Monday 20 October 2008

Willis Island Expedition Update

The Willis Islands Group, Mid Isl. Thursday, October, 16thJosh_039_vk9dwx_1_sm

This is the seventh day of operation. We had two days with heavy gusty winds. The long enduring rainfall for more than a day gave us some relief. It was refreshing to have a sweet-water shower from the sky and temperature dropped to 28 degrees C. Today the sun is back again and we are experiencing 39 degrees in the operator tents, with linears running.

Our receiving situation on the lowbands is heavily influenced by static noise, which usually comes up to 20-30 db over S9, a real challenge for our operators. We obviously built the 30m 4 square too close to the water, because two Verticals were nearly washed into the sea by the heavy surf. We managed to fix the guy-ropes and pegs again and could keep the antenna into operation. For the same reason, we also moved the 40m 4-square a few meters away from the beach. We also put up a 6m-antenna, but there is no activity at all so far.

Today we crossed the line of 40.000 Qs. Stations are pouring in in great numbers still. Unfortunately especially the W-path is interfered and jammed heavily on 160m. but we will do our very best to get as many of you as possible in the log. We also have set up a fifth station and now are able to operate from all five positions at the same time, to cater the needs of all of you even better.

Tomorrow, we are expecting the "Rum Runner", who will bring us more supplies, out friend Dale, VK4DMC, Bernd (DK2JW; our "tourist") and the new rookie Rhy, ZS6DXB. Unfortunately Josh, W4WJF will be leaving with the "Rum Runner" in the next day, but this also means that Rhy will be joining our effort. Josh says he has loved working you all on the bands and has greatly enjoyed his experiences so far. He came in mainly as a SSB operator but has made quite a few CW contacts with you on-the-air. Even though he said some operators complained of his slow speed, his proficiency has improved so far. He is lucky since he doesn't have to help break down the antennas and the camp AND can go home and put VK9DWX in his log! He thinks the idea of inviting rookies along on DXpeditions is a great idea. In the US, he said many DXers were inspired by this idea and he hopes to give a few presentations about his trip in order to motivate others to sponsor a rookie on their next DXpedition.

We are expecting a great weekend and another exciting week full of pile-ups on the Island.

We will enjoy to work you in CW, SSB and RTTY on all bands!

73 de the VK9DWX-Team

P.S.: Just a few minutes ago the Rum Runner arrived at Willis Island. Around noon we will start to transfer the persons and the ordered supplies.

Courtesy of the Willis Island DXPedition web site.

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