traditional October DXpedition focused squarely
on North American stations. We had a couple of nice
openings, and reception improved gradually until
October 28th. Just as we expected to enjoy daytimer-filled
final days of the month, a large solar eruption
silenced the AM band for the remaining days. Apart
from DXing, a definite highlight was an excursion
to the Arctic Ocean coast, where we enjoyed the
hospitality of our Norwegian DX friends over a fabulous
king crab dinner.
year the launch of DXpedition AIH142 coincided with
the start of a one-week fall vacation at schools,
which meant that we wouldn't be the only ones traveling
north. It was very difficult to secure a cabin and
a place for a car in the overnight train. Instead
of our favorite destination Rovaniemi on the Arctic
Circle, the only vacancy was on a train heading
to Kolari near the Swedish border. It was further
up north, but the train would arrive several hours
later, meaning that we'd arrive in Aihkiniemi
much later than normally.
As our day of departure (Friday,
October 15) arrived, Jim
Solatie and I
faced other obstacles. The largest ice-hockey arena
in Helsinki is located right next to the car-carrier
station. Traffic was a nightmare as the most popular
game of the season was about to begin, and all the
roads leading to the area were jampacked. COVID-19
regulations had just been loosened, so the crowd
was huge. For a moment I thought I could be late
for loading the car, but I did arrive in time. Jim's
stuff was moved to my Toyota Auris at the Pasila
train station, and so we set out north, ready to
face the next hurdle: the first winter storm this
Winter was waiting for
us at the Kolari railway station. Click the images
in this report to open larger photos.
I slept miserably, as the train felt even noisier
than normally. We arrived in Kolari on schedule
at 10.40 local time on Saturday, but it was snowing
heavily. Quite a contrast to my previous DXpedition
just a couple of weeks earlier, when Lapland was
ablaze with fall colors. Once we started driving
north, the next stop was Kittilä, where we
filled up and weighed our options. We decided to
opt for a detour, first east to Sodankylä,
and only then straight north. This added 100 kilometers
to our drive, but spared us from the worst leg of
the road and the eye of the storm.
By early evening it had snowed
35 cm (14 inches) in Kittilä, the record for
the day in all of Finland, so avoiding the western
road north was the right choice also in hindsight.
During the detour, part of the onslaught was just
plain water and part of it sleet, but most importantly,
the road was never icy, so while driving was stressful,
it wasn't outright dangerous.
We stopped for lunch at a Neste
service station at Saariselkä ski resort, where
we also briefly met outgoing Aihkiniemi DXers Jorma
Huuhtanen and Jorma Mäntylä. They were
happy with the previous week of DXing, although
they had to endure the consequences of a minor solar
storm. We shopped for groceries a bit later in Inari,
and arrived in Aihkiniemi at 18.50 local time, the
latest arrival time on record, and it was already
pitch dark. We emptied the car, set up our gear,
and relaxed in the sauna, looking forward to two
weeks of fabulous AM DXing.
The brown cabin in Aihkiniemi dates back to 2010,
and the reddish cabin was added in 2020.
We would have been happy logging
stations from any direction, as long as there would
be a clear focus, favoring reception of stations
from any narrow target area. That didn't really
happen. The solar weather was rather quiet for a
long period, which produced neat signals from large
areas at relatively high latitudes both east and
west. So North American stations ruled the first
ten mornings, and a mixed bag of Asians were heard
in the early evenings.
All that changed instantly on October 28, when a
large coronal mass ejection started heading to Earth.
Its immediate impact was a proton event, which silenced
our AM dial, sparing only stations in Europe and
in the Middle East. The last few days were mostly
time wasted, although we did score a couple of rare
This far north the sun shines
from a very low angle, forming long shadows on frozen
lakes. Shot from a drone 120 meters above ground
The weather remained wintry for
the full two weeks. Our nearby lake froze, and on
a couple of days the temperature fell to -15 degrees
C (5 F). Due to persistently overcast skies on most
nights, AIH142 turned out to be the first DXpedition
in years without any successful photos of the northern
Our most important chore was to build a new antenna
pointing southwest. This antenna aimed at 207 degrees
replaced an earlier antenna directed to 214 degrees,
which for some reason had started to collect unwanted
interference. Here's an updated map of our antennas.
