25th Nov 2016...There seems to be a reasonable lift on the VHF bands today as there is a high pressure weather system over the country. I noticed it first late last night when I heard the West Tyrone repeater GB3WT in the noise on 145.775 MHz.
This morning, the Limerick repeater on 145.725 MHz which is normally S3 on my indoor antenna was up to S8 and I was able to have a QSO with MM0RJJ and MI0ADX on it with just 5 watts.
Looking North from here this morning, I could see the inversion layer with the high pressure keeping the air trapped near the ground. It can be seen as that dark band on the horizon which is usually slightly pink/purple in colour and is in marked contrast to the clear air above....a classic sign of air trapped near the surface.
This inversion layer means good VHF conditions and it ties in with this tropo propagation map for this morning...
The biggest suprise this morning was hearing the GB3CM repeater in Wales on 70cms. It was up to s'8' at times and that is with a home made colinear antenna in the attic. The distance is about 286 kms, well in excess of the usual range for that repeater.
70cm (FM) UHF Repeater
94.8Hz CTCSS tone and the 'time out' is set to three and a half minutes
Operating on 433.200MHz output 434.800MHz input
As I don't have the 70cms rig programmed for that CTCSS, I didn't try to work through it. I'll have to dig out the manual again :o)
GB3CM...Website for the GB3CM repeater.