NEWS UPDATE — In just a little over 5 weeks, Adrian (KO8SCA) and I will be heading down to French Polynesia for the challenging activation of OC-113 and 297. Time flies quickly now, as we try our best to calmly hold our excitement in check as we prepare in intimate detail how best to reach the atolls.
The landing plan consists of two stages. In the first stage, the two of us will occupy one of the zodiacs, in which we need to secure the radio equipment, power components, and camping gear. This zodiac will be tracked close to the reef by a second zodiac, manoeuvred by the skipper. From there, the second part of the landing will require that we paddle hard to go across the reef, trying to be in synch with the incoming waves, keeping the boat well balanced. We will obviously scout in advance for the best location to undertake it, hoping for a low ocean swell, with little to no wind.
In order to best mitigate the hazards, we will wear diving suits and gloves, as well as hiking boots. I think that it will be necessary to take at least two trips in order to bring all the radio, power, and camping equipment to the atoll. Depending on the actual sealed drums available, we may leave some spare radio components on the yacht, at least one rig and one antenna, maybe one generator too.
We are grateful to those who have already provided us with financial support. At a price-tag of $28.5k, if we can resell the power components upon our return in Rikitea, this is truly a very costly endeavour. Since French Polynesia ranks low among the Most Wanted DXCC, we know that virtually all the support will come from the IOTA community. Consequently, we are looking for more islands chasers, particularly from EU and NA, who are willing to help us out. We need your assistance!
OCTOBER 14, 2018 — Cezar (VE3LYC) and Adrian (KO8SCA) will operate as TX0A from Maria Est Atoll (OC-113) and as TX0M from Morane Atoll (OC-297P) between December 4 and 18.
OC-113 was operated from once, more than 28 years ago, and currently ranks #6 on the Most Wanted IOTA List, while OC-297 is a new IOTA reference.
More information can be found on the expedition website