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Previous seasons in Lemmenjoki: 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14
Other DX-pedition sites in Northern Scandinavia: AIH KONG PAX (ENOX 2007-2011)
LEM antennas: Measured LEM antenna directions on the Great Circle Map
|LEM348 22NOV2014 - 29NOV2014|
Hannu Tikkanen (HAT) and Håkan Sundman (HS)
HAT & HS
Welcome to another day of broadcasting activities. Usually the conds get worse, when the indices improve – but at least this time they focused to the eastern part of the continent! Signals started to improve around 2230 utc (no daytimers/no worries) with a general, wide coverage from New York to Great Lakes. But it was nice to listen to the strong, clear signals in the late evening for a change! In the morning there were YV/HJ-stations mixing with regular eastcoasters, but nothing really interesting, and the southern signals weren’t really that good either. The total lack of South American conds was an unpleasant surprise of this expedition, especially as HAT got really badly hooked with them last year, after a long break that had lasted some decades ...
The assortment stayed in the same area of East Coast/Great Lakes the whole day, so for a change we had totally different stations to tune in than during the first five days of the expedition! Regulars had a very nice reception, but it was very hard to find anything new among the stations. WPPG-1450 dominated its’ frequency from early night, just like WMID-1340 & WCMC-1230 their own respective channels. So we ended up identifying other good old friends eg. WIOD-610, CFCO-630 (always nice to hear this station, brings back memories from the Summer of ’77 in Garden City MI), CHRF-980 again being naturally a pest, WSAL-1230, WIRA-1400, but also WLEC-1450. Late afternoon gave just a few westcoasters, of which a strong split 1469,710 gave a need to identify it: KBSN Moses Lake was the verdict as anticipated, but the ID was also very weak. Still, we feel comfortable to announce this split.
All in all, before the closing down words and without knowing what kind of a selection will run over us tomorrow, we must confess that this week has been fun once again! We were blessed with NA signals from the very start of the expedition, and even though it’s been hard to find new catches, it’s always fun. That’s why we’re here every year.
It’s now early evening, the house has been electroluxed (couldn’t find the hoover) and the floors have been flooded; next is sauna, then it’s dinner time and some prepacking. As we’re gradually contemplating about returning to the civilization, it’s time to stop beating around the bush and get back to business:
The final tip of the day follows. And it's weekend down there in the south anyways, right..?!
ps. Apologies about the link of yesterday. We really didn’t hear five new Hawaiians last Sunday, the 23rd. Just one, KEWE-1240, but it deserved a High Five. To pick up a new Hawaiian with the overoptimistic attitude “maybe it’s already on the air though there are no such news about it”, and to identify it exactly four minutes later, was some kind of a record for its’ listener. The station had inaugurated broadcasting already a day before, on the 22nd with its’ current 1000-watt test level, but we spent that day travelling and unpacking. Damned.
A new station a day helps you sit, listen and play!
There’s still not much to say about the evening conds, nor the nighttime dxing, though lots of common NA stations could be found there at night. This morning finally changed the receiving direction from Idaho and surroundings, from which it’s always challenging to find new stations. Already yesterday there was a short break to East Coast giving old suspects such as WNZS-1340, WIKE-1490 etc, but this morning the conds remained on the coast line a bit longer. Unfortunately nothing fancy, only common stuff, thus stations such as CFCO-630, WCMC-1230, WGVA-1240, WBAE-1490 and a handful of Rebeldes and Relojs were heard. The commonest West Coast throughout the day, as always.
What else? of course ... the tip of the day, already from last Sunday and ever since, to be exact!
Groundhog Day. We could have copied the comments and the list of the identified stations from yesterday, but we didn’t. On the other hand, we haven’t said anything about the evening conds, simply because there’s nothing to say about them, except: half a dozen of weak NA signals in the early evenings. Now it’s said. And it’s sad.
Instead we’d like to take this opportunity to thank JUS and JJN for cleaning, mopping and hoovering the house. Job well done!
What else? of course this ... link of the day is the hint of the day!
