6M Ready for Desecheo (K5D)

I installed a small, non-optimized, and somewhat resonant 3el 6M beam temporarily to try to work the K5D DXpedition on this band.  This morning, I heard a couple CQs from them on 50.106 Mhz but they weren’t copyable long enough to make a QSO.  I’ve got a pretty good shot in that direction, as you can see in the 2nd photo.

Here’s the small 6m yagi on a 25ft tall push-up aluminum mast. The antenna on the left is a sloping fan dipole for 10, 17, and 15m, It usually gives me an S-unit advantage into Europe and South America over the verticals on these bands.
Here’s my path toward Desecheo Is…..nothing but salt water. Stock Island can be seen in the distance, with nothing but the Bahamas between it and KP5.

The Brown Boobies of Cay Verde

My crew recently spent two weeks patrolling the southern Bahamas, and we spent some time anchored next to Cay Verde.  My Executive Officer and I spent some time exploring the island.  As we soon discovered, the island is inhabited only by birds, lizards, snakes, and crabs.  Brown boobies were nesting all over the island, most tending to a pair of eggs.

There is a small natural bridge on the southwest side of the cay, near the place where we landed.
My XO walks along the beach with most of the small cay visible behind him.
One of the thousands of nesting boobies all over the island
One of several snakes we saw, all of the same species. I’m sure they ate well, feeding on bird eggs. I imagine these snakes are an invasive species which probably arrived by ship at some time in the past.
Here’s the view of the northern side of the island, exposed to the prevailing seas
The CGC Pea Island at anchor, with a nesting booby in the foreground

The story behind my header photo

I took the photo used for the header image.  It shows the USCGC PEA ISLAND’s cutter small boat, transiting southward just off the east coast of Anguilla Cay.  Anguilla Cay is the eastern most island of Cay Sal Bank, part of the Bahamas, which is located about mid way between Cuba and the Florida Keys.  Back in 2008 when I took this photo, Cay Sal was a commonly used stopping point for Cuban migrants trying to make their way to US soil.  We went ashore not only for a chance to explore, but also to look for evidence of recent migrant activity.  I loved this photo because of the turquoise waters.

Anguilla Cay