QST de W1AW
Propagation Forecast Bulletin 48 ARLP048
From Tad Cook, K7VVV
Seattle, WA November 21, 2001
To all radio amateurs
SB PROP ARL ARLP048
ARLP048 Propagation de K7VVV
Because of the short work week and ARRL headquarters schedule, this bulletin will arrive early and without the solar flux, sunspot numbers and geomagnetic data at the end. This is because the reporting week runs Thursday through Wednesday, and the data for Wednesday isn't quite available yet. Watch for it in the next bulletin.
N8II reported the best European 6 meter opening of this solar cycle occurred on Friday, November 16. Jeff is in West Virginia in grid FM19, and said he worked 117 Europeans from 1340-1728z. He said British calls dominated, but he also worked as far east as Poland and Bulgaria. Europeans were working as far west as Ohio, Michigan, Arkansas and Texas.
It has been a quiet week, with no big geomagnetic upsets. The most active day was Monday, when the planetary A index was 16 and K indices went as high as 4. Solar flux and sunspot numbers have been declining.
The latest projection calls for solar flux of 180, 175, 170, 170 and 175 for Wednesday through Sunday, and planetary A indices of 10, 10, 10, 8 and 8 for those same days. Although the forecast is for moderate A indices, there is a chance that sunspot 9704 could emit some earth-directed explosions in the next day or two.
Early Sunday morning I witnessed a wonderful Leonids display. We rose at midnight local time, and drove east of Seattle to search for a dark spot for viewing the meteor shower. We didn't have any VHF gear, but were determined to take advantage of a rarely seen clear Northwest night. At Rattlesnake Lake, about 32 miles east of Seattle on I-90, the road was completely packed with cars and people, resembling an Independence Day evening in the city.
Armed with the GPS and laptop, we finally drove high into the Cascade Mountains and up a Forest Service road west of Snoqualmie Pass near the Alpine Lakes region. We parked at a trail head where many others were gathered in the dark to witness the display, and lay on the ground until 4:30 AM local time, in awe at a sky lit with meteor trails. Returning to the city, we could still see meteorites streaking across the sky at 6:00 AM, just before sunrise.