I have set up at YMCA in St. Louis (EM48sq) today. Main intention was to try work Zack W9SZ from EN50 and Ron from EM59. Weather was somewhat cloudy with little chance for Rain Scatter. It was raining a little when I arrived at the hill, so I have "installed" an "all-weather-option" on top of my 10GHz station:
First of all, I have heard Zack W9SZ when aimed my dish at an airplane departing from the Lambert St. Louis airport! He was S9 but this propagation didn't last long - that airplane was departing West, almost perpendicularly to the path between Zack and me. Tried again with next airplane, no luck. Maybe we should find a spot in the direction of main runway next time .. ?
Tried with Ron KO0Z later and heard him S9+. Ron was in EM59cm today, little bit North of his usual location, which gave me clear view in his direction from YMCA. However, he didn't hear me. Tried several times, then found a damaged transfer relay at my dish antenna .. the relay was switching (means clicking), but the "TX" path didn't connect. I have to check my sequencer before replacing the relay, which can't be done on hilltop, so this contest ended for me and I have returned home at 9:30am.
Before leaving YMCA, I have taken a picture of the view towards EM49pa from the garbage dumpster behind the building where N5MU worked me from on yesterday - it's actually very good spot for that direction!