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E. coast propagation is always better, why?

groundwire

Sr. Member
Jul 19, 2014
959
1,334
153
I have studied multiple books and resources on radio propagation so i have a good understanding on how it all works, but the one thing i cannot figure out and cannot find any solid answers to is, why does the east coast of the usa have WAY better radio propagation on a regular bassis than the west coast? The east coast skip will be going strong all day long and into the early evening, and the west coast is really quiet to almost dead? it doesn't make sense.
It definitely is not a E layer skip thing, is it a terrain thing maybe? i just cant figure out why. more water mass? It is very weird. and this goes for all bands, shortwave broadcast at night e coast, slammin, west coast, very little activity. same on 80m, 40m, and 20m. whats your guess?
 

Cookie55

W9WDX Amateur Radio Club Member
Aug 19, 2010
67
68
28
Central VA
I've never lived on the west coast but they sure seem to work the Australia and Japan stations plenty of times while my calls go unanswered. Maybe there's just more Europe stations with their antenna's aimed to the east.
 

brandon7861

Well-Known Member
Nov 28, 2018
258
278
93
Ringsted, Denmark
I could be totally wrong here, but I believe it has to do with FAI. From the middle of the continent to either coast is about 1200 miles, so IMO, F-layer is ruled out unless the MUF is very high. I believe what we have is E-layer during enhanced solar activity with fairly occasional field aligned irregularity enhancement in the afternoon. From here in northern MN, most of the skip I hear is Texas through Florida, and that path happens to be parallel to the geomagnetic field lines - a prerequisite for FAI enhancement (although the signal often takes a path off to the side before bouncing back).
magnetic_lines_2010.gif
 

AudioShockwav

Extraterrestrial
Staff member
Apr 6, 2005
7,684
5,670
593
Sierras Near Yosemite National Park
Back in the early days of the CDX Club during cycle 22, myself and Larry, DX Man faced being banned from DX contests because many members said we had a unfair advantage on the West coast.
We even disqualified ourselves from winning a few contests just so we could make contacts without discouraging other members.
East coast stations seem to have a advantage working into Europe using greyline early AM, we seem to have a advantage working the Pacific using greyline in the evenings when the sunspot numbers are high.
During the day when the band is blown open is anyone's game.
Cycle 22 was extremely wild with days that the skip would run late into the night and then back a few hours later in the morning with just a few hours when it would die off.
As for this cycle, it's just getting warmed up, as the numbers increase so will activity.


73
Jeff
 
Last edited:

groundwire

Sr. Member
Jul 19, 2014
959
1,334
153
I could be totally wrong here, but I believe it has to do with FAI. From the middle of the continent to either coast is about 1200 miles, so IMO, F-layer is ruled out unless the MUF is very high. I believe what we have is E-layer during enhanced solar activity with fairly occasional field aligned irregularity enhancement in the afternoon. From here in northern MN, most of the skip I hear is Texas through Florida, and that path happens to be parallel to the geomagnetic field lines - a prerequisite for FAI enhancement (although the signal often takes a path off to the side before bouncing back).View attachment 59430
as far as who has better chances with europe vs the pacific, i understand how that works. its the whole E coast band is open, W coast dead air. I think brandon may have nailed it here with this presentation. I may have been to quick to dismiss any E layer influence, as E layer propagation is usually short lived and sporadic, not all day into the early evening hours on one whole half of the continent.
 

Captain Kilowatt

Professional Amateur
Staff member
Apr 6, 2005
16,928
11,247
823
59
Nova Scotia,Canada
How do you know the east coast is hopping while the west coast is dead? Online receivers? Time of day will make a difference as there is three hours difference from coast to coast. If anything I would say the south has better DX than the northern regions especially when Es is happening. I see openings all the time in southern states but nothing, dead, here in Nova Scotia.
 

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