Last night marked the return of propagation between Texas and Wasilla, AK. The dry spell has spanned from March 15, 2015 until July 21, 2015 but curiously, the return appears to be right on schedule when comparing data from previous years. Laurence, KL7L / WE2XPQ, reports that he was using multiple antenna configurations, including the K9AY Loop, a 10-foot diameter active magnetic loop, and an LFEngineering L400b probe. The probe once again proved to be the best antenna to hear my signal. Laurence reports that the path to Texas and the lower-48 (about 112 degrees) has the worst S/N of any path he might observe due to noise sources in that direction. What makes this path interesting to me is that Laurence does not experience darkness this time of year or even twilight, for that matter. Somehow enough signal is making it without excessive attenuation.
If history repeats itself, the latter part of Summer could prove to be exciting. Of course, time will tell as solar activity has been elevated this year in addition to weather patterns that have resulted in more late-season thunderstorms that increase the overall noise floor. Last night represented the first quiet geomagnetic conditions that we have seen in quite a while.
While some speculation suggests that ducting is at work, this could also be a matter of ionospheric motion.
As we move into the late Summer in the northern hemisphere, I hope that we begin to see stations in Oceania listening for stations in North America. By mid-August, the path to VK and ZL should begin to manifest itself if it is going to happen.