With just 3 more days to go until it shuts down, poor weather has been literally putting a damper on the Perseverance DX Group’s Chesterfield Island TX3X DXpedition. The team’s 12 operators have been having a time of it, dealing with high winds and rain squalls as well as crummy propagation. Chesterfield Island is #21 on ClubLog’s DXCC Most Wanted List.
“We know all too well the frustration some of you may be experiencing,” the TX3X team allowed in an October 9 news release. “Propagation has been a real challenge, with unexpected openings occurring during times we’re working another [region].” The group said it has been taking advantage of any unexpected openings and other propagation anomalies as often as it can. A geomagnetic storm occurred at mid-week, and even satellite telephone service has been impacted. But the major impediment seems to be the weather.
“The wind continues to blow with high intensity. The tents are holding up very well, although the noise from the wind and shaking tents sounds like a never ending freight train — all we’re missing is the train whistle,” the report said. “We had rain squalls for the first time last night, and at the moment it’s raining; we’re surrounded by clouds, and the sea is unsettled.”
According to the report, just walking to the antennas has been a challenge, owing to the depth of the sand and the fierce wind, but the antennas are holding up.
“We’re just a few meters from the ocean on both sides, salt spray covers everything,” the report said. “We’re inspecting the antennas daily and washing salt build-up off the insulators. To date, there have been no equipment or generator failures. We’ve experienced high atmospheric noise levels, [but] the Elecraft K3 noise reduction system works extremely well.”
The TX3X team will take “unused and nonessential equipment” back to the boat today and will start dismantling the stations at first light on October 12.
The team is aware that there are PSK31 log entries that should be either SSB or CW, “and a few other problems” and is “discussing alternatives to fix the log from the island.”
“We appreciate everyone’s understanding,” the report concluded. “We can assure you, the conditions in your shack are far superior to those on the island.” — Thanks to The Daily DX