I thought this session actually turned out OK. QRN was elevated during the evening due to a storm system that is approaching from the West but the geomagnetic field was quiet and reports seemed to be strong and numerous. My transmit and receive numbers have returned to the very good category for this session. This may not be the case for all stations and the recent, persistent low latitude auroral warnings suggest that I shouldn’t be seeing the reports I am seeing. Yesterday WH2XZO noted the lack of good southern openings in the US which I believe is attributed to these reported low latitude warnings. Fortunately many stations are observing improved conditions.
My local storm system was relatively innocuous this morning although QRN increased as sunrise approached suggesting to me that the tilt was favoring high angles. This week is forecast to be a stormy one in North Texas.
Geomagnetic conditions were quiet with a Bz that has been persistently at unity overnight after periods of variability during the early part of the session. Solar wind velocities are averaging 311 km/s and Australian DST values are positive for a change. The Kyoto DST is unavailable today.
The big news at the moment is the return of Andre, FR5ZX, as reported by Stefan, DK7FC, on the RSGB-LF reflector. It was late last Winter / early Spring since we last saw activity from Reunion Island. It was reported that he spent the Summer in France and has returned with a significant amount of radio equipment, much of it for use on 472. Andre’s appearance will hopefully also provide on-air support for Ken, ZS6KN, who has been diligent about being QRV daily over the past several session. Luis, EA5DOM, reported that Ken “…is using Icom 718 and full size +-50m end to end multi band traveling wave antenna at 12m.” Also exciting, but short-lived, was the appearance of 4Z4TJ, but it seems that this station was only a band selection error by the station in Germany that submitted the report.
With the VI4SEA special event operation passing it’s half-way point, attention begins to turn to the upcoming VE cross-band event / “Berlin Treaty” special event on November 12 (November 13 UTC). Steve, VE7SL, has worked hard to line stations up in Canada for this event in addition to submitting numerous press releases to email reflectors and social media. The updated info has been posted here with additional links to other information sources. I will detail my operational plans later in this report.
Rick, W7RNB / WI2XJQ, reports that it finally stopped raining in the Seattle area. He decoded eleven WSPR stations and was decoded by 26 unique stations. His unique report details can be viewed here.
Neil, W0YSE/7 / WG2XSV, reports:
“GM John. Some of the ionic fog must have lifted from the north since I was heard by Laurence/we2xpq at least 12 times (with a best of -22) this session. Merv/XCR decoded me 22 times (best of -20). The list of listeners is growing !!
EDIT: Neil indicates that VE7UBC was also a new reporting station for him.
I decoded 12 (the first one is bogus, and maybe XLM also):
I listened for Laurence/XPQ on both LF and MF but did not decode him on either band.”
Ken, K5DNL / WG2XXM, reported that he received reports from 54 unique stations including VI4SEA and WE2XPQ:
Larry, W7IUV / WH2XGP, reports improved band conditions, decoding fourteen WSPR stations including VI4SEA, WD2XSH/15 and a few stations in the East. He was decoded by 51 unique stations, many of them in the East, in addition to VI4SEA, VK2XGJ, ZL2BCG, and ZF1EJ. Larry also reports that he was decoded by WE2XPQ in Alaska but he did not hear Laurence on 630-meters. He did, however, hear him on 2200-meters, just not as well as the previous session. Larry’s trans-Pacific report details can be viewed here.
Ron, NI7J / WH2XND, received trans-Pacific reports from VI4SEA, VK2EIK, VK2XGJ, and ZL2BCG. Those report details can be viewed here.
Ward, K7PO / WH2XXP, received trans-Pacific reports from VI4SEA, VK2DDI, VK2EIK, VK2XGJ, VK5ABN, and ZL2BCG. Those report details can be viewed here.
The VI4SEA special event, operated on 630-meters at the QTH of Roger, VK4YB, shared two-way reports with VE7BDQ, and was received by W1CK and W6XY. These report details can be viewed here and are in addition to details reported elsewhere in this summary.
Due to unexpected visitors early in the evening, the planned CW session fro Saturday night was scrubbed, instead going directly to WSPR which did not require my attention. WSPR reports were numerous with several stations producing and providing CW-level reports and most stations reporting JT9 QSO levels. Receiving was good in spite of storm QRN from West Texas and New Mexico. My WSPR transmission reports can be viewed here and my WSPR reception reports can be viewed here. This morning’s CW session was “situation normal” with low QRN until just before sunrise when it began to peak. The new tentative daily CW plan will be to start prior to sunset at my station, around 2300z at my station right now and operating for about an hour after sunset when I will transition to WSPR. Mornings will begin around 1120z and go until 1300z or so. Some days there will be a CW sked at 1130z but on other days the CQ machine will continue and I will respond to calls accordingly.
For the upcoming Canadian cross-band event / Berlin Treaty special event I will run CW only, calling CQ on 474.5 kHz (CW-rev or ‘USB’ passband) through sunset and into the late evening. I will have classic NTS-formatted traffic for stations interesting in receiving the messages. Most are intended to be comical with maritime themes plus a few “Star Wars”-themed messages included. There is something very elegant about pulling into a space port and reporting cargo aboard the craft in CW in my opinion.
The two main CW stations that I often find myself working on a regular basis and passing traffic to during this event will be unavailable so for this traffic to move, new blood will have to step up. A few other CW operators show up during this event so hopefully they will QNI and report QRV for QTC.
In lieu of only CQing I will also send “high seas” weather bulletins (and possible galactic asteroid alerts!) at times and will make announcements of those times accordingly. I may even send an opening and closing benediction as is done at Marine Radio Historical Society events via KPH. Through the evening and particularly later in the evening and into the overnight I will search for VE stations to work via cross-band and hopefully log a few of them. Most years I typically get a couple.
These plans will develop further over the coming week but operational updates can be found in the upper right corner of this website and in the ON4KST chat. My experience has been that there are a LOT of stations tuning the band for this event and its my hope to provide them a signal to decode as well as entertain a bit with interesting traffic.
Activity seemed to be very good but due to the evening activities here I did not look to see the “official” numbers from the WSPRnet activity page. K4JGR from North Carolina and N7IW from Oregon joined us during this session. Welcome aboard!
Regional and continental WSPR breakdowns follow:
Eden, ZF1EJ, reported southern US stations as well as WH2XGP in Washington state during this session:
Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, experienced significant improvements during this session, hearing many additional stations and being heard into northern California and Hawaii. Laurence also decoded VI4SEA once again. His reports of WH2XCR and VI4SEA can be viewed here.
Merv, K9FD/KH6 / WH2XCR, experienced another strong session including two-way reports shared with VI4SEA and reception reports from 7L1RLL4, JH3XCU, VK2EIK, VK2XGJ, VK3XHM, VK5ABN, and ZL2BCG. Reports were also recorded at WA3TTS near Pittsburgh for the most eastern decodes of Merv’s signal during this session. As previously detailed, the two-way path to KL7 was also very good. Merv’s VK, ZL, and JA report details can be viewed here.
Additions, corrections, clarifications, etc? Send me a message on the Contact page or directly to KB5NJD gmail dot (com).