Our receiving equipment were same old, same old.
We both had three Perseus receivers to cover the
full AM band, using (at most) three antennas at
any given time. I operated receivers with Jaguar,
and Jim with Perseus software. Fortunately I was
able to fully concentrate on DXing, burning my vacation
days, but Jim continued working remotely all through
video shot in 2020 you can take a peek inside
the Aihkiniemi cabins and see how we have equipped
During our DXpedition there were a total of three
DXpeditions in the Lemmenjoki
DX base, 100 kilometers southwest from us. First
Jari Korhonen and Jussi Korhonen (LEM451) were DXing
on October 1623,
then Jari Ruohomäki (LEM452) on October 2330,
and finally Juha
Vehmas and Teijo Mäenpää (LEM453)
on October 30November
6. Apparentely also Vesa-Jussi Rinkinen had preprogrammed
recordings running in Lemmenjoki in October.
These reindeer wandered
around our cabin.
There were also other parallel
AM DX efforts. Many Swedish DXers were listening
in late October, and Norwegian DXers continued to
monitor their remote receiving stations also after
DXpedition. And as there are two more Beverage-equipped
DX bases near Ivalo in Lapland (Veskoniemi
and Jari Korhonen's cabin), some coveted stations
may be flooded with reception reports from the Nordic
countries this time of the year. Fortunately most
weak stations tend to fade in and out at different
times in different locations around the Arctic north,
so at least the reports and corresponding recordings
shouldn't be identical.
Here's a description of our adventures each day:
Sunday, October 17, 2021
U.S. stations invaded the AM
band as soon as darkness covered the nation, and
stations from coast to coast were quite strong through
the morning hours. There was a slight dip after
sunrise around 0600-0700 UTC, but by 0800 UTC signal
levels improved again. Identified stations included
610 KNML, 710 KXMR, 730 KDBI, 860 KPAM, 870 KPRM
and 1490 KDBM. Jim spotted KREF from Oklahoma on
1400 AM, which was a new one for both of us.
Mika needed to crawl through a concrete drainage
pipe under the road to take the coax cable (Tri-Lan
RF240) to the other side. Photo by Jim.
During the day we had an antenna construction project.
First we needed to build a coax feed, which turned
out to reach 450 meters in length. It had to be
routed through a culvert across to the other side
of the main road running next to the cabin. The
culvert was just wide enough for me, and naturally
it was dark, but fortunately it wasnt wet.
And there were no rats or other wildlife. Once on
the other side, we took the coax to as far away
as possible from a power line running adjacent to
Then we proceeded to unwind and
hang the Beverage-type antenna (made of 1.6 mm diameter
UL wire, which weighs only 4 kg/1 km) to maximum
length, until we arrived at a road. The final span
was 784 meters pointing at 207 degrees. This antenna
replaced an antenna pointing at 214 degrees, which
had become too noisy because of some undetermined
source of interference. Maybe it was the powerline.
Jim unreeling the antenna wire.
The new antenna seems to work fine, and should be
ideal for targeting Nigeria, Algeria and Italy,
which all host plenty of AM stations. It also works
reasonably well for Eastern parts of Spain as opposed
to our 255-degree wire, which overwhelmingly favors
the northwestern part of the country. And yes, were
still hoping to catch Gibraltar on 1458 AM some
In the evening, nothing much
from the east. NHK2 stations closed down at 1530
UTC, but only the usual suspects were spotted.
Monday, October 18, 2021
U.S. stations landed in our cabin
after nightfall, but unfortunately not before sunset.
Initially the focus was in the Great Lakes area,
gradually moving westward by the morning. Around
0500 UTC Mexico City stations were pretty strong.
Graveyard frequencies improved during daylight,
with common stations from the Rockies and the Pacific
Northwest. I identified stations like 830 XEITE,
940 KIXZ, 1250 WJMK, 1260 WSDZ, 1340 WMBN, 1440
KKXL, 1460 WBRN, 1570 WBGX, and 1580 KKTS, but no
Beautiful patterns in newly formed ice.
