BECAUSE WE'RE ALL ABOUT RADIO
DX Central's TIS/HAR Challenge
TIS/HAR stations, such as this one from Mandeville, LA that is used for the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, provide travelers and residents with vital information on road conditions, airport information, weather conditions, and a whole lot more!
Not all radio stations found on the AM/MW band in the United States are regular broadcast stations playing music or talk radio. There is a category of stations called Traveler's Information Stations (TIS) and Highway Advisory Radio (HAR) that serve to alert traveler's to airport information, highway conditions, information for theme parks and national/state parks, or otherwise broadcast important-to-the-public information. TIS/HAR stations transmit low-powered signals, with content often on a loop.
Prior the expansion of the AM band above 1600 kHz, TIS stations were mostly found between 1610-1700 and additionally on 530 kHz. Many can still be found in this range, but TIS/HAR stations can be found just about anywhere on the band these days. They are not as easy to hear as they once were, but determined DXers still pursue them with great enthusiasm!
When I first began AM DXing in the early 90s, TIS/HAR DX was one of my absolute favorite parts of the hobby! I spent many nights on 1610 or 1620 kHz listening for distant TIS stations from my home in Brasstown, North Carolina. Stations in Chicago, IL, Paducah, KY and even down into Texas were all heard from Brasstown during this period.
To encourage other DXers to incorporate TIS/HAR DX into their regular DX sessions, we are launching the DX Central TIS/HAR Challenge. The challenge opens at 2359 UTC on Friday, October 28, 2022 and will run through the end of the DX season (exact date TBD, sometime in Spring of 2023).
I am including a few resources to help DXers in their pursuits of TIS stations:
The IRCA free TIS/HAR list to aid in identifying stations
Our DX Central TIS/HAR YouTube Playlist. This will include any TIS/HAR that we receive during the challenge so that others can hear their content for matching up against what they are receiving.
I encourage other DXers to follow suit by uploading their own TIS/HAR airchecks to YouTube. DXers that do, can email links to these airchecks to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will publish a consolidated list of all TIS/HAR airchecks.
The Google Form below can be used to submit receptions for this challenge. You can link to this page or you can bookmark the direct Google Form URL: https://forms.gle/y4ftUvXLEVo871Mj6
Good luck to all DXers! Check back here to this page for Challenge updates, news and more!
73 and best of DX,