Big Island ARRL News, 29 January 2018, 1530 UTC, Post #442.
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The Bouvet Island (3Y0Z) team on board the MV Betanzos has sailed past the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, and is about half way to isolated Bouvet Island near Antarctica. Here are the current reports from team members as they approach this isolated land mass:
“January 27th, 0120 UTC: Thursday night, our weather took a major turn for the worse, as we were overtaken by a low pressure system with winds about 35 knots and confused seas at 5 meters.
The ship has been pitching quite a lot, but is riding well. This short video courtesy of Jeff, NM1Y, best tells the story of our day, yesterday, and why we have remained below decks.
“We had to QRT our maritime mobile operation and secure the radios, because of the ship’s rolling. We did not want to risk damage to the radios.
We have yet to ascertain the status of our ship-mounted antennas for possible damage. The Hustler vertical is mounted on the bow, and took many salt water baths yesterday (as you can see in Jeff’s video).
Today’s forecast looks a little better. We hope to be back at full speed, and have 3G9A/MM QRV again, after checking and repairing the antennas. –
“* January 27th, 0530 UTC: Last night was a tough night for us. The full fury of the South Atlantic was unleashed upon us. Shifting winds and turbulent seas changed our ship’s motion from severe pitching to pitching and yawing to very marked rolls. That which was not secured is no longer where it was. Some of those who were up and about yesterday are down and out today. Personal items are scattered, and some small items are lost in the mix. Bathroom floors are wet from water splashing out of the toilet bowls.
It was a tough night, but we knew this was likely when we signed on. We will persist and continue towards Bouvet. —
“* January 28th, 1200 UTC: 54 degrees 30 minutes South; 14 degrees 54
minutes West. The seas have calmed somewhat. The predominant motion of the ship remains a moderate roll. We have not restored our maritime mobile stations, due to difficulty in securing the equipment to prevent damage. There are occasional breaks in an overcast sky. Visibility is estimated at 15 to 20 miles. Our current forward speed is 8.8 knots; a compromise between creature comfort and structural stresses and getting to Bouvet.
Attendance at breakfast this morning was sparse, with most team members preferring their bunks over caloric intake.”
“N9TK, N4GRN, and K0IR continued working on flight sequencing last night, and should complete the process this evening. We have a lot of “stuff” to get ashore as fast as possible in the weather windows Mother Nature sees fit to give us.”
“Our forecast is for moderate snow ahead, followed by clearing.
Icebergs remain visible but have decreased in number.
73 – Ralph, K0IR”
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Aloha es 73 de
Russell Roberts (KH6JRM)
Public Information Coordinator
Hawaii County, ARRL Pacific Section