During the day we finalized construction
of the new antenna at 207 degrees. We lifted the
coax to safe heights, hanging from tree branches,
to avoid it being a hazard to moose and reindeer.
Near the powerline we pressed it on the ground.
Then we added grounding and a resistor for termination
in the far end. The ground in the end of the antenna
is rocky and dry, but it is what it is. It is also
at a higher elevation compared to the surrounding
plains, offering a scenic view.
Back in the cabin a couple of
hours later, at least half a dozen New Zealand stations
were observed around 1300 UTC, but nothing personally
new. Signals were strongest on 1035, 1107 and 1161
AM. Also Tonga was noted briefly on 1017 AM, the
first island station from the South Pacific. Alaskan
stations were strong in the afternoon, so I finally
identified the latest newcomer KPEN
Kenai on 840 AM (audio here). Its sister station
Kenai on 960 AM was also strong.
NHK2 network closed today at
1540 UTC, but offered nothing north of Okinawa on
1521 AM. Once again a mixed bag of stations from
China to Iran, so it was practically impossible
to find anything of interest. In the evening I focused
on the new 207-degree wire, but heard only familiar
stations from Italy and Greece.
The highlight of the evening
was the first and only personally new Aussie so
far, 2QN Deniliquin NSW on 1521 AM. 2QN gave a nice
local station ID and a local spot after the news
before continuing its network program, The Australia
Overnight. As noted on my previous DXpedition
AIH139, 1521 kHz has become a real treasure
trove once a superpower CRI transmitter was turned
off earlier this year.
Polypores quickly take root in fallen tree trunks.
Tuesday, October 19, 2021
Overnight U.S. stations sounded
very promising just before 2200 UTC, followed by
a dip and a second rise around 2230 UTC, again sinking
at 2300 UTC, and finally coming quite strong from
0000 to 0400 UTC, at which time the signals nosedived
again so it
was quite a roller-coaster.
In the morning hours I tried
to catch up on sleep. I didn't want to look like
a zombie, since in the afternoon I gave an online
lesson to a high-school class in Kouvola about my
work as a foreign news journalist.
There was no visible improvement
in the signals at daybreak, but stations from the
Pacific Northwest continued weak on the dial beyond
1300 UTC in the afternoon. At the same time a couple
of Kiwis showed up, and signals from Japan grew
quite strong after 1300 UTC, which unfortunately
is not near any slot reserved for NHK's local station
Later on there were a couple
of Kiwis on the dial, and Japanese stations were
quite forceful around a regional NHK1 break at 1355
UTC. In the evening we heard many Greek pirate stations
on the AM dial on the new 207-degree wire.
Wednesday, October 20, 2021
The first U.S. stations appeared
at around 2130 UTC on Tuesday, with a strong emphasis
on Ohio and its surrounding areas. I identified
for instance 1110 WGNZ, 1150 WIMA, 1160 WCVX, 1360
WMAN (listen to the audio), and 1580 WWCD.
This snapshot from Jaguar
was taken on October 19 at 2300 UTC, on a screen
showing the borderline between day and night, and
mapping all stations on 1240 AM. The three highlighted
stations were identified at the top of the hour.
Sunset enhanced Ohio stations
Sunset in Ohio on October 19 turned
out to give a neat boost to stations
in a relatively small area. Within three
minutes around 2300 UTC I was able to
log the following personally new catches,
three of which were heard for the first
time in Finland (marked with a +). Within
a couple of weeks all of them had verified
my reception reports:
- 990 AM WDEO Ypsilanti MI
- 1240 WHIZ Zanesville OH
- 1240 WJTN Jamestown NY
- 1280 +WONW Defiance OH
- 1340 WXFN Muncie IN
- 1340 +WCHB Royal Oak MI
- 1560 +WWYC Toledo OH
There was another good surprise
as well, when WDEO
Ypsilanti MI came booming on 990 AM, very likely
on daytime power, seemingly a bit longer than the
FCC would have allowed. Also, WWCK on 1570 AM is
no longer silent (as indicated in the AM Radio Log),
but was heard during this nice opening.
