Please wait, authorizing ...

Next DX-Pedition...

Serrana Bank & Bajo Nuevo

5KØT DX eXpedition

5KØT was on the air from Serrana Bank & Bajo Nuevo
from November XI.-XII. 2008

5KØT DX eXpedition

5KØT was on the air from Serrana Bank & Bajo Nuevo
from November XI.-XII. 2008

5KØT DX eXpedition 5KØT was on the air from
Serrana Bank & Bajo Nuevo from November
XI.-XII. 2008


We will be operating from Serrana Bank (IOTA NA-133) between November 19 and Dec 01, including the CQWW DX Contest. We will not operate form Roncador due lack of a suitable location. We plan to relocate to Bajo Nuevo on Dec 02 and operate from there until Dec 06. Both reefs are part of San Andres region, HK0. Although we will focus on low band operation at night, we intend to be active on all HF bands, and 6 meters. Operators will be: AA7JV and HA7RY. A second station, mostly working SSB, will be operated by HK3JJH using the HK0 prefix. Serrana Bank (IOTA NA-133) is a shallow lagoon measuring 20 miles across. It is surrounded by an almost continuous coral reef. The lagoon contains numerous reefs and coral-heads and a number of very small sand cays. There is a large cay, South-West Cay at the southern tip of the bank. The cay carries a navigational light and is manned by a small garrison of the Colombian military. There is also a small cay at the north-western tip of the bank. 5K0T will operate from one of the small sand cays measuring approximately 100 x 60 meters. Bajo Nuevo is a small reef that is part of Colombia (HK0) and is located 250 miles south of Jamaica in the central Caribbean. It is administered by the Colombian Navy. The reef contains a number of small barren sand cays, one of which carries a navigation light. The station will be setup on this cay. Antennas will be erected in the shallow water of the surrounding lagoon. (This is to save on radial wires! :-)

Due to a potential conflict with a previous operation, the call-sign issued by the Colombian Ministerio de Communiciones is now 5K0T. Please also note that members of the operation will also be using their home calls prefixed with HK0 (i.e. HK0/AA7JV, HK0/HA7RY, HK0/HK3JJH). For these contacts please QSL via the home calls as per

In keeping with the AA7JV/HA7RY tradition, this is a simple, mostly self financed operation, although we appreciate donations to cover Equipment, Operations, QSL-ing and other "administrative" costs. We do not take corporate sponsorships. This allows us to set our own agenda, use the gear we want and focus on narrower, more specialized aspects of DX-ing, such as low band operations.

  • Nov 18 - We are now anchored in the protection of the reefs. We have arrived just ahead of a major storm that hit last night, with winds exceeding 40 knots. Today we will attempt to build at least one station. There are big waves even on the protected side of the cay and we are not sure we can erect the tent and antenna poles in this wind.

  • Nov 19 - Because of adverse weather we are not able to set up and will not be on the air tonight (Nov 19). Winds are up to 100 kmph (50 kts) and there is continuous heavy rain. We hope that the weather will improve tomorrow enough to set up a tent and raise one antenna to put one station on the air.   

  • Nov 21 - Today we were able to put up the tent and raise two antennas. We now have two operational stations. We were able to get briefly on the air on 20m SSB (HK3JJH/HK0B) and on 160m CW in the evening but had to QRT and return to the boat. Will complete the installations tomorrow and hope to be on the air full time starting tomorrow evening. The weather continues to be a problem! Strong, gusting winds with driving torrential rains virtually all the time. 

  • Nov 23 - Last nights operation resulted 820 QSOs on 160m  using the  700W amp and 1130 QSOs on 80m with about  80W. After the 80m operation we spent about 1.5 hours on 40m working both NA and JA. The spare amp (500W) will be installed as well to improve our signal for the JA openings. We keep focusing to the low bands while Pedro HK3JJH operates on 20m SSB 

  • Nov 25 - Adverse weather continues to hamper operations. Winds are often above 50 kts, sometimes gusting to hurricane strength. We were not on 160 meters last night (Nov 24) due to a broken inverted L. We hope to get a break in the weather today to fix it. We've also built a pennant receiving antenna as QRN has been extremely high during the past two nights. (S9+ from the thunderstorms and static rain.  

  • Nov 26, 2200 Z. - 5K0T is fully operational after having survived near hurricane strength winds, torrential rains and flooding for three days. Last night and today we had our decent weather. Our antennas have been repaired and we had a good night on 160 and 80 meters, despite high QRN produced by the large thunderstorms that blanket the area. We made the pennant antenna semi-rotatable to give EU and Japan directions, which allowed us to mitigate the QRN when working those areas. Log-search has been activated. Please note that some QSO-s (especially last night's 160 and 80 meters crop) have not been up-loaded yet.
  • Dec 01, Monday is the last day 5K0T will be on the air from Serrana Bank (IOTA NA-133). We will move onto Bajo Nuevo tomorrow. Weather forecasts indicate high winds and it is likely that we will not be able to set up a large station on Bajo Nuevo, especially for 160m. Therefore 5K0T will likely be on 160 for the last time tonight!"

  • Dec 03, 2100 Z, Serrana Bank. We are packed up and ready to relocate to Bajo Nuevo but are holding at Serrana Bank waiting for the weather to improve. Originally we were planning to cross the 130 nautical mile distance to Bajo Nuevo last night but winds have shifted to the north and have increased to well over 30 knots. We decided to spend the night at anchor in the protection of the reefs of Serrana Bank, rather than face the uncomfortable and potentially dangerous night trip to Bajo Nuevo. Now, we are planning to leave for Bajo Nuevo either tonight or tomorrow morning, depending on how quickly the winds will subside. In any case, the earliest we could be on the air form Bajo Nuevo is the night of Dec 04. Please check for further updates here.

  • Dec 5, 1200 Z. Bajo Nuevo, IOTA NA-132 -After a rough crossing we are now at Bajo Nuevo. We will set up the station today and expect to be active by 1800 Z. Again we will have two operations: 5K0T will operate mainly CW on 20, 30, 40 and 80m and HK0A/HK3JJH will operate SSB on 17 and 20m. We intend to be active from Bajo Nuevo until Dec 07, 1200 Z."

5K0T News Update, Bajo Nuevo, Dec 07 1200 Z. 5K0T has gone QRT at 1200 Z today.

During our two day stay on Bajo Nuevo we made 4000 QSO-s, 750 of them Saturday night in the ARRL 160m Contest. On Bajo Nuevo we used a small station: 100 watts and a 12 meter tall vertical, which we converted into an inverted L for 160 for Saturday night. (Despite its small size, the inverted L seemed to perform well over the good ground provided by the salt water all around.)

The total 5K0T and HK0 QSO count is around 30,000, including 3000 QSO-s on 160m.

We thank everybody for the all the QSO-s.

We are under way home via Navassa Island (KP1) and the Bahamas. Although we can not operate from Navassa, indeed can't even go ashore, we will take some pictures and post them on the web-site. At least we all get a look at "the promised land"

© 2024 AA7JV