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Grayland DXpedition
October 25-28, 2007

by John H. Bryant

WinRadio 313e, Eton e1, 600 and 800 foot Beverages, W & NW
Beta Version Wellbrook Phased Array, W & NW

Wednesday, October 24 was my travel day from Orcas Island to Grayland. Rain, some fog and numerous accidents in Seattle forced me to divert widely around the metropolitan area, and take an additional ferry to get to Grayland. A normal 6 hour trip became a low stress eight plus hours. The travel delay and early sunset meant that I only had time to get up the standard BOGs: westerly 600' and the NW 800 footer.

THURSDAY, OCT 25
Given the conditions that I found Thursday AM, I probably should have just waited until Thursday to hang any wire at all. Thursday AM was the least interesting, least productive morning of DX that I've had here in several years. From the way that the band was behaving, I'd guess that there was some kind of solar disturbance. I DXed periodically from 1130 until 1530.... Going back to bed twice in disgust.

A number of DUs were in most of the morning, at just above threshold levels... 531, 549, 612, 702, 1116, 1512 and 1548. None ever got to really listenable levels, but they hung around a long time. All of the usual Japanese were there, though usually at their late October poor levels. Once in a while, one of the Big Guns would pop up for 10 minutes or so, before dropping off to fair/poor levels. The Chinese were almost totally absent, with 963 and 1206 kHz. being notable exceptions.

The only two bright spots were a really good log, early (1300UT) of 738 Taiwan Fisheries, parallel a much worse 1143 and CNR1 639, very late (1500 UT). I've heard them both a number of times before, but they were still the class of the field for Thursday morning, October 25.

Thursday, the 25th, was a beautiful sunny day at the beach and I had great fun putting up both Guy Atkins’ and my own beta Wellbrook Phased Arrays ready for some more serious Beta testing on Friday morning and, I sincerely hoped, a load of great DX.

FRIDAY, OCT 26
I DXed from 1130 until 1615UTC with somewhat better results than Thursday and a pot full of antenna testing. Overall conditions still seemed sub-par, but a good deal better than the abysmal conditions of yesterday Thursday AM. The Aussie Big Guns were in at 1130 and more or less stayed in until things FINALLY shut down after 1600. (sunrise = 1445UT) The larger Japanese were there, along with some of the second and third line stations, though levels were generally sub-par. The Koreans were back for the most part, though not too strong and there were quite a few more CCs around, though still quite low level.

The more interesting loggings included:

648 The Russian transmitter near Vladivostok was in nicely this morning, running a VOA program until TOH @ 1400, then they either slewed the antenna away from NAm or left the air, as after 1400 there was only threshold audio on the frequency.

990 JORK in Kochi was dominating that frequency for a while. Also QSLed long ago, but a relatively rare visitor.

531 was a mix of at least two, maybe three DUs for quite a while before 4KZ dominated at dawn. Unneeded, again, but fun to listen to at a decent level. Crime Stoppers PSA, local Toyota dealer's commercial, nautical weather and sea conditions for the area

783 8AL Alice Springs, very tentative this, late in max dawn at fair level, initially, fading to nothing just before 1500. Could be Access Radio, Wellington, but heard no other Kiwis on this DXpedition. I hung on every word and every note, like an IDIOT, rather than trying to // from 120 meters. I'll be looking tomorrow morning, but... Will send a tentative report with CD. I might add that the music program was several songs by a female "lounge singer," which doesn't sound that much like Alice Springs to me, but even less Wellington. Definite DU, both by DFing and by language. Hummmmm.

At noon on Friday, Patrick Martin and Dave Williams showed up for a delightful lunch and afternoon radio jam session. We had lunch at the Local Bar and Grill and I was able to upload the partial "Report #1" and download two days worth of messages. It was comforting to know that other DXers in the region were experiencing similar (semi-lousy but improving) conditions.

SATURDAY, OCT 27:
If you look in the DXers' dictionary under "mediocre conditions," you'll see a picture of me at Grayland this weekend. The Japanese are clearly beginning to fade out about an hour or more before dawn enhancement kicks in, so they are "mere shadows of their former selves" at dawn. This morning, the few DUs that have been present the past two days were even more modest, though a few made it to poor levels of audio. The Chinese were beginning to reappear in some numbers, but there still were many "usual suspect" stations that were either still totally missing or were mired in the mud of unintelligibility (936, 927, for instance.)

