QSL Review: A Look Back at the QSL Card from St. Paul Island CY9C 2016

Editor’s Note: Every month, DX Engineering features QSL cards from our team members’ personal collections. Usually we showcase ones from entities that are currently active or will soon be QRV. However, with so many DXers homebound these days and the number of DXpeditions reaching all-time lows, we’ve altered the rules. Until things change, you can expect a bit of everything from our stockpiles of QSL cards, including the rarest of the rare, personal favorites, and recent QSLs of historical significance.

Earlier this year, we showcased the QSL card from the DX Engineering-sponsored VP8PJ South Orkney Islands 2020 DXpedition. It was the latest in a long list of DXpeditions that DX Engineering has supported over its 20-year history, including Ducie Island VP6D 2018, Mellish Reef VK9MA 2017, Pitcairn Island VP6R 2019, Amsterdam Island FT5ZM 2014,  Chesterfield Islands TX3X 2015, and many others.

Today, we’ll be looking back at the QSL card from another DX Engineering-backed venture, St. Paul Island CY9C, August 18-29, 2016.

A team of 11 operators recorded 64,231 QSOs (21,305 unique) during their stay on frequently fog-covered St. Paul Islanda three-mile long by one-mile wide stretch of granite rock about 15 miles from the northern tip of Nova Scotia. Once home to a Marconi radio station, today, the island’s only permanent structure is a solar-powered automated lighthouse.

DX Engineering played a critical role in assisting the 2016 venture by providing a range of DX Engineering manufactured gear, including:

Back in September 2016, CY9C DXpedition members Jay Slough, K4ZLE, and Wayne McKenzie, K8LEE, stopped by DX Engineering headquarters in Tallmadge, Ohio, to chat with Tim Duffy, K3LR, DX Engineering CEO, about the challenges and rewards of this successful “tent and generator” operation (in Jay’s words) from St. Paul Island, in which the team braved capricious weather while manning camps on the island’s Atlantic Cove and Northeast Island sites.

“That island, in my opinion, experiences all four seasons in one day,” noted Wayne, K8LEE, who served as the DXpedition’s dedicated RTTY operator. “It can be very, very rainy with high winds—30, 35 knots—and very cold and damp in the evening, and then in the morning it’s extremely hot.”

Watch the interview here.

In addition to being an equipment sponsor, DX Engineering staff actively got on the air to fill bands and record All-Time New Ones. Here’s the coveted QSL card from the DXPedition:

Prior DXpeditions to this rarely visited spot include CY9M in July 2014, also sponsored by DX Engineering. Mark, W8BBQ, DX Engineering customer /technical support specialist, received this QSL card after working CY9M on 160, 80, 40, 15, 12, and 10M CW; and 40, 20, and 17M SSB.

For an encore at activating this DXCC entity, the CY9C crew returned to St. Paul Island (IOTA NA – 094) in August 2019.

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