Winter E-Skip continues, this time into the Caribbean (updated)

post-fmesWinter 2015/2016 continues to be intriguing in terms of off-season Sporadic E-Skip. There were reports of top-of-the-band FM Es into Jamaica in my region.  Lee, a DXer 70 miles south of me in Richmond, VA, positively logged 88.5 Mello FM from Montego Bay, Jamaica and likely other nearby countries on Jan. 13.

Click above to hear Lee’s slam-dunk positive ID from Mello FM, which corresponds to the station’s programming listings online (thanks to Lee for the clip).  He also received other Spanish and Caribbean signals, many with strong signals, during the 7-8 p.m. hours.

Locally, my FM band was more or less devoid of skip, except for a fade-up of a NPR-like station on 89.1 which had horrible audio processing, and a religious station that faded in and out briefly on 91.3.  Both signals disappeared at about the same time that Lee’s signals went away.

I believe that I matched my 91.3 FM station to the webstream of NCU 91.3 from Kingston, Jamaica.  Although the music seemed to be a match, the Es-reflected signal was weak and not in-sync with NCU’s stream to the point where I was unable to confirm reception.  Either way, it was intriguing to pick up such exotic DX when the temperatures outside are below freezing!

Listen to Lee’s other unidentified station audio clips, plus a full list of what was received, after the jump. Continue reading

New FM DX Log: WERA-LP 96.7 Arlington, VA

post-fmtrWhile doing a routine dial scan upon seeing emails from the WTFDA email list regarding signal enhancement in the region, I came across a new log and a new station: 96.7 WERA-LP, Arlington, VA.  The signal is 21 watts at 17 miles away.  I’ve been trying to get this station for a while, as I read recently on that it would be starting soon.  Without even knowing, I received the station 38 minutes after its 6 p.m. debut.

96.7 WERA Arlington, VA, “WERA” – community, 12/6/15, 6:38 p.m., 17 miles.

weraAs noted in the above audio clip, WERA’s signal at my house is extremely weak, given the distance and wattage of the station.  Thankfully, it is of least concern with regard to DX interference.  My DX Log and Audio pages have been updated with the new content as noted in this post.

Impressive Tr opening 9/6/15. 1 new log.

post-fmtrA great tropo opening in the early morning hours of Sept. 6 brought in one new log, HD Radio decodes for the first time from four relogs, and several New York, NY FM signals (93.1, 97.9, 101.9, 104.3 and 107.5) at over 220 miles away.  The surprise of the night was a first-time HD Radio decode from relog 101.5 WRAL from Raleigh, NC over local WBQB that was received regardless of where my antenna was aimed, and at a point in the opening where few other Raleigh-area signals were in.  The opening started at 3 a.m. with Philadelphia FM relogs booming in, replaced sparingly with NYC and Raleigh signals at 4 a.m., and then it all died down around 5 a.m. with my usual Norfolk, VA tropo pests starting to come in.  My DX Log, HD/RDS Screenshots and Audio pages have been updated with the new content listed below.

@ = new

101.5 WRAL Raleigh, NC, 218 miles over local WBQB

103.7 WXCY Havre Continue reading

FM E-Skip Opening 6/29/15 into AL, AR, FL, GA, LA, MS, TX. 10 new logs.

post-fmesA mammoth of an FM Es opening, full of top-of-the-band HD Radio decodes and many new stations, filled my radio dial in Northern Virginia on June 29.  Without a doubt, the strongest opening of the 2015 season.  Only 11 minutes into the opening, signals were up to 107.9 FM from the Atlanta, GA area under 550 miles with full IBOC decodes.  The opening lasted about 100 minutes in the FM band, before completely dropping out as fast as it appeared.

What surprised me during this opening, save for the short <600 mi distances, was the prevalance of RDS and HD Radio decodes.  Many of the stations listed below were ‘HD hits,’ or stations IDed by the HD Radio calls received upon immediately tuning to the station.  Signals were also fairly strong in this opening, a major difference from previous openings this season.  My DX Log, HD/RDS Screenshots and Audio pages have been updated with the new content listed below.

@ = new log

88.1 WUWF Pensacola, FL, HD hit, 794 miles
@ 88.1 WJSP Warm Springs, GA, HD hit, 579 miles
89.1 KUAR Little Rock, AR, HD hit, 883 miles
90.5 KLRE Little Rock, AR, HD hit, 877 miles over local WJYJ
90.7 WWOZ New Orleans, LA, HD hit, 945 miles
91.3 WMPN Jackson Continue reading

FM E-Skip Opening 6/23/15 into FL, IA, IL, KS, LA, MO, OK, NE, SD and TX. 6 new logs.

post-fmesSporadic E was very active in Northern Virginia for most of the afternoon on June 23.  Based on unattended recordings on 97.7 and 101.9 FM, FM Es first appeared at about 2:15 PM and continued off and on, save for a dip during most of the 6 p.m. hour, until 8:16 p.m., for a cumulative 231 minutes in FM.  I, unfortunately, was only able to DX the last hour or so of the opening due to work, but I did log a few new stations via the unattended recordings.

In terms of locations covered during this opening, it seemed to be across the entire midwest with signals from multiple states being received all at once. At times, signals were 2-3 stations deep at once, making identification difficult.  For the most part, signals were weak and sparingly.  The opening had a MUF of 106.9 FM.

My DX Log, HD/RDS Screenshots and Audio pages have been updated with the new content listed below.

