We are now in the peak of the fall season. DX paths are shifting and will continue to shift. 15 Meters is as good as it will get, and is mostly dead. African stations show with good regularity, and this path is open nicely to the states through most of the afternoon. 15 is especially worth watching on weekends, but European signals are still few in number. A beam on 17 Meters would help in working some of the paths that are missing on 15. 17 should remain somewhat open through the bottom of the solar cycle. 17 and 20 are now the best bands for daypath work.
On 20, the morning path to S.E. Asia is mostly gone, and now favors the east coast where it is more of a polar path. Since the grey line is now almost directly over the pole, we will have narrow pipelines into central Asia in the morning and evening. As the grey line continues to shift, we can expect our main path to the Orient to occur in the early evening. There is news of an operation from Burma, but no specific information about a substantial expedition at this time. African paths are open for most of the afternoon and into the evening. Morning DX on 20 now favors Europe, and includes the Middle East. The peak of the window is kinda short, and later in the morning only the loudest Europeans are copyable. (This means that the East Coast will have Europe all to itself during DX contests.) As signals fade in the late morning, it is a good idea to move to 17 Meters if you have an antenna there. 15 will sound a lot like 10: The heavy action on these bands during contests will be for Caribbean and South American multipliers.
20 now closes well before midnight. The further north you live, the earlier the band closes. On the other hand, the band stays open quite late in tropical regions and in the southern hemisphere. This means you can work into these areas late in the day, and these will be the last paths to close. The last Asian path to close is usually to Western Siberia - UA0.
Noise levels on 40 have dropped substantially since the summer, and signals are better. This is a nice band to Europe in the evening, with paths open to Russia in the early evening. It is also an excellent source for African signals. The Asian opening, of course, is in the morning before and after sunrise.
80 is opening, but there is not a lot of activity from Europe yet (perhaps on SSB, but I don't tune there). Some of the African regulars from last season are starting to appear on the low bands. I hope every body has their EWE's ready by now - it's going to be a great season on 80 & 160.
ad5q@wa4imz.#setx.tx.usa.na or firstname.lastname@example.org