I saw another e-mail in my inbox this morning from Marv K2VHW with the subject "Another flare". I groaned loudly, inwardly, because no one near me would have understood. Then, just before heading out to the Jeep at lunch time, I checked http://www.bandconditions.com/index.htm
That had me shaking my head even more.
I'm glad I didn't give in to the temptation to chuck it all for today, because I had the best QRP lunch time that I've had in a while - numbers and predictions be damned!
I started out on 17 Meters which seemed to be in great condition. Low noise level and some loud signals. I worked EA6NB, Jaime in the Balearic Islands. From there I wandered around a bit and worked W4B a Special Event Station for Earth Day in Florida.
After that, I switched bands and called CQ near the 20 Meter QRP Watering Hole and was answered by Dick K5TF in Atlanta, GA. Dick had a gorgeous signal. He was pushing 5 Watts out of his K2 to a Hexbeam (secretly, I am lusting for one of these babies. Bob W3BBO and I always dream about getting one for our stations and my good friend and fellow DXer/QRPer Steve WX2S is in the process of installing one). Not only was Dick's signal excellent, but his fist was a dream to copy. The words were appearing in my brain as if I were reading a teleprompter. It was a very enjoyable, but short chat.
From there, I decided to spend the last bit of time that I could squeeze out of lunch break by calling CQ at the 15 Meter QRP Watering Hole on 21.060 MHz. I was greeted there by Alberto WP4L for another 2X QRP chat. Alberto was pushing 5 Watts out of his Yeasu FT-450 and sounded like he was just down the street. And I might add, another excellent fist that was bliss to copy.
If the flare that Marv e-mailed me about helped provide the kind of band conditions that I experienced today, then I hope we get them all the time! Loud signals, quiet background noise - what more could you want or ask for? The only bad thing was having to stop so that I could come back inside in order to finish the work day out.
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to senf the very least!