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Operating in Spain and France - is 40 m the preferred Band ?

I have activated four peaks near Barcelona, in the EA3 region. It appears that operations on 40 m is more popular in the Eu than 20 m. Is this the case, or is propagation over the last few days driving operators away from 20 m ? My activations, while successful, have only a few contacts. Times of operation have been 0600 GMT, 1200 GMT, 1800 GMT, 2300 GMT. Thanks for any advice.
Brian

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Hello Brian.
40m is not more popular than 20m but always open over Europa. Ptopagation is weird on 20m. This band is open a little in the morning and allows VK/ZL contacts and at the end of the afternoon. Unless you have a very good directive, which is never the case in SOTA, the 40m and 30m are sure values.
Good activities in SOTA.
Best 73.
André f5ukl

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Thanks. In the US it seems 20 from the west coast has propagation somewhere most of the day. It is the same with DX, as you stated, early morning and late afternoon propagation picks up. I will set up on 40 m while here. Thanks

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Hello Brian,
being Spain a country located in the most western part of Europa bands work a bit different than for any other central european place.

40m is working well as a short range distance during mornings and any SOTA activation usually bring lots of EA chasers and also some from near countries like France and Portugal, nevertheless it is difficult to work some other distant places in central Europe.

20m is reserved during the sunrise (05 utc) to VK & ZL DX via Long path these days, due to improved solar conditions. After sunrise the band is more or less closed but soon opens to all central european countries since 8-9 utc. Working EA by using 20 m is difficult in the other hand.
If you activate after midday (since 16-18 utc) propagation will enable you to work North America, where 14, 18 and 21 MHz are the bands of choice for such trans atlantic DX contacts, while some European could also work you, some of them via backscatter.

30m, as André mentioned, is a fine intermediate range band to work EU, but only of interest if you are a CW operator; are you?

When I do an activation during mornings (that spans between 8 to 11 h utc) I usually run 40m first, and then I switch to 20m later.
If I do an activation after lunch I experience a reduced number of chasers from EU plus a few NA DX if propagation is in good shape.
Bigger number of QSO are achieved during weekends as well.

Can I ask you for details of your rig and antenna while you activate in EA?
Hope to work you soon, 73 de Ignacio

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I live in Spain. I have tried 40 m LSB SOTA and I avoid it now. Why? First, most people who work you don’t know what you’re doing, have no account in SOTAData, and will never upload their QSO. Second, there is quite a large amount of people that does not know how to behave in a pile-up. You may call “the station EA7” and still have a station from, say, EA4, call again and again, regardless. Then someone posts you in one of their Spanish clusters, and then you are likely to receive calls from people who are pushing 1 kW and can’t hear you. I decided I did not want to deal with that kind of traffic anymore. Happy on 17, 20 and 30 m, and even happier with my rusty CW which usually helps me secure the four contacts needed.

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Hi Brian,

I looked at some of my 26 activations in EA3 and to me it seems that on 20m I did more QSOs than on 40m. This applies only to SSB.

On 2m FM it’s really hard to get 4 contacts and 60m is not so popular as in central Europe.

Maybe the propagation on 20m wasn’t so great during your activations?

Enjoy your stay!

73 Stephan

Usually I’d have figured 20 would be the more popular choice, but over the last few weeks the Sun has been playing games and the propagation has followed suite. Summits I might have expected on 20 but not on 40 have been workable on 40 but not on 20, and vice versa. Throw in the occasional black-outs, and…

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Hi Mikel,
In case you don’t realise - the contacts don’t have to be with SOTA chasers, any 4 different contacts will do. If they don’t enter the contact into the SOTA system, it doesn’t matter. You enter your activators log and that is taken as being correct, without any cross-checking.

Some other award schemes need both sides to enter the contact into the award systems website - SOTA does not.
73 Ed.

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Hi Brian @N6IZ

Thanks to activate EA3 and F/PE but never seen you on 40m, I’m too closed to work you on 20m with my little pwr/antennas :joy: and asked you via the cluster for 40m try … but nothing !
You was active from several first summit activation (20m CW) and lost the possibility to work them :pensive:
I know the activator remains the leader and the master of his traffic :wink:

73, Éric
F5JKK

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Eric, So sorry. It has been very windy and cold on all the peaks. I will be activating a few more in the area and will give 40 a try.

Regards,
Brian

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Hi Brian,

No do not change your habits, you have your reasons and they are sufficient !
Others will surely come to activate these summits one day or another :wink:
Merci.

73, Éric
F5JKK

Nice surprise Brian :wink: many thanks for your 40m attempt :+1:
73, Éric

Of course, I know. I just wanted to highlight that they probably expect one of those activities that get them automatically into some ranking because I log them (a number of 40-metre activities are like that).

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