where the shack was. He got me up and running within an hour or so of my arrival. Making 250 QSO’s in that evening.
I then went to see another Radio amateur on Orkney to then go and make another 250 QSO’s in the evening on 40m with a 4 square. That’s already 500 in the log. With a little bit more pile up experience it was almost time for the IOTA contest. I switched from 2M0SDV to the call sign MS0YHC for the contest and switched the amplifier on. It took a few minutes to get the first call but after that I was away. The calls came thick and fast. The first 100 QSO’s came within an hour. My experience was very good.
I was kept fed and watered all through the contest. By the time 1000 QSO’s came it was 00:15z and I was very tired. But I continued through it. But unfortunately for me QSO numbers dropped for a few hours. I was called out of the shack to observe so very faint Aurora behind the clouds. If it had been a clear night I may have had to chance to see my first ever Auroral activity. But I was not that lucky so back to the contest. I was operating for the full 24 hours without much of a break. That got me a nice score. 1723 QSO’s and 2 419 690 point’s before checking. After the contest I went off to bed for a few hours before getting up again for more food and back down to the shack, where I tried to focus on chasing some DX for 2M0SDV. But the bands were flat after the contest (No surprise there)
On the Monday I worked just over 500 QSO’s again which took my total number of QSO’s as 2M0SDV to over 1000. Then I went QRT. Or at least that’s what I thought. I was woken up at 08:00 on Tuesday ready for my flight. But instead Dave had told me that Pacific and West coast USA was coming in loud over the North pole. So I went into the shack and had a few more calls. With some success to my surprise. I managed Oregon, California and Alaska, A few Japanese stations long path. But I also was called by a gentleman In Hawaii. So after I’d worked them all I had no further call’s so I continued to pack. Everything went smoothly from Kirkwall airport back through Aberdeen. A two and a half hour wait in Aberdeen before arriving home in Birmingham airport. It’s a shame my bags didn’t arrive. They showed up at my door 24 hours later. But oh well. I had a great trip and a brand new experience.