When Easter Island expedition finished, the usual question arise - where to go next.

We had few options but only two of them have to be chosen.

Summer trip to Armenia was planned long before, but due to the fact that process of license approval for foreign visitors has been suspended temporarily, Mongolian trip did happen instead.

Autumn trip destination was under question, but – here we are.

After long multiple discussions we decided to pick on Zanzibar Island. One of the main reasons was financial one, as Sergey R4WAA promised to his eldest son to take him on next trip.

To keep “the parity” I’ve decided to take my kid too.

Number of questions was on the agenda: most important of them were a license permit and an accommodation. The search and information gathering began, as well as colleagues’ visited Zanzibar previously, debrief regarding their experience in getting a license recently. As a result, Bodo DF8DX responded to our request, providing contact details of a local resident who was helping him in past. Long negotiation process started and after few months after payment finished successfully by provision of PDF file with the license inside. Information provided by Alexey UT5UY, who was travel to Zanzibar in August this year, was very helpful as well. .

Alongside search process of accommodation with enough space to erect all antennas planned was running. Unfortunately, almost all hotels and guest houses do not have free space for our needs.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you”. Matthew 7:8

And our case wasn’t an exception - Airbnb was able to offer a house with a decent plot, suitable for our plans. After all explanations to the owner, descriptions and images of antennas sent, the approval has been granted, the house booked, flight tickets paid and we started to prepare everything for the trip.

Sergei has got a new netbook, electronic key card and started to put all parts of the workplace together. I chose the task of making a 5-band “spiderbeam”. The design and description have been downloaded; forum.qrz.ru’ related posts have been memorized; a telescopic mast has been purchased from Michael RA1ALA. Manufacture process took place mostly at work at lunchtime. Finally, all wires have been measured out, pipes sawed and fixed on central plate and even balun, purchased in past from US via the Internet has been found.


After several fields tests “a light at the end of the tunnel” became visible and then, finally, "spider" is at operational height. Sergey R2DO, located 14 km away, is helping to create directional diagram for all 5 bands. The result is more than satisfactory.

Antenna set is ready: 80 and 160m trap vertical based on 18m telescopic mast (thanks to R7LV & RA9USU for the design and advise), 40-10m - 1/4 & ¾ wave wire verticals rising to 12 m on telescopic mast through pulley and 20-10m - "spiderbeam" on top of 8m mast. Preparations completed and we have to continue waiting again.

In September, at "Russian Robinson Club" forum in Orel I was approached by my friends R1NU and RW3RN asking to let them know if I’ll plan to go somewhere. We’ve discussed the request with R4WAA Sergey and decide to invite both of them, Victor and Alexander, to Zanzibar. Victor could not go for a good reason. Alexander RW3RN was in a troubled situation, trying to make a choice out of three different destinations, but decided to go with us finally. I just hope he didn’t regret (ask him, if you want). Due to his workload, organization of his trip has been taken over by us.

Day "X" (18th of November 2016) came, the gathering place is Domodedovo airport. I and my son with the most voluminous luggage arrived a little later than the others, unloaded the taxi and began to wait for assistants with luggage carts. The meeting was held in a businesslike but friendly atmosphere. I attended with a luggage which wasn’t able to be packed into masts’ box or my case, so we spread it across Sergey and Alexander’s suitcases.

Check-in has been done in advance, only task left was to hand over the luggage and get boarding passes. And we’ve done it! Border passport check, short period of waiting and, finally, comfort chair inside the plane. It was night flight, but sleep didn’t come. However, monitor embedded into a seat in front did help to spend boring time. The flight went well, with a short break between flights at Doha airport - a huge one, but almost empty, just few duty free shops with poor choice of goods where we’ve spent some time.

We bought a souvenir for Eddie, the owner of our accommodation and loaded on the plane again. Five more hours in the sky and technical landing at Kilimanjaro airport, some passengers came out, a quick salon cleaning and going to take off again. Next landing will be at Zanzibar airport. Filling different entry forms, paying for the visa, going through passport control, getting luggage, pass it through a scanner, answering questions about content, and here it is - freedom. Changing US dollars for shillings (local currency) at the airport, choosing the best course - there are several points and Alexander is very busy, negotiating... And we leave the airport finally, going out to the heat. A minibus is waiting for us, ready to do more than an hour trip in northern direction, Nungwi village. We met sunset on the road with different shacks alongside. It was quite depressive view.

The road is narrow and our driver regularly pops up on the oncoming lane to overtake. Everyone in the car was totally captured by fatigue and nodding. On the way we took some water and food from local store because the accommodation included breakfast only. We arrived to the place in total darkness; were met by Eddie the owner, who did show our rooms. In the process of conditions acquaintance we decide to organize operator’s desks outside, at the verandah, not inside, where space was crowded and stuffy. Changing clothes to something lighter and make a decision to dine and celebrate our arrival under night sky. A table is set, bread sliced, pre-cutted vacuumed sneaks unpacked, a kettle is boiling and noodles are warm. Eddie has been awarded by the one part of the souvenir, and another part is going to the table. The evening full of different rouses and jokes smoothly flows into the night, still enough food on the table, someone request to continue the feast... It was a real mistake, but the we understood it in full next morning only...