In the morning, North American
signals vanished at daybreak, with some West Coast
regulars reappearing around 1000 UTC for a couple
of more hours. During the day we checked several
antennas. The weather was ideal. After a few days
of sub- zero temperatures, the swamps had hardened
into sturdier ground, and as there were only patches
of snow, it was easy to see where you're stepping.
Actually this would be the most comfortable time
of the year to walk in these forests.
In the evening there were lots
of Chinese stations on the dial, but initially no
new catches. It had started to snow, and we drove
to Inari to meet fellow DXers Jari and Jussi Korhonen,
who were spending the week in Lemmenjoki. We had
a fabulous dinner at Restaurant Aanaar, and did
some grocery shopping afterwards. The distances
here are quite large, so we ended up spending five
hours on this dinner outing, and got back to the
cabin in heavy snowfall, just in time to hear U.S.
East Coast stations pour in from around 2100 UTC.
This was the earliest opening so far, so expectations
for daytimers were high, but at least instantly
we didn't notice anything spectacular.
Roasted reindeer smoked
with pine, a reindeer blood dumpling, lichen seasoned
with lingonberry, and Lappish potato purée.
This was the main course of the 5-course dinner
at Restaurant Aanaar.
Thursday, October 21, 2021
Overnight conditions seemed to
favor Minnesota and the rest of the Great Lakes,
as is normally the case. At sunrise signals dropped
fast, and daytime was useless: no signals from any
During the day we tried to resolve an issue with
our 60-degree antenna. It has a relatively high
noise level, which seems to have gotten worse since
last season. After replacing parts, as well as remaking
and resolding connections, we pretty much eliminated
all the potential problem areas that we could affect.
Maybe it is the nearby powerline.
After 1300 UTC Asian signals
were booming. Aside from Chinese and Japanese stations
for a while, there wasn't much of a focus, so finding
new ones was once again a major challenge.
This birch grove surrounds our antenna pointing
at 335 degrees. It becomes a real nuisance during
the winter when snow bends most birches down, pulling
the wire down as well.
Friday, October 22, 2021
On Thursday evening, U.S. East
Coast stations made a very weak and brief showing
around 2130 UTC, after which transatlantic connections
were miserable. The lousy night however gave way
to a great morning, when signals just kept on improving,
especially from the Eastern Seaboard. Spanish stations
were also very strong, but no new ones were logged
Then it was time for a break
by way of meeting other DXers. We started driving
toward Kongsfjord in northern Norway, where DXpedition
KONG43 was underway, attended by Bjarne
Mjelde, Odd-Jørgen Sagdahl, and Ole Forr.
It had been ten years since I visited Kongsfjord
DXpedition AIH7), but Jim had maintained more
frequent contacts, meeting Bjarne last summer, and
was now embarking on his third Norway visit this
This modern bridge over the
Tana (Teno) River was opened in 2020.
First we headed east, filled up in Näätämö
on the Finnish side of the border, crossed over
no questions asked
and began following the coastal road westward. After
a bit of grocery shopping at the foot of the newly-built
Tana Bridge (Tana bru), we continued in heavy snowfall
over the fells to Kongsfjord and the adjacent village
of Veines, where we checked into Kongsfjord Gjestehus.
The house built by Bjarne's grandparents now serves
as the Kongsfjord DX cabin.
From there it was only a few hundred meters to the
Kongsfjord DX base, where we enjoyed a fabulous
three-course dinner. The main delicacy was king
crab & carbonara, and a variety of drinks, including
supergood Norwegian Supersonic beer. The food was
exquisite, the company fabulous, and the DX base
was really sophisticated.
The KONG crew was able to use
not only their antennas just outside, but also remote
listening locations, so if conditions were good,
they had many options to look for the best selection
of stations on each frequency. It was probably past
2 AM Norway time when we stumbled back into the
Bjarne Mjelde (left), Odd-Jørgen
Sagdahl, and Ole Forr, and a load of king crab.
