47DX/SJ036 Vejlo island
47DX/SJ035 Sloto island
47DX/SJ025 Enehoje islans
47DX/SJ025 Kaareholm island
Island Festival 2014/DXRC Island Weekend 2014.
The story about the Danish DX team for IF2014 has it roots from last summer not long ago after IF2013.
Every year at the second part of June 47DX132 Carsten host a meeting for Danish DX'ers, getting together for socialising, having fun, eating nice food and drinking a beer or two. During last years "Get Together" some of us discussed what it would take to put together a team, able to activate 4 new islands for the IF in 2014.
During the autumn months mails flew back and forth, October 1st we had our first Skype Meeting and primary team members was in place: 47DX002 Soren, 47DX052 Tom, 47DX109 Jesper, 47DK137 Karsten and 47RO109 Tom (47DK137 Karsten had to leave Sunday morning but would participate as a full member of the team).
A line of Skype meetings were held, and first point at the agenda was: Do we "just" want to participate - or do we want to do our best to make the most points we can? We all agreed: We want to do the most we can in order to make as many points as possible...
A lot af planning began, also good chats about where to activate. We zoomed in on Nakskov Fjord as a great choice for the IF. We were lucky enough that 052 Tom and his Son Martin owns a speedboat (and a trailer), and we had the pleasure of knowing that Martin would sail it for us and at the same time do pictures and videos in order to make the best possible proofs. Long story short, we decided to activate Vejlo, Sloto, Enehoje and Kareholm. Then Karsten started the task of contacting the owners of the different islands, which proved to be a long and hard task, but he succeeded in the end - not only getting all needed permits but also securing us very good possiblities: place to sleep, power etc. besides good contacts for future Activities.
Armed with the knowledge that we were allowed access on all 4 islands (3 of them are privately owned), and that we could get power and shelter on 2 of them (Vejlo & Enehoje), planning continued - now moving on to discuss and plan all details. In february all plans came together into one masterplan, and we started to look forward to the first weekend of June.
In May 47DX052 Tom, 47DK137 Karsten, 47RO109 Tom and Martin had a trip visiting the different islands, to prepare and scout. Our plans seemed fine, and we had a great day on the waters of Nakskov Fjord.
On Friday the 6th, 47DX052 Tom, 47DK137 Karsten, 47RO109 Tom and Martin meet in the harbour where we could get the boat into the water. After a while the boat was ready, equipment was loaded on board, and around 13:00 UTC we arrived at Vejlo island were we meet up with Anders Fausing, owner of the island. We carried and used a handcart to get all equipment, gear etc. to the barn that was going to be our shack for the first leg of the IF. Martin sailed back to pick up 47DX002 Soren and 47DX109 Jesper as they were responsible for food and beverage for the weekend. They loaded their stuff and all the food etc. on the boat and arrived at Vejlo around 15:30 UTC.
In the meantime, 47DK137 Karsten and 47RO109 Tom had started erecting the Bi-Square antenna...
Upon arrival of the rest of the team we got the Bi-square set up properly, and also got the Moxon in place. The shack was now ready for launch, and we took the time to start the BBQ and chat with some of the locals from Lolland island who visited not only Vejlo island for pleasure, but also our shack to learn more about radio communications.
Around midnight local time (22:00 UTC), all team members except 47DK137 Karsten and 47DX002 Soren went to bed. At 00:00:01 UTC we went On Air and started working/logging stations - slowly as expected for logging during the middle of the night here in Denmark. Mainly French and Danish stations were logged. At 02:30 UTC (4:30 local time) 47RO109 Tom woke up and then took over the radio so that 47DX002 Soren and 47DK137 Karsten could get some much needed rest. The other team members started to appear as the sun raised on to the sky. At 6:30 UTC breakfast was eaten all the while the radio was operated all the time.
Later during the morning 47DX052 Tom and 47DX109 Jesper got ready to sail to Sloto island as they were to go live at 12:00 UTC from that island. 47DX002 Soren went along to help to set up the equipment. At 11:10 UTC Vejlo went QRT with around 160 stations logged and we were very pleased with that ! Immediately we had a good Pile Up from Sloto island. We were located in the private garden of the island's owners house and we had a great QTH, even using the 12 meter high flag pole for our 3 element Skypper, mainly pointing South.
47DX002 Soren and Martin rushed back to Vejlo island to help 47DK137 Karsten and 47RO109 Tom to disassemple the station there, mainly to take down the Bi-square antenna in order to move to Enehoje island and set up the station there...
On Enehoje we meet up with Peter who had allowed us to stay in "The Blue House" once owned by Peter Freuchen a famous Danish polar explorer. "The Blue House" showed to be a fantastic place for us, and after a quick inspection we started once again setting up equipment. This time we "only" did set up the Bi-Square as it had proven to be very efficient on Vejlo.
