View Poll Results: Has the 2015 E-Skip Season Been the Worst of the Past Decade?

Voters
8. You may not vote on this poll
  • Yes, it has been the worst in ten years.

    2 25.00%
  • No, actually one of the better ones here.

    4 50.00%
  • It's been poor, but my new SDR receiver has made up for it.

    0 0%
  • Poor, but the tropo has been so hot, I hardly noticed.

    1 12.50%
  • Worst in ten years? Worst in many more years than that?

    1 12.50%
  • Terrible. I plan aliens, ISIS, Hillary Clinton, or Donald Trump.

    0 0%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Thread: 2015 Worst DX Season of the Past Decade

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    St. Catharines, ON
    Posts
    505

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    There was only one top-of-band opening this year here, which occured on June 29th. Only 29 new stations via Es for me this season. It was by far the worst year in my QTH.

    I'm still hoping for another e-skip opening, or at least some new tropo logs to make up for the lack of Es this year.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Enfield, CT
    Posts
    1,172

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    This is a hard poll to answer because none of the choices fit. On a score from 1-10, with 10 being fantastic, I'd give this season a 3 and I'd give last year a 1.5. Every season since at least 2012 has been poor here. There were too many openings with MUFs sitting at 50mhz, or maybe it just seemed like that due to the lack of analog TV DX. I don't expect next year to be much better, given all the LPFM, HD and translator crap on the air now blocking frequencies. And TV DX will be even bleaker with Mexican analogs gone. Hows that for optimism.

    So we wait all year for skip season and we get two lousy weeks? Better than nothing, I guess, but not much.
    Mike B.
    Enfield, CT
    -72 30' W/41 59' N
    FN31RX

    Online since 1999 and still going at
    mikesdx.com

    Archives: The Original Mike's TV/FM Page with Tuner Mods and Lots of Old Stuff

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Yakima, WA
    Posts
    308

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    We DID have a four-week drought of Es from May 17-June 21. I was getting to the point of going back to AM because it felt like a 2012 season. You anxiously wait for summer to begin, and NOTHING comes out of it.
    As for Frank Merrill, I'm sorry that your Es season has been one of the worst yet (and I thought 2002 was record-breaking terrible). I wish I could deliver a load of Spokane area skip for you (and I know you had KIIX-96.1 WA last year). I am too far to hit Illinois on 1-hop, and even Keokuk IA is 1520mi
    Wonder what it would be like if we had all the US and Canadian analogs still on. People would be complaining - "God, I am so SICK and tired of seeing WPBT and WESH EVERY SINGLE DAY!!" I suppose even though WPBT was practically a villain on channel 2 in the east and Midwest, I'm sure you all miss seeing "2" in a square and the PBS logo almost every day in the summer.

    And by the way Mike-CT, HD Radio has turned into practically an excuse for FM stations to sign on an analog translator, blocking a prime DX channel, to relay that HD2 or 3. KHHK Yakima has done that so far, turning on HD and destroying 99.9 and 99.5, all the while destroying 3 channels at the top of the band for analog HD translators!

    -crainbebo
    FM/AM/SW DXer of Yakima, WA! God Bless America!

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Macomb (western IL)
    Posts
    66

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    A major silver lining is that I've mostly escaped the scourge of multiple local IBOC's (with WIUM-91.3 the only one within forty miles), as well as LPFM's and translators (locals 89.7/90.5/[LP]106.3 in Macomb with one, the 90.5, M.I.A., with no others commonly receivable from "most" directions in a rotation). I'd say that's pretty good, though the local AM station has a CP for one on 103.7!

    Actually, the condition of the dial here, with *LOCALS*, hasn't changed in more than five years, or whenever it was that Colchester-96.7 came on. (As soon as I made that comment, I decided to "think my way" down the entire dial.) Yes 96.7 is the most recent change, and I think that's been about seven years. No local has even increased their signal noticeably here, though at some point in recent years WIUM-91.3 moved somewhat closer, but that could even be ten years ago. (DX'ing around them is a lost cause anyway, so I didn't really pay attention.) In fact, one local has LOST strength...WKAI-100.1 increased from 6 to 25kw...BUT they're now 13 miles from me (formerly 4 miles) and I can actually get skip through them sometimes now, not really before. I'm also not really sure when that happened, as I wasn't paying much attention. Even that might be 8-10 years ago.

