13 Colonies Special Event – Wrapup

Well, another big ham radio event has drawn to a close. It was fun, but I fell a little bit short. The 13 Colonies Special Event is each year during the week of Independence Day. Work one, get a certificate. Work all 13 (K2A through K2M) and get a “Clean Sweep” endorsement. I worked 12, being unable to contact South Carolina. That’s the way it goes I guess.

There were two bonus stations this year as well. I was able to work the one in Philadelphia but was never able to make it through the pileup to get the Great Britain station.

Special Event Log – 13 Colonies

DATE/TIME BAND MODE FREQ CALL STATE
2017-07-02-171706 20m PSK31 14.07179 K2A New York
2017-07-05-170500 40m SSB 7.18000 K2B Virginia
2017-07-01-195100 40m SSB 7.21800 K2B Virginia
2017-07-05-184729 20m PSK31 14.07069 K2C Rhode Island
2017-07-01-201100 20m SSB 14.27600 K2C Rhode Island
2017-07-01-203100 20m SSB 14.28000 K2D Connecticut
2017-07-05-172000 40m SSB 7.23900 K2E Delaware
2017-07-01-202400 40m SSB 7.21200 K2E Delaware
2017-07-01-204600 40m SSB 7.20250 K2F Maryland
2017-07-06-021400 80m SSB 3.83800 K2G Georgia
2017-07-02-170700 17m SSB 18.13800 K2H Maine
2017-07-01-143900 20m SSB 14.29500 K2H Maine
2017-07-02-172300 20m SSB 14.27000 K2I New Jersey
2017-07-05-224200 40m SSB 7.27300 K2J North Carolina
2017-07-05-215000 40m SSB 7.26500 K2J North Carolina
2017-07-01-211300 20m SSB 14.31600 K2K New Hampshire
2017-07-02-171000 40m SSB 7.20500 K2M Pennsylvania
2017-07-05-202500 20m SSB 14.25290 WM3PEN Philadelphia Bonus Station

Just as much fun for me was what happened outside of the event. While everyone was trying to work the 15 special event stations, it was quite easy to work other stations while waiting to be able to contact a K2x. I was able to contact six new DXCC entities, work the Gettysburg special event stations, got my first contacts on 2 new bands, and progressed towards my WAS Award.

General Log – July 1-6, 2017

DATE/TIME BAND MODE FREQ CALL COUNTRY STATE COMMENT
2017-07-01-195928 20m PSK31 14.07244 EA2DDO Spain
2017-07-01-205247 20m PSK31 14.07259 PT8DX Brazil
2017-07-01-205400 40m SSB 7.26500 W1G United States PA 154th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg Special Event Station
2017-07-01-211500 40m SSB 7.25700 K0ATZ United States MO
2017-07-02-172500 20m SSB 14.26500 WM3PEN United States PA
2017-07-05-163200 20m SSB 14.32500 KC1CBQ United States MA POTA: Dighton Rock State Park
2017-07-05-164848 20m PSK31 14.07094 N0VFJ United States FL
2017-07-05-173435 20m PSK31 14.07187 NQ6L United States CA
2017-07-05-190005 20m PSK31 14.07106 K4AWM United States VA
2017-07-05-201800 20m SSB 14.29000 V4/W6NN Saint Kitts & Nevis
2017-07-05-202500 20m SSB 14.25290 WM3PEN United States PA
2017-07-05-214200 40m PSK31 7.07098 KE9CK United States IN
2017-07-05-222900 20m SSB 14.27140 PJ7/NP4U Sint Maarten
2017-07-05-234116 20m PSK31 14.07164 GW0UQT/P Wales Clytha Castle
2017-07-06-021156 40m PSK31 7.07135 RA6ASU European Russia
2017-07-06-021234 40m PSK31 7.07135 TG9NDO Guatemala
2017-07-07-001439 10m SSB 28.43310 K0TT United States MN
2017-07-07-002423 20m SSB 14.32200 K0ATZ United States MO POTA: Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield

Unfortunately, the event also highlighted much of what was wrong with this hobby. I invited my mother-in-law into the shack to see what I was working on, then had to awkwardly explain to her that some of the odd noises were intentional interference. Some were operators (albeit excited) jumping into a pileup either ignorant or apathetic to the fact the station was calling by numbers. This, combined with participants who were intent on getting every station with every band and every mode, made the process much more difficult than it could and should have been. Yes, I did contact a few stations more than once. But I made a point of only doing that when they were slow, and I made sure to spot them afterwards to get them more contacts.

I get challenging yourself, but there are only endorsements for CW and QRP. There is no reason to try to complete on all bands except ego. There is no reason to chase all RTTY or PSK31. All that does is add to the chaos, and that is the last thing we need.

The bottom line is I had fun. I will do it again next year. But if amateur radio is to survive as a hobby, we must clean up our behavior. If it comes down to it, we must assist with enforcement as well by not engaging with or acknowledging stations which do not follow (or are even openly hostile to) the proper code of conduct.

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