[CQ-Contest] Aurora and ARRLCW conditions

Robert Shohet kq2m at mags.net
Sun Feb 25 17:04:32 EST 2001

Bruce, ZF2NT, asked about whether or not there was auroral activity possibly
depressing US & VE signal strengths and lowering his score.  The answer is
YES! there was.

There is a very useful NOAA website that displays pictures of the auroral
"coverage" of the North & South poles.  You can find it at

I use it during the contest (along with WWV) to check polar absorption and
plan operating strategy.

Although quite unusual, even though we had very low A & K indices during
ARRLCW, there was significant polar absorption on Friday, Saturday & Sunday
evenings, causing a large deterioration in the path to JA - which was very
evident here in Connecticut as compared to last year, when there was
practically NO polar absorption with similarly low A & K indices, and I had
GREAT JA runs.

Oddly enough, this year the polar absorption seemed to peak in the evenings
and decline in the mornings.  Same with the K indices.

CT1BOH has a good website that also has this auroral map as well as other
propagation indices.  I think his site is at


Bob KQ2M

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