The silver lining in this weekend for me was the fact that I was there primarily for final Beta testing of the Wellbrook array and I wanted a lot of very low level audio for test purposes. "Be careful what you wish for........"

SUNDAY, OCT. 28
Finally, decent, not great but DECENT, TP conditions. Most of the usual East Asian suspects were there and sometimes at excellent levels. Even 4QD-1548, Emerald, Queensland was bombing in just after dawn. The Japanese continued to peak well before dawn and nowhere near their levels of mid and late September…. But, they were there!

The still disturbed but improved conditions brought me two very nice catches:

549 OKINAWA JOAP NHK1, Naha , Oct 28 1250 - Stumbled on this running a national sporting event soon after turning on the radio. Fair to good at first, rapidly fading back into the mumble mix. Happily, the play-by-play announcer was very distinctive and I could follow the signal until TOH. The // on 594 was ever so much better. Really happy with this one, after a minimum of 16 years of trying. Report going out tomorrow! (JB-G'land WA)

801 AUSTRALIA 4QY, Cairns (prob.) , Oct 28 1520 - 30 minutes after dawn, caught an Aussie talk show just above threshold level. There are three Aussies listed. 2RF is Radio Italia; 5RM, Berri appears to be an Oldies` station. 4QY would be my first guess, anyway,since Q'landers often dominate late at Grayland. However, this talk program was similar but NOT // to 4QD-1548. Subsequent i-net research indicates that the two stations are in different subgroups of ABC Local Radio, so this is certainly a possibility. New for me and worth a report with CD. (JB-G'land WA)

I DXed until 1545, an hour after sun-up and then had to roll ‘em up and head back inland into the fourth nice sunny day in a row.

Totals for the 4-day weekend: Japan: 31 stations, China: 21, Australia: 11, South Korea: 6, North Korea: 4 and one station each in Okinawa, Taiwan, Thailand, Russia and the Philippines.

With our annual migration back to our winter home in Oklahoma coming up in two weeks, that closes out my DXpeditioning out here for another year… and what a great one it has been!