Sergey woke me up early; I got up with strong feeling that yesterday was too good.

It’s time to unpack our luggage and prepare antennas’ installation. The sun was just beginning his rise above the horizon, but my not adapted after the winter body is already beginning to suffer from the heat (and not only external). Deciding to start with the simplest operation, I’m beginning to unwind and lay on the ground Beverage hiding t same time under the guise of the fence shadow.

Everything is going very slowly, no way to do it faster. Alexander is still in bed; Sergei is unpacking his luggage to get the transceiver, power supply and prepare operating position.

I began to untwist the cable for the vertical. Suddenly I notice that one cable is laid there already. I do not remember when and who did it, probably at last night, when morale was raised to an unprecedented height, someone decided to install the antenna in the darkness.

It is time to prepare the 12m telescopic mast. Alexander got up and ready to help me. Fasten clamps at all junctions of the mast’s body to prevent self-folding, pull cord through a pulley and connect ropes.

We make short break for a breakfast; we need a lot of power.

After breakfast we raise the telescopic mast, tighten ropes and align the mast. Counterpoises and verticals are still waiting, but sunshine is deadly strong, and skin not covered by sunscreen is ready to ignite. We must take a break to cool off, have a shower, cover ourselves with sunscreen and the battle continues.

Sergey is finished to assemble operating position, but the CAT does not start. Hard struggle is continuing, but CAT refuses to operate. OK, we do have an electronic keyer and hands to do switching manually.

Sergei decides to organize second operating position immediately.

Counterpoises and wires unrolled, variable capacitor and antenna analyzer are connected, the setup is complete – and decide to start on 12m band.

Length of time under sunshine and time of cooling in the shadow are incomparable. Everything done at home in minutes takes much longer time here.

The consequences of the evening celebration being felt, water consumption measured by litres. A shower must be taken hourly or more frequently.

Alexander takes a seat at operating position. We are continuing antenna works; “spiderbeam” is next in the row. For the beginning mast base must be installed very precisely and secure, otherwise the mast may fall down when raised. Next task is to assemble the antenna - rods’ unfolding, fixing all joints by clamps, wire elements unwinding. We still doing it in short attempts with long breaks in a shade.

Our kids are bored, they came in here for an ocean but have to sit in the middle of the island, away from a beach. Sergei decides to go with them to a beach, to not aggravate the situation.

Alexander switches to 17m band, I continue to gather "Spider" slowly.

Toward sunset "Spider" is ready to be erected.

The boys are back from the beach, looking happy and it makes everything bit easier.

At home, I raised "spider" with help of another guy who only held the rope preventing the antenna’s rotation. Now we decide to do it with three of us – me, Sergei and Nikita. As the wind picked up, we need some sort of safety precautions. Erection is going smoothly, no rush, nothing can be missed. Closer to the working height wind starts to tilt the top of the mast with a "spider", but we able to work it out. Ropes are in place, "Spider" fixed to the north direction. When finished we offer Alexander to switch (and compare) antennas.

Difference is quite significant and number of calling stations is growing.

We can’t do any more work, totally exhausted, and decide to install LF vertical in the early morning.

Alexander surprises by his stamina, I wouldn’t be able to manage huge pile-up whole afternoon and night without any break. In the morning we even doesn’t touch him and begun to put up the vertical together with Sergei: telescopic must pulled out to full length, clamps have been tightened, wires wrapped around the mast, trap and ropes attached, capacitive loads unwound. Wake up "youngsters" to get some help when lifting, if the rope will cling to the grass. We’ve raised it with no problems. While Sergey and Nikita hold the mast, me and Zhenya stretched and anchoring ropes.

Immediately after that I start antenna tuning, parameters are differ. But after some sweat and running back and forward capacitive loads, inductivity and capacitors are well tuned.

Bit later I hammered several nails, kindly provided by Eddie, into a fence, and fixed capacitance loads to them.

Breakfast is served, wake up Alexander and with a sense of accomplishment sit down around the table to have a meal.

Sergei and I are going with youngsters to a beach, leaving Alexander alone. He seems just happy that competitors withdrawn themselves, and no need to compete the air. Following days, going to the beach twice a day, we left someone on air.

Upon returning from the beach we launch a second operating position, using filters and different polarizations (WARC bands).

Propagation on 15m and 17m bands was quite good, and after sunset number of calling stations from W.EU & NA was enough to enjoy the life. But LF vertical was ready and we had to go to 160m. Not very long CQ and top ban log became to be filled up with UA4CR, R3LA, RW3PZ, R3GO, RZ3AM, RW5C, RW3DD, RA3XDX, RN3RQ call signs...

The Beveridge did help a lot, it has been made just a few days prior to departure due to persistence (a constant reminder regarding receiving antenna) of Ken RW3DD, and under the guidance of George RZ3DX, who helped with the quarter-wave transformer and switch box.

