Friday, January 15, 2016

K5P Palmyra is in my log - ATNO and DXCC #317!!

I'm delighted to be able to tell you that I have made a successful QSO with the K5P dxpedition to Palmyra Island in the mid Pacific. They have been QRV since Tuesday and their signals into Europe have been very poor. I didn't think I was going to be able to make a contact. They were very poor on 20 metres CW when I picked them up this evening but a mixture of luck and perseverance helped me through.

As with all these far-distant rare ATNOs, it's always a priority just to make ONE QSO. Just one contact will do, to get the new entity in the log. As you might remember, with Chesterfield Island it looked like I wasn't going to make it - until the very last day. That experience was a sobering one. The thought of missing a rare one (Palmyra is number nine on the Clublog most-wanted DXCC list) was in my mind again, especially with all the derogatory DX cluster spots in the past couple of days from European stations who have so far been unable to hear K5P.

So with the beam at 320 degrees, I began to pick up their signal with darkness setting in here. But they were very weak. Eventually I could hear them well enough to pick up partial calls, and the split became obvious when I heard a couple of EU stations going back to them about 3.5Khz or so up.

So I called them a few times and then heard the magic "2KC" and so gave my call a couple of times. Then it sounded like EU2VC??? and then EI2??? until eventually my call was given EI2KC EI2KC 5NN and I went back with the RRRR 5NN 5NN TU.

In the K5P log with some of Ireland's top DXers.
Even if I don't get another contact, I don't mind. Getting the DXCC logged is of paramount importance. I'm delighted also that they uploaded the logs fairly quickly and I can confirm I am in their log - one of just ten Irish stations to make it through so far.

I was contacted shortly after the QSO by my friend and fellow DXer Ark EI9KC, who said not only was the QSO 100%, but he had a recording of it. Here it is (my thanks to Ark!):


  1. Great work on making the contact Anthony, as you mentioned regarding Ark I read that in his blog and I hope with his last attempt yesterday that he finds his call in there log. As for me I just see the spot on the Cluster but hear absolutely nothing. Oh well maybe today…….73 and have a good weekend.

    1. Mike, they are not easy to hear in Europe. The opening to Ireland on 20 metres is a half hour maximum for those with 3-element beams, while for those of us with two elements the opening was a fluttery few minutes only...... A big part of working these far distant ones is to have some idea when the opening occurs and to be at the radio when it does!!! And I'm glad to say I was.

  2. Well done Anthony, you're a top DXer. Haven't been able to hear K5P at all and so are others. People are begging for them on the DXcluster. They think it helps? Frustration I guess. 73, Bas

    1. Bas, yes, a lot of people are frustrated. Understandably so. Propagation is not wonderful, and the dxpedition is using verticals only. A lot of negative comments on the cluster - but what purpose do they serve? They are there for at least another week - who knows how propagation might improve? I'm glad to have worked them though. I remember Chesterfield - I don't want to go through that again!!!


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