Loggings

531 AUSTRALIA UNID Aussies, Oct 25 1134 - At least two Aussies noted mixing at just above threshold level throughout the morning. (JB-G'land WA)
531 AUSTRALIA 4KZ, Innisfail , Oct 26 1405 - Dominated frequency throughout max dawn, sometimes at quite decent level. Ran some great local commercials. At times, could also hear at least two other DU stations beneath 4KZ. (JB-G'land WA)
531 JAPAN JOQG NHK1, Morioka , Oct 27 1215 - Heard all morning on the 27th with the DUs beneath. //594. (JB-G'land WA)
540 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 25 1410 - Heard at very poor level //5030. (JB-G'land WA)
549 AUSTRALIA 2CR Orange , Oct 25 1140 - Presume this the DU noted at just above threshold level throughout the morning, with ABC programming. (JB-G'land WA)
549 OKINAWA JOAP NHK1, Naha , Oct 28 1250 - Stumbled on this running a national sporting event soon after turning on the radio. Fair to good at first, rapidly fading back into the mumble mix. Happily, the play-by-play announcer was very distinctive and I could follow the signal until TOH. The // on 594 was ever so much better. Really happy with this one, after a minimum of 16 years of trying. Report going out tomorrow! (JB-G'land WA)
558 SOUTH KOREA HLQH, Yeong-il , Oct 26 1140 - Noted mixing with JOCR. KK informal program with fem. host, laughter, pop music. (JB-G'land WA)
558 JAPAN JOCR, Kobe , Oct 25 1411 - Noted at poor level with JJ talk and occasional pops. Heard also Oct.27 and 28. (JB-G'land WA)
567 JAPAN JOIK NHK1, Sapporo , Oct 25 1415 - Heard here each morning, usually running at fair level or poorer. //594. (JB-G'land WA)
576 AUSTRALIA 2RN, Sydney , Oct 27 1445 - Aussie talk at fair level, just as the band began to fade. (JB-G'land WA)
585 JAPAN JOPG NHK1, Kushiro (prob.) , Oct 28 1310 - Probably this northerly 10 kW among several much weaker NHK1 Synchros. Heard throughout the morning. (JB-G'land WA)
594 JAPAN JOAK NHK1, Tokyo , Oct 25 1141 - Noted throughout the DXpedition, though usually only at fair or poor levels. (JB-G'land WA)
603 JAPAN NHK1 Synchros , Oct 26 1145 - Noted at fair level //594. (JB-G'land WA)
603 SOUTH KOREA HLSA, Namyang , Oct 26 1415 - Heard at good level at dawn with a very informal program of talk and pop music. (JB-G'land WA)
612 AUSTRALIA 4QR Brisbane , Oct 25 1250 - Heard throughout the DXpedition. (JB-G'land WA)
612 JAPAN JOLK NHK1, Fukuoka , Oct 28 1310 - Heard // 594 mixing with 4QR. Both at good level. (JB-G'land WA)
639 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 25 1500 - Heard late at fair level //5030. (JB-G'land WA)
648 RUSSIA RV445 VOA, Ussuriysk , Oct 26 1355 - VOA programming, with some interviews in EE. Only fair level, but the language sounded Russian to me, rather than the listed KK. At 1400, they obviously slewed the antennas significantly to continue in listed CC programming. Heard also Oct.28. (JB-G'land WA)
657 NORTH KOREA Pyongyang Bangsong, Kangnam , Oct 27 1418 - Noted here in passing. On frequency, for a change, but with a massive spur on one side. Heard each AM, but usually badly distorted. (JB-G'land WA)
666 JAPAN JOBK NHK1, Osaka , Oct 28 1305 - Noted in passing at fair level, // all the other NHK1s. (JB-G'land WA)
693 JAPAN JOAB NHK2, Tokyo , Oct 25 1413 - Noted throughout the DXpedition, though usually only at fair or poor levels. (JB-G'land WA)
702 AUSTRALIA 2BL Sydney , Oct 25 1135 - Presume this the DU noted at just above threshold level throughout the morning, with ABC programming. Heard at fair level Oct.26. (JB-G'land WA)
702 JAPAN NHK2 Synchros , Oct 27 1430 - Heard at fair level //774. (JB-G'land WA)
729 JAPAN JOCK NHK1, Nagoya , Oct 25 1300 - Heard at fair level //594. Heard also Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
738 TAIWAN Taiwan Fishery B.S., Baisha , Oct 25 1312 - Heard with news and into a pop music program. Good for about 15 minutes. // much poorer 1143 kHz. Heard well also on Oct 27 & 28. (JB-G'land WA)
747 JAPAN JOIB NHK2, Sapporo , Oct 25 1145 - Noted throughout the DXpedition, though usually only at fair or poor levels. (JB-G'land WA)
756 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 25 1325 - Noted //5030 with talk by M+W. Fair. Heard also Oct 28. (JB-G'land WA)
