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FK activations in November (+ ZL/VK in December)


Hi Manuel,

Well done on all those US contacts. 15 m was very good last night - I worked 4 new countries. This evening not much doing. Virtually nothing above 14 MHz which was pretty flat, a few stations on 40 m but 80 m only a local QSO and 160 m was silent.

I’ll have another chance to work you again soon I’m sure. I had seen a spot for you on 20 m but thought, “No hurry, he’ll have a pile up”, and as UTC roll-over approached I was winding the dial from the CW to SSB section and was almost on your frequency when I heard a voice - too far off frequency to copy… By the time I had the receiver frequency set and operated the ATU it was past 0000 UTC. I put out a call but with a feeling I might have heard you going QRT. I am not anxious for chaser points anymore, so please don’t feel concerned.

I suppose the gate-man would not open up in the evening as it might be inconvenient for him at night. Looking at SOTA maps it seems to be public land but maybe not. At least with a head torch or moonlight you could walk out after an evening activation. Not much twilight at New Caledonia.



I received you on 15m. but I could not succeed …

73 Jean VE2JCW


Bonjour Jean,

ah, so it was you with the ‘2’ in the callsign that I received two or three times, very weak right at the noise floor! I couldn’t make out any other characters, just the ‘2’. Sorry it didn’t work out… I was running 100 W yesterday, and no local QRM on 15m.

vy 73,

Manuel FK/HB9DQM/P


Hi Manuel,

very glad to have heard you so well this morning on 20 CW.
I just noticed your spot and once in your QRG I heard Jorge EA2LU signing off with you saying LP.
I quickly rotated the hexbeam LP and there you were really stable and clear!

Were you using the JUMA amp today? I wonder what LiFEPo batteries do you use with that!
Hopefully it was late for you and perhaps this time you were not suffering of high temperature… Very well done Manuel.

Thanks for your great activation, 73 es CU sn


Was very close to copying you well enough to attempt the QSO but eventually did not quite make it there. Will keep my ears peeled for the next one (can’t remember how long you stay).

Awesome-looking log with 104 QSOs, 5 S2S with Europe, and many countries overall. It sounds like it was a lot of fun. You must have had some nice pile-up going since you had to start working split. Fun under the sun!



Well, who said conditions were bad… The activation of FK/SP-123 today was DX heaven for me! The first EU station in the log was HB9AFI at 06:32z on 30m. Then many more EU stations (+ NA, SA, AS, OC) were worked, first LP, then SP (according to feedback given by chasers with directional antennas), and some signals had a very distinctive echo sound. It was especially nice to be able to work Bruno @HB9CBR, Matt @HB9FVF and Tom @OE9TKH as S2S, as well as some regular SOTA chasers! Signals on 30m and 20m were pretty good, most around 559, with a few EU chasers actually booming at 579-599. When both my batteries were completely drained at around 08:45z, there were still weak EU stations calling. It was also the first time that I had to start operating split on a SOTA activation, as at one point the pile-up of JA stations on 30m became unmanageable otherwise.

Countries worked:

  • 30m: 9A, DL (3), EA (4), FK, HB9 (7), JA (25), LU, LZ, OH (2), PA, R (2), S5, SM, SP (2), UT, VK (3), W (3), ZL (2)
  • 20m: DL (5), EA (2), F (3), FK, HB9 (9), I (2), JA (13), R, SP, SV, VK (2), ZL

@EA2BD Glad to work you today, Ignacio! Yes, I was using the Juma PA, 100 W with EFHW mounted vertically on a 10m mast. Batteries: 2 x Zippy 4200 mAh LiFePO4. Most of the activation was in the dark, and the WX was very pleasant.

@JG1XMV Thanks for the spots Arnaud, and sorry it didn’t work out again! There will be more opportunities; I’m leaving on Nov 29.

Thanks all for the (DX) QSOs, it was awesome! I’ll try to schedule at least one other activation on a weekend around the same time before I leave FK.

And before I forget, here’s a photo of the ARANC meeting last Wednesday :smile:


What an awesome activation Manuel! No worries for the spots, I am glad you had such a great time with so many DX stations. I spoke to a friend back in France (Freddy, F4HEC)who was very excited to make the QSO with you. He is actually very good friend with most the FK OMs, small world.