Back to Sloto: Around 14.00 UTC some persons came and asked us "What are you doing here in the owners private garden?" Obviously we told that we took part in a Radio Contest and had permision from the owner to stay in her garden. The people arriving turned out to be family members of the owner, having a key to the house and offering us 230 volt (mainly to avoid the noice from the generator)... It turned out that the owner every year host a family get-together during this very same weekend (the Pentecost weekend) and then we had the reason why so many persons arrived at the island :-)
We decided to leave Sloto island earlier than first planned to avoid too many problems with the family members of the owner. So when the station was nearly set up at Enehoje island 47DX002 Soren, 47RO109 Tom and Martin went back to Sloto to help disassemble the station. We began to take down as much equipment as possible while 47DX052 Tom operated the station. At 17.20 UTC we only had a radio, a Bamby, and of course 47DX052 Tom left in the garden - so we stopped transmissions and 47DK137 Karsten took over from Enehoje.
The results from Sloto were fine with around 170 stations logged, once again we were very pleased with that - especially seen in the light of the Family Party now beginning at Sloto - a party that we were not invited to :-) Soon after Martin sailed us to Enehoje where we all gathered again at around 18.45 UTC.
It was 47RO109 Tom's turn at the microphone, so while Tom handled the station the rest of the team began to cook dinner over the BBQ. The owner Peter and his party showed up, and we had the pleasure of showing them what we did, and how we did it. It was during that explanation that the expression "World Championship in Radio Communication" was made up and 47DX109 Jesper proved to be a great operator to study for the group. After they left we tossed some sausages and steaks at the BBQ, of course all the while the radio was operated with no pauses. As 47DX052 Tom and 47DX109 Jesper still had their tent at Vejlo island, they left us after dinner to get some needed sleep.
On the way back to Vejlo 47DK137 Karsten was transported back to his car in order to get home for the following days family get-together. Martin slept in the boat at Vejlo harbour. 47DX002 Soren operated the radio during the night while 47RO109 Tom got a chance to sleep, unfortunately with no propagation. 47RO109 took over at around 3:00 UTC and Soren went to bed.
The Team meet again at Enehoje around 08:00 UTC for breakfast, and to continue with the plan. Due to weather reasons Martin, our boatdriver, was afraid that it would be impossible to get close enough to Kareholm island to access the island so 47DX109 Jesper and 47RO109 Tom sailed with Martin to investigate an alternate island (Rommerholm island) into closer details. It quickly turned out that access by boat to Rommerholm island was even harder to do, so after a quick chat we decided to sail to Kareholm island to see if we could do some magic.
Upon arrival in proximity of Kareholm, the closest we could get was about 200 meters due to shallow water. Martin had to raise the engine at that point to avoid damage. We decided that we WANTED to do this island, so 47RO109 Tom jumped into the sea, and dragged the boat until approximately 25 meters from shore. The anchor was set, and we started carrying the equipment to the island through the water.
After some tours back and forth to the boat everything was ashore and we started assembling the station. 47DX109 Jesper did set up the Bamby and 47RO109 Tom rolled out cables etc. After about 1 hour we were ready and told 47DX002 Soren & 47DX052 Tom to stop transmissions from Enehoje for now. We went on the air 13:28 UTC into a MASSIVE pileup, which lasted for 45 minutes. With 47DX109 Jesper at the mike and 47RO109 Tom assisting we managed to put around 100 in the log in about 1 hour and 45 minutes. At that time we have had severals warnings via TEXT, phone calls, emails and by air, that a huge thunderstorm was approaching, so we decided to go QRT, and pass the duty back to 47DX002 Soren and 47DX052 Tom on Enehoje.
We quickly disassembled all equipment, and packed up the gear. The tide and wind had turned, so the boat was only 15 meters out now - and close to be stranded. 47RO109 Tom carried the generator and leftover fuel to the boat and then dragged it a little further out to make sure we wouldn't strand. All other euipment was then carried out to the boat and 47RO109 Tom once again dragged the boat out to deeper waters, this time around 350 meters away from the shore. After a quick dip in the sea we sailed back to Enehoje while enjoying a well deserved cold beer!
On Enehoje 47DX052 Tom was fighting big QRM but nevertheless still managed to put more and more stations in the log. The BBQ was once again fired up and a quick dinner was taken in. 47DX002 Soren, 47DX052 Tom and 47DX109 Jesper operated the radio until 00:00 UTC where we went finally QRT for the weekend. On Enehoje we had put 329 stations in the log, by far the greatest number during the weekend.
In the morning we followed the plan made the previous evening, and 06:30 UTC we closed the door to the "Blue House", certain that we left it in the same condition (or better) that we had received it. The boat was loaded with equipment and we sailed back to the harbour at Lolland island.
47DX109 Jesper had a ferry to catch so we quickly got his equipment out of the boat and into his car and waved him goodbye.
The rest of the team emptied the boat, and got the boat out of the water back on its trailer. We then said goodbye and went our seperate ways, very pleased with the entire weekend, we think around 9:30 UTC (11:30 local).
Thank you to the 755 stations that got into our four logs, we are pleased to have served 4 new Danish islands for you...
Danish Island Festival 2014 Team.