Really Good Skip? 3/28/12 (12AM)

Status
Not open for further replies.

scannerowner

Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2008
Messages
965
Location
NW Missouri
I'm picking up KCMO P25 with nearly all bars currently with both my 396XT and 996T with stock antennas... I also am picking up Grandview, Raytown, and Independence, it's crazy!!! I don't know what's going on, but it's ok with me!! I am 50-60 miles from most of these agencies, why would I be picking them up like they're in my backyard?!
 

K0JWW

Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2007
Messages
32
Location
Fairfax, Iowa
I guess I would check the control channel and system ID data on your scanner. It could be good skip. I remember picking up STARCOM 21 channels from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. That would put it at about 75-80 miles on the direct radio path or even longer. I was able to use the system IDs to determine which STARCOM 21 tower it was.

It was really good skip that morning and I was receiving public safety traffic on VHF Highband from Madison, WI. That's a good 150 miles away.

There could be an alternate explanation, although not as plausable. MOSWIN is supposed to have the capabiity to be linked to the other P25 systems in the state. Not sure if MOSWIN is being set up in your area or not. The way I understand it, they were supposed to build it out in phases. Northern Missouri was supposed to be part of the last phase. Also, MOSWIN was primarily on VHF Highband. If you're receiving on 700/800 MHz, then this second explanation is pretty much moot.

I hope this helps. I would say that it is likely skip you are experiencing and 700/800 MHz skip is possible. Just not as much distance as the skip you would get on VHF Highband.
 

sphipps

Member
Joined
Oct 25, 2003
Messages
207
Location
Joplin, MO
I agree... conditions are very good tonight here in SW Missouri. Stations located 30 to 40 miles north of me that are usually very weak are coming in strong tonight.
 

kruser

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 25, 2007
Messages
4,178
Location
West St Louis Cnty, MO
Sure Enough!
I'm getting great copy from several Starcom sites tonight.
Normally I can only hear one Starcom site only but tonight I was able to log 4 Starcom and several Ameren UE AP25 sites as well.

I only did control channel tests on most just to verify the Sysid's but all matched up with the database. I did program three SC21 sites and they all came in with zero decode errors!
I wish I could say the same for the local p25 systems right here.

I also ran the TV through a few auto scans in four different directions from here but oddly I did not get a single new digital station but did snag one new station that was still analog and the two analog stations I've received since the digital switch were much clearer. I was surprised I did not snag any new digitals though. I did not get an ID on the single new analog as conditions dropped off while I was waiting. I wish I'd have seen your post earlier!
 

w2xq

Mentor
Joined
Jul 13, 2004
Messages
2,064
Location
Burlington County, NJ
Enhanced propagation can appear due to temperature inversion (such as occurs at sunrise when the upper layers of the atmosphere are first heated) or radically different air masses (such as a strong weather front coming through your area). Not uncommon in the spring. This kind of propagation is ground-wave, not involving the D-, E- or F-layers of the ionosphere. HTH.
 

KCoax

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 6, 2009
Messages
381
Olathe and Overland Park (hence, the name) have the highest elevations in the metro. That's pretty amazing that you receive the Olathe tower. What is your antenna set up? With basic RS800 I can get Indep p25 on a 396T at the highest points (i.e. Antioch and College blvd. or 135th bridge and I35) consistently. Indep p25 probably has the worst p25 system signal in the metro. At 63rd down by Swope Park (KC ZOO) I can't even pick up the control channel. Yet, down yonder, in OP at College and Antioch reception is great.
 

scannerowner

Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2008
Messages
965
Location
NW Missouri
Well I use the stock antenna on both, but now I'm not hearing anything except barely the KCMO Edacs system... last night was a great night to listen!! I was picking up either the Olathe or Mission KSICS towers easily, I believe it was both, but not too sure which had the strongest signal, I still want to say Olathe did.
 
Last edited:

kruser

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 25, 2007
Messages
4,178
Location
West St Louis Cnty, MO
Years ago I could pickup the city of Indianapolis, IN on their 460 MHz UHF frequencies.
They so happened to share many of the same UHF frequencies used by our City of St. Louis, MO police system back then.
I always remember that as I started hearing odd street names and odd sounding dispatchers yet the type and amount of traffic was very similar to the STL city traffic.
It had me puzzled for a good amount of time until one night I heard odd tactical traffic on a channel that STL city used for routine dispatch for one of the districts.
It was then that I realized I was hearing another city all together!
Lucky for me, I also owned the Police Call book that covered Illinois and Indiana and was able to quickly determine that it was Indianapolis Police I was hearing! This went on for some time but if memory is correct, it only occured after storms in one of the areas or maybe both and only at night. Sometimes well after midnight. This would have been when I started staying up way past my bedtime as I was just a youngster in high school back then. I'd discovered what I could hear late at night after the parents went to sleep. I must tiptoe though as my large bedroom was half above the parents room below. I later moved my radio equipment over the living room half of my room so I could move about without getting caught!
That was my first experience with long distance UHF communications and late night reception work which I still do to this day. I'd guess this to be back in the late 70's as that was about the time I purchased my first programmable scanner, the Electra Bearcat BC250.
I was also able to easily receive a UHF TV station also out of Indianapolis uisng nothing more than the good ole rabbit ear antenna on the old TV!
If I could hear Indy police, I could also watch their TV station if they had not signed off for the night which they did at like 11 PM I think. I bet those conditions lasted for almost two months and then things went back to normal and I never heard Indy again on UHF.

