Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Blog Logs

Special thanks to contributor Terry Kruger, for the following medium wave and Travelers Information Station loggings.
Gayle VH

530 FLORIDA AIRSPACE Radio Martí (airborne); tune in at 2150 18 May, 2007 (local Friday). Intentional channel blocker Radio Rebelde audio was going strong as usual, and also as usual a full second behind 1180, 5025 etc. But interestingly, the Rebelde power was abruptly dropped way down to maybe a fourth of the signal level at 2156, no doubt so the Habana Jammer Commados could check for the appearance of Air Martí. (I've heard this happen maybe once or twice before since the inception of Air Martí during the former PANG 193rd EC-130 operator days.) The Habana Jammer Commandos probably haven't seen a log of mine on the Internet for a few weeks and were curious about the status of Air Martí thus shut down 530 briefly (hi Arnie). Lots of local line noise here, but I could tell that a couple of minutes later, the Rebelde transmitter was completely cut off, then back up with full power at 2208. Air Martí audio was finally audible at 2217+ underneath and continued clearly, albeit weak under Rebelde, parallel Martí 6030. Air Martí was still hanging in there with the theme sounder at 2300. A true cat-and-mouse game this evening and a great example of the highly coveted radio war. Brilliant!

940 FLORIDA (MIS) Pinellas County Emergency Management WPTI814, Palm Harbor; 1705-1710 18 May, 2007. Noted this one at exceptional level when near US-19 and SR-580 (Countryside vicinity). This is one of three transmitters (the Ulmerton Road, Largo transmitter is loud and near me, and the third is near downtown St. Petersburg) which synchro the same audio. Usual NOAA Weather Radio KHB32 telco audio with sporadic Emergency Management generic crap announcements dropped in.

1680 LOUISIANA KRJO, Monroe; 1033-1040 18 May, 2007. Presume the one based on format, near local sunrise time. Briefly up before the Winter Garden, FL Spanish station overtook the channel. Promo for the apparently very big "Rejoice Music Soul Food" Christian concert in Philadelphia, then mention of "...only on Rejoice..." (KRJO's slogan -- and note the call letters, get it?). I initially hoped this was WTTM, Lindenwold, NJ based on the Philly concert reference until I Googled the concert and saw it was a major event at this location, and WTTM is apparently mostly an Asian languages/brokered format. Plus, late on the sunrise path for NJ here. So, KRJO I will say it was.

All logs were made between May 12 and May 17 during a random road and hiking trip to GA, NC and TN using the stock radio in the 2006 Hyundai Sonata rental (very poor sensitivity). All frequencies in kHz unless otherwise stated, times/dates EST

830 GEORGIA (TIS) William B. Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport; after vinyl record shopping in Atlanta's Little Five Points neighborhood, I tuned to this one around the I-285/US-23 junction (the usual huge signal). Female loop abruptly malfunctioned and stopped, leaving just an open carrier for the next 30 minutes of listening this early afternoon, May 15th.

1390 GEORGIA WISK, Americus; a totally cool station, clearly this must be a hobby station with automated programming built to fit the owners' music likings. I was in the Americus vicinity from late afternoon one day through noon the following, and never did this one air any commercials or PSA's for that matter, during my listens. Format is automated nonstop Top-40 60's/70's rock and soul. Hendrix, Sly and the Family Stone, James Brown, Dan Fogleberg, Michael Jackson, Mama's and the Papa's, Del Shannon, The Beatles, etc. Near top-of-hour canned ID by male as "Your music, 1390 WISK, Americus" and several variants at other times, though rare. Nice, warm audio. Someone here is having fun and knows how to do it at a cost that must be out of his own pocket. Listed in the FCC dB as 1 kW, NDD.

1410 KENTUCKY WHLN, Harlan; May 13, 6:06 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park (a pretty good place to do AM/FM bandscans as I found out last year). Unusual format that one would expect on FM, not here: hits by Snow Patrol, Tracy Chapman, Lionel Ritchie, Train, etc., female DJ Mary (Mills?). I thought 1-800-832-0308 announced (I may have gotten it wrong, or my Cingular would not work in this area or both, as it kept prompting me to send a text message with no other options or identification). Fortunately, they ID'ed after the attempted call with a canned "The radio station everyone can agree on. Today's hits and yesterday's favorites, 1410 WHLN." At 6:34, a promo for a Walt Disney World trip contest, beginning Monday. Never any commercials! Not so certain the programming was really locally-originated based on the format and 800 number. Listed at 5 kW, ND1 in the FCC dB.

1510 SOUTH CAROLINA WDRF, Woodruff; May 13, 6:37 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Tune in to The Eagles "Take It To the Limit," canned male "Oldies 1510, WDRF" and into national Home Depot commercial, then Grand Funk Railroad's "Locomotion" cover. Fair. Listed at only 250 watts NDD in the FCC dB.

1580 UNIDENTIFIEDS May 13, 6:55 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Two domestic stations with Spanish formats trading places, fair to poor. One uses the slogan "La Pantera 80" and the other (apparently simulcasting with FM) as "La Buena --- FM." Anyone know who these are? I Googled La Pantera 80 + 1580 and located WXRA, Georgetown, KY supposedly using the slogan La Pantera 15-80. No clear hits on La Buena + 1580 in this geographic region.