Saturday, October 23, 2021
We met the KONG DXpeditionists
for breakfast at Bjarnes DX HQ at 10 Norway
time, after which we checked out and headed with
OJS and Ole to Mount Loran to see their remote listening
site on a barren cliff some 25 km west of Kongsfjord.
Odd-Jørgen Sagdahl and Bjarne Mjelde checking
the AM dial.
The road from Kongsfjord to Berlevåg is very
impressive, snaking around steep coastal cliffs
and surrounded by sharp, protruding rocks all along
the coast. After OJS and Ole had changed a battery
and a hard drive for the Loran equipment, which
was housed in a steel box on the open terrain, we
headed back to our cars, and bid farewell to our
fellow DXers. We continued a bit further west to
the town of Berlevåg for some sightseeing,
after which we began the long road home.
It turned out to be about a six-hour
drive. After heavy snow and whiteout conditions
on the fells, a snack at Tana bru, very narrowly
missing reindeer on the road following Tana River,
crossing the border in Utsjoki without getting stopped,
and observing an unidentified light above the horizon
near Kaamanen, we arrived back in Aihkiniemi at
around 9 PM local time. Phew.
If it wasn't for the plow
stakes, it would be difficult to see where the road
is. This was the road over the highlands of Varanger
Time for sauna and a quick check of our automated
recordings. One of my three PCs had stalled due
to an unexpected Windows update, but otherwise we
got plenty of new recordings. No Asian stations
to speak of in the evening.
Kongsfjord Landhandel, a colorful store, had unfortunately
been closed permanently.
Sunday, October 24, 2021
Transatlantic signals were surprisingly weak overnight,
but the going got better after 0400 UTC. Some common
signals from Puerto Rico and Colombia were strong
at around 05000600
UTC, and for North America, focus was on the East
Coast, which is always welcome.
This was the coldest morning
thus far. It was -15 C when I woke up just before
7 AM local time. We checked the last remaining antennas
and enjoyed sauna already in broad daylight.
Asian signals arrived early,
and we started recording the dial before 1200 UTC.
Loads of Chinese were heard, including Henan PBS
on 585 AM, which was a personally new catch, and
probably unheard in Europe before this.
A warning for landslides
is not baseless at this point close to Berlevåg
Monday, October 25, 2021
After a lackluster night, the
morning was overwhelming. Stations from Colombia,
Peru and Puerto Rico were heard for hours, along
with stations further south in Argentina and Uruguay.
No rarities at least instantly, but reception from
that region was still better than on any previous
day of this DXpedition. At the same time, U.S. stations
improved, so at 0600 UTC it was difficult to choose
where to focus. Also Spanish stations were exceptionally
strong, and we logged a couple of RNE1 stations
previously unheard in Finland. This was thanks to
RNE1 having also local breaks, and not just regional
slots, at a time when they would be audible in Finland.
Once again nothing from the Pacific,
but in the afternoon Asian stations started pouring
in before 1200 UTC. Jim identified Ningbo Music
Radio on 1521 AM, an unlisted station which we heard
also before on this DXpedition. In the evening Japanese
stations were also pretty strong, and U.S. East
Coast stations became audible already before 2100
A sandy beach, Sandfjorden,
halfway between Kongsfjord and Berlevåg on
the Arctic Ocean coast.
Tuesday, October 26, 2021
Overnight wasnt very impressive, but once
again the morning hours were pretty nice. There
were some common Colombian and Peruvian stations
in the mix, and some of the U.S. stations were from
the coveted East Coast, so these kind of openings
are always nice to study afterwards.
From 1030 UTC onward Tonga on
1017 AM was stronger than on any previous day of
this DXpedition. Overall the South Pacific however
remained been much weaker than usually at this time
of the year, especially when compared to AIH106
in 2019 or AIH88
in 2018 at the same time of the year. Even today
nothing else was heard from the Pacific apart from
Tonga. Lots of Chinese and Japanese stations later
on in the afternoon.