    About the only other change with "locals" is that WDUK-99.3 Havana (34 miles) sometimes (or always?) leaves their carrier on all night, though they program limited hours. Also, WSMI-106.1 and WEAI-107.1 still sign off every night.

    So, condition of frequencies here has done NOTHING to hamper Skip (the overnight sign-offs are irrelevant to that) recently, though there are enough semi-locals and "shorter-DX-range" stations to hamper long haul Tropo openings, compared to years past.

    I consider myself very lucky with all this, but that also means that (unlike some places such as Yakima) I CANNOT blame the dearth of skip in recent years on a "worse dial" because nothing has changed, really - the onus of the blame is on conditions.

    Speaking of Yakima, I would love to get a good opening that "digs" into WA/OR at least a little bit - say KJDY-94.5, Walla Walla, etc. Oddly I've never even had a good Boise opening (1270) in 30 years here, yet I've had Kalispell and Missoula decently here, and Las Vegas (1360) twice to top-of-dial. My highest SW Idaho frequency logged here is 96.1 ("Ontario, Oregon"). You're right about my 96.1 KIIX, crainbebo, and even THAT (not to mention the 98.1 previously logged) beats Boise.

    So, OK, the "northern angle" from here for that stuff is almost identical compared to the Canadian Maritimes, and I'm absolutely *LOADED* with tons of FM openings up there over the years and 20 or 30 1,400+ mile loggings up that way. What is THAT all about?

    In fact, at least one-half of my 1400+ milers, if I totaled them all up, would come from the Maritimes, I think. (For accuracy, I need to remove my three catches which are "confirmed" to be Double Hop from other directions, when comparing.) That's even true when considering that I have a massive 1400-1500 mile swath across Mexico which is readily available, Cuidad Veracruz to Mexicali, yet I've heard very few over 1400 from there.
    "I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do, because I notice it always coincides with their own desires" - Susan B. Anthony

    IF VEGETARIANS EAT vegetables, then what do humanitarians eat?

  5. #15
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Thunderstorm, KY
    Posts
    1,727

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    None of the above... kind of the way I feel every time I go to vote.

    E-skip season has been so-so this year (about what I'd expect near the Solar cycle peak) but it's not over, yet. In a 'normal' year (what's that?) Es usually fizzles out in early August at my location.

    Ever since I called Al Gore a, "hypocrite" he's been messing up my tropo. This is the third year of, less than average, Tr conditions, so, no real help there, either.

    73, Ed NN2E
    Owner / Operator - Murphy's Law Test Site & Thunderstorm Proving Grounds
    "You Might Be a Redneck If...
    Your TV is on 24/7.
    Your TV has been permanently on for over a decade.
    The only time your TV is off is during a power outage.
    Your TV gets 512 channels, but you go outside to use the bathroom.
    Your new TV is sitting on top of your old TV.
    Your TV costs more than all of your other furniture.
    Your deer-stand has a TV antenna on it.
    Your cable provider has no idea that you exist."
    Jeff Foxworthy

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    near Seaside OR
    Posts
    253

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    Frank,

    I have yet to hear any IBOC on FM. I am too far from anything on trops, and so far no E Skip has been noted since I got the FM6 up. I am hoping for something, but I have not been at the FM dials all of the time either, so I could have missed out of something.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Wilkes-Barre, PA
    Posts
    318

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    It was the worst E-skip season since 2009 when TV went digital. There was really nothing notable this year after the 4th of July. Much like 2010 but worse than that. I don't know if it was the worst since I've been DXing. I remember some years when there was a lot of skip on channels 2 thru 4 but little on FM in analog days. This year would rank close to those years if we had the analog DX to compare it to.

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Fort Walton Beach, FL
    Posts
    1,526

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    This Es season was OK here. I'd grade it C+ or maybe B- There were more quiet days than expected and most of the openings were... (yawn) But there were events that made the grade higher.


