My subscription to Life expired, but I still have a subscription to Mad.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Norton Outlook

I live on a ridge of mountains that are the highest points in the county, but you would never know it if you visited my home because I am surrounded by trees, which essentially blocks the horizon in all directions. Up on the roof, I can see some of the horizon the six months of the year when the trees are defrocked, but it still not visually impressive.

To be impressed, you have to hike into the woods to Norton Outlook, an outcrop of rock that is in the clear. Once or twice a year, I like to be impressed so I hike to Norton Outlook. Although Norton Outlook is only two-fifths of a mile from my home, you can't get there from here and I have to hike about a mile and a half over various trails to get there.

Wednesday's weather was inviting. Clear skies and temperatures in the mid-40s, so I decided to hike up to Norton Outlook. It was a fairly easy hike. There was no snow or ice to slip me up. It was muddy and puddly in spots, but my Totes waterproof boots kept my feet dry.

Forty minutes later, I reached the outlook and was pleased to see that I picked a perfect day. The sky was perfectly clear – minimal haze and smog to ruin the view from Long Island Sound to Mount Holyoke in Hadley, Massachusetts.

I spent about a half hour on Norton Outlook taking photos, enjoying the view and getting impressed!

View to Southeast

View to Northeast

Annotated Southeast View

Annotated Southeast View

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

WTOS in Log


I have not made a top-of-the-hour recording in awhile. Since LW and MW band conditions have been so good lately, I decided to make a recording at 0600 UTC on Tuesday.

I lucked out – band conditions were excellent and I heard stations from all over the eastern half of the continent on MW and stations from all o er Europe and North Africa on LW, but I had only one new logging: WTOS on 910 kHz transmitting 5,000 watts from Bangor, Maine, 303 miles to the northeast.

ELAD FDM-S2/SW2 receiver/software and 80-meter dipole antenna were my receptors.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Six on the Sixth

UN on 388 kHz in State College, Pennsylvania

Good conditions/propagation this morning resulted in six new entries in the longwave log.

LE on 242 kHz transmitting 100 watts from Lexington, Kentucky, 670 miles west-southwest

D7 on 350 kHz transmitting 25 watts from Kincardine, Ontario, 472 miles west-northwest

AZ on 370 kHz transmitting 25 watts from Kalamazoo, Michigan, 648 miles west

IRS on 382 kHz transmitting 25 watts from Sturgis, Michigan, 644 miles west

UN on 388 kHz transmitting 25 watts from State College, Pennsylvania, 353 miles west

IL on 407 kHz transmitting 25 watts from Wilmington, Ohio, 585 miles west-southwest

ICOM IC-R8600 receiver and 80-meter dipole antenna were my receptors.


Saturday, January 4, 2020

Mobile DX


I always have my car radio tuned to an oddball frequency to hear what I can hear as I go mobile. The radio is a stock AM-FM unit in a 2007 Subaru Outback Sport. It is sensitive, but its selectivity could be better.

Anyway, Friday afternoon (3:30 PM EST/2030 UTC), I had a 10-minute run to the grocery store, so I tuned to 1710 kHz to maybe hear a pirate or a TIS. Nothing but static going down the mountain, but on the way back, I heard WQFG689, the Hudson County, New Jersey TIS, transmitting 10 watts, 85 miles to the southwest (photo above). I almost never hear them during daylight from the radio shack, so I was surprised when they popped up and put in a solid signal as I topped the mountain and pulled into the driveway.

By the way, my best AM band mobile DX so far is WAPA in San Juan, PR, on 1030 kHz, about 1650 miles to the south-southeast. Best FM band mobile DX so far is WLHR in Lavonia, Georgia on 92.1 MHz, about 750 miles to the southwest.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Christmas Eve UTC Loggings


My 200th longwave logging was a doozy!

RT (photo above) on 284 kHz at 0518Z, December 24, transmitting 500 watts from Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, Canada, 1659 miles to the north-northwest. The 1659-mile logging was impressive enough, but the Nunavut logging also represents my first logging of that Canadian province. (Truth be told, I had never heard of Nunavut until I logged RT and looked it up on the LW Radio Beacon list.)

My 201st longwave logging occurred 30 minutes later and it was unusual, too.

SJX on 382 kHz from Beaver Island, Michigan, 688 mile to the northwest. It was unusual because when I looked it up, it wasn’t on the list, which made me wonder if I decoded the Morse code ID correctly. The signal was very weak and buried with static crashes. I listened some more and confirmed that SJX was correct, so I checked other online resources and finally found it at AirNav.com.

As usual, my ICOM IC-R8600 and 80-meter dipole were the receptors.

Merry Christmas and Good DX!