Having spent my first week on the new for me 4 m band it might be a good time to sum up my first experiences. As anticipated the band is very interesting. Despite running QRP only into a small 5 ele Yagi tropo QSOs up to 550 km seem to be no problem although most of the time with very deep and long QSB. Depending on whom you work CW is quite doable while with others you have to do digital modes, i.e. JT65, to gain a few more dB’s. Also Meteor Scatter is surprisingly easy! Reflections are a bit longer than on 2 m and although higher in frequency I don’t see much difference in comparison to 6 m. But it seems on 70 MHz it can all be done with a lot less ERP than on 2 m.
The most challenging part of doing 4 m is certainly finding QSO partners. 70.200 MHz is the “international” calling frequency but our temporary allocation only allows the usage of 70.150 to 70.180 MHz. Thus without any special openings that produce activity and people scanning the band it’s rather difficult to raise a soul. Sure the ON4KST chat helps. But would appreciate more activity by DL’s! 😉
So far I made 40 tropo (black on map) and 7 MS (blue on map) contacts into 33 squares and 9 countries being active on 5 evenings and a bit of Sunday daytime. Looking forward to my first Sporadic E opening now, it’s about time, isn’t it? 😉