The Bouvet Island DXpedition
Attempted January 2018
UPDATE to the DX community re: REFUNDS of unused DXpedition funds…
Press Release 2019-1
Bouvet DXpedition (3YØZ)
January 7, 2019
Subject: Options/Instructions for REFUNDS of Unused DXpedition Funds
Let me take this opportunity to thank you again for your financial support. The DXpedition team members are all extremely disappointed that we were not able to complete our mission. We were offshore Bouvet for three days and encountered extreme weather conditions. While fighting hurricane force winds, one of our vessel’s engines was over-stressed and a critical coupling failed. The ship’s Captain had no choice but to abort the DXpedition for safety reasons. It was the correct decision, but a huge disappointment after almost three years of planning.
We now have returned our sea container to the US, paid our final bills, and sold equipment to raise funds. After all this, I am happy to report we have a balance in our accounts. I am able to offer you a 48% refund of your original contribution to 3YØZ. All supporters of our DXpedition are offered the same percentage regardless of whether they are a DX Foundation, DX Club, Individual DXer or DXpedition team member. This is the only fair way to do this!
Many of you have contacted me and indicated that you DO NOT want any refund. So, I want to give everyone several options:
Option 1: I want the refund. Please use my PayPal email address. (No checks or wire transfers please). I respectfully ask that you do not take a refund IF your contribution was $30 USD or less.
Option 2: I do not want the refund; please donate my refund to the 3YØZ team. Each member of the DXpedition team has invested considerable money, time and effort to try to make this DXpedition a success.
Option 3: I do not want the refund; please donate it to the Northern California DX Foundation (NCDXF) in my name. This will help fund future DXpeditions worldwide.
Option 4: I do not want the refund; please donate it to the International DX Foundation (INDEXA) in my name. This will help fund future DXpeditions worldwide.
DEFAULT OPTION…..If you do not respond, we will divide your refund pro-rata (proportional) between the 3YØZ team, NCDXF, INDEXA and German DX Foundation (GDXF). (These are our largest financial supporters.)
Our DEADLINE for requesting Option 1-4 is March 15, 2019.
PLEASE NOTE: it is not necessary to contact me. If I do not hear from you by the deadline, I will assume the DEFAULT OPTION.
The contact email address is email@example.com
Again, we very much appreciate your support for this project. The final outcome of this ambitious project is not as we planned or hoped for, but the DXpedition team is home and is safe. We are thankful for that!
3YØZ Co-leader and Chief Financial Officer
The Longest Mile
We were this close. The island lay there in front of us; smiling at us, beckoning us. The skies were clear and the wind was calm. Conditions were ideal for a landing, but it was not to be.
We had arrived three days earlier. Bouvet was shrouded in fog and clouds hung low over the island. Our ship rolled in the waves and swells driven by 39 knot northeast winds. With time the weather cleared but the winds persisted and a landing was not possible. On the following 2 days fog and clouds again obscured the island. During short weather windows the ship moved along the east coast of Bouvet to assess landing possibilities until nightfall. The third night all hell broke loose.
Winds were 60 to 70 knots and the sea was angry. The ship rolled up to 32 degrees port and starboard, a 64 degree excursion, and anchorage close to the island became difficult and dangerous. The captain’s weather forecasts predicted no change in conditions for a week. After a coupling in the drive train of the starboard engine failed, the captain declared that the DXpedition could not be carried out safety and made the decision to abort the mission.
On February 3rd, we awoke to what you see above, a pristine island in the sun. But the captain had made his call. By happenstance or divine intervention, the captain’s call may have averted disaster. Had the mechanical failure occurred after some team members had landed on Bouvet, the outcome of this project may have been even more disastrous.
We initially set our course to return to Punta Arenas, Chile. Battling the oncoming seas and strong westerly winds was a daunting task with a single engine. We changed course for Cape Town, South Africa, 1000 miles closer, to avoid the foul weather and ice that lay between us and Chile. After slogging along at 4 to 6 miles per hour for 14 days, we were welcomed to Cape Town by the local hams who sailed out into the harbor to meet us, blasting “CQ” on the horn of their 32 foot ketch. After a long and disappointing 31-day journery in the cold South Atlantic, the 20 sea-weary members of the 3Y0Z team were ready to set foot on land.
Over the next few weeks our future plans will unfold. We will keep you informed. Thank you for your support and for following us during this journey.
We were so close, just a mile away. But it was one very, very long mile.