Thanks for your thoughts on 30M. I think it's my favorite band on many activations, for several reasons:
1) 30M covers a large part of the USA effectively at mid-day.
2) 30M reaches many of my favorite chasers and activators.
3) 30M is ideal for several mountain areas favored by busy activators.
4) 30M is quieter than 40M, especially for QRN from storms.
5) There are no disruptive contests on 30M.
6) In the USA power is limited to 200W, so there are few over-powered chasers.
7) With sunspots declining and the solar flux going down to base level, 20M is often too long for many SOTA signal paths, while 30M now is ideal for those same stations.
Our recent situation with increased solar activity and excellent propagation on 20M and 17M has been fun, but now those solar active regions have rotated behind the sun, so we have near-solar-minimum conditions again.
Under these conditions, many activators and chasers in the USA are too close to me for 20M propagation, but too far for good reception on 40M at mid-day, when path losses are high. I find that 30M is often the only band that works.
I'll be using 30M as part of my mix for activations. It certainly will be the money band on many days, as we go forward into solar minimum.