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E51LYC Pukapuka Atoll IOTA OC - 098

Cezar, VE3LYC, will attempt to operate from Pukapuka Atoll (OC-098), North Cook Islands, between 9 and 23 May 2017 as E51LYC.
The OC-098 IOTA group has been last on the air more than 22 years ago, and as such is in demand by 92% of the IOTA membership.
There are no regular commercial flights or boat cruises to the atoll. Cezar will stay with one of the locals, expecting living conditions to be basic – this is not a tourist destination.
He will apply for a callsign in the coming days and will post it when issued. More details will be available on the expedition website, to be setup soon.
He will operate on 40, 30, 20, 17, 15, 12, 10m CW, SSB.
QSL via home call, OQRS.
Ads for direct QSL:
Cezar Trifu, 4986 Bath Road, Bath, ON K0H 1G0, Canada.
DXCC Country - North Cook Islands.

Pukapuka is the most remote atoll in the Cook Islands, situated about 1200 km north-west of Rarotonga.
There are no regular planes or boats that go to Pukapuka.

DX Pedition website -

E51LYC News 25 May 2017 from Milan OK1DWC for

Cezar E51LYC flew back from Pukapuka yesterday afternoon at 17:00 local time.

The flight was a bit longer,/ 5 hours - 1 400 km / the plane flew through Manihiki and Aitutaki.

I took him out of the airport and told me all about Pukapuk and the traffic on the night.

Made 5 612 qso from 40 to 10m. About 25% SSB.

At 10 and 12m only JA.

The main, main track was 20 and 17m.

Log upgraded from me, from Rarotonga, Pukapuka is not the internet.

By 05:00 am he handled the emails.

The whole of Pukapuka as well as Manihiki is a solar power distribution.

Today, the afternoon departure at 15:55 local time across Auckland and San Francisco home to Canada.


E51LYC News 22 May 2017 From The Daily DX W3UR

It looks as Cezar will have to be ready to leave Pukapuka by 7am on Tuesday 23rd May Local time.(Z - 10)

This means he will probably QRT around 12:00Z on Tuesday May 23rd to give himself time to pack up his equipment and get to the dock.

He plans to look for the EU opening on 20 metres (usually 14.040 mHz CW and occasionally 14.260 nHz SSB) between 05:00Z and 09:00Z +/- , and will check out the 30m (usually 10108 mHz) and 40m (usually 7025+/-) bands before and after those times. He is actively listening for the weak signals from IOTA enthusiasts.

At this point, in spite of terrible ionospheric conditions, and tough, very hot and humid operating conditions, he has some 6,000 + contacts in the log.

There are two larger motus (small sandy islands) on Pukapuka, the airport is on one and the village on the other. The airport is accessible from the village by a 20-30 minute boat ride across the lagoon.

From Pukapuka he will fly on an Embraer Bandierante (a 15 passenger aircraft limited to 8 passengers to allow for enough fuel for the 1400 km transpacific flight) to Manihiki Atoll, returning to Rarotonga on Tuesday evening. On Wednesday he will embark on the 35 hour trip back to Toronto via Auckland and Los Angeles.



E51LYC News 18 May 2017 From the Daily DX W3UR

Based on experiences so far, the only "reliable" times for EU are on 20M from 05:00Z through about 08:30Z with the strongest signals between 06:30Z - 08:30 -- so this is his plan for the next few days:

From about 05:00Z to 08:30 Z he will focus on 20 metres to EUROPE but at 06:00 he will QSY to 30m and try there between 06:00 and 06:30. At 6:30 he will return to 20metres. HOWEVER, if 30m is completely dead, he will return to 20 earlier.

From 8:30 to 12:00Z he will focus on 30 and 40 metres.

At 12:00Z (2am local time) he will get some sleep with the plan to get up and try 30/40 metres 14:00Z from 14:00 to 16:00Z

The rest of the time -- daylight hours here (Zulu-10) he will operate largely on 17 and 20metres with occasional transitions to 15metres if the band opens.

He will adjust the schedule slightly according to conditions.

Operating from Pukapuka is proving challenging as the temperature is around 35 in the shade with 90% humidity, and potable water and food are in short supply on the island.

To date he has about 4500 QSOs in the log and is at the mid point of his DXpedition. He will be active until the morning of May 24th (Zulu).

A reminder, Cezar has no access to internet or the cluster so he cannot monitor the activity; however, he appreciates the help of those spotting him.


Andy E51AND

E51LYC News 15 May 2017 From The Daily DX Bernie W3UR

Had a good chat with Cezar today -- S9+20 here on Rarotonga on 20m and 17m.

Based on what he is hearing, Cezar suggests that EU stations listen for him on LONG PATH on 20m between 1800 and 2000Z and on 17m between 1900 - 2300Z.

