You are here: St Kilda Today > Ranger's Diary > Fog and radio hams

Fog and radio hams

1 October 2011

While much of the mainland is bathed in sunshine, here on St Kilda the weather is very different. Fog has obliterated the view and the place feels a little eerie.

Fog obliterates the view

On Thursday morning, a dark shadow slowly emerged from the fog and it was a strange sight seeing a large ship enter into the bay.

On board were a team of Belgian radio enthusiasts who were hoping to land on the North Atlantic islet of Rockall.  The team started their journey on the 24th of September, setting sail from Antwerp on board the Cdt. Fourcault. This is their second attempt to land on Rockall from which they plan on making as many contacts with other radio stations as possible.

Rockall is an extremely small, uninhabited, remote, volcanic rock that is 100ft wide and 70ft high.  It is notoriously difficult to land on and an almost impossible task in poor weather.   Progress to the island was slow with winds averaging between 50 to 70 knots, waves 12 metres in height and visibility down to 100 yards. Several members of the crew suffered severe seasickness and the skipper of their ship decided to head to St Kilda (301km east) to seek shelter from the poor sea conditions. 

The Belgians came ashore, walked around the island and then spent some time assessing the weather charts.

Radio Hams in the office checking weather chartsHams Weather Map

The Belgian team decided to make another attempt to scale Rockall.  They started their 14 hour journey on Friday hoping to reach the rock by Saturday morning when there is a small suitable weather window. 

Hams leaving from the pierRadio Hams leaving in the fog

Good bye and good luck!

Update 01/10/11: The team landed!  Check out the following website

Gina, Seabird and Marine Ranger

<< Previous
Colour on a grey day
Next >>
Found a shearwater