We tried hard to keep our promise of yesterday, but the conditions neglected our mission to catch all of those states today – a few remained missing. In fact, the stations started once again from the Great Lakes/Great Plains in the very early morning. Gradually the listening area broadened, and the rest of the morning/midday/early afternoon was spent west of the Rockies. The stations were audible with strong signals throughout the day, but this kind of a station assortment is a tough challenge, if one is seeking for new catches…Lots of regular graveyarders were noted in addition to even more common regional channelers, eg. KOBB-1230, KHAS-1230, KWSN-1230, KGFW-1340, KODI-1400, KKTL-1400, KYNT-1450, KATE-1450, KBBS-1450, KOVC-1490, KRIB-1490, and XENU-1550 being an example that we really didn’t forget Estados Unidos Mexicanos either. KCAP-call was now heard on 950 (ex KMTX, a very recent call change), and KREL-1580 seems to be heard whenever one tunes into this frequency.
Letfovers from the Pacific Islands were heard as we promised, KTWR-801 being the sole example. Japanese had a very strong and short opening at the same time, but nothing of interest was heard, however. And finally it was time to pay a visit to Inari Kultahovi and to purchase some fresh groceries for the rest of the week at the same time.
What else? ohh, the link of the day of course!
Nighttime offered nil, the early morning hours were pretty much equal, but gradually the conds travelled from the Great Lakes towards Rockies and remained there for the rest of the fairly short opening, until the Canadian Prairies took over. Graveyarders and some regionals offered the Great Plains at the same time; KODY-1240, KCOW-1400, KWBE-1450, KOVC-1490, KJAM-1390, KGIM-1420. Some Mexicans were noted in the mix, XEHX-860 for instance, but there was no real cx to the south of the border. Mañana? Daily pattern seems to offer also AK and HI, so eg. KXXJ-1330 was audible with a booming signal. Asia was a disappointment, but what else to expect in late November, tbh?
What else? ohh, of course this ...
Tomorrow’s schedule naturally offers LOTS of rare NA stations to report, and after recording terabytes of exceptional catches from all the 50 states + the leftovers of the Pacific islands, we’ll enjoy the traditional dinner in the Inari Kultahovi!
LEM348 is now on. HS and HAT loaded the car in Pasila and found their traditional table reserved for them in the restaurant wagon, as planned. After passing Tampere JM and JHT were identified sitting in the nearby table, on their way to Aihkiniemi, so some time was spent chatting together.
The driving conditions were very nice from Rovaniemi to Lemmenjoki, sunny and a few cm of snow. Couldn’t have been better! Some NA was also heard in the very late afternoon hours after the receiving equipment was installed; a few west coast big guns, a handful of AK and HI - so this all looks promising.
The first night offered some regulars from Great Lake, and the morning hours scattered the cx westward reaching AK and HI once again. Late afternoon included some common Philipinos. So, nothing spectacular for starters (not expected either), but it was indeed very nice to see that the path is open towards NA. If the promised R1 stays away, the conds might have a decent chance to improve during the next days!
|LEM347 08NOV2014 - 15NOV2014|
Jopi Nyman (JJN) and Jussi Suokas (JUS)
Friday 14NOV2014 - LEM347 Howling Off
Today's NA session started a bit later than yesterday, and lasted about an hour longer. The final results are not yet fully available, but at least KRDO CO 1240 was IDed live. As a piece of interesting information, CJSL 1280 was approved to change the transmitter location and frequency last May, and the station was heard on its new frequency of 1150 AM.
When the signals died out it was time to round off the week and enjoy a rather tasty All Day IPA Session Ale from Grand Rapids, Michigan. The menu for the closing night: Pasta Carbonara and Lindeman's Bin 50 Shiraz The house has been hoovered, mopped and emptied of protons and particles for HAT and HS to come next.
This is LEM347 howling off.
Today's hour of fervent DXing (between 6 and 7 utc) was directed to the Great Lakes and gave us a couple of new stations (WOKY 920, WMAX 1440) until the band became practically empty around 7.30 utc. The Spaniards have been surprisingly silent if not non-existent for several days, so in the afternoon we recorded some more audio material for our future Chinese numeral lessons. And practice we'll need, because at the moment we still sound like two hesitating sheep with our er-er-bah-bah sounds, very much like those devoured at today's dinner: The Classic Uhtua Lamb Feast with creamy goat cheese potatoes and Las Moras malbec followed with Lapland squeaky cheese and cloudberry jam.
