March 1988 Forecast -- Flux Range 101 - 132

by Roy, AD5Q - Houston, Texas

We are moving into springtime, and this will change the bands dramatically. The area of darkness over the pole will give way to a gray-line path deep into Asia and Russia.

HIGH BANDS: 10 Meters will improve, with likely openings into western Europe. Fluxes probably won't be high enough to really open 10 up, and this band seems to best in the fall anyway. Look for big things to happen on 10 this fall, but as for spring, the action will be on 15 & 20. Both bands will be staying open later into the evening throughout the northern hemisphere. This makes for longer and broader openings into Europe and Asia via short path. Russia should be easily workable on 15, with some polar stuff in the early morning and evening. It is oblast hunting season on 20, which will echo with the hollow sounds of countless soviet CW sigs.

LOW BANDS: 40 is still in good shape, and is a good place to be after 20 closes. The sunrise sweep across Europe is earlier, 11- 1 am local time. The pacific starts to come in before midnight. Northern paths on 80 will begin to fade, but southern hemisphere activity should improve with declining summer QRN. Look for a gray-line path over the pole on 40 at sunrise.

20 LONG PATH: Gray-line Antarctic paths should remain open to India, the Middle East and Europe in the morning, and Indonesia and SE Asia around sunset. East/West circuits are not gray-line and different rules apply. These are essentially nighttime paths with stations on both ends in daylight, but in opposite hemispheres and opposite seasons. There is a critical point toward the eastern end of the path where it is 4:am. If it is winter at that point then the path is closed. This is why we have not been getting the long path to Africa in the morning, even though we get VK in the afternoon. Africa and Indian Ocean LP should start to open sometime this spring 1-1/2 to 2 hours after sunrise. Have fun!!

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