Fjerritslev DXpedition Report
February 8-15, 2003
by Cornel van
Ravenswaaij, Guido Schotmans and Max van Arnhem
right-minded medium wave DXer dreams now and than
about making a trip to the famous beverage farm
in a tiny little place called Fjerritslev, in Northern
Jutland, Denmark. It was however not easy to form
a group of interested people. There was already
a "Beverage-group" that organised regular
listening sessions, but extending the group would
probably reduce the DX-quality.
a search of almost a year, Guido Schotmans, Max
van Arnhem and Cornel van Ravenswaaij formed a new
group and took up the challenge to go to Fjerritslev
between the 8th and 15th of February. A lot of e-mails
were exchanged to agree upon what we needed for
listening purposes and other needs.
Guido departed in
Merksem, Belgium as early as 0400 local time for
a trip of 1017 km since we wanted to reach Fjerritslev
before sunset. Cornel was leaving Den Dolder in
the Netherlands at 0530 and Max was driving away
at 0600. From the centre of the Netherlands, the
850 kilometres long journey lasted for about eight
and half hours. After some mobile calls we met each
other in the last "Raststätte" and
petrol station before the Danish border. From there
we were heading north together for the last 350
km. We reached our target around 2.30 p.m. local
time and found it without any problem.
Wilhelm Herbst was
already waiting for us and after a hearty welcome
he was so kind to give us some aid while unpacking
our receivers we connected them to one of the 21
beverage antennas and listening could commence.
This is one of the major advantages of this DX location.
The antennas are present permanently, which means
you don't have to carry all that antenna material.
Yes, you spend a lot of time on the voyage but on
the other hand you're gaining time while you don't
have to put up antennas.
Wilhelm Herbst has
installed all these beverages between 65 and 360
degrees. They vary in length between 80 and more
than 300 meters! To the western hemisphere, there
are antennas available at almost every 10°.
The antennas are situated around his farm, outside
the small town of Fjerritslev with hardly any neighbours.
Especially the surroundings are very quiet.
This means hardly
any noise on the radio bands. Sometimes, you even
get the impression that your receiver is not functioning
well. In the neighbourhood are some small quiet
towns and even beautiful beaches, which are worth
a visit, even during wintertime. In Fjerritslev
and Løgstør you can find libraries,
which offer free Internet access. In this way we
were able to follow the daily A and K indices.
Because of the unrest
on the sun's surface, we experienced quite bad conditions
on medium wave. Check the loggings. Nice receptions
were Radio C.N.M. in Arad, Romania with 1 kW on
1602 kHz. While listening to 1575 VOA Thailand we
also discovered Radio Asia 1575 in the United Arab
Emirates. In the afternoons we started listening
around 1400 UTC on medium wave towards Asia. Almost
daily we heard the already mentioned VOA Thailand
1575, but also 1557 WYFR Family Radio, Taiwan, sometimes
with very good quality.
Somewhat later in
the afternoon we tuned to the tropical bands. We
were quite astonished about the good reception quality
of the RRI stations from Indonesia. This reminded
us of the seventies and eighties when these stations
often gave good reception quality in the Netherlands
and Belgium too. Also the well known Australian
2 MHz stations were doing well and were often audible
as soon as 1630 UTC. Cornel was very busy checking
the Aero and NDB-bands and was very delighted with
Another a nice reception
was Radio Khara, Dusheti, Georgia, as well the still
unidentified station on 4050 kHz, probably from
Kyrgyzstan. In the evenings we tuned to the medium
waves, tropical bands, short waves and aero bands.
Somewhat later in
the evenings, especially stations from Brazil gave
good reception in the 6, 9 and 11 MHz bands. The
reception from the rest of South America was a bit
Early mornings we
pointed our attention to the medium wave band to
listen to North and Central America, but conditions
continued to be poor. Even these poor conditions
gave some nice receptions, like La Voz Evangelica
from Guatemala and quite some US stations between
1600 and 1700 kHz. WDHP from the Virgin Islands
was a daily guest.
looks like Wilhelm is still as passionate as in
the times he was writing his story about 99 nights
on medium wave. He was even prepared to wake us
when conditions were going better.
Our listening time
schedule was usually: getting up between 5 and 6
o'clock a.m., listening until just after 8. Then
catch some sleep until 10 or 11. Buy some things
in Fjerritslev, passing by the library and from
3 p.m. onwards, back to our monitoring positions
until 1 at night or beyond.
with Wilhelm's antennas from his unique location
was quite an experience. Especially the directivity
on medium wave, but also on short wave of beverage
antennas was new to us. Don't forget to check out
our MW loggings
and SW loggings
to see what we heard.