We carried tents to the island, but fortunately we didn't need them. We were allocated to an air-conditioned room with crash pad and even satellite-TV.

The same evening of our arrival day we set up a station underneath a sunroof near the beach.

After the 1st antenna was put up (V-dipole for 14 MHz),  I started the operation. I was the only CW-operator, so I had an enormous mission :-)  However, for a while I operated also operated on 20m SSB.

The view from my station table was quite enviable. I had a view to other islands in the north and turquoise water just in front of me.


From here I operated most of the time.

The artistically weaved sun-roof made of palm leaves.



The station at the beach with the 20m V-dipole.   Ramón, YV5EED

© Javi


A Force12 vertical dipole (foreground) and the 20m V-dipole.

Between the palms you can observe our station near the beach.

Cushcraft vertical antenna.



YV5JF preparing an antenna.


The first night at the station was quite an experience hard to describe.

It was full moon. The moonlight illuminated the beach. To the north, far away, I could observe the lightning of a thunderstorm. In the sand before and below me, hundreds or thousands of hermit crabs were walking into all directions.
When I removed my headphones, I heard a noise like small china bells. Crabs were climbing a pile of large snails and lost their balance. When they tumbled the ringing was occurring.


At the base building another station was installed. The antennas used there, were dipoles and a vertical.

At the beach station later we set up a vertical dipole (Force12) for 14,18, 21, 24 und 28 MHz. The last evening we added a measuring tape inverted vee for 30m.

We had up to 3 stations working simultaneously.

Sometimes I had to leave the station. As the roof was only intended as source of shade, I had to cover the equipment with a tarpaulin.

The last night (during the 30m operation) I passed really terrible !  A swarm of very aggressive mosquitoes attacked me so merciless that I was thinking to scarper. Anyhow, I did not give up until the band closed. But my body was covered with hundreds of bites.

Aves de Sotavento is infamous for its mosquitoes, but except the last night we were spared. My repellents were already packaged because of the departure hours later.

The lagoons on the island are the ideal breeding grounds after a longer rainfall.


YV5JF operating at the quarters.