In the evenings (local) he will work the 20m opening to EU (usually 0600-0800Z) and when the opening to EU ends between 0800-0900, he will move to 30m then to 40m to call EU -- but will switch to 20 or 17m NA/JA/OC if that proves fruitless. He said that last night he called CQ for an hour on 30m and worked only one station, whereas on 20 he could have worked many. He says it is a balancing game trying to work as many stations as possible and trying to work the lower bands which have been "dismal" at his location.

It is important to remember that on Pukapuka he is very isolated and over 1400km from other E51 stations and much closer to the equator -- so because you can hear/contact E51DWC on Rarotonga does NOT mean there is similar propagation to Pukapuka. Also Raro stations E51DWC and E51AND are using gain antennas and much higher power . . . . .

Internet on Pukapuka is very limited and Cezar does NOT have it at his location so he cannot see spots and there is only a very faint possibility of uploading a log at some point from the slow internet connection at Telecom -- but do not count on it.

Could you also please ask folks not to email me with requests to ask Cezar to check if they are in the log -- I will not relay them as it takes time out from his primary purpose.

Thanks. Andy E51AND

E51LYC News 14 May 2017 from The Daily DX Bernie W3UR

1. He will try Europe daily on 17m at 21:00Z -- the forecast suggested earlier openings but these have not materialized.

2. Opening on all bands seem to be much shorter than forecast.

3. He is focussing as much as possible on South American and Europe but has been frustrated by poor conditions.

4. His noise level is EXTREMELY low so he can hear some EU stations even when they are very weak, but they are not responding when he calls them back. (I know from my own experience that EU QRN and QRM can make things difficult -- we commonly copy stations at 5 and 0 here - NO discernable motion on the S meter but Q5 copy)

5. He will try SSB today -- and throughout his stay -- expecially on 20m to try to work those EU station who do not have CW -- but will emphasize CW as this seems to be the most effective with the weak signal conditions.

6. 30 metres has been very hard -- noise is low but few signals -- the most productive bands seem to be 20m and 17m

7. He has tried long path to Europe on 20m with dismal results.

8. Propagation to JA, OC and NA has been good with many contacts. Happily the self discipline of the JAs has enabled him to work some weak EU stations during the JA pile-ups. He expressed his appreciation of their courtesy.

9. He has set his alarm for 2 hour sleep periods to try to catch opening during the night but has had little success - especially on 30 and 40m where noise levels are very low -- but he is hearing no signals.

Internet is very limited on Pukapuka and he would have to leave the shack and walk to the Telecom to be able to access internet at dial-up or slower speeds -- so he has NO access to spotting aids like DX summit -- and one should not expect that he will even recieve, let alone be able to reply to emails.

He has over 2,000 contacts in the log already.

Good trip so far, lots of assistance from the locals. VERY HOT and humid, however there has been a wind which keeps the mosquitos away.

I can hear Cezar at S9++ most of the time when he is operating on 20 or 17M and with a KW and good gain antennas, I should be able to contact him if you need to get a message back.

Andy E51AND

E51LYC News 11 May 2017

11 May 2017 22.05 UTC

Milan, OK1DWC/E51DWC inform that Cezar arrive in Puka Puka and will be QRV very soon.

11 May 2017 - Rarotonga, 03:00 UTC

I arrived on time, and was relieved to see that my checked luggage madeit too. Many thanks to Andy (E51AND), Milan (E51DWC), and Doug (W6HB/E51DLD) who came to welcome me at the airport. Milan's wife Alice and daughter Natalie came along too. I will stay with Milan's family tonight, but first we will meet for dinner and some casual hobby chatting with other hams at 04:30 UTC at one of the local restaurants.

E51LYC News 10 May 2017

10 May 2017 - Auckland, 19:00 UTC

The flight to New Zealand took almost 12 and a half hours. I was able to sleep a few hours, so I don't feel tired at all right now. The plane to Rarotonga is scheduled to depart at 8:45 UTC, so I have plenty of time to catch up with some emailing, hi.

10 May 2017 - Los Angeles, 03:30 UTC

Uneventful flight to LA. I was several times on this airport connecting to different parts of the world. However, this was the first time that I had to get outside of the arriving terminal and walk about 10 min to reach the departing terminal for my connection to Auckland. I had to go again through security, which was very annoying, but everything went well and I'll board the plane in 20 min or so.

Pukapuka Atoll Cook Islands E51LYCPukapuka Atoll (Danger Islands), Cook Islands.

E51LYC. Where is Pukapuka Atoll located. Map.

E51LYC Pukapuka Atoll IOTA OC - 098. Sunrise 07-19-2024 at 17:21 GMT sunset at 04:58 GMT
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