Southgate Amateur Radio Club
During the week of December 17-21, six members of the February 2009 Desecheo DXpedition team met in Puerto Rico.
The team spent the first evening with local DXers and members of the Puerto Rico Amateur Radio League and enjoyed a wonderful dinner and a night of fellowship.The hospitality was gracious and very much appreciated.
The following day the team visited US Fish and Wildlife Headquarters in Boqueron and met with the Chief Refuge Manager and law enforcement personnel. Later that day, the DXpedition team members underwent UXO (unexploded ordnance) training.
The following morning, Friday, Dec. 19th, they accompanied U.S. Fish & Wildlife law enforcement and UXO personnel to Desecheo. The campsite and antenna fields were thoroughly swept for UXO and several areas were found suspicious. These areas were clearly marked, mapped by GPS and declared off limits for the DXpedition.
USFWS will allow antennas on the ridge above the helicopter pad, thus providing a clear shot to EU, NA and JA. Other antennas will be located on the beach below the helicopter pad. The only radio operation that was conducted was to test a 2m link to Puerto Rico. After three hours on the Island, the team endured a rough passage back to the mainland.
Logistics and staging of equipment is ongoing and will be complete before the team arrives in Puerto Rico on Feb. 7 th. The team will transit to Desecheo on Feb. 12 to begin the two-week operation. Eight HF stations plus 6 meters will be operational. An incredible array of antennas has been planned. Transportation and logistics have been arranged for a fast deployment and quick appearance on the air.
The Desecheo 2009 team wishes to thank our sponsors for their generous support. Special thanks go to North American and Japanese DX clubs and individual DXers. Their support has been especially noteworthy.
Fundraising continues.. if you or your Club would like to help out, please go to www.kp5.us/help.htm. While on the team website, click the “Pictures” menu button and check out the pictures taken on the recent reconnaissance trip to Desecheo.
Bob Allphin, K4UEE
Glenn Johnson, WØGJ