Jersey DXPedition, December 2011:
- Yutaka JQ2GYU
- Joe JA1LZR
- Hal JF1PJK
- Mihoko JA1AJT (YL)
- Martin G3ZAY
- Michael G7VJR
The idea for this activity came about in 2010 when a couple of Japanese members of the Chiltern DX Club were passing through London and over dinner with Michael G7VJR and Martin G3ZAY expressed an interest in doing an LF operation from Jersey. A date of December 2011 was set, with the JAs to fly in and Michael and Martin to take the equipment over on the car ferry.
The main problem with operating from Jersey is finding a suitable location as most of the hotels are located on small plots of land and are often over-shadowed by high cliffs. CUWS members have operated in the past from the youth hostel which is on high land above the cliffs and is surrounded by several acres of flat grass – an ideal location but it had closed a couple of years earlier. The closure was the result of a lengthy and ultimately fruitless police investigation into suspected child abuse and murder when the hostel had been an orphanage in earlier decades. In early 2011 however Martin heard that the hostel was being leased to a local company as an activity centre and flew out to meet the new management. They were keen on promoting it for amateur radio operations and agreed a good deal for a December DXpedition.
The first Friday in December saw Michael and Martin on the fast ferry from Weymouth with cars loaded down with equipment. Antennas erected in the hostel grounds included a 60’ top-loaded top-band vertical, a 2-element phased array on 80, a 4-square for 40, a quarter wave vertical for 30, and a 2-element Yagi for 17 and 12. Other equipment included two K3s, an FT-450, and 3 HF linears.
We had been concerned about EMC issues as the summer visit had identified some strange narrowband data signals coming out of the mains wiring and there was clearly the potential for triggering fire alarms or causing TVI to nearby houses but in practice we had no problems at all. As a backup and for the main HF bands we had booked the Jersey club station where there are a couple of HF beams but we only used this for a few hours.
We made around 13,000 QSOs including over 1100 on 160 CW and 2600 on 80m CW. Unusually for a DXpedition, we made only 1 QSO on 20 metres as all the other bands were open.