When the protons leave, then come the solar winds. For the first time there was some action on the AM band before 21 utc, but that didn't materialize into anything better, and the night and the morning went along similar lines as yesterday. Our only pleasure today was Argentina that produced good signals for a while. For example, Radio Tres, Trelew 780, AM 1330, Rosario and R Fé y Alegría, Asunción 1300 were received with enjoyable signals. The time after 6.30 utc was mainly spent listening to and destroying files from the previous days.
Today's meal Fish Chili Garam Masala with Leyda Pinot Noir.
Last night was like a typical Christmas, silent night, silent morning, and the presents went elsewhere. At some point after 6 utc even the regular very talkative Spaniards went silent. And after the few Brazilians disappeared, November gloom started to creep in. But, to our surprise, even though all the other directions were quiet, the antenna wire to the north produced clear signals from Alaska, and also a couple of Hawaiians were heard. And just before 7 utc also the wire to the US midwest woke up, although that's where the progress stopped. Hours of hard work and mediocre conditions, however, gave us a couple of surprising stations here and there, like KVSI 1450 and KTWR Guam 801. An optimistic sign right after the A-indeces hit the above 20 mark. Lots of new snow here, but the antennas have been checked now. And yes, Hoopi, we heard your howling test loud and clear!
Today's meal Classic Chicken Curry, Saag Paneer, nan bread and rice with lager beer.
The morning broke with an empty band towards the Americas, but we got some consolation from the direction of the UK (JCom 1386, Flame CCR 1521). After a while the North Americans returned with dominants and also some better-quality stations (KHAS 1230, KJCR 1240, KBMW 1450). Today's other important events: a school lesson of Chinese numerals with Weifang PBS 1161 and a lovely dinner of Porco Savoniano con zucchine fritte e patate al chili with Mayu Carménère Reserva.
Greetings to our devoted readers ANA and HAT. Thank you for your constantly encouraging support to our humble toilings up here.
Saturday 08NOV2014 - Howlin' Howlin' Howlin'
The wolves drove non-stop from Joensuu to the cabin and arrived many hours in advance this time missing the joys of Saariselkä because HN had departed the dx-premises wisely before his time was due. The first checks around midnight didn't promise much, but between 06 and 08 utc there was good huffin' and puffin' on the band. Some of the best stations noted live are Radio Impactante, Santo Domingo 1440, KJCR 1240, WWWL 1350, WLQR 1470 and KREL 1580. The band died out around 09 utc, and as there is virtually no snow here, it was a real pleasure to walk in the antenna forest after this promising start. This year's very short gourmet season at Lemmenjoki started with Chili con carne con chocolate and Tommasi Valpolicella Ripasso.
|LEM346 25OCT2014 - 06NOV2014|
Hannu Niilekselä (HN) full time and Hannu Asikainen (HAS) only until 01NOV2014
Nothing new - no cx ...
The proton event is over, but our dear earth is passing through some ”windy” area and aurora borealis has been more spectacular than in a long time - even according to our locals at Lemmenjoki.
As the K-index has reached 4 on a contuinuing basis, there is no actual chance for any real NA. On Wednesday morning BRA-La Plata was less impressive than days before; at sunrise I noted 4 NA stations in the bruices, all being powerhouses from the west coast ; 152, 1510, 1410 and 1380.
Not much improvement on the last morning on Thursday: a bit better BRA-La Plata and a dozen most common NA again around 06 UTC. Remarkable was how weak Europe in general was: Iberia almost non existent and also the British Isles really weak.
So, it is time to pack and head south. The good news this time was one week of decent (even if not very good) NA cx in midst of all these sunspots with continuous flaring. And the other big issue being our totally interference free listening place - absolutely no man made noise since the horse fence, which has been a nuisance, has been torn down for good - no horses in Lemmenjoki anymore, just the reindeer and us !
