A good weekend to get serious about radio again

The Worked All States Triple Play award is getting closer with every contest weekend. I made a serious effort on Saturday as soon as the clock struck 1 p.m. EST with the start of the North America QSO Party SSB contest.

I began with QSOs on 10 meters, then worked my way through 15 meters and scanned the 20 meter band several times over, mainly focusing on states I had not logged phone QSOs with. I worked for two hours, broke for a few, then returned right before dinner, grabbing a crucial Alaska QSO while he was calling for “4” stations.

Unfortunately I lost several hours (and the majority of the 40 meter band window) while I went out for a longish dinner with friends. By the time I returned it was after 10 p.m. and the only action I could find was on 80 meters, although conditions were quite good and I racked up more QSOs on 80 in a few hours Saturday than I have in the past two years of hamming. I also managed to slip into the pile-up for W1AW/3 (Delaware) on 80m phone and get him in the log for my first ARRL Centennial QSO.

I finished the period with 56 contacts. It’s a low number, but I was mostly focusing on states I hadn’t worked before, so I skipped quite a few that would have been easy grabs. Overall, it was a casual, fun weekend of radio without any pressure or unrealistic expectations.

That said, I’m sitting at 120 of 150 contacts needed to complete the Triple, so there is still much work to be done, particularly in Morse code QSOs.

Here’s what remains:


  • Idaho
  • Mississippi
  • North Dakota
  • Wyoming


  • Alaska (contact made, unconfirmed on LOTW)
  • Indiana
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Nebraska
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Dakota


  • Alaska
  • Arkansas
  • Delaware
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • Oklahoma
  • Rhode Island
  • Virginia (QSLed via card, unfortunately, paper QSLs are not allowed for the Triple Play)
  • West Virginia
  • Wyoming

I don’t see any reason to go into panic mode yet trying to hunt down the last 30. I would describe my operating style as very casual, and even so, I’ve made some decent progress towards this award. It just takes some well-timed operating, some luck and the realization that it’s not going to happen in a weekend — at least not from my modest station.

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