If you ever make it to the Ile Des Pins (stunning place like most of FK), there is a SOTA there as well which has not been activated yet. :slight_smile:

Great picture with all the OMs looking naturally happy and smiling. Island spirit! PS: Yves (FK4RD) is the one on the left with gold chain and the brown shirt with Goulven to the right of him. If you see Yves again, ask him how was his birthday celebration in the French Alps last summer :wink:

I have not given hope of working you yet Manuel! Enjoy the rest of your trip.



And I already thought my memory for names was failing me (the annotation of the picture was done by someone else)! Fixed now, thanks :smile:

vy 73, Manuel

PS: tomorrow morning I’ll attempt an activation of Mont Do.


Just a quick heads-up especially for EU stations: on Sunday (Nov 19), I plan to activate Mont Dore FK/SP-063 again, this time between about 07:00 and 09:00 UTC. Bands will be 40/30/20m as conditions allow, with 100 W. To conserve battery power, I may make longer pauses between CQs, so make sure to listen for at least 30 seconds before deciding that nothing is to be heard :wink:

On Nov 25/26, I will be on Île des Pins, a small island that also has a summit (Pic Ngâ FK/SP-143), which looks suitable for a nighttime activation, so perhaps there will be another EU DX opportunity. That will likely be my last FK activation before I continue my journey to ZL.


Sounds good Manuel. I was just looking at the spots page this morning and it was fun to see so many exotic calls FK/HB9DQM, ZL/M0VFC, VK/G4TJC and JG1BOK. It still surprises me how we have been able to expand SOTA such that it is now really a worldwide and 24/7 activity. Enjoy yourself out in the Pacific.


Today another special activation took place: a joint activation of Mont Kouré FK/SP-111 with Michel FK8IK, who is now the first, and at this time only, real no-prefix FK OM to have performed a SOTA activation. Félicitations, Michel, et merci beaucoup!

Putting up the antenna pole is teamwork :joy:

In other news, the nighttime activation of Mont Dore last Sunday was successful again, with 112 QSOs in total and a lot of EU DX, including an S2S with F5UKL/P. Also, I am still set on activating Pic Ngâ on Île des Pins at night this weekend.


[quote=“HB9DQM, post:51, topic:16065, full:true”]… including an S2S with F5UKL/P.

And did you know that André@F5UKL/P only used a small ATX-1080 antenna together with the KX3 ?
As André said, the biggest challenge was not technical but the well-known fight against the particularly (over)ambitious chasers using QRO and directional antennas. :wink:


Michel has now signed up for a database account. :thumbsup: :sunny:


All good stuff.
Glad we could finally make the QSO together Manuel.
I hope you had time to visit the Piscine Naturelle on l’Ile Des Pins, it is worth it.



My trip to FK is coming to an end; the nighttime activation of Pic Ngâ FK/SP-143 on Île des Pins yesterday was the last one. Propagation to EU was not too bad between 07:00z and 09:00z, just like the last two times; a mixture of LP, SP and echoey signals in between. This time it was SSB only on 20m, as the CW portion of the band was of course chock full with CQ WW contest stations. And it became apparent once more that CW is the better mode in times of weak conditions (surprise, surprise); some SSB QSOs and especially S2S were hard work as the noise floor was around S4, but would have been easy in CW – all other things being equal.

I’m leaving FK with a grand total of 625 SOTA QSOs. Thanks to all who listened out for me! SOTA in FK is certainly much different from what I’ve experienced before; new challenges (finding accessible summits, heat, etc.), but on the other hand, a pile-up is almost guaranteed: you can start calling CQ on a band where you hear no signal at all anywhere (15m), and then make 30 QSOs. It was also great to meet some FK OMs, and do a joint activation with a local.

In ZL and VK, my activations will most likely be shorter, as the focus is on travelling and I won’t stay in one place for more than a night or two.

vy 73,

(@JG1XMV now off to Piscine Naturelle before leaving the island :smile:)

Set up on Pic Ngâ


Hi Manuel,

You will surely enjoy the piscine naturelle, an amazing little gem. The “Baie d’Upi” si very nice as well if it is sunny. You can arrange for a local wooden “cat” to take you out (if you have time). The back of one of my QSL cards for IDP was a pic taken at the baie d’upi:
Baie d’Upi

You did very well with 625 QSOs, must have been a lot of fun! Part of the fun with ham radio is meeting new people from around the world and the FK ops are a very nice bunch. Thanks for introducing them to SOTA. Hopefully Michel will entice the guys over there to activate more summits. To see people like yourself enjoying SOTA in FK is very rewarding.

Safe travels to ZL & VK & catch you on the air again Manuel!