For reconnaissance, I visited Rieu Island in Belgium in November 2013 on the way home from the 54DA/HI activity on Luxembourg’s Helt Island — just to see if everything was okay for a possible inland water island (IWI) activation in the future.

1200px-Great_coat_of_arms_of_Belgium_svgEverything was perfect with the DXstination so the appointment was made to activate the island of Rieu in March 2014 as 16DA/HT011.

On Sunday, March 16 2014, I drove from the house at 09:30 and arrived 1 hour later in the province of Hainaut in the country’s south west under a bright sun and a good temperature of 14° with little wind.


imagesHBQX7KGLUnfortunately, the passage to get to the dock was flooded by the rains of the past few months and alas I hadn’t planned boots — only walking shoes.

“That will have to do to cross,” I thought to myself at the time, “But the water is a little cold.”

Unloading equipment from the car, I crossed the carp filled waters of the lake to the pontoon and arrived on the island in the middle of Grand Rieu Lake full of anticipation.


emotionheader473374As you can see in the PROOFS, Rieu is a miniature jungle with trees and thick, long grass hiding birds, insects and other wildlife.

Installed by the owner was a caravan and camping table that he had used to hunt from but it was now overgrown so the area needed some work to clean it up.

After removing the tall grass around the table, I established the station which consisted of a Yaesu FT-857D transceiver and a KL-501 amplifier and a quad antenna with 1 element. 

The station was powered by a battery 130A/h (25kg).  (See PROOF above)


cache_1285272Here I’m operational at 11:45 and turn the VFO to find a free frequency — something that was a little difficult because a lot of operators were on the air.

Unexpectedly I get a text message from Olivier 14DX010 asking me to go to 27.960 MHz USB.  Immediately I QSY and BINGO! 14DX010 is in the log for 16DA/HT011 with an R/S of 5/6 at 11:52 (local time).

Elated, Olivier then passes the information on to the Cluster dk Spot Board and QSOs with enchainment include 13AT013 Sven in Germany at 5/1, Theo 18SD105 in Greece at 5/7, 14HF297 Jérome in France at 5/8, and more…

At around 13:00, suddenly the local owner comes to visit me and tells me that the island is private and that I should NOT be there.


I explained what I was doing and luckily he allows me to stay to promote the island of Rieu through the airwaves.

Here we go again at 13:20 with Diego 4SD039 in Argentina at 5/7 but this time I’m QRV on 27.645 MHz USB with many more QRM.

As I promised the owner to QRT at 17:00, I finished the activation 16DA/HT011 Rieu Island at 16:30 with 14AT962 Jean in France at 4/1.


Positive results are attained with 108 QSO’s in 4 and a ½ hours with 22 DXCC.

These include: France (14), Germany (13), Greece (18), England (26), Poland (161), Denmark (47), Italy (1), The Netherlands (19), Brazil (3), Austria (35), Canary Islands (34), Switzerland (15), Belgium (16), Thailand (153), Argentina (4), Canada (9), United States of America (2), Martinique (136), Puerto Rico (11), Finland (56), Corsica (104) and Mexico (10).

da28-small-34ed27bDA-RC members ITL = 14DA049 Fred, 3DA012 Roger, 14DA181 Jean Marc, 14DA007 Chris, 13DA121 Ralf and 14DA016 Rudolph.

Thank you to everyone who came to log in for this IWI and sorry for those that I have not heard.

73 Phil 14DA028