*MEET* 143DA010 Steven

From the picturesque island country of St Lucia in the West Indies, experienced North American DXer 143DA010 Steven is welcomed to the Dx Adventure Radio Club (DA-RC) in February 2022.

A licensed amateur radio operator who shares a passion for hunting DX on the Freeband, and a qualified Maintenance Engineer, Steven connects with the DA-RC via the DX Hunter category, easily satisfying the 100+ DXCC requirements for membership.

This imposing tally has been achieved over the course of more than 40 years involvement in the radio communications hobby.

Part of the Windward Islands of the Lesser Antilles, St Lucia is located north/northeast of the island of Saint Vincent (NA-109), northwest of Barbados (NA-021) and south of Martinique (NA-107).

Just 617 km2 in size, and with a population of 165 595 people, this delicate island dxstination possesses the IOTA reference NA-108 in keeping with the World IOTA Program.

(See https://iota-world.org/islands-on-the-air/iota-groups-islands/group/623.html)

According to 143DA010 Steven, pictured left, “Its coast is home to volcanic beaches, reef-diving sites, luxury resorts and fishing villages…”

St Lucia is also home to a number of smaller islands which all fall under the same NA-108 reference.

They include Maria, Rat (Choc islet), Fregate, Scorpion, Dennery, Burgot Rock, Lapins, Bouche, Ramier, Des Bateaux, Praslin, Liverpool Rock and Petit.

According to the IBO database, only St Lucia has ever before been activated on the 11m band so Steven will be motivated to undertake some dx adventure, no doubt, with this new Delta-Alfa callsign in the years to come.

(See: http://islands.upway.pl/find_for.php?do=search&pr=143&io=&re=&na=)

143DA010 Steven’s island is more mountainous than most Caribbean islands, with the highest point being Mount Gimie, at 950 m above sea level.

Two other mountains, the Pitons, form the island’s most famous landmark and these are located between Soufrière and Choiseul on the western side of the island.

Forests cover about 77% of the land area and contain colourful orchids and anthurium.

The rich birdlife includes the Saint Lucian parrot (the endangered national bird) (See pictured left), the Saint Lucia black finch, and the Saint Lucia oriole.

There’s also a lizard unique to Saint Lucia, and the agouti is common.

St. Lucia’s largest city is Castries, its current capital, and its second largest is Soufrière, the first French colonial capital on the island.

The population tends to be concentrated around the coast, with the interior more sparsely populated, due to the presence of dense forests.

143DA010 Steven’s home town is Choiseul.

It’s a place known for its beautiful local arts and crafts such as grass place mats, chairs, clay products such as coal pots which are still widely used in many St. Lucian kitchens, and woven baskets.

These can be purchased at the roadside craft market.

Choiseul is also known for its spectacular beaches.

Located at the foot of Gros Piton, Anse l’Ivrogne Beach is regarded as one of the best sites for scuba diving in Saint Lucia, and is known as “the Black Hole” because of the underwater drop of 600m.

Another, Sabwesha Beach, is a black sand beach just north of Choiseul with views of Gros Piton as well as views of the neighbouring island of Saint Vincent.

Other attractions include…

…the Balembouche Estate — a former sugar plantation which is a heritage site as well as an organic farm; the Morne Sion Windmills that were built by the British in the early 19th Century to crush sugar cane for the production of rum; the Pon George (Devil’s Bridge) which spans a 60m deep ravine in the River Dorée area; the Reunion Estate which is an Agricultural research station, and many, many others.

North of Steven’s home town, Choiseul, near the village of Saltibus, is a daunting rainforest trail leading to the spectacular Saltibus Waterfall (See pictured above and left).

This is a series of five magnificent waterfalls with heights from 3-10m that rank as one of the most often visited of sites on the island.

As you can see, 143DA010 Steven has compiled an impressive station for DX work on any one of the bands, including 11m.

More than 80 foot above the ground, a 5 element yagi antenna, backed by a 2kw linear amplifier, provides exceptional horizontal directionality on 27 MHz frequencies.

An IMAX 2000 vertical antenna by Solarcon, with an IMAXGPK ground plane kit, provides omnidirectional capabilities also.

An Icom IC-765 multi-mode transceiver is just one of many rigs which adorn his bench top, alongside a collection of modern dxcessories that combine to produce a high performing station.

Others are a 100 watt all mode Alinco dx-70 mobile rig which covers HF + 50 MHz, a Kenwood TS-480HX which can provide up to 200 watts RF output, a Kenwood TS-2000, Kenwood TS 850 and a Yaesu FT-1000.

When he’s not behind the microphone of one of his many rigs, chasing DX, 143DA010 Steven enjoys night diving and spear fishing.

Not only does it provide him and his family with a healthy feed of fish, but it also offers relief from St Lucia’s sticky tropical maritime WX.

Dorado (Mahi-Mahi), Wahoo, King Mackerel (Kingfish), Blackfin, and Yellowfin Tuna are just a sample of the fish that end up in Steven’s boat!

143DA010 Steven monitors the Freeband international call frequency — 27.555 MHz USB.

He looks forward to working his friends in the DA-RC, including the world’s population of serious 11m Island Hunters.


* Via DA-RC HQ Oceania, PO Box 3140 Browns Plains LPO, QLD, Australia, 4118
* Contribution: $3 US + SAE