Topband: 160 meters hot between Midwest US and Europe the last few mornings.

Don Kirk wd8dsb at
Mon Jan 22 12:55:53 EST 2018

Much better conditions on 160 meters from Indiana into Europe the last two
mornings.  Early this morning (0553 to 0649 UTC) I easily worked 5 very
loud European stations (thanks).  I have a very modest station with output
power = 100 watts, and a 68 foot base loaded vertical wire.  I heard a few
other European stations calling CQ that I did not even bother to call.

The stations I worked this morning were typically peaking +12 to +18 dB
above my noise floor, but there was also rapid and deep QSB.  Noise floor
in general was lower than normal (my pennant pointed 40 degrees also helped
reduce the static crashes off the back side of the pennant that were from a
big line of thunderstorms between Iowa and Eastern Texas).

What amazed me is that I was the only station spotting these loud stations
when I was on, and these loud stations were being called by very few if any
other stations (maybe I was just late to the game, or maybe the
thunderstorms caused folks to stay off the air).  Most of the time the
European stations I heard just sounded like CQ DX beacons and I could hear
each station for a very long period of time, typically in excess of 30
minutes.  For the 5 stations I worked this morning, I worked them anywhere
from 1 hour to 1 minute before their sunrise, with the average being 30
minutes before their sunrise).

Granted the stations I worked are big guns (HA8LNN, S55OO, F5LQ, F6ARC,
IK2CLB), but conditions were definitely on the special side and they heard
me amazingly well (typically my first call).

I felt like a kid in a candy shop this morning, just wish I'd been on

Just FYI,
Don Kirk (wd8dsb)

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