I’ve been chasing and working European stations on 20m between 600 and 830 UTC each (ZL) night now for almost 2 weeks. Both operating portable in ZL and working EU QRO stations and QRO here chasing portable SOTA/WWFF in the EU.
So how about more of you EU stations giving 20m a go in that window …!!!
You want it? - You get it!
Thursday 14 April 2022
Thanks for the hint Matt! Will try to activate some peak on Monday the 18th of April between 6:00-8:30 UTC. So looking forward to work you soon. Hope HF conditions will have improved by then…
(One of our club members is working VK stations daily in the mornings around 600 from his car.)
Both locations are good for DX!
I know - but unfortunately the predictions for DX are not so promising.
The last two evenings I had DL20SOTA/P activated on the higher bands to possibly make QSOs to NA or SA… I heard some… but it was relatively weak and the only QSO to NA was K2LT.
But anyway - Thursday morning Feldberg
Conditions where indeed very weak. However managed to work one US station on the weekend…
Lets hope that conditions will improve during the next days…
Fingers crossed for Thursday!
Yes, we got it. 6 UTC as advertised. Thank you!
Thanks for the 20m contact, Armin. I wasn’t expecting SSB so surprisingly good in VK2.
You’re still workable now at 0730z just not quite as strong as an hour ago.
73, Gerard - VK2IO
Well, as a hilltop ‘radio experiment’ to test the topic title, I think we can call that a success!
Thanks to all chasers - many first DXCCs for me there, and my very first S2S outside Oceania.
Well done Matt,
I see you have concentrated on 20m. A little earlier (say 0500-0600 UTC) ZL to EU is normally wide open via Grey line propagation on 40m. Something else you might like to try to catch. The problem with 40m at the EU end is the number of active stations, so finding a free frequency is always a chore.
73 Ed DD5LP
Thanks for my first ZL summit! You had a very good signal if I was able to receive you with my 10m wire on the balcony!
73 and happy Easter
The conditions were better than I expected.
I had my first SSB QSOs with ZL and VK… including my first S2S with ZL (tnx Matt)
The signals were really good… partly 57! and even stronger than the stations from EU.
After several calls I tuned over the band myself and answered VK / ZL stations calling CQ. One station was a bit confused about my callsign… and a bit reserved… he told me that he first had a quick look on qrz.com what DL20SOTA is all about. Then we had a nice QSO.
My setup was KX2 with a small 35 W PA on an east facing Inv - L Endfed for 40 / 20 / 15 / 10 … and for 17m I connected the endfed directly to the KX2 with 10 W and used the tuner.
Originally I had planned to activate DM/BW-002 afterwards… but I thought I would do that again in one morning
will give it a try Friday morning at 6:00 UTC from DM/BW-114 (also DLFF-0090).
On the air with 5W CW on 15m, 17m, 20m and 40m.
With priority on 20m…
Hope to work some VK/ZL stations.
This is reminiscent of 2014 and 2015 where VK grey line activations produced a lot of interest for EU and UK chasers working VK1 summits.
Weather permitting, I will activate a number of VK1 summits, for grey line propagation after the Easter break.
Lookout for VK1 grey line activations next week.
I have posted an alert for Monday morning 0630 UTC (1630h local). VK1 sunset is 07:40 UTC (1740h local). The descent is 30 minutes in the dark.
I will open on 14.310 MHz +/- QRM, radio FT-857 @ 25 watts into a vertical GP.
I’m looking forward to working chasers in the EU/UK regions.
I will attempt an activation each day next week.
I may be wrong (I often am), but I thought Greyline was only on the lower bands 10MHz to 1.8MHz - I think the propagation you will get at 0630UTC is long-path F-skip. I have been using it for several contacts into VK5 and VK3 over the last week, both from portable and from home. Currently, MUF is subdued by the high Kp Index, but by Monday it is predicted to be back at 3 or below so this should bring some “easy” contacts into Europe. With the way the band has been over the last 10 days, inter-continental S2S contacts will soon also be “normal” again. I will be out on Wednesday from UTC 0600, if the bands are good let’s see if we can exhange an S2S contact. By the way, as MUF rises in frequency across Europe from South to North, finding a frequency lower in 20m will help those in Northern Europe hear you earlier.
Setting aside the impacts of coronal holes, CMEs and other mysteries emanating from the sun, as VK1 activators found in 2014/2015, the goose often lays the golden egg during a 90 minute window which commences before VK east coast sunset.
Call it what you want, we know the propagation window to EU/UK opens and later closes. In 2014/2015 the propagation window was best exploited using the 20m band.
I’m afraid tonight the goose refused to lay.
Grey-line or not, I’m pretty sure all the chat back then was about it being a long path opening, which makes a bit of a difference if you’ve got a beam that needs pointing…
Yes intestesting - the 3 European contacts I did get on tonight’s activation were all good clear strong signals and the reports I received were all 55 to 59, despite me running QRP. SP9JKL, DK8MZ and FY5KE so a reasonable northern spread. But the bands were certainly a silent place compared to yesterday. Maybe those 3 just have exceptional antenna systems!
Hopefully it will all be playing nicely again by Monday as predicted.