Until next time
73 de HN
Old QTH as of 04NOV2014: The facade is still beautiful in November sunshine, but the roof has rottened, water has come in through the roof and the smell inside is disgusting - it is "in memoriam".
No surprises ... anyone a bit deeper into DX'ing NA on the high latitudes will know that increased levels of protons will kill the atmospheric skip. There seem to be no exceptions.
This time the increase started on Saturday and stayed on the higher level all Sunday. The slow decline started on Monday and by the end of Tuesday we should be back to basic levels. Usually cx will reappear a day around one day after that.
This time the level of protons did not jump very high, so it may well be that the effect are not as serious as some other times. However the Kp index was at the level of 4 on Tuesday and the solar wind was on the increase, which is not necessarily a sign of suddenly reappearing conditions across the Atlantic.
Still, on Tuesday morning the first 4-5 most common east coast powerhouses made a brief appearance around 06 UTC. BRA and La Plata has been present on both nights and mornings until around 07 UTC. Signals have been moderate, but the true quality of the cx into that direction is so far unknown.
As expected, Friday was not a disappointment. NA signals started appearing around 21 UTC (Thursday), but it took another 30 minutes before there was anything noteworthy. It looked good around 2130 UTC, as the amount of stations on the band increased fairly rapidly. Still, the positive development ended before 22 UTC and it was, in fact, worse than just 10 minutes before.
Having had a fairly extensive run-through the files up until 23 UTC, the end result was less than impressive. Some daytimers, yes, but just the stuff you would expect and not really that many stations. Many without ID´s, but based on experience you know who they are ...
In spite of the solar wind remaining around 400 and above, the cx lingered on all night, which you would not normally expect. For some reason this time many things seem defferent. Having followed the discussion on expert sites, noone seems to really know why the extensive amount of flaring from the past huge sunspot produced no noteworthy CMEs.
In the morning mostly midwest with acceptable signal strengths, later in the day more westerly all the way to 14 UTC.
Saturday´s cx started to open up a little later, but otherwise very much the same way as the day before. The exception, though, was that signals from around Missouri started to come in very early, with KZQZ-1430 identified already at 2236 UTC, around one hour before their local sunset. Cocentration in the same area continued also around 2330 up until 2345 when many stations in that area power down in October.
In the morning VEN-COL and Cuba dominated quite late with some NA squeezing in a bit later. At 0830 we left for the Ivalo airport to catch the plane for HAS back to Helsinki. Upon arrival back to Lemmenjoki HN experienced fading signals, which died out already in front of 13 UTC. The worst had happened...while we had escaped all the threats of the huge sunspot all week, "out of the blue" (e.g not out of any sunspot) we got a proton flare...no NA in the night or all day on Sunday.
Now it is a good time to start digging into the files of the past week !
We have been most fortunate... sunspot 2192 is now fairly safely out of sight. There were altogether 6 class X and an incerible amount of 26 (!!) class M flares during its passage through the sun´s visible disk, but none (!) of the produced a CME or a proton event...
Thus the cx across due west northwest across have developed positively, although the westerly parts of the continental US have strongly dominated. Also AK and HI have been strong. In spite of good signals across the pole, no openings to the rest of the Pacific have occured. Also Japan has been very modest.
On both nights stations have appeared a little late, but on wednesday evening the first daytimers were noted (WFIF-1500 and WHGT-1590). On wednesday, west coast, especially Oregon, was very strong. Somehow stations from the Seattle-Vancouver corner were, however, not at their best. A good example of this was KACI-1300 competing evenly for a longer period with its companion KKOL, even if the latter one has 100 times the power of KACI !
Thursday was about the same, but afternoon not quite as strong as IOregon on wednesday. For the first time also Asia opened up before 10 UTC with a few NHK-1 stations, but soon "The Chinese" (=most of southeast asia) took over. No openings further to that direction.
On thusday evening we experienced the first real daytimer opening with lots of signals appearing around 2130 UTC. Nothing worth mentioning was noted listening live, but there always is a chance for some goodies from openings this early. After 22 UTC, not so interesting anymore, as the signal levels did not develop and only the strongest "regulars" were noted.
In all, the development has been good and we stand a good chance for the cx to reach also east coast and deeper down in the days to come.
