Breton Island ** NA-089 ** 25 & 26 April, 2003

Breton Island (29.4N, 89.2W) is part of the Chandeleur Island group in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Louisiana. Nearby "hotel barges" accomodate sports fishers, who come in by boat or sea plane to fish the productive waters of Breton Sound. Last activated in April, 1994 by members of the DDXA, this island was since devastated by hurricanes, leaving only a small spit of sand in the warm Gulf waters. To satisfy the needs of IOTA seekers worldwide, Silvano, KB5GL, accompanied by his courageous wife, Adele, made the rough trek from New Orleans to Breton Island to activate it once again. Staying overnight in one of the hotel barges, the couple was able to travel to the island by boat on each of two days, spending the day on the beach where the station was set up in the open, without any protection from sun or wind.

Adele and Silvano ready to leave the dock at Venice, LA, 80 miles south of New Orleans, near the mouth of the Mississippi River.
Transportation: The Orion, a 32 ft. (10m) off-shore fishing boat with twin 200HP engines, capable of over 60 knots in calm seas.
Overnight accomodations: the "hotel barge" - only a few hundred yards from the island and quite nice after a day in the hot sun, high winds, and bugs!
Capitan Ryan helping Adele wade ashore to Breton Island. With a 30 knot wind and seas running 4-5 feet, it was not possible to beach the boat, so all had to be carried in from deeper water.
The 1 KW generator, Capt. Ryan, and Adele coming ashore.
Silvano getting the R-5 vertical ready for some activity. High winds, gusting to 30 knots, prevented the use of umbrellas for shade.

Despite poor conditions (A=25, K=4), high winds, sun, no shade or protection (and clouds of gnats by the millions when the winds subsided), KB5GL/5 logged over 800 QSOs on 6 continents during the two days.

Quite an accomplishment for this stalwart couple!

Finally, the operation begins!

73 de KB5GL and Adele!

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