Thursday, 29 December 2016

Propagation: Terrible!

This morning, having a bit of difficulty raising any SSB QSOs, I tested 20m paths using WSPR.

The results were not encouraging.  Despite the tens, if not hundreds of WSPR stations present on 20m, only four - yes, FOUR - could hear my 2W signal!  That's something of a first at 20m for me.

Things got substantially better late afternoon, allowing a decent SSB QSO into eastern seaboard USA.  From then on, it was downhill, fast.  I just managed to complete a valid QSO with a WA7 station - invisible on the waterfall and only faintly audible - in Oregon, using OLIVIA 32/1K, before the band died a death once more.

It's not now uncommon to find 20m the highest band that can be used for the whole day.  17m opens fairly regularly, and even 12m can open mid-mornings, though it's been dead for a couple of weeks now.

I guess we can only expect more of the same - and worse - for the next couple of years.

Ho hum!

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