10. July 2022
Rig:4 x 16ele
ODX:UT1FG/MM IM53qd via EA8 3,500km
Log:09:15 EA8RH IL18 -19 R-10 FT8
11:39 EA8AVI IL28 59 59 SSB
16:25 EA8DMF IL18 529 539 CW (Rainer DF6NA @EA8 QTH)
17:29 UT1FG/MM IM53qd By reflection from EA8 Islands
17:46 EA8/I4GHG IL18 Rino SSB using 1W with 2ele antenna
Comment:The Atlantic tropo ducts are incredibly strong over the sea, but they rarely get far inland and they are completely disrupted by the Iberian peninsular of Spain and Portugal between here and Morocco.
However, whilst listening on 144174 to strong signals from EA8 I noticed occasional decodes from UT1FG/MM at low level, with -23 to -25dB reports. He was enjoying a sporadic E opening to Italy at the time. Initially I thought I was also hearing Yuri via sporadic E, but as the weak decodes continued I suspected I was seeing a signal from the back of Yuri’s 5ele beam, travelling 900km down to the EA8 islands, being reflected and travelling 2,600km up to Cornwall.
I have a large antenna of 4 x 16ele yagi’s and no signals were heard direct (187 degrees QTF), only when beaming to EA8, (206 degrees QTF).
I messaged Yuri in the KST chat and, after his sporadic E opening ended, he turned his beam down to EA8. His CQ immediately appeared and we completed an FT8 QSO in consecutive periods.
The distance between us was only 1900km... but the signal had travelled 3,500km to get around the Iberian peninsular!
10th July 2022 144.174MHz 17:29 UT1FG/MM R-11 / -19 IM53qd
Yuri said in the chat afterwards “It’s amazing…I heard you only upon turn to EA8...tnx!”
Soon after the contact with Yuri, I also had a chat on SSB with Rino, EA8/I4GHG who was on holiday on South of Tenerife, IL18oh. Rino was using just 1W and a 2 ele, HB9CV antenna.