774 JAPAN JOUB NHK2, Akita , Oct 25 1145 - Noted throughout the DXpedition, though usually only at fair or poor levels. (JB-G'land WA)
783 AUSTRALIA 8AL, Alice Springs (tent.) , Oct 26 1449 - Very tentative this, late in max dawn at fair level, initially, fading to nothing just before 1500. Could be Access Radio, Wellington, but heard no other Kiwis. I hung on every word and every note, like an IDIOT, rather than trying to // from 120 meters. I'll be looking tomorrow morning, but... Will send a tentative report with CD. (JB-G'land WA)
783 CHINA Hebei RGD (prob.) , Oct 28 1505 - Probably this one heard just as the band began to fade with seeming news broadcast in standard CC. (JB-G'land WA)
792 AUSTRALIA 4RN, Brisbane , Oct 28 1404 - ABC News at a good level during dawn enhancement. (JB-G'land WA)
801 AUSTRALIA 4QY, Cairns (prob.) , Oct 28 1520 - 30 minutes after dawn, caught an Aussie talk show just above threshold level. There are three Aussies listed. 2RF is Radio Italia; 5RM, Berri appears to be an Oldies` station. 4QY would be my first guess, anyway,since Q'landers often dominate late at Grayland. However, this talk program was similar but NOT // to 4QD-1548. Subsequent i-net research indicates that the two stations are in different subgroups of ABC Local Radio, so this is certainly a possibility. New for me and worth a report with CD. (JB-G'land WA)
819 NORTH KOREA KCBS, Pyongyang , Oct 28 1315 - This the listed massive North Korean here and one of few that seems to be on frequency most of the time. Heard throughout the DXpedition. Noted running a bit above 819.0 on Oct. 28.0. (JB-G'land WA)
828 JAPAN JOBB NHK2, Osaka , Oct 25 1145 - Noted throughout the DXpedition, though usually only at fair or poor levels. (JB-G'land WA)
837 CHINA Harbin RGD, Harbin , Oct 28 1410 - Finally heard this at last dawn of the DXpedition, with news programming in CC. This has been a very regular visitor at my home QTH. Its absence here the first three AMs of the DXpedition is a real comment on the poor conditions. (JB-G'land WA)
855 CHINA+N.KOREA The Mess on 855 , Oct 28 1430 - The Mess on 855 was present throughout the DXpedition, at various levels. There are normally three carriers on different frequencies. The on-frequency station is Chinese, most probably one of the CNR2 transmitters. It is in audio only on the best Chinese mornings. The carrier just above 855 is the North Korean, Pyongyang Bangsong. I have not identified the third carrier, higher still in frequency. (JB-G'land WA)
873 JAPAN JOGB NHK2, Kumamoto , Oct 27 1447 - Noted here //828 as the band began to fade. In past years, this station has been more prominent in loggings. In 2007, the North Korean seems to own 873 much of the time. Heard also Oct.28. (JB-G'land WA)
891 JAPAN JOHK NHK2, Sendai , Oct 26 1347 - //774 at fair level. (JB-G'land WA)
918 CHINA Shandong RGD, Yantai , Oct 27 1230 - Noted here all morning with nice peak at dawn. Heard also on Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
936 CHINA Anhui RGD, Hefei , Oct 28 1443 - This old friend has not seemed as prominent this year as the past couple of years. Heard only on 28th at fair level. (JB-G'land WA)
945 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 27 1230 - This old friend finally back on the third AM of the DXpedition. Fair only. Heard also on Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
954 JAPAN JOKR, Tokyo , Oct 25 1437 - Noted at good level only at max dawn. Heard also Oct. 27th. (JB-G'land WA)
963 CHINA CRI, Govorit Pekin, Unk.Loc. , Oct 25 1420 - Heard throughout the DXpedition, often well. (JB-G'land WA)
972 SOUTH KOREA HLCA, Dangjin , Oct 26 0232 - Heards each AM, sometiimes at good level. (JB-G'land WA)
981 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 27 1404 - Heard at fair to poor level //5030. Heard also Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
990 JAPAN JORK NHK1, Kochi , Oct 26 1422 - Heard mixing with Oregon and California stations already on daytime patterns. QSLed this some years ago, but its still a fairly rare visitor. (JB-G'land WA)
1017 JAPAN JOLB NHK2, Fukuoka , Oct 28 1445 - Noted at max dawn at good level //774. Not heard very often by me. (JB-G'land WA)