@ = new log

@ 89.1 KSQX Springtown, TX, “QXFM” – public radio, 1207 miles
89.9 KTHF Hammon, OK, “The House FM” – ccm, 1232 miles
92.3 unID CHR
92.3 unID country
92.7 KUSO Albion, NE, “US 92” – country, 1096 miles over local WWXT
92.9 unID urban
92.9 unID country
93.5 KKOT Columbus Continue reading

FM E-Skip Opening 6/22/15 into ON, MB, MI, MN and ND. 6 new logs.

post-fmesAs others have commented on the TV/FM Skip Log, I would call this a surprise opening.  Out of nowhere at 8:23 p.m. June 22, FM Es shot up to 100.9 FM, staying there for 54 minutes with a MUF of 105.7 FM before disappearing almost instantly.  During this opening, I received many signals from Ontario, Manitoba and upper Michigan–an area often overlooked during upper midwest openings in lieu of Minnesota FMs.  My DX Log, HD/RDS Screenshots and Audio pages have been updated with the new content listed below.

@ = new station

88.7 unID religious
88.9 unID VCY Radio station
89.1 unID french
89.5 CJRL Kenora, ON, “89.5 The Lake” – ccm, 1141 miles
89.9 unID french
89.9 unID classical
90.3 unID public radio
90.5 unID CBC radio
@ 91.5 CKPR Thunder Bay, ON, “91.5 CKPR” – hot AC, 900 miles
@ 91.5 WJOH Raco, MI, “91.5 Smile FM” – ccm, 647 miles

@ 92.7 CKDR Dryden, ON, “CKDR” – hot AC, 1083 miles over local WWXT
92.7 KZDR Kindred, ND, “92-7 The Drive” – classic hits, 1127 miles over local WWXT
92.9 WSCD Duluth, MN, HD hit, 937 miles
92.9 KKXL Grand Forks, ND, “XL93” – CHR, 1177 miles

@ 93.5 WKMJ Continue reading

FM E-Skip Opening While On Vacation in Florida 6/20/15

post-fmesI’ve been in Florida for the better half of last week (new travel and airplane DX logs coming soon).  However, while in Florida I was lucky enough to experience my first Sporadic E opening away from home.  I was driving in the West Palm Beach area at 1:04 PM on June 20 when I noticed 89.1 WVTF with full RDS coming in.  This was very interesting for me, as WVTF is from my home state of Virginia and is an occasional tropo visitor at home.

The band was open for about an hour total and by the time it ended I was driving in the Stuart, FL area.  As I was driving, I did not DX local signals that were received during the opening between West Palm Beach and Stuart.  I stopped for the RDS screenshots and recorded audio of the entire opening on my phone, hence the clips below.  Also, since I was mobile during most of the opening, I am not including any mileages below (however, most mileages are likely in the 800-950 mile range).

Again, these stations were received by Sporadic E in south Florida, not at my home in Virginia:

88.7 WSIE Edwardsville, IL, “WSIE 88.7” – jazz, 1:41 p.m.
89.1 WVTF Roanoke, VA, 1:04 p.m.
91.7 WBGL Champaign, IL, “91.7 WBGL” 1:23 p.m.
92.3 unID country, 1:41 Continue reading

FM E-Skip opening 6/16/15 into TX, LA, OK, MS, MO

post-fmesI must have written too soon about the lack of FM Es this year.  An average Sporadic E opening brought in signals from Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi and Missouri to my Virginia home on June 16.  The opening started at 8:39 p.m.and ended at 9:26 p.m., with a cumulative 35 minutes in FM with a MUF of 106.1.  Most signals, save for KKHH, KCIL and WDGL, were weak and unstable and the MUF was largely below 98.1 for the majority of the opening. Although no new signals were heard, I received some new RDS screenshots, seen below.  My HD Radio/RDS Screenshots and Audio pages have been added with the new content below.

Relogs received:

89.1 KWFC Springfield, MO, 859 miles, RDS hit
89.5 KWGS Tulsa, OK, “KWGS” – public radio, 1026 miles
92.9 KBEZ Tulsa, OK, “Bob FM” – adult hits, 1045 miles
94.5 unID CHR, suspect KRUF Shreveport, LA
95.3 KQKI Bayou Vista, LA, “95.3 KQKI” – country, 1013 miles
95.7 KKHH Houston, TX, “Hot 95-7” – CHR, 1214 miles
96.7 KCIL Gray, LA, 998 miles, RDS hit
96.9 KXBJ El Continue reading

FM E-Skip Opening 6/3/15 into FL

post-fmesA good FM Es opening apparently blanketed the U.S. East Coast on June 3, however, I was at work all day and completely missed it, save for unattended recordings on 97.7 and 101.9 FM.  Skip was in for a cumulative total of at least 38 minutes between 12:20 p.m. and 1:04 p.m. with a MUF of at least 101.9 FM.  The opening was focused on South Florida, with only two relogs coming in on the unattended radios:

97.7 WTLQ Punta Rassa, FL, “Latino 97.7” – spanish, 883 miles
101.9 WWGR Fort Myers, FL, “Gator Country 101.9” – country, 882 miles

My Audio Files page has been updated with the above audio clip from 97.7 WTLQ.

First FM E-Skip Opening of 2015. 1 New FM log.

post-fmesThe 2015 Sporadic E-Skip Season officially started right on time in Northern Virginia on May 14.  Although I completely missed this opening due to work, my unattended recordings on 105.3 FM found Es off and on between 9:04 and 9:58 a.m.  Within the 9 a.m. hour, FM Es was at a MUF of a least 105.3 FM for a cumulative total of at least 28 minutes.  I received one new log from this opening: 105.3 KLIP from Louisiana.  My Audio Files page has been updated with the new clip below from KLIP and my DX Logs have been updated, accordingly.

New log received:

105.3 KLIP Monroe, LA, “LA 105” – classic hits, 935 miles, 9:33 a.m.

Relog received:
105.3 WACR Columbus AFB, MS, “WACR 105.3” – urban AC, 723 miles