The first transatlantic signals
arrived before 2100 UTC and continued until 2230
UTC, after which signals nosedived. At least 1160
WPIE NY was a new catch during this opening.
A drone view of an AIH142 sign for visiting aliens.
And making it easier for spy satellites to find
Wednesday, October 27, 2021
Overnight reception of North
American signals was mediocre, but in the morning
things really got going. There was no decrease in
signal strength after sunrise, so during the day
the entire AM band was full of North American stations,
from coast to coast. To give you an idea of the
signal strength of some relatively common AM stations,
here are some sample audio clips:
beginner this would have been heaven, but
for us it is extremely difficult to find any new
ones if there is no real focus. WSON from Henderson
KY on 860 AM was perhaps the best new catch, logged
all over Lapland.
In the evening, the first stations
from Atlantic Canada appeared already before 2000
UTC, which was exceptionally early for October,
well before sunset at these Canadian locations.
There was a first initial wave of stations from
New England and Ontario peaking at 2130 UTC, but
it proved to be weaker than expected. For instance,
WSKW was heard on 1160 AM, but no new daytimers
were noted. At this time the 321-degree antenna
was not yet useful, and we used antennas pointing
at 291 and 305 degrees instead.
Not my favorite terrain for hiking. These boulders
are located close to the end of our 94-degree antenna.
Thursday, October 28, 2021
After a short retreat around
2200 UTC (late Wednesday), signals improved by 2300
UTC, and the following hour was quite productive
for catching daytime-only stations from the Midwest.
Stations identified included 890 KQLX, 930 WLBL,
1120 KCRN and 1550 WHIT. After the sun had set all
over North America, a few more boring hours followed,
as is typical.
Daybreak is the next highlight
of the daily DX cycle. Sunrise here was at 0613
UTC, and under normal conditions, signals would
rapidly fall around that time. However, when geomagnetic
conditions are favorable, what happens is that nearby
European stations quickly wane, while transatlantic
signals remain more or less intact. These hours
are a pleasure to listen to
no adjacent-channel interference, and solid signals
from coast to coast. Stations identified included
610 KNML, 770 KATL, 870 WHCU, 1270 WHLD, 1340 KYSP,
1400 WZFC, 1410 WNGL, 1420 WLIS, 1570 WVTL, and
1580 KFCS. The JIX curve on Jaguar software peaked
at 98, meaning that there were transatlantic stations
10 kHz apart throughout the entire AM band.
A Jaguar screenshot demonstrating
strong signals from North America on the 305-degree
antenna through the day until I switched the antenna
off. This precise offset indicates that I'm listening
to KQLX Lisbon ND on 889.9963 kHz at its sign-off
time of 2345 UTC, when its signal briefly overtook
On a day like this it would be possible to identify
American AM stations if you counted all the regular
ones as well.
In the afternoon we saw a gradual weakening of signals.
I pulled the plug on the 305-degree antenna at 1354
UTC, because none of the stations heard at that
time were anymore from the main target area of that
particular antenna, but rather from the Pacific
Northwest, which I was recording using another antenna
at 335 degrees.
This explains the sudden drop
in the red indicator line, the JIX curve, in the
image above. The remaining random streaks in the
evening represent just unintended leftovers, and
forms of QRM at 10-kHz intervals, while I was actually
using an antenna at 80 degrees to record signals
For a beginner, a DX day like this would be paradise.
Loads of signals from all over North America for
18 hours a day. While there were nice moments, for
us (both me and Jim have about 1,8001,900
verified stations from North America) it was extremely
difficult to find anything new, because there were
no sharp and geographically limited openings to
any specific areas.
Also, the so-called graveyard
channels (local stations with 1 kW of power) were
simply too crowded to allow many individual stations
to rise on top of the pile. On a positive note,
East Coast stations remained audible for a long
time, as typically (up here in Lapland) West Coast
stations tend to take over during daylight hours.
The author, Mika Mäkeläinen, surrounded
by receivers and accessories.
