BCQP 2017 club reminder: Feb 4 8am to 8pm BC time

BCQP 2017 is coming up in just a few weeks. Please give a gentle reminder to club members so that they can prepare if they haven’t done so already. And SRI if I’m duping you in the mailout. I’d rather dupe you than have you left out of the loop!

This is a rather long email but it is packed with info to help everyone make the most of this event.

As tough as conditions may be, QSOs are still possible, albeit with different strategies. Think of it like driving in the weird winter weather we’ve been having in BC, especially in the Lower Mainland. If you can drive when the weather is awful, you’ll have no trouble when the weather is good.

Key Details
Date/Time: 1600z Feb 4 to 0400z Feb 5 (Saturday, February 4, 8am to 8pm, local time in BC)
Objectives: BC stations contact anyone anywhere.
Stations outside BC have to contact us!
Exchange: BC stations give three-letter code representing the federal electoral district in BC + RS(T)
Stations outside BC give province/state/”DX”*
*In BCQP, Hawaii and Alaska are not considered DX. Stations in KH6 and KL7 will give “HI” and “AK”, respectively.
Stations outside the U.S. and Canada will give “DX”.

Resources
Rules: http://orcadxcc.org/bcqp_rules.html
FAQ: http://orcadxcc.org/bcqp_faq.html
Helpful Hints: http://orcadxcc.org/content/pdf/2017_hints_for_bc_stations.pdf
Multipliers: http://orcadxcc.org/bcqp_districts.html
Same-day event schedule: http://orcadxcc.org/content/pdf/excel_sked_2017.pdf
Federal electoral district lookup: http://www.elections.ca/home.aspx

Be Prepared!!
BCQP has the potential to be tremendously fun, even when band conditions are frustratingly bad. But operators must be prepared, not only from a hardware/software point of view but also from a simple administrative point of view.
1. Read the rules.
2. Know your own district!!!!
Go to http://www.elections.ca/home.aspx , scroll down a bit and plug your postal code into the space provided. Compare against the BCQP multiplier list to find the appropriate three-letter code.
3. Have your multiplier lists handy — both the BCQP federal electoral districts AND the U.S. states — to facilitate logging.
4. Know how to execute a trade (see Helpful Hints) to maximize QSO potential. Keep same-day event schedule nearby.
5. Be aware of the suggested frequencies, especially alternate suggested frequencies for CW during overlap with NA Sprint.
6. Listen for the “net approach” (note).
Note: A few years ago, some operators got a net-style situation going on 40m and 80m SSB in the last couple hours of BCQP. There’s no guarantee that this will work every year, but listen for it. You might be able to connect with stations that would not necessarily be listening in your direction but with the help of “net control”, they’ll turn the beam and pick you up.

Tangible Rewards
BCQP relies on stations in BC to get on the air and stay in the chair. The party just doesn’t happen without us. And because this is a home-grown event, BC stations have more chances than in any other on-air event to capture tangible rewards.
Certificates: Top scores in each class of entry receive a beautiful photo-based certificate highlighting something scenic or special about BC.
Special Recognition: If submitted logs are particularly numerous in any given category or results are particularly noteworthy, additional certificates are awarded, as appropriate.
Top District Awards: BC’s federal electoral map has 42 districts. To encourage operators all over BC to get on the air, we offer special certificates for top scores in each federal electoral district. Only 10 QSOs are needed to qualify.

Plaque Program
Through the plaque program, supported by radio-related clubs, businesses and individuals, we are going into BCQP 2017 with plaques in nine categories. The ones that BC stations have a chance at are Top Score BC (single-op), Top YL Score, Most Federal Electoral Districts Worked, Top Mixed Mode, Top Club BC and Top Score BC (multi-op)
* For an individual score to count toward a club aggregate, the submitted log MUST indicate in the Cabrillo header the club to which the score should be allocated.

Logging Software
The goal of BCQP is to get BC operators on the air to practice their skills. Everyone should keep a log of their contacts, because someone may request a QSL card (eQSL, LoTW, etc) at some point later on, but if a program does not support BCQP, there may be problems inputting data and/or getting an accurate score.
BCQP is fully supported by N1MM Logger+ software as well as CQ/X GPS-enabled software for mobile contesting and QSO party software by N3FJP. Other programs have generic QSO party options, but all software really needs the computer and radio to be interfaced to work as intended.
Paper logs are OK if the QSO count is less than 50.
No one should worry about logging software — or lack of it. Each operator can use whatever logging method works for him/her. And if the program used doesn’t generate an accurate score, don’t be overly concerned.
The log-checking team at Orca DXCC will make sure everyone gets the points s/he is entitled to. But, and this is a big but, logs MUST show the required information. See the rules for details.

BC in the Spotlight
BCQP is quite probably the only annual on-air event that puts BC in a spotlight. VE7/VA7s can contact anyone anywhere. We can QSO with other BC stations, with stations in other parts of Canada, with U.S. stations, with stations in Asia and Europe and South America and Africa and Australia, with DXpeditions, with anyone. Anywhere.
Consequently, the potential for fairly constant activity, regardless of band conditions, is tremendously high for BC operators who get on the air, stay in the chair and call “CQ CQ BCQP”. If the pool of BC operators is deep, stations outside BC will have an easier time in their hunt for VE7/VA7s, and the number of participants from outside BC will grow. The activity fuels more activity — the snowball effect. Let’s get it rolling. Let’s keep it rolling!

GL. I’ll be in the SSB chair running the VA7ODX sponsor station call. Drop by for bonus points!

73,
Rebecca VA7BEC
Contest Coordinator for BCQP, Orca DXCC

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