Category Archives for "DXpeditions"

Ham radio Photo DXpeditions

Crossing my e-mail was a note that Svalbard (JW) shore operations were approved for July 4th and July 14th of this year. You may work this short operation with radios, vertical antennas and less than a 100-watts. But, that’s not why you should pay attention to this operation.

It is the photography

Breathtaking is the best way to describe the photos that come out of these trips. Whether it is photos of penguins, glaciers, polar bears or other fabulous scenery, these trips will knock your socks off.

Oh, and by the way, ham radio is an integral part of these trips where there are shore stops to operate ham radio.

You can find out about these great trips from the Photo DXpedition website. And the pictures? Here’s a sample of how close you get to the scenery:

I like my Digital SLR model better than this one

Photo DXpeditions

Suitcase DXpedition to St. Martin and Saba

Can you do a ham radio DXpedition in one 50-pound suitcase? These enterprising hams did exactly that. DXing on the beach, on bikes and from mountaintops.

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h/t to N9PUZ and the SMC reflector

Online QSL Requests for VP6DX

image Does every ham in the world now have online access? Let’s hope so as the major way this DXpedition wants their QSL requests is via an online request form.

From the Ducie Island site:

A special service for the VP6DX DXpedition is the Online QSL Request System (OQRS) for bureau and DIRECT QSL cards, based on an online form and the QSL Label Software BV. This is no E-QSL system. The callsigns and QSO data of the requests are stored in a database and you will automatically receive a real printed QSL card via the bureau or DIRECT to your mailbox without sending your own QSL card if you are in the log!

If you do request a direct card, they will ask you for a donation to cover the cost of postage via PayPal and will list you as a sponsor if you provide more dollars than the postage amount.

The purpose of all of this: dramatically reduce the number of bureau cards going through the worldwide system and eliminate as many direct cards through the mail as possible.

I can relate to this. I’m sure they are not as thrilled to get a K9JY QSL card as I’d be getting a VP6DX card from them! It eliminates the hassle of envelopes, cards, processing return cards, and keeping it all straight.

These innovative ways of electronically QSLing, requesting QSL’s and getting confirmations move the hobby along in what has always been (in my opinion) the slowest part of the hobby: getting the confirmation for the contact.

You can still send a card, of course, and get one in return. But, if you have online access, why would you send a card?

h/t to K2DBK.

Scot, K9JY

Marion Island ZS8T Web Site Up

image The Marion Island DXpedition web site is up. The DXpedition is scheduled for May of this year and the web site will be a great place to follow the progress. You can subscribe to changes on the site through their RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed (http://zs8t.net/feed/) and participate in their forum.

I don’t need Marion Island for a new one, but for those who do, this is an impressive and informative site.

Scot, K9JY

PS Hat tip: Christian, DL6KAC

DXpedition Search

BleuI’ve spent a lot of time the last 3-4 days looking for places to go on a personal DXpedition. I’m not positive I’m going to do it, but I have the time and the dollars to do something that isn’t too extravagant.

Here’s the criteria:

  • The antenna’s need to be in place. I don’t want to take any antennas.
  • A separate structure. A place where there already is a shack, not a hotel or apartment building.
  • Less than four time zones away from Pacific Time. I just got back from Ireland and the jet lag was tough!
  • Only eight or nine hours of flight time. Blowing one day on each end of the trip is probably necessary, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it! I’d like to get there and at least get set up on the first day, operating the second day and forward.
  • Relatively easy licensing. I’m not looking to work with 27-government agencies trying to get a license.
  • Relatively easy transportation. I’m not thinking about going to a place and then having to have four more hours spent getting the final place.

The idea behind the DXpedition is to simply operate as much as possible from a place. Since I do so little operating here at home (like…none), I want to get on the air and just operate as much as makes sense. The timing doesn’t need to be associated with a contest and, if it is, my objective wouldn’t be to win the contest, just participate in a way that supports my operating objectives.

I’ve done some research and have some thoughts. Any good ideas out there?

Scot, K9JY

Bermuda Flags

Bermuda 068

Bermuda flag on top, with Canada and United States flags below. From the VP9/K9JY contest DXpedition.

Scot, K9JY

9V1YC has ZL8R and BS7H DVD’s

Yagi BackgroundMost of us contesters are also more than a little interested in DXpeditions. Maybe not in chasing them, necessarily, but we all know what a tremendous effort goes into putting stations — especially rare ones — on the air for the deserving.

Steve, K9ZW, notes:

ZL8R Kermadec Island is an awesome nature preserve so remote that few groups ever get there. James 9V1YC’s DVD story about how “keeping it simple is sure a lot of fun” is captured filmed against the natural backdrop of what looks to be a fabulous place.

The BS7H Scarborough Reef filming in itself is as amazing of a feat as running radio operations in stunningly difficult conditions.

I’ll point you right to Steve’s, K9ZW, blog With Varying Frequency with the scoop on how to get these DVD’s.

Wow.

Scot

E51 on the air

earth.jpgA little reminder from one of the reflectors I belong to: E51 is up and working stations and will be in the CQ WW CW contest working the deserving.

While you’re at it, check out the preparations at the South Cook Island blog — George, K5KG, and Ron, KK9K, are great operators and I hope they are having a blast.

Scot, K9JY

VP2M DXpedition video

World BackgroundScott over on the 100 Pound DXpedition blog (a great blog that talks about all things planning and executing on a DXpedition) offers up two videos on the Montserrat DXpedition.

I’m pretty late in posting this — it was in my notes to post that I lost and then found — but check it out.

Scot, K9JY

YW5AS DXpedition pictures now online

yw5asPictures are up of the YW5AS Aves de Sotavento DXpedition — and they are pretty cool. There’s a bit of narrative that goes along with the web site as well.

It was a pleasure to see the use of all of the verticals right there on the salt water beach as well. As you know, the combination of vertical antennas and being located on the beach makes the vertical a powerful antenna.

And, as a side note, I am continually amazed at the quality of Google Earth — and how so many DXpeditions now are using it as part of their planning.

Hat tip to DL6KAC for the link.

Scot, K9JY

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