MX5A : IOTA Contest 2018 : Isles of Scilly : Op G3WVG : EU-011
Ian G3WVG operated the 2018 IOTA Contest from the Isles of Scilly (EU-011) using the Three As Contest Group callsign : MX5A.
St Mary's in the Isles of Scilly - EU-011.
Single Operator : loads (150kg+) of luggage to carry!
The Scillonian : ferry between Penzance and Isles of Scilly.
Scillonian's callsign is GWOS (no, not Chris G3WOS!)
The antenna support at MX5A was the lower 12m of an 18m Spiderpole. It supported three thin, nested inverted vee dipoles which covered 80/40/20 and 15. There was a small additional 1/4 wave GP for 10 metres. Five bands on just two coaxes.
The Isles of Scilly are located a two-hour boat journey off the extreme south west of England. My temporary QTH was a farm on the highest ground in the east of the island. It had a great take off over the sea in most directions which obviously meant it was very exposed to the elements. I had intended to operate from my tent, but thinking there was bad weather on the way, the excellent farmer kindly let me use his rather battered old cow shed. Just as well because late on Saturday night there was torrential rain and strong gusty gale force winds. I don’t think my little tent would have survived. In the event the flimsy dipoles got tangled and couldn’t be fixed until dawn on the Sunday. Nevertheless the auto-ATU managed to correct the high SWR and so I was still able to make QSOs.

The radio was a K3 together with a KPA-500 amplifier and matching ATU.

Just for fun I’d decided to try my hand at mixed mode, in the end the split was roughly 2:1 in favour of CW. I tried to swap bands and modes as much as possible to maximise the Island Multipliers. The most productive band was 20m with great conditions into Europe on Sunday morning.

And despite very average conditions even 15m/10m produced some good openings. All in all I had great fun taking part in a contest that seems to be growing in popularity test year-on-year. The MX5A summary table above shows 1,574 QSOs and just over 3.9M points.

73 - Ian G3WVG : Op at MX5A : IOTA Contest 2018