VK0EK Four Year Anniversary

The 2016 VK0EK Heard Island DXpedition

Wow – its been 4 years since the VK0EK Team were on their way to Cape Town to get the gear and ship fumigated and ready to make the long 11 day voyage to “almost” the South Pole – and way out there in the south of the Indian Ocean.

I spent 3 years working with Bob, KK6EK planning and strategizing, assembling the team and raising money – and it started after TX5K came back from Clipperton, which I also worked on. VK0EK won DXpedition of the Year – and that is the last time (actually the only time) I went to Dayton Hamvention – in 2017 – the first year in Xenia.

I wish the VP8PJ Team all the best – on their way to South Orkney Islands (Signy) – several are from the VK0EK Team. If the team gets bored and starts begging for callers – I might try them on 40 or 20M CW QRP – but I have totally lost interest in DXCC and its funny that VK0EK and all that intense work now seems like another lifetime from my past.

 

7 Comments on “VK0EK Four Year Anniversary

  1. Ditto. I haven’t made a single QSO since November. I’ve totally lost interest in anything except ATNOs, and since there aren’t any of those, I’ve basically totally lost interest. I put the MA8040 back up this evening, just for the hell of it, but I’m not really sure why. I think I’m trying to convince myself I still feel the magic.

    It won’t be an ATNO for me, as I worked LU6Z many times back in 1996, on 20, 30 and 40. I actually worked them multiple times on 40 out of pity, because most evenings they were on there calling CQ CQ with few takers. How the world turns.

    It’s funny they borrowed VK6CQ’s call, just like we did for VK0LD.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My new path really is all “whim and whimsy”. I’m actually surprised how I am keeping a little toe in the DX Waters – and its because “I don’t need no stinkin’ badges”. I’ve tried several new pursuits (i.e. the Vintage thing), and nothing has stuck.

    I really have to give credit to the Elecraft KX-3. Once I decided that was all I needed – I started having ham fun again. And now – with this Diversity Receive on the used K3 – it really is so I can “hear” what’s going on in the ionosphere – which when you think about it – IS the magic worth staying in touch with.

    I’m surprised it has the staying power that it does. When I work EU or Vietnam or my best yet – Perth and Sri Lanka, I ask myself “How the hell did anyone hear my 5 watt signal?”

    Its especially funny since at one time I just had to have 1500 watts.

    Like

    • Yeah, I still do see the magic in radio itself and probably always will. It gets harder and harder to stay engaged as time goes on and the non-ham stuff slowly vanishes though. It would be much easier to stay involved in the radio hobby day to day if the SW broadcasters hadn’t gone and if the BCB stations weren’t the worst drivel. Even the utility stations, like air navigation beacons and lighthouses, are now in non-repair status and gradually disappearing. One day I may try to get into listening for whistlers and the dawn chorus and all that. As far as I know, only one book was ever written about those phenomena, and that was in 1965 I think. Still a really unexplored area of natural radio. I have heard the moon Io interacting with Jupiter’s magnetic field which was memorable. You can sometimes hear it around 18 MHz. And I have “detected” the sun with radio which was amusing.

      I know this may sound crazy but I grew up in a “secret city” from the Manhattan Project, and WW II was still all around me as a kid. HF radio played a huge part in that war and I think that may have piqued my initial interest. For that reason, I think HF radio will always be primarily a nostalgia trip for me, especially as it fades away in practical application. Even if ham radio goes tits up, we’ll always have Paris.

      Funny observation: I worked one ATNO only last year, Conway Reef, a Rebel operation. There are only two ATNOs announced for this year, T33T and 3Y0I, both Rebel operations. How about that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s pretty interesting – the Radio Astronomy side of radio. I’ve built the Bruce Array several times – which was an early antenna for the Radio Astronomers – and also read about “The Big Ear” in Ohio. I’ve never listened for such phenomena – but it is always interesting what the noise sounds like during an ionospheric disturbance due to a solar storm. Even the bands changing during the grey line offer some really interesting stuff.

        I miss shortwave broadcasting and even AM radio when they played music – even though the fidelity stinks. Somewhere I have the coolest WSM QSL card of a picture of a castle or something on top of a big rock – if I remember it right. I also have a super rare Radio Aum Shinrikyo QSL with Shoko Asahara’s picture on the card. They leased time on Radio Moscow’s Asian transmitter site. That was the last SWL QSL card I ever received.

        Liked by 1 person

      • WSM calls itself “the Air Castle of the South,” so your memory makes sense. I did some scrounging around and discovered that book I was remembering, “Whistlers and Related Ionospheric Phenomena,” was written by a professor at Stanford named Robert A Helliwell. In fact, he basically discovered whistlers right here in Palo Alto. Yet another local connection.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Wow. Time flies and things change. Like you, I’m looking for fun but in my case, probably in all the wrong places. Have decided to unload my IC-7610, the 7300, and the 9700. I am keeping the KX3. I’m going to convert the station power to 100% solar charged batteries. I might pick up a KX2 for field work. It will be all wire antennas and 10 watts here. Couldn’t care less about DX and for that matter, I might even give up logging. Who needs it? The changes keep coming fast and furious in an effort to not lose “that loving feeling” about RF some 40+ years on…
      73, Jeff

      Liked by 1 person

      • We are pretty much on the same path.

        I was a “serious DXer” as long as my first marriage, which now seems like another lifetime.

        That’s the longest run for any hobby except maybe cycling which I’ve done non stop since 1995

        Liked by 1 person

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