Neil G4DBN wrote:
>Bob N7UA and I had a QSO at around 1505z on 29 Dec 1997 and he was only
>audible on my north-west rx antenna.
This short path over or near the polar regions seems to be best during low
sunspot years. In fact 1997 was the best year propagation-wise around the last
sunspot trough, at least from my perspective. On the other hand, the sunrise
long path seems to peak up in high sunspot years which obviously is now.
Back in the mid-1980's (around the sunspot minimum in that period), in W1 we
would sometimes get propagation over the North Atlantic short path at our
sunrise. It was common to work Zone 40 this way. I have not seen this path
open here since that time, however. In fact, that period in the 1980's
produced extended periods of outstanding lowband propagation that hasn't been
repeated since (at least not for me).
73, John W1FV