The weather’s been beautiful in the National Capital Area. We’ve broken some temperature records, not just in the last few days but for most of the month of March. The winter was mild too. There have been robins in south Greely since Christmas week. They stayed all winter this year. Temperatures were 16C yesterday and reached a high of 15C today. With the warm weather comes antenna maintenance and improvements. I spent yesterday running 130 feet of new coax to my Cushcraft R6000 vertical. It was long overdue and I kept putting it off in typical ‘ham’ fashion. I did spend most of the winter on 40 meters because conditions were very good and my PAR EF-40 End Fed dipole performed very well.
After terminating the coax with connectors and checking my work I got it all connected and working. 20 meters was full of signals about mid afternoon and I snagged a DXpedition – TM7CC – Ouessant Island IOTA EU-065. Ouessant Island is the western most part France’s territory out in the Atlantic. They had a potent signal into Greely on RTTY and I snagged them on the second call. Signals on 20 were strong until well after dusk.
Today, signals were pounding in on 17 meters. Around supper time the JAs dominated the band with RTTY. It’s great to see the bands coming alive again and staying open late. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard that much DX on the upper bands. There are some exciting times ahead for us hams – all over the world.