ARRL Triple Play

A new award created by the ARRL has me excited about 2009, it’s called the ARRL Triple Play. The award is presented to any amateur who works all 50 states on CW, SSB and digital modes. One catch to the award, it began today, so any contacts prior today do not count. The other catch, so to speak is no need to submit QSL cards to the ARRL, but confirm all QSOs through Logbook of the World.

I like the concept and hopefully this award will help me in becoming a better operator, which I think it will. Until last month, I had avoided any SSB contacts, mainly because I am not really set up for good SSB. While I have done as much as I can with my Hustler 6-BTV, I still lack true output needed to make good ’59’ contacts. I was able to secure a handful of US and Canadian contacts in the RAC Winter Contest, so I now know I can be heard, but it will take much work on my end to WAS using SSB.

Much of my logbook is filled with PSK31 contacts, well over 160 confirmed QSOs. Thankfully in November and December, 2008 I was able to add RTTY, CW and Olivia to the logbook. So as it stands now I am well on my way to working all 50 states, but have started back at zero with the 3WAS that will be awarded by the ARRL. I started off on the right foot, but confirming North Dakota today, not always an easy state to find.

In the first month of 2009 there are three contests that could really get my moving towards the award. This weekend is the 2009 ARRL RTTY roundup, which I will be working from N6RO, as well as trying to put some time in at my station. The North American QSO Party CW is the following weekend, which should further add to my WAS total and the following weekend is the North American QSO Party SSB. All of these contests are brief exchanges and many hams should be on the air for all three contests.

While I am not fully sure what to expect, I do know this, it will be an enjoyable time. I am looking forward to the contesting experience I will get this year, operating my own station, as well as taking part at operations at N6RO, now that I am a member of the NCCC (to be confirmed at next meeting as I understand it).