There have been many amateur radio operations from Kure, most carried out by amateur radio operators attached to commercial, military, or governmental operations. Unfortunately, we do not have a complete list of these operations. Here we describe briefly those we do know about. We warmly solicit additions and corrections.
Some of the first amateur radio operations were carried out by navy men stationed at Midway. One of these was done by KH6ECD and a contingent of navy men stationed on Midway. They flew over to Kure, operated for one weekend of the ARRL DX contest, left the gear (there was a small garrison of other guys on the island building the Loran station), then the alternate crew came back the following weekend! Gary Elliott K7OX is the only one "standing" from that first expedition. He went back later and operated under better conditions, since the construction was finished by that time. There is a good article about the first expedition in QST, Aug 1961, p 54, DXpedition to Kure Island, by Gary KM6CB.
Source: Private e-mail Gary K7OX
Source: http://hamgallery.com/qsl/country/Kure_Island/ Courtesy of K8BHG
Leslie (Gene) Lewis, currently W5LE, carried out two operations from Kure:
As KH6NR/KH6 November, 1969. A 1-week operation with Don Chilcote, KH6GKV
As KH6HDB 1973-74.
QSL manager for the DXpedition was Mary Ann Crider, WA3HUP.
Received from K4BNV 13 Feb 2012:
I would like to add another Dxpedition to your list carried out by myself and Paul Kraus. In 1970 I was an AT&T engineer living at Midway Island at the time. My call sign on Midway was KM6DT and my primary call sign (still is) K4BNV. Paul Kraus (LtJG USN) was the supply officer of Midway Island NAVFAC. His call sign at Midway was KM6DQ. Paul passed away a few years ago.
Paul and I flew to Kure Island on May 8, 1970 with our Ham Radio equipment which consisted of a Heathkit SB301/SB401 receiver and transmitter and a Heathkit SB200 linear amp and a Mosley TA33 three element beam. The sunspot conditions during that three day period were prime and our total contacts on 10, 20 and 15 meters were more than a thousand, if I remember correctly. We did take shifts through the day and night with very little sleep. QST Magazine had advertised our trip in the April edition so the pile ups were enormous.
In addition to the many contacts we also ran phone patched for the Coast Guard men stationed on the island. I think the total number was 23 men. In those days those guys would have to visit Midway Island for R&R (and on to Honolulu sometimes) and really had no communications with the outside world except the official military communications which didn't allow them to talk with loved ones. Our goal was to run a phone patch for everyone on the island and we did accomplish that. Most of the patches were run for free (no long distance charges) via hams on the mainland.
--Denny Carroll K4BNV
Source: http://hamgallery.com/qsl/country/Kure_Island/ Courtesy W9AU
Source: QSL courtesy VK3OT http://hamgallery.com/qsl/country/Kure_Island/kh6lw.htm
There is also a report of an operation by KH6LW/KH7 on 15 m on July 4, 1989. Mark Demeuleneere ON4WW worked him on July 30, 1990.
Source: QSL courtesy ON4WW.
In July 1981, WBØICS carried out an operation on 20m. QSL manager was WB6FBN. In the QSL picture, the outlines of the LORAN-C station, deactivated in 1992, are evident.
Pete Aldrich, formerly WD6QGQ, while on duty with the Loran station, carried out an operation in January, 1983, using the callsign KH7AA
Source: Courtesy Franz DJ9ZB
Rick KH6JEB carried out at least two operations, in 1984 and in 1989. The minor differences in his QSLs show that he needed to have them reprinted.
Source: http://hamgallery.com/qsl/country/Kure_Island/ Courtesy K8CX
A joint scientific/radio operation including fish and wildlife scientists and the members of the Midway-Kure DX Foundation's 1996 Midway team was carried out in 1997. The team included four scientists from the U. S. Department of Fish and Wildlife and the following radio operators: Kimo Chun KH7U, Andy Chesnokov UA3AB, Michael Goode N9NS, Randy Martin KØEU, Burt Myers WØMY (ex WØRLX), Erik Sjölund SMØAGD, Frank Smith AHØW/OH2LVG, and Yuji Yoshitani JA3IG/K1NT. The team flew to Midway, then took the ship S. S. Midway to Kure Atoll.
Antennas used during the operation included Force-12 C-3's, Force-12 80 and 160 meter verticals, Force-12's new WARC-7 tribander, HF2V verticals, a Cushcraft A3WS and the German-made Titanex 40-80-160 meter vertical. The team also enjoyed the benefits of the SMØAGD 20-meter Special, a vertical quickly assembled by Erik SMØAGD from the broken remnants of one of the beams destroyed during the reef landing.
Sensitive to the ecological concerns of Kure, including beaches covered with plastic and glass garbage that continuously floats ashore, the K7K team undertook to assist the fish and wildlife scientists with their clean-up work. Team members, when not on-the-air, worked side-by-side with the F&W personnel to clear several meadows of a non-indigenous bush-weed that has become a menace to Kure's ground-nesting birds. The team left some equipment in storage on Kure.
After leaving Kure, the team returned for a 2-night, one-day stay on Midway where they made approx. 3,000 QSOs as K4M before returning to Kauai and onward to their respective homes. As chairman of the Midway-Kure DX Foundation, Frank AHØW and Yuuji Yoshitani JA3IG/K1NT also worked out an arrangement with officials on Midway whereby two permanent HF stations will be installed in Midway's hangar to include two fully-equipped ICOM HF stations and Force-12, Cushcraft and other antennas. [The status of this equipment is not known to the author]. Contact for Frank R. Smith (AHØW, OH2LVG) is email@example.com. Contact for the MKDXF is firstname.lastname@example.org.
QSL's for the 1997 Kure Atoll, K7K, trip may be requested directly from Mr. Frank Smith, AHØW, 5933 W. Grovers Ave. Glendale, AZ 85308-1101, U.S.A. Please send a self-addressed envelope with sufficient postage or IRC(s).
This is the current operation (see elsewhere on this website).