The episode is about an hour long, though, so before starting it, you might want to pop some popcorn and open up a cold one and get comfortable for a bit. (It's instances like this where tablets and other hand held devices really soar!)
Now on to 15 Meters. The past few days during lunch, I have been noticing some very loud signals on 15 Meters, even though various propagation tables have been calling for only "fair" conditions on the band. There were a few loud Europeans and South Americans on the band, but I was being beat out in the pileups by stronger signals (Them's the breaks). Rather than give up on the band totally, I decided to go on up to venerable ol' 21.060 MHz and put out the CQ call for a lil' bit.
I was rewarded with a call from Bert F6HKA who is very well known on the CW portions of the bands. Bert and I have QSO'ed before, but always in a contest situation. It was nice to be able to spend a few minutes with him today, actually chatting for a bit.
Bert was operating from Limoges, France. It was a 2X QRP QSO, which made my day. Bert had the advantage with a beam up at 75 feet. It really helped to pull my KX3 and Buddistick out of the noise. Bert was 569 in New Jersey and I received a 539 in return. But fortunately, even with a little QSB, solid copy was achieved at both ends.
So even when the propagation gurus say a band isn't in the best of shape, it never hurts to put out a CQ. You might get skunked, but then again, you might be rewarded with a gem of a QSO like the one I had with Bert.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!