Oh, the low band VHF skip was also awesome back then during the afternoons after school until about sunset. Mid 70's there maybe.
I still cannot recall VHF low band skip being as good as it was back then in the 70's to this day. It's been good but not like what I remember from back then. I saved up for the BC250 one summer while working at my dads machine shop. I'd grown sick of buying crystals.

Tonight, I'm still getting great reception from the Starcom site 3-025 in Edwardsville but no signals from the others I could hear last night.
The Edwardsville tower is still booming in here tonight for me and way better than the STL Cities P25 simulcat system which is not hard to beat really.
Tonight is way different than last night was and the only thing I can think of is that the outdoor humidity level is sill rather low tonight compared to most nights at this time. It is 48% RH now while most nights at this time it is more around 80% and I get little to no reception from the Starcom site at all. I'd imagine a higher humidity can attenuate the 800 MHz signals from Starcom but they are still hitting here with barely any decode errors at all tonight. I did not think to check the RH levels last night.

Unless they have changed the antenna patterns at site 3-025 on Starcom, this is the best I've ever received anything Starcom related except for when the 3-001 (Mascoutah), 3-005 (Belleville) and 3-053 (Caseyville) sites were on the air. I used to get great reception from all three of those sites but then those went dark and the 3-059 Simulcast St. Clair site came online. I can barely detect the control channel on that site for some reason. That bummed me out as I enjoyed monitoring Starcom. Being able to monitor 3-025 last night and tonight again has been great! I just wonder ow long it will last.
Now I see lightning on the security cams so I guess it's time to disconnect for the night!
 

talkpair

Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2009
Messages
955
Location
Clinton County, MO
Oklahoma was coming in strong here in Clinton county between 8 and 9am this morning.

I was listening to my feed radio (147.27) this morning and really not expecting to hear anything.

Overheard a repeater ID itself in Pawhuska, OK. (didn't catch the call sign)

Later, caught WX5LAW in Anadarko, OK identify in Morse code.

Also heard N5JMG repeater in McAlester, OK identify in voice.

By 10 AM, conditions had pretty much returned to normal.
 

kruser

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 25, 2007
Messages
4,178
Location
West St Louis Cnty, MO
Oklahoma was coming in strong here in Clinton county between 8 and 9am this morning.

I was listening to my feed radio (147.27) this morning and really not expecting to hear anything.

Overheard a repeater ID itself in Pawhuska, OK. (didn't catch the call sign)

Later, caught WX5LAW in Anadarko, OK identify in Morse code.

Also heard N5JMG repeater in McAlester, OK identify in voice.

By 10 AM, conditions had pretty much returned to normal.
Bummer, I did not fire anything up until after 10 AM so I missed it. I still tried though!
 

talkpair

Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2009
Messages
955
Location
Clinton County, MO
Oklahoma to Kansas City 2-meter reception

I had to leave the house for a few hours this morning, but managed to capture audio from a couple of the stations mentioned earlier. (between 10 AM and noon).

I did some rough calculations and found McAlester is 322 air miles away, and Anadarko is 372 air miles from me.

It's interesting that furthest repeater has the best signal. (files attached).
 
Last edited:

talkpair

Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2009
Messages
955
Location
Clinton County, MO
For me at least, having radios with PL and DPL capabilities have made me less aware of when conditions are favorable for long distance reception.

PL and DPL weren't even available on scanners 30 years ago, so you either had to listen to the out of state traffic, or lock out the channel.

In that same era, except for 2 meter amateur radio, and the Corps of Engineers, repeaters were pretty much unheard of in the VHF high band. Therefore a good antenna was essential for picking up the mobiles in a simplex world. This was a good thing if you wanted to hear the far-away stations, or a bad thing if it interfered with local traffic.

Harry.......If i read that forecast right, it looks like it was accurate for the traffic I picked up.
My reception from here has always been good along the US 71 corridor, but this morning's traffic was way off the beaten path.
For grins, I'm going to leave the feed up for a few nights and record it locally to see if I get a repeat of last night's performance......Even though the forecast really doesn't show anything favorable.
 

kruser

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Nov 25, 2007
Messages
4,178
Location
West St Louis Cnty, MO
.

Harry.......If i read that forecast right, it looks like it was accurate for the traffic I picked up.
I also checked that site and it looked like my area was just outside of the forecast path.
I've looked at that site before as well and it seems there is a hole around the St. Louis area a lot of times but go 50-75 miles either side and it is showing a good chance at long distance reception. I feel neglected!
I always found that funny as the same thing happens to us here a lot when it snows! All around will get snow except here. They call it the "heat island" effect but I never have my heat set 'that' high :wink:
 

talkpair

Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2009
Messages
955
Location
Clinton County, MO
Seems it may be back again tonight, not as strong, but it is here...
I agree.

I managed to hear the N5JMG repeater in McAlester, Oklahoma (322 miles) again but not the other two.
Pulled in the KD5AYE repeater in Batesville, Arkansas (222 miles) very weak.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top