I was eventually bound to discover that an electronic logbook can be more than just a repository of data queued for delivery to LoTW. It’s a warehouse of information that can be searched, pivoted, and made to generate all manner of statistics.
In my quest for WAS via FT8 I’ve kept an eye on Hawaii. It’s been elusive for me on this mode. I worked a handful of HI stations in their QSO Party just last weekend, all on phone. My log says I’ve worked Hawaii 38 times since I’ve been keeping records, mostly via CW. I’ve seen exactly two Hawaiian stations on FT8 and was unable to snag them.
But while spelunking the data I discovered something else. I need Nebraska too. Though I’ve worked one station in Nebraska using the new mode, I never received confirmation for that contact via LoTW. I don’t know how I missed that fact - I’m not just one short of my goal, I’m two. And though you might assume Hawaii is more elusive than Nebraska, my logbook tells me otherwise.
If you believe in pesky things like facts, Nebraska is an exceedingly rare entity. According to the data, I’ve worked Nebraska exactly five times in the 21st century. Five times. FIVE. It’s my least worked state among all 50 of them.
During this century I’ve logged Alaska 29 times, Florida 235 times, Ohio and Michigan over 250 times each. Among what I assumed to be the harder to get states, I’ve worked Rhode Island 31 times, Vermont 33 times, and Wyoming 17 times. South Dakota, Montana, and Delaware appear in my logbook more than 20 times each.
Nebraska is exceedingly rare. Unbelievably rare. Hell, it’s just two states to the west from here on the other side of the corn belt. I never knew - or even considered that it might block me from achieving Worked All States on a particular band or mode. I earned WAS mixed and WAS CW years ago but I guess never realized the margin was so razor thin.
I’m confident I’ll confirm Hawaii over the next few weeks, maybe even today.
But Nebraska seems a special case. Perhaps we should launch a massive DXpedition to the Cornhusker State, it seems I may have a better chance of confirming P5 before I do Nebraska - the very rarest of these United States.