PJ7/K5WE Sint Maarten DXpedition

Oct/Nov 2014

Operator: Jeff Martin – K5WE

The DXpedition

Op: Jeff Martin – K5WE
Oyster Pond
Sint Maarten
CQ 8 – ITU 11
IOTA – NA-105
Grid – FK88

PJ7 – Sint Maarten – Update on my Sint Maarten operation – I made 9,254 QSO’s as PJ7/K5WE. I had 190 QSO’s on SSB, 313 on RTTY, all the rest on CW. Equipment included a K3 radio, a KPA500 amp, a Hexbeam for 20-6 meters, a 2 el VDA for 30 meters, and an inverted V for 40 meters. We stayed at a villa on a hillside overlooking Oyster Pond on the Eastern coast of the island. The location had spectacular views and was very pretty, but turned out to be not so ideal from a radio perspective. The villa faced SE with a mountain directly behind us in the direction of the US and JA. The path to Europe was clear, straight out over the water. My percentage of QSO’s from the Caribbean is always highest to Europe, but this time it was the highest yet, at nearly 72%, due mostly I think to the location. The house was perched on the side of a mountain, with hardly any yard and very little space for antennas. I had to put the 30 meter verticals within a few feet of the house and there was no room for the 80 meter antenna, so it did not go up at all. We had no internet access the entire time we were there, so no email and no log uploads. They got the TV working after 5 days. They blamed the outages on a hurricane that hit the island a couple weeks before our arrival. I operated for 9 days, beginning 25Oct14. A significant part of the first 2 days was spent putting up antennas, and half the last day was spent tearing down. Also, my wife went with me on this trip so we spent 2-3 hours each day doing tourist stuff and took off one whole day to take the ferry over to the island of St Barths for sight-seeing and shopping. So all-in-all, I am happy with the 9,254 QSO’s. Tnx to all of you who worked me as PJ7/K5WE. QSL cards are on order. Hpe CU Agn from the next one… 73… JeffPJ7/K5WE