In spite of the huge threats from sunspot 12192 we are still on the right track towards improving conditions. Even if flaring has been immense with 6 class X-flares and -at its "best"- almost hourly M-flares, all of them have so far been "dry" without earth directed CME´s. The threat is not over, but we keep our fingers and toes crossed all the time, knock on any wood found nearby, etc ...
Monday started surprisingly well: "standard midwest" NA throughout the night. No specific highlights, but we cannot remember when there would have been so many stations throughout the night - the "night conditions" have just not been there for quite some years.
Still, morning was a bit of a disappointment with the cx becoming weak, very unstable an directed to the upper rockies-west coast area. Some of the common stations fading in and soon disappearing totally, with lots of atmospheric noise killing the signals only too often. By noon UTC the path directly due north opened up with lots of the common AK and HI stations with occasionally very nice signals, e.g. WQLE259-1610 Prudhoe bay with its 10 watts of power booming in from time to time. However, especially the lower end of the MW spectrum did not offer too much of anything - just bruises from the still disturbed conditions, most likely the lingering effects from CH640.
Stations from the westerly and northerly directions were heard all the way past 13 UTC. Also asia opening up around then, but nothing interesting, except a ferw Philipinos and the first sign of AUS on the X-band with Vision Radio Network identified on 1611.
Tuesday began the same way as Monday with stations from NA heard throughout the night. This time from a bit more easterly directions, but not really the east coast. This was quite surprising considering that at midnight we experienced K-indecies up to 4 !
Signals in the morning were more stable than on Monday, but in the morning and throughout the day still westerly directed and varying very much: at one point 10 minutes strong to MEX, but only to disappear completely very shortly.
Very strong at times due north in the upper half of the spectrum. Interestingly CBC low power stations from NT still noted on 1150 and 1230 with "The Trailbraker" originating from Yellowknife later in the afternoon.
A couple of most common Japanese stations in the afternoon, but otherwise uninteresting Asia.
The threats have not subsided yet... As AR2192 approaches the sun's horizon, it is no longer facing Earth. However, the odds of an Earth-directed radiation storm are higher than ever. The reason is, the western limb of the sun is well-connected to Earth. Solar magnetic fields springing out of that region spiral back to our planet (see picture below). If a sunspot passing through the area explodes, those spiralling magnetic fields can funnel energetic particles in our direction.
We arrived at Lemmenjoki a little after 08 UTC, found the cottage tidy and warm after PÄ and JEÖ, who had headed south about an hour earlier. There was no hurry to get to DX´ing, since the AM band was completely blank due to lingering Coronal Hole effects, which had been there practically all the time with the LEM345 crew.
The largest sunspot of this cycle was directly facing the earth with daily class X flares, which at any moment could spoil the cx for a long time... As of writing this we have survived them, since all of the 5 X-flares so far have been "dry", e.g. without any earth directed CME effets or p..... (we do not even wish to mention the word).
The effects from large CH640 - which more or less spoiled the conditions for the second week of LEM345 - are gradually easing up. So already upon our day of arrival, e.g. on Saturday, we had a brief encounter with some of the most powerful U.S. West Coast stations, as well as with 1570 and 1500 Hawaii. No great signals, but a good thing to happen. Later Asia opening up to the direction of China and Thailand.
At night some BRA and ARG and by 05 UTC fairly nice VEN - COL accompanied by a hanful of Puerto Ricans and most common NL. The Latin American stations disappeared very rapidly just in front of 06 UTC and never returned. However, with the 320 degree antenna, just 5 minutes later we experienced a 5 minute opening to the upper prairies. The very interesting item about this extremely short lived peak was that it took place exactly at 06 UTC - something that very seldom tends to happen. Not many decent signals, but very nice ID´s from KREL-1580 and KWBE-1450.
Soon again the MW band was empty, but a little bit of Britain emerged for while, together with the most common West Coast, AK and Hawaii for short moments. Asia opened up in front of 13 UTC, but never brought anything of interest.
