Wednesday, July 25, 2012

E-Skip Opening on July 24, 2012

When I turned on my radio and television receivers on the afternoon of July 24, 2012, I was in for a treat. It was just after 4:00 p.m. local time (2100 UTC), after working a few stations on 6 meters in the Mid-Atlantic states, that I turned on my FM receivers. It was filled with distant signals. My digital TV tuner was lighting up E-skip signals on channels 4 and 6. Although the signal on channel 6 was not strong enough to get even some call letter information, the one on channel 4 did give me call letter information. It was my first TV station of any kind from the Garden State. Here's the pic to prove it.

The opening reached well into the FM the NOAA Weather Radio band. I first logged KHB38 162.400 MHz Atlantic City, NJ on the big opening of July 6, 2004. I relogged the station on that opening. But, the best signal of the opening came on 162.475 MHz from KIH28 in Philadelphia. It was just after 5:00 p.m. St. Louis time (2200 UTC) that I pulled in a severe thunderstorm warning for southern New Jersey. I post a lot of my DX recordings to Box, and here's the link for the audio file:

KIH28 162.475 MHz Philadelphia, PA

I also noted my shortest E-skip on this opening: WFHG-FM 92.9 Bluff City, TN. At 470 miles, this shatters the record of 560 miles, set by WMEZ 94.1 Pensacola, FL in 1994 and KQDS-FM 94.9 Duluth, MN in 2008. 

WFHG-FM 92.9 Bluff City, TN 

I noted several D.C. area stations in this opening; I got a chance to record WMZQ 98.7 and WRQX 107.3.

WMZQ 98.7 Washington, DC WRQX 107.3 Washington, DC 

Even a relay of a D.C. station made it in. American University's WAMU 88.5 has a relay station in Ocean City, MD. 

WRAU 88.3 Ocean City, MD

By the early evening hours, the action shifted to the southwest. Analog channel 2 had at least three stations coming in; one of those that dominated was XEPM-TV in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, across the Rio Grande from El Paso, TX. Here's a pic:

A few stations did make it from the Southwest. The farthest one on this opening was from KPXK 98.7 Phoenix, AZ.

KPXK 98.7 Phoenix, AZ 

I also had a few Mexicans in; this one is from XHBW 93.3 Chihuahua. This one also identified its AM affiliate, XEBW 1280 kHz.

XHBW 93.3 Chihuahua, CI, Mexico

This E-skip opening is one I'll remember for a long time.

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