In the evening we drove for an hour in a snowstorm
to Inari to meet Ritva and Jari Ruohomäki at
Restaurant Papana. It was nice to catch up, and
for a change
a fortune in a meal like in the upscale Restaurant
Aanaar. On our way back the snowfall had fortunately
ended and the roads had been plowed.
While we were in Inari, at 1535
UTC there was a major
eruption in the sun, which silenced the AM band
on higher latitudes. A coronal mass ejection (CME)
was heading toward the Earth. Already then we realized
that the remaining days were likely spoiled by this
unexpected energy burst. We could kiss goodbye to
North American signals for a few days, because this
kind of solar eruption would wreak havoc on the
geomagnetic field on high latitudes like Lapland.
Because of overcast skies, I couldn't even take
advantage of the northern lights, which in any case
were less impressive than predicted.
Friday, October 29, 2021
After a quiet night there were
some Latin American stations at daybreak, after
which the AM band totally died. The evening wasn't
any better. Some Iranian, Indian and Thai stations
were all that was available. Time to shovel snow
and get other chores done. And time to listen to
recordings made on previous days.
I used the leftover connectors to build short coax
cables for use in the listening room.
Saturday, October 30, 2021
Protons had a devastating
effect on transatlantic signals. The second night
after the solar eruption was the worst in all of
two weeks. Only some weak signals from Argentina,
Uruguay and Brazil were noted through the night,
peaking around 0500 UTC, and vanishing totally around
0600 UTC. Again a very quiet day, and in the afternoon
the first signals from the east were from Iran.
Sunday, October 31, 2021
One more wasted day, almost.
Luckily there were some strong and interesting stations
from Brazil in the low end of the dial when signals
from the Western Hemisphere peaked in the morning
around 0530 UTC. During the day I even resorted
to listening to European shortwave stations, because
there was nothing of interest on the AM dial.
Jim Solatie listening.
Monday, November 1, 2021
no transatlantic signals at all during the night,
so this was the poorest night and morning of all.
It wasn't such a pity, because at least it was painless
to switch receivers off, pack our belongings, and
clean the house for the next DXers, who would be
arriving on Saturday.
No promises as to when a comprehensive log will
be published from this DXpedition. I have a backlog
of many years and dozens of terabytes of recordings
to go through. However, if you just want to get
an idea of what kind of stations can be logged in
Aihkiniemi, check out my newest
published log (AIH133) from February 2021.
our return trip to Rovaniemi Jim drove most of the
time, while I attended a journalism conference online.
The journey was uneventful, except for a short detour
in Sodankylä. We wanted to take a closer look
at Sodankylä Geophysical Observatory, which
has massive antennas for various uses.
This receiver antenna
is part of an international EISCAT
(European Incoherent Scatter Scientific Association)
radar system, used to study solar effects on the
Earth on UHF frequencies.
The Observatory measures Earth's magnetic field,
cosmic radio noise, seismic activities, and cosmic
rays. The National Satellite Data Center run by
the Finnish Meteorological Institute is located
on the same campus, and has a few somewhat smaller
The precise location of the research center is a
village named Tähtelä, which can be loosely
translated as "Star home". This reminded
me of what astronomer Carl Sagan often said of us
humans being "star stuff." All the essential
building blocks of life on Earth (carbon, hydrogen,
nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, and sulfur) have been
formed in stars. Dizzying to think about it.
From the Observatory it was only 125 kilometers
to Rovaniemi on the Arctic Circle. Having left Aihkiniemi
before midday, we had time to kill in Rovaniemi
before the departure of our train. We dined at Hanki
Restaurant, which turned out to be a really good
Korean restaurant nestled on the street level of
an ordinary condo building, a few blocks outside
of the very heart of Rovaniemi. A very tasty conclusion
to an exciting two-week DXpedition in Lapland!
After AIH142 I counted that I've spent altogether
218 days in Aihkiniemi during the past 11 years,
and another 182 days in Lemmenjoki prior to that,
which makes a total of 400 days of DXing in Lapland!
Actually I did DX for four weeks also in other locations,
so the total comes to around 438 days, or over 62
weeks. Time well spent :)
and photos: Mika Mäkeläinen
November 9, 2021