That's because those indexes describe related, but seperate conditions about what we're getting from the sun. As mentioned in our HF propagation wiki, I would start with this site to understand what is going on...you will need an installed Flash player to view this site...
Understanding this, plus knowing what areas of the planet are in daylight, and which aren't , will give you a clue as to from where propagation is possible to your location. The wiki has a few links involved with this as well.
Right now, higher freq HF (above 10 mhz or so) is difficult, but certainly not impossible. Once that flux level starts to approach the triple digits, things on the higher bands will improve markedly. One can only hope.....73 Mike
I see on Spaceweather that a M class flare erupted on the sun this afternoon. This is a rather low energy event, but it has bumped our flux levels up almost 20 points. Now if we could just get it up a little more.....73 Mike
Yea I saw that. I've been watching it daily to try to understand it but it seems to make no sense. All the factors add up or build up and then nothing happens. However...it can be a normal day with no spots or activity and the radio goes nuts like it did a week or two ago.
Both those bands are special cases in many ways. We need a higher flux level to really get them popping, but there's another mode - referred to as 'E Skip' (written Es for short) during the spring and fall (happens in the summer too, but less so in the winter) where signals can go great distances, but the openings aren't all that long in duration.
It seems that Es is more common during low sunspot activity, then when it's very active, and no one is quite certain as to why. You really have to be johnny on the spot to detect this - which is why hams that are active DXers on these 2 bands sometimes have spare receivers sitting on specific 10 and 6 meter frequencies, waiting for signs of an opening. It's catch as catch can, when it comes to Es. This mode can also be invoked during and just after severe thunderstorms, although it doesn't always happen this way.
Welcome to the mystery world of propagation - there's much we really don't fully understand....73 Mike
I noticed this last fall that loband was open for a while in the mornings. I was able to hit a 10 meter repeater with my Moto MT1000 while walking to my car.
I usually keep the FT857 on 29.620 but I haven't heard anything yet. The sunspot numbers sure did spike but I read that they are still considered cycle 23 spots due to their polarity. I wonder if it's a spike or the actual prelude to the big event?
Yeah, this latest batch of spots are supposedly remnants of the last Cycle, due to their polarity. Patience! Fact is, no one is really sure just how good the new Cycle will be - there are more opinions out there - some say it will be the best in half a century, others say not so. We gotta wait and see (and hope that the half a century folks are right...) 73 Mike