Scarborough Reef BS7H Operation Shutting Down Soon
- Scarborough Reef BS7H Operation Shutting Down Soon
NEWINGTON, CT, May 3, 2007 -- If you haven't already snagged BS7H on
Scarborough Reef <http://www.scarboroughreef.com/>, there's not much
time left to put the world's most-wanted DXCC entity into the log. Word
from the BS7H DXpedition is that operation will cease at 0000 UTC on May
6. /The Daily DX <http://www.dailydx.com>/ reports the BS7H team plans
to keep two stations on 20 meters around the clock. Earlier today Wolf
Harranth, OE1WHC, of Documentary Archives Radio Communications in Vienna
interviewed BS7H team member James Brooks, 9V1YC, via satellite
telephone. Brooks explained that the team operates from wooden platforms
on each of the reef's four rocks that are exposed during high tide.
"Basically, we're like little birds perched on a small rock in the
middle of the ocean," Brooks told Harranth. "It's a very dangerous
reef," he went on to say. "There's lots of hazards. There's rain,
there's wind, there's lightning, there's piracy."
The coral is also very sharp, and most of the team members have suffered
cuts and scrapes. Changing shifts three times a day has been difficult
and time consuming, and Brooks says the individual stations can barely
see each other during daylight.
Brooks said the DXpedition team has been visited by several fishermen
from the Philippines who have asked for fuel and water. Visit the
Dokufunk Web site <http://www.dokufunk.org/index.php?ID=2094> and click
on the "BS7H Scarborough Reef 2007 - Interview" link. The entire .mp3
clip runs 8:45. The interview also is available from the BS7H DXpedition
Web site <http://www.scarboroughreef.com/>.
The most difficult path from BS7H is to the US Northeast, although many
stations have been successful in the past few days in working the
DXpedition on 30, 20 and 17 meters, and signals have been reasonably
strong. Pileups have been extremely large, on 20 meter SSB extending 50
kHz or more up the band from the BS7H transmitting frequency.
Stations attempting to work BS7H are advised to exercise courtesy and
make sure they have a clear frequency before transmitting, to avoid
interfering with ongoing communications unrelated to the DXpedition.
Judging from anecdotal information, stations in the Eastern US should
start listening around 1100 UTC. One station in Florida reported hearing
BS7H on 20 meter CW from 1130 until 1630 UTC, /The Daily DX/ reported.
Brooks explained to Harranth that Europe, Japan and Oceania are easy to
work most any time of the day, however.
The first QSO was made on April 29. As of 1400 on May 2, BS7H was
operating four stations from four separate rocks, with two stations
dedicated to 20 meters. All stations now are running 800 W, and activity
has been on 10 through 40 meters. Substantial QRN on 40 and 30 has
prevented the operators from hearing most stateside signals, however.
In part because of high winds, the team has yet to launch the
helium-filled weather balloon that will support an antenna for 80 and
160 meters. On the other bands, BS7H is using vertical antennas and
taking advantage of the salt water for a ground plane.