DX-pedition to Lista, January 16-21, 2015

Travelling to Lista on the south western coast of Norway for a weekend of serious DX-ing has become almost an annual rite for me. 2015 was no exception and in January I was again back at Lista for a weekend, this time accompanied by fellow DXers Torgeir Nyen and Geir Fredheim.

Despite good indices, conditions turned out to be as good as expected (or hoped for). Canadian DX-er Walt Salmaniw described the period as “mediocre” at his QTH. “Mediocre” sums up our impressions of the conditions at Lista pretty well too. Not too good, but not very poor either. Compared to our loggings at Lista one year ago, the loggings this time were still disappoiting. We expected a better DX-pedition, especially as the geomagnetic indices were quite good during our entire stay at Lista. But that’s the rules of the game: Although everything seems set for good propagation, there is never any promise !🙂

Propagation to North America was particularly poor in our local evenings, no chances whatsoever of logging any daytimers. The mornings were, luckily, much better with decent reception from North America. After reviewing our SDR recordings we also discovered some “new” stations (implicating not logged by us at Lista previously) such as 590 WROW Albany NY, 960 KMA Shenandoah IA, 1320 WJAS Pittsburgh PA and 1480 WSDS Salem Township MI. Propagation towards the Caribbean and South America was again more or less absent, just as has been the case for the past couple of years.

Our log is available as a Google Docs spreadsheet. The log is a work in progress where new stations are added continuously. The log includes an unusually high number of European stations. DX-ing (often small) European stations is also fun now that more and more high power transmitters in Europe close down on AM.

For me, the funniest and most unexpected catches of this DX-pedition was hearing a few stations from Africa for the very first time. I was especially pleased about catching the exotic signals from Nigerian stations 1026 JBC Radio Jigawa and tentatively 972 Katsina State Broadcasting Corporation.

As usual, we used a 800 metre long antenna towards the East Coast of North America / Florida / Cuba. This time we also rolled out some some 600 metre of antenna wire towards the Midwest. We had high hopes for the latter antenna which was rolled out all the way into the North Sea, but sadly the conditions were not good enough this time.

QSL: WHBY Kimberly WI 1150

WHBY

WHBY is the most common Transatlantic catch on 1150 kHz at Lista, along with CKOC in Ontario. Chief Engineer Steve Brown confirmed my reception of the station with an e-mail and a Word attachment. Steve writes that WHBY operates with 20 kilowatts daytime and 25 kilowatts nighttime from a six tower directional antenna system from Kimberly, Wisconsin. Kimberly is located in Northeast Wisconsin, west of Neenah and north of Oshkosh.

QSL: Deutschlandradio Kultur 177

170px-LW_Antenne_Zehlendorf

The longwave transmitter at Zehlendorf 40 kilometres north of Berlin on 177 kHz was switched off for good on December 31, 2014. With a power of 500 kilowatts, the transmitter was well heard in Norway. During the last years of service, the transmitter carried programming from Deutschlandradio Kultur.

I sent a reception report to Deutschlandradio Kultur in March 2014 and waited almost one year before a reply in the form of a full detailed QSL-card arrived in my mailbox. This was for a reception made at Lista in January 2014.

QSL: WOOD Grand Rapids MI 1300

WOOD

WOOD in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is the most common station of all on the crowded but interesting frequency of 1300 kHz. Their distinctive “Newsradio 1300 WOOD” identifications are frequently heard, often along with the New York stations WXRL and/or WGDJ. My previous attempts of getting a verification from WOOD has not been successfull. Some weeks ago, however, Phil Tower, Program Director, confirmed my reception with a brief e-mail.

WOOD broadcasts with a night time power of 20 kilowatts so no wonder they get out so well. The logo of the station features Willie Wood, the station’s woodpecker mascot.

QSL: WABH Bath NY 1380

WABH

WABH is the second most commonly heard station on 1380 kHz at our listening post at Lista in Southern Norway. Only CKPC in Ontario is more common. I haven’t had any luck with my QSL requests untill yesterday when Doug Gyver verified my report with a nice e-mail. This was for a recording from our latest DX-pedition to Lista one year ago when WABH at times had a good signal on 1380 kHz.

WABH broadcasts with a night time power of 450 watts only from Bath in upper New York State. For such a low power, they certainly gets out well in our direction. WABH now carries NBC Sports Radio replacing the previously heard ESPN format.

QSL: CKNX Wingham ON 920

Print

After CJCH in Nova Scotia left 920 kHz in favour of FM in 1998, CKNX in Wingham, Ontario, has become the most commonly heard station from North America on this frequency at my place. I haven’t had any luck with my QSL requests to this station untill Program Director John Marshall sent me an e-mail yesterday  confirming my reception of CKNX. This was for a report from our latest January 2014 DX-pedition at Lista.

CKNX broadcast a classic country format with a night time power of 1 kilowatt only. For that, the transmitter certainly does pretty good!

QSL: WINY Putnam CT 1350

WINY

A nice surprise found on our recordings from Lista in January 2014 was WINY in Putnam, Connecticut on 1350. The signal of WINY was heard for about one minute only as early as 21.38 UTC one evening. At this time WINY presumably still broadcast with their listed day time power of 5 kilowatts.

WINY is a local radio station owned by the Osbrey Broadcasting Corporation. Karen Osbrey confirmed my reception of the station with a brief e-mail today.