This past weekend was terrible for signals, but things seem to have picked up somewhat. Here’s a snapshot of last night:
I even had some action on 15 meters and 60 meters. Almost all of my contacts were with North American stations.
The weather has become more springlike lately. The birds are singing, the pollen is falling, and the weeds are sprouting. I think it’s time for some antenna attention. It’s raining today, but later this week I need to get out into the back yard and check antenna connections, coax, and matching networks to make sure everything survived the winter OK. I’m thinking of putting up another 40M inverted vee, since 40 is looking to be a workhorse during this part of the sunspot cycle. The inverted vees have always performed well for me.
I also want to get out and do some portable parks work, too. I’m at the age when sitting in the cold, sleety outdoors with a thirty mile per hour wind whistling around my ears is not fun, so the warmer, more hospitable climate is very welcome.
Forty meters was the workhorse this evening. I worked a bunch of digital contacts on forty, as well as a few on twenty and thirty. Then I went down to the CW portion and had a short (599 … TU) contact with both Montenegro and Kuwait. I tried for quite a while to break the pileup that Z66D (Kosovo) had going but unfortunately, no luck tonight! Ah well, there’s always tomorrow!
Weather’s been a bit wonky here as well. Eighty-some yesterday and mid-forties today. Please, Lord … SPRING!!!
The bands have been sort of lackluster the past few evenings, with not much activity noted from my humble shack, One bright exception was a short, contest-style contact with PJ4/M0SDV, Jamie, last night on 40M CW. He’s vacationing and DXPeditioning in Bonaire, and must be having a great time! He’s a first-class operator and was doing a great job of managing the pileup.
Brings back memories of my DX days in the Indian Ocean. Every time I got on the air, I created pileups. remember, this was back in the days of very active sunspot cycles. I remember huge pileups to the USA and Europe when I was running 5 Watts SSB or CW, using a TenTec Argonaut. Ahhhh … the good old days!!
The bands have been a bit sparse the past few days, but you can just about always find signals on FT8 frequencies when nothing else can be heard. Last night was a bit lean, but I did work nine North American stations on FT8 … all on forty meters.
There were a few CW stations participating in a CWT Contest, but I have my paddles disassembled at the moment, so I’ll make it a priority to reassemble them and get them back in action. There weren’t a lot of stations there, but several were quite strong. Nothing exciting, though, unless you were actually participating in the contest.
We dodged the bullet on this last Nor’easter … we only had a mix, with no accumulation, mostly rain, and above freezing temperatures. Further north, they got the brunt of the storm. This coming Saturday, we’re looking at some sleet and rain overnight, but the temperatures are supposed be be in the upper forties. I’m ready for Spring!