We are crossing our fingers and toes, so that this huge sunspot would continue with only dry flares until it is behind the limb again in a few days time. Should that happen, we might stand a chance for some decent cx in the coming days ...
|LEM345 11OCT2014 - 25OCT2014|
Pertti Äyräs (PÄ) 11OCT2014-25OCT2014 and Jan-Erik Österholm (JEÖ) 16OCT2014-25OCT2014
Totally useless TA-cx these days. Nothing to report from these days. Very depressing indeed.
Morning cx more or less lousy and only the 05 TOH was reasonable, After that the cx disappeared completely and have not returned for several days. Maybe some loggings of Iranians could have been made but for some reason they have not been of interest to us.We still have one week to go so we hope something will appear ...
In the morning may be the so far best NA cx. Stations such as WJRW 1340, KLIK 1240, KGIW Alamosa CO 1450 and KQYX Galena KS also on 1450. Around noon PÄ picked up JEÖ from Ivalo airport and after some food etc. shopping we returned to the HQ around 13 UTC only to find the band almost empty. Later in the afternoon some X-band Aussies emerged as did ABC on 729 and 891. If we are lucky som other Aussies can be found from the recordings. Early in the evening lousy cx from Brazil. Recordings on and to sleep!
Nothing during the evening and night. During sunrise some Brazilians and X-band Argentinians. A weak an short East Cost NA opening during sunrise. The rest of the day was silent as golden.
During sunrise pretty much the same East Coast stations as the day before. WSAN Allentown PA was new for me. KGOW 1560 was heard as almost the only NA throughout the day. Some X-band Aussies appeared again in the evening as did some common East Coast NAs around 22 UTC. A solar storm distroyed the rest of the day.
Hardly anything during night hours. At sunrise some East Coast NA turning pretty rapidly towards the Mid West with stations such as WILS 1320 and WIBA 1310. A little later a better one, namely KTOP Topeka KS 1490. In the evening Asian stations as usual and some weak X-band Aussies.
Saturday 11OCT2014 - THE NEW SEASON HAS STARTED
To keep the things simple I pick the opening text from my pedition last autumn 2013 since the starts of the two peditions were practically the same. Like this: "Greetings from the Lemmenjoki Headquarters in northern Finnish Lappland. I have a "solo" DXpedition for the next two weeks and try to report on what's going on here. Arrived here Saturday evening, Oct. 12th after spending a night in Oulu as a guest to Jari Ruohomäki. Thank you Jari very much, for providing a bed and company (not in the bed!) after driving some 700 kms from my home QTH in Kaarina to Oulu. Way up north some other 600 kms brought to me to Lemmenjoki the next day.
The house was clean and in good conditions but the antennas were disconnected for safety reasons (thunder storms etc during the summer...) so there was a lot of work to do. During the first evening I managed to fix some 5 aerials for operation. Connecting the aerials to the receivers and putting them into work is always a high tension moment ... do they work or not. This time all went OK and good signals were received from the very start, but only on 5 of the 10-11 antennas. Any extra electrical noise was not observed."
The next day, on Sunday, I went through the rest of the aerials and connected them to the "boxes and coxes". One of the aerials was broken and lying on the ground, it is the 30 degrees antenna (pointing to Japan) and will be fixed on Tuesday I guess.
The first evening provided Brazilian stations and later some Spanish speaking ones from Argentina, Uruguay etc. In the morning then stations from the North American Continent took over. Huge signals from States like Colorado, North Dakota, Idaho and so on. The conditions lasted until 2-3 local time PM. In the Sunday evening also some more common Australians were noted, like 729 and 891 plus some X-band Aussies.
Sunday night started again with about the same Brazilian stations as the previous night but the European stations were too strong this time. On the monday morningside the NA stations started to be heard, with good signals again.
This time the conditions favored more the Central and Eastern Parts of the Continent. Again the conditions lasted to late afternoon but at 15 local time the signals were very weak and, of course, only the strongest dominants were audible. Later stations from Japan etc. bopped in and out in an interesting way until the Europeans conquered the AM- band. X-band Aussies were again noted but weak compared to the previous evening.
It seems likely that the prevailing good conditions will continue. Luckily then, I have 7 Terabytes hard disc space available for my recordings.