1035 CHINA CNR1 Synchros , Oct 28 1431 - A bit of Chinese instrumentals and plenty of talk at fair level. There was an echo on this one. No surprise, as CNR1 has a bunch o CNR1 transmitters on 1035. (JB-G'land WA)
1044 CHINA CRI Japanese Service, Changzhou , Oct 27 1238 - Noted here in passing. Fair only. Heard also Oct.28. (JB-G'land WA)
1053 NORTH KOREA V. of Nat'l. Salvation, Haeju , Oct 26 1427 - Heard mixing with jammer and Japanese. Sometimes dominant. (JB-G'land WA)
1053 JAPAN JOAR, Nagoya , Oct 26 1427 - Heard mixing with jammer and North Korean. Sometimes dominant. (JB-G'land WA)
1116 AUSTRALIA 4BC, Brisbane , Oct 27 1437 - Aussie talk at fair level. (JB-G'land WA)
1134 JAPAN JOQR, Tokyo , Oct 25 1422 - Good at max dawn with JJ talk. Heard also on Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
1170 SOUTH KOREA KCBS Japanese Service , Oct 26 1210 - Heard fairly well o/u KPUG Bellingham, with JJ talk. (JB-G'land WA)
1170 PHILIPPINES VOA, Poro Pt. (pres.) , Oct 25 1335 - Presume this the one in CC doing well beneath KPUG, Bellingham, WA. (JB-G'land WA)
1179 JAPAN JOOK, Osaka , Oct 28 1334 - Heard at good level with M+F in JJ. Not a regular visitor. (JB-G'land WA)
1188 SOUTH KOREA HLKX, SEOUL , Oct 25 1150 - FEBC EE religious program in at good level briefly in disturbed conditions. Heard also Oct.26. (JB-G'land WA)
1206 CHINA CNR Korean Prog., Yanji , Oct 25 1151 - Heard at fair level each morning. Huge on Oct. 28. (JB-G'land WA)
1215 CHINA CNR, Multiple Loc. , Oct 26 1206 - Both CNR2 and CNR7 broadcast on 1215. From transmitter location, this was likely CNR2 from Shenyang, Manchuria. Unable to find //. Fair to good. (JB-G'land WA)
1242 JAPAN JOLF, Tokyo , Oct 25 1503 - Heard most AMs of DXpedition. (JB-G'land WA)
1260 JAPAN JOIR, Sendai , Oct 25 1425 - Here briefly in disturbed conditions with JJ talk. Surprised to hear on such a poor JJ AM. (JB-G'land WA)
1278 CHINA Heibei RGD, Shijiazhuang , Oct 25 1152 - Heard throughout the DXpedition, sometimes at good level. (JB-G'land WA)
1287 JAPAN JOHR, Sapporo , Oct 25 1202 - Heard here each morning, usually running at fair level or poorer. (JB-G'land WA)
1305 CHINA CNR2 Synchros (tent.) , Oct 26 1215 - Tentative this at poor level. Possibly // 1323. Unsure. Clearly standard CC. (JB-G'land WA)
1323 CHINA UNID station in CC , Oct 26 1215 - The Russian Service of CRI is usually dominant here. This was clearly standard Chinese. Two other Chinese local stations listed in Manchuria. These?. (JB-G'land WA)
1323 CHINA CRI Russian Service , Oct 28 1338 - Doing very well in Russian this AM, much better than 963. This would hint at widely separate sites. I wish we knew. (JB-G'land WA)
1332 JAPAN JOSF, Nagoya , Oct 28 1334 - Noted with very informal programming M+F chatting, laughter, etc. Possibly All Night Nippon program. Fair to good level. (JB-G'land WA)
1377 CHINA CNR1, Zengzhou , Oct 25 1424 - Heard every morning, peaks to very good level. (JB-G'land WA)
1386 JAPAN NHK2 Synchros , Oct 25 1425 - Heard each AM, though usually poorly. (JB-G'land WA)
1422 JAPAN JORF, Yokohama , Oct 25 1440 - Noted at good level only at max dawn. Heard also Oct.26. (JB-G'land WA)
1440 JAPAN JOWF, Sapporo , Oct 25 1426 - Heard each AM and beginning to serve as a bellweather for upper band Japan. If JOWF is in, JJ conditions are average or above. (JB-G'land WA)
1503 JAPAN JOUK NHK1, Akita , Oct 25 1445 - Noted at poor/fair level only at max dawn. (JB-G'land WA)
1512 AUSTRALIA 2RN Newcastle , Oct 25 1130 - Presume this the DU noted at just above threshold level throughout the morning, with ABC programming. (JB-G'land WA)
1548 AUSTRALIA 4QD Emerald , Oct 25 1131 - Presume this the DU noted at just above threshold level throughout the morning. Heard also Oct. 27 & 28. (JB-G'land WA)
1566 SOUTH KOREA HLAZ, Cheju Island , Oct 25 1205 - Heard each morning, sometimes at good to very good level. (JB-G'land WA)
1575 THAILAND VOA, Ban Phach , Oct 25 1212 - Heard each morning, sometimes at good to very good level. (JB-G'land WA)
1593 CHINA CNR1 Unk. Loc. , Oct 27 1415 - Heard at poor level but clearly //5030. (JB-G'land WA)
1593 JAPAN NHK2 Synchros , Oct 25 1430 - Noted //774, etc. at poor level. (JB-G'land WA)

Published on November 5, 2007

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