    June 20 short skip event to North and South Carolina,
    June 23 all day event well into the night open all over including to Mexico and northeast at the same time that gave some nor'easterners 2X FM to Mexico.
    July 14 with over 1.5 hours of 93.9 "IQ Radio" from Costa Rica, very strong at times, one I've been looking for 10 yrs and mostly gave up on expecting to ever receive. 1kw 1425 miles
    Three two meter Es openings best being June 29 with 14 QSOs in CT,PA,NY,MD,NJ,RI,MA,QC
    Aug 11 probably the grand finale, 2 hours of strong Es to northeast (most missed)
    On the down side only three openings to the Caribbean, and only 1 of them occurring after July 12 when I put together the portable setup at my daytime work location intended to catch more Caribbean events due to the SE blockage at home. And it was as wimpy as FM Es can be so that part was a bust.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Randy KW4RZ Fort Walton Beach, Florida panhandle EM60

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Shreveport, LA
    Posts
    3,563

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    If I had not had the opportunity to check the TV often (or have my son check for me sometimes when I was
    busy), the results for 2015 would have been much lower.

    After going through my DX notes for May - August of 2015, my first thought was that I'm spoiled and
    greedy; I don't really have reason to complain.

    However, the facts are these: There were fewer days with Es events overall, fewer long-lived events, and few
    events with sustained MUFs above channel 4. It is also a fact that the quality of Es seasons has declined here
    every year since 2011, and 2015 was the worst since I began keeping records in May of 1994.

    Yet, there were some extraordinary high points. Here are a few:

    (1) A readable text ID from XHAO-4 San Cristobal's 2 kW shadow, XHAO-4 Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chiapas, was
    received and phtographed on July 29. This is almost twelve years after receiving XHCSA-2 Cristobal's
    same-channel shadow in Tuxtla - without being able to photograph the text ID and no proof that the Tuxtla
    location was even legitimate. (Many thanks to Raymie.) This reception was on the same afternoon that Mike P
    received his extraordinary FM logs from Belize, Guatemala, etc.

    (2) Forty-four watt analog K02KP was received with KRWG IDs on June 10 and July 21. It is not a new log,
    but it was the first time I could photograph any ID material.

    (3) KFMP-LP-6 Lubbock TX was added to my list of LPTVs received via Es on July 21. I even made a photo.

    (4) Two new DTVs were logged by Es this summer, and I was able to record good on-air ID material from
    several re-logs. I know that Mike P had more new DTVs than I did.

    (5) July 20 brought re-log YNFA302-2 Nicaragua (1,475 miles) and my first phtotograph of the "7/4" logo on
    HRLP-4 Honduras. YNFA302 is not received here at all some years, and I was even able to make a fair photo of
    the logo.

    (6) Three new logs from Mexico: XHHHN-2 OAX, XHCOV-4 VER, and XHAO-4 Tuxtla. XHHHN-2 OAX was
    also a new log for Mike P a few days earlier, and he was the first DXer to record XEW-2's new text ID in July.

    (7) The last week of July and the month of August brought some impressive Es, including photographs of "CTV
    Ottawa" news on CJOH-6 on August 11. At the same time, Mike P logged a bunch of FMs from ON, NY, and PA.

    Rather than give the season a grade, I will emphasize the fact that I made the best of what came my way, and it
    was a blessing to have that opportunity.
    Last edited by Danny; 09-04-2015 at 09:17 PM. Reason: Poor typling again
    Danny
    Shreveport, LA
    Mexico/Latin America TV DX ID Tips http://www.tvdxtips.com
    Submit and read DTV Stats http://www.tvdxexpo.com/dtvdxrecords.html
    TV and DTV DX Photographs http://www.tvdxexpo.com
    My Photographs of 100 Mexico TV DX Local IDs http://www.tvdxexpo.com/100mexicotvids.html
    More than 1,100 TV logs since 1994

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    15 mi NW Phila, PA
    Posts
    1,532

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    I don't recall if I voted on this or not. In any event, this was one of the better seasons of late, with two huge FM openings - 6/23 which added 4 Mexicans to my logs, all 2x; and 8/11, which resulted in over 160 distinct logs. Also added 5 new translators via Es, though a couple are 250 watters. I can't judge by overall quantity of new logs because there are a number of usable frequencies I've 'fished out', but all that was missing were a Caribbean and a Maritimes opening.
    Russ Edmunds
    15 mi NW Philadelphia, PA
    WB2BJH -- Grid FN20id
    Yamaha T-80 & Conrad RDS Manager;
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