Ham Radio wise, last Sunday started like the usual one, with an early QSO on 40 mt., working an Italian special call (it seems, in our Country, everything leaves the ordinary on week-ends). However, I then recalled I saw e-mail reports about 10 mt. being wide open the day before. So, at 8.20 UTC I gave it a try. The band was alive, despite being late september, and stations heard were already more distant than the "standard" 28 MHz opening in Aosta Valley. It wasn't about Ukraine and Romania, but Europen Russia, for QRBs in the surroundings of 2600 km from IX1. Also, stations sounded loud and not showing any QSB (another uncommon element). It didn't seem Es, to be completely sincere. Tried a couple calls, as barefoot as ever (40 watts into the vertical), and in ten minutes scored full 5/9 reports from UA6HRR (in Stavropolsky, LN15me), and RO3G (in Lipetsk, KO92tp). I rejoyce of simple things, so was already glad, but the best had yet to come. Thinking conditions were challenging enough to test the waves /P, I took PRC-320 to the courtyard, connecting it to the Outback HF-1899 antenna on my mom's car, parked close. 15 meters sounded promising. The final log confirmed that feeling: 5/8 from LZ2RS (from Gabrovo), 5/9 from RN6HCX, 5/7 from RX6FW (in Stavropol), and 5/4 from UR3IF (in Enakievo: the closest one, getting me the weakest!). If you find all these QSO to be standard performances, I might agree with you, but don't forget we're talking a 30 watts radio, built some thirty years ago. Once back home, I turned on again the main station, and the moment to realize the real state of things went. Stations were blasting in on 10 mt., but from outside Europe! In particular, I had crystal clear copy of VU2ATN, Atanu from Gurgaon, India. In the last five years, extra EU colleagues did came in on 10 just another time. I called, but as I suspected (being received with such a signal here, had Atanu dealing with a monster pile-up), I wasn't heard. It didn't matter, however, as such an opening made me feel like an OM located in an environment not so depressed for radio ops, as being surrounded by mountains is. It wasn't over! One hour and the skip became even longer. South-east Asia knocked Europe's door this time, with calls I didn't even knew. I was aware Indonesia being YBx, but YF1AR – Java Island – was a complete new one for me. It came so well I could hear him also with the Degen DE1106 and the telescopic, like in the video here, shot at 13.14 UTC on 28480 kHz.
The same happened with 9W8AWT, even if I couldn't find a route for him on QRZ.com, nor through other web services. I had to leave the radio for a while, and at around 14.30 UTC, propagation took off again, to land in Brazil and Argentina. Time for another 320 /P round in the grounds, this time with the 2.4 mt. whip (and its counterpoise). The most simple set-up possible provided incredible receptions: for example PY2VA from Sao Caetano do Sul sounded times stronger than local stations calling him. Some calls hadn't me lucky on 28 MHz, but I went succesful on 15 mt. once again, with EW8A (at 15.42 UTC), and my first ever QSO on 12 mt.: SV1NJA on 24955 kHz, at 15.55 UTC. Packed up portable set, and once upstairs, after another pause, at 18.00 UTC, despite darkness outside, on 28620 MHz a station was announcing his QTH "in Maryland…". Considering I was short of radio time, I left MultiPSK on autolog mode on 28100 (PSK31). Results were, once again, above (local) average. Last QSO was logged at 19.21 UTC, then the band closed. Decoded calls include: PY3IP, N9JLY (in Winsconsin, so not on the east coast, which is the area you get most often in JN35pr), LW9EKA, and WP3PH in Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico. That was it, and I still wasn't dazzed by the amount of 10 mt. DX in just one day I witnessed. Unprecedented for my location (I heard Australia earlier this year, but opening didn't last so long, nor toured the whole world), I'm puzzled on this having to be related to high geomagnetic activity of the last days (saturday's XL flare, and as I type we're under storm), but for sure it's been an instructive experience, on how 10 mt. can be charming in places where opening are usual. Let's hope in more propagation presents like this one.