Happy New Year

 To all my readers I say Happy New Year! Julie and I welcomed the new year in our sleep as we toddled off to bed around 10 pm and it was lights out. Looking into this new year I would like to continue with my CW journey. With 10K cw contacts from 2023 under my belt one would think I would be done with CW BUT not so my ham friends. This is an art that I want to continue to grow at and to be honest the fun has not even come close to wearing off. 

The plans for the new year are to start more often to run in the CWops mini contests. This would help my running skills to improve a lot. You can practice running with software all you want but there is nothing like the real thing. The 1 hour CWops mini tests would give me live practice twice a week. 

I would like to move a bit more away from all computer code sending during contests and try to add more of me sending exchanges, repeats and sending the station call with my amazing Begali key. The difficult part for me is switching over to the key and then back to the keyboard to juggle N1MM+ logger. 

Now here is a stretch...in contesting there is what is known as single op 2 radio! You have one radio in one ear and the other radio in the other. I don't know how they do it but then again just over a year ago I just could not understand how op's hear one station in a mess of a pile-up. I practiced and low and behold your ears get used to how to hear a call or part of a call. I digress.....My Icom 7610 has two independent receivers and I believe I could start to practice that and who knows! 

As you all know I am retired and I want to keep up with my daily walks (weather permitting) and my 1 hour of stretching that I do each day. I never want to forget how important our health and well-being is.
Well, that's about it for the plans for 2024 but no rule says I can't build and add to the goals I have.

Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

2 Responses to “Happy New Year”

  • Alex W5ALX:

    Hi. I would like to make a comment about CW ops, especially when doing POTA or even SOTA.
    Lots of people, especially “Newbies” are interested in POTA/SOTA, and are going to engage in “hunting> I love POTA, and have been a hunter for some time. As there is illness in the family, I have been unable to go and activate, but without hunters, there would be no activators, right?
    However, I am dismayed by the people who are exclusively CW or FT8. Many Newbies do not have any kind of proficiency or even knowledge of CW, and this shuts them out of “getting”a new park. I do wish people who are activating would work some SSB to allow us who do not like or use FT* or CW to work a park.
    Note – I am an Extra, and had to learn CW to get to General, so I do know it, but an mot that good at it. Out of practice, plus, I like to hear a voice.
    Just saying – I know some people are almost exclusively CW or digital, but it is nice to see people on POTA who use more than one mode.

  • MIke VE9KK:

    Good morning Alex and very nice to hear from you and thanks for taking the time to read and comment on the post. I am one of those CW only guys….well at this time in my ham radio adventure anyway. I did some SSB when I first started out as a ham but I wiped out the radio and tv next door. So it was then I decided to hit the CW road good and hard. I also have put my toes in the waters of digi modes. I understand fully that new ops are mainly SSB and CW is a no go for them. There are many more radios coming out now that offer compact operation good for SOTA/POTA that have SSB now as well. Hopefully this will increase the number of SSB ops.
    Have a great weekend Alex

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