1600 UNIDENTIFIED May 13, 6:37 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. This is the same domestic Spanish unidentified heard trading places last May with English gospel station WXMY, Chilhowee, VA at this site, and it remains active and with the same Mexican format. Snagged a slogan this time, "La Favorita." WXMY is still there too, same format. I suppose one possibility after having Googled La Favorita + 1600 is WAOS, Austell, GA.

1610 FLORIDA (MIS) Manatee Information Radio, Crystal River; big signal noted late afternoon on the return home through the back roads east of Crystal River and then south of the city on US-19. Long loop by squeaky female regarding manatee habitat, boating safety in manatee zones, etc. This one continues to remain unlisted (and thus the callsign is unknown) in the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau dB.

1610 GEORGIA (MIS) US Army Corps of Engineers, Buford Dam (southern end of Lake Sidney Lanier); the most interesting new find on the trip, a TIS/MIS seemingly not listed in the FCC's dB (presumably due to government operation status vs. private or municipal). Peaking at fair level on I-985 at exit 8 and lost just south of the first Gainesville, GA exit. Looped male, partly copied text as: "This is a public service announcement regarding water release at Buford Dam. This service is provided by the US Army Corps of Engineers... The scheduled water release for Saturday and Sunday [initial log was on a Saturday] is zero...For... information, call 770-945-1467, or for the latest water release information, call 770-945-1466, or in the local vicinity, tune your radio to 1610 on the AM dial." No signs posted for this on I-985, maybe there's something heading west at exit 8 (SR-347)? I called these numbers (pre-recorded messages) upon returning home. One states to call a third number, 770-945-9531, for web information. I called and it's a live number. The lady gave the URL as: which works. The address she gave me fo potential QSLing is: USACE, Attn. Mr. Williams, PO Box 567, Buford, GA 30515-0567, which matches the mailing address on the web. On some days, the recorded phone information (1467) is updated by a Ranger Brad Vogel, USACE.

1610 GEORGIA (MIS) Perry Area Convention and Visitors Bureau PJY891; still active and still with a big signal that gets out for 10 miles or better. The same male and female looped information as last year, except for a short insert regarding May events.

1640 FLORIDA (TIS) FL Turnpike, Sumter County; UK-accented female with generic Turnpike ID, male generic trafic flow blather, time/date stamp ("7" instead of 2007 or 07). Briefly fair on I-75 northbound (as always during daytime), just north of the Lake Panasofkee bridge.

1680 FLORIDA (TIS) Floria Department of Transportation, Jennings; as previously reported by David Crawford, a large blue background with white letters sign (and inactive yellow flashers attached) is posted just across the Georgia/Florida line on I-75 southbound. But this is still not active. Would it not make sense to have it functioning during the wildfires that are sporadically seriously hampering travel on I-75/I-10? This is presumably the same phantom station that was on 1640 per a previous sign in the same area. 1680 is listed under the
generic FDOT mobile calls WQBN524 and at Jennings in the FCC's Wireless Telecomm

88.7 MHZ NORTH CAROLINA WNCW, Isothermal Community College, Springdale; noted May 13, 5:30 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Bluegrass and Appalachian folk vocals. Top-of-hour ID, promo for a Telluride vacation giveaway, mention of, fair. First heard this one last May, a few miles southwest of here. One of the nicest regional flavor stations/formats.

89.9 MHz GEORGIA (PIRATE) "Brisas del --," Tifton; this Mexican-format Spanish pirate appears to be gone. Noted last May on the way north and a few days later on the return. Nothing this time heading up and back on I-75 around Tifton, and nothing traced on any other channel.

92.1 MHz GEORGIA WDDQ, Adel; still spewing nonstop loops for Wild Adventures/Splash Island tourist attractions. Heard while sitting for 1-1/2 hours on I-75 under the eastbound I-10 overpass, waiting for those of us who were the last on the Interstate to move north after both I-75 and I-10 were closed due to the wildfires on May 12th.

92.5 MHz SOUTH CAROLINA WESC-FM, Greensville; May 13, 5:42 p.m. local at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Live DJ with "92 point 5 WESC" into Country format songs. Canned ID near 6:00 as "WESC-FM, Greenville."

94.3 MHz FLORIDA WNFB "Mix 94 point 3," Lake City; pathetic that only one station had any updates on what was happening with the wildfires and the Interstate closure situation: WNFB Mix 94.3. Their Saturday air staff gave awesome accounts between songs. I sent John Newman, President and GM, an email about how his staff did such great job in this age of consolidation, brokered crap, satellite-fed repeats of weekday talk spewers, voice-tracking, etc. Responsible local radio? We cannot have that; someone buy this station out regardless cost. John Newman's reply: "Terry, Thanks so much for your kind words. I will pass your comments on to our staff, who all worked overtime an with a good attitude to provide the coverage of the fires. As a broadcaster of 40 years, we still feel it is important to be very involved with our community. When disasters occur, such as the hurricanes of nearly 3 years ago, or fires, we all step up to the plate to keep our listeners informed. We are delighted to hear from you and many others who have passed along similar comments. Stop by on your way through Lake City next time for a free tour and a chat." -- John Newman, President.

96.7 MHz FLORIDA WZPH-LP, Dade City; the usual pop/country oldies format (Bobbie Gentrie's "Ode To Billie Joe"), canned ID's. Audible briefly on I-75 near Zephyrhills. (Terry Kruger, FL)