January 1990 Forecast -- Flux Range 166 - 259

by Roy, AD5Q - Houston, Texas

It is now mid-winter. Both 10 and 15 are closed at night, and certain night paths we take for granted on 20 are no longer reliable. With fluxes as high as they are, this situation is temporary. It is not so serious anyway, as 10 and 15 are jumping during the day and 20 is still open to all parts of the world. Some of the DX windows are of shorter duration, and on 10, some of them do not open at all. All this is easy to adjust to unless you specialize in 10 meter operation. Propagation patterns have shifted around some, providing opportunities on other bands that should be exploited.

LOW BANDS: DX is very workable on 40 CW right now. Europeans are coming through all evening, and African CW stations seem to like this band too. Pacific stations come thru late at night, and we have a sunrise peak to Asia with a brief grey line opening to northern Europe. A southerly long path is available on 40 to southern Asia along the grey line, but a 40 meter beam is almost a necessity for this path. 40 meter delta loops aren't much good for long path or polar work. There have been some surprises on 80 - like copyable signals from the 3Y operation. A nice stateside ragchewing band in the evening is 160 SSB.

HIGH BANDS: There is no shortage of DX on 10 Meters, which will remain good for a few more months. 15 is also good right now as a strictly daytime band. During spring, 10 will deteriorate and 15 will improve. All night 20 meter openings will return in February, but morning long path is good right now. Use the afternoon and morning long path openings for the exotic southern Asian stuff that is now so difficult via the north. We also have improved daytime conditions on this band. Keep in mind that it is only winter in the northern hemisphere, and that 20 is open all night everywhere south of us. Long haul pipelines across the southern hemisphere are accessible from mid-afternoon. The easterly path includes Africa (during their prime TV/hamming time), the Indian Ocean (if anybody is awake) and the long path to VK (where it would be morning).

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