Top band did not give us time to be bored, enjoying by good signals of friends calling us, but then I was cunningly deceived by Alexander, who applied a "military" trick and dismissed me from 160 meters, I had to settle on 40m band.

The first evening on 160m was very effective - 360 QSO's, as well as the next on 80m - 570 QSO's. Later we tried to handle statistics by band and equalize the imbalance, unfortunately, due to the propagation it does not always work.

Filters do help in most cases, but sometimes operators were suffering from cross-interference.

On the second day we’ve passed adaptation process, power was restored, equipment was up and running around the clock, almost no pauses on air, even food has been taken in rotation. Once callers disappeared, we changed the band, and continued, helping ourselves by self-spotting. Sorry, but what else could be done? Unfortunately, people in common stopped to twist tuning knob completely and we don’t want to make endless and useless CQ. Antenna (spiderbeam) almost always looked to the north, or bit to east in the morning, and slightly to the west in the evening.

Alexander tried to turn the antenna close to the east, but in most cases it was useless. On the third night (except arrival day) we tuned to 80m band. Beveridge didn’t pose itself as good as on the top band, and vertical has been used as a receiving antenna. But the air was not very noisy, signals were loud enough, so we didn’t experience any difficulties with reception. Alexander was monitoring the neediest areas using spreadsheet prepared by Andrew RZ3EM in advance; stopping European to pull Asian ones.

Tanzania as a DXCC country is most valuable in Asia, Oceania and South America, so direct calls have been made periodically.

After our appearance on 160m emails began to arrive from the US & JA, with requests to concentrate our attention on these areas at certain times.

With varying success it has been done next nights.

Operation on air has been adjusted, beach trips have become routine, but it would be great to get some more from more cultural and tourist programs. Therefore, we had a talk to Eddie and his brother Moha defining priorities and as a result of the negotiations decided to allocate 2 days to  touring. However we had to change our plans on fly because of tropical downpour on Wednesday, which took whole day with short breaks. Some streets in Zanzibar City, our route was going through, turned into turbulent rivers, and we’ve got a feeling of sea cruise instead of a van trip.

We visited a national park, looking at the butterflies, forest monkeys and mangroves. Both days we were leaving after breakfast and came back before sunset.

On Thursday, we went to Stountaun, walking through its streets with a guide, and did boat tour to Prison Island, where a prison was situated in past. At present time the island is used to bred turtles and we took a picture with one of the largest (possibly it will be used for QSL design).

On Wednesday evening, after returning from the tour, we went to 160m band again. Alexander just got a taste, but suddenly electricity was cut off - consequences of strong winds and tropical shower. Evening with good propagation was spoiled totally.

We could not decide on a plan for the weekend, to participate in the contest or not. I do not know whether the right decision been chosen, but we refused to participate, activating of WARC bands, ssb & digi modes.

I’ve almost missed another important life-enhancing factor: we took an "auxiliary" 80Amps power supply with us. After some time it started to discharge when touched, came to the fact that it was easy to get electrical shock even when notebook case been touched in process of QSO logging. Well, it was a great sleep prevention. On return the cause was revealed – leaking capacitor installed especially to get rid om EMI - thanks to Jack RW3FB, we were adultly energized.

When tourist programme was finished we almost did not detract from the air.

But on Saturday evening from 16:00 to 19:00 local (equal to Moscow) we went together on a boat trip - Sunset Cruise.

LF vertical was dismantled on Sunday, 27th of November, in the morning; "Spider" - in the evening, and the remaining HF vertical has been lowered and dismantled on Monday morning, after breakfast, at the end of activation, finishing on 40m and 30m bands.

Transfer to the airport was scheduled for 13:00, before that time it was necessary to roll up and pack everything. Alexander, in the packing process, greatly cheered to see a small, young and helpless scorpion in the aisle between beds. Eddie has been debriefed immediately but only information provided was that's okay, good medicine, one injection and everything will be in order.

We did say goodbye to Eddie, promising to help him with recommendations to future guests, and to come back in another life.

Moha, Eddie’s brother,  drove us to the airport, we said goodbye to him at the entrance.

The airport was reached without any incidents. At the entrance we had to open our bags after screening and show a copy of the license to calm vigilant customs officers.

We handed over our luggage, got tickets and boarding passes. Again - filled forms, passport control and waiting for boarding.

 The flight to Doha took place normally, at the customs an officer took Sergei’s passport with tickets and ran off somewhere. The transceivers were in hand luggage, so we were waiting for the security guy to show him a copy of the license and explain what's what. It was a pity to spend extra money for a paid rest at a lounge, free recumbent seats were occupied already, and we decided to spend time occupying usual seats.

Flight to Moscow departed on time – again A320, monitors embedded to front seats did help to survive 5 hour flight. Passport control, long wait for baggage, our luggage appeared on the conveyor belt to the latest, as if specially for security check (and maybe indeed the case), actually customs control was already waiting for us. The box with masts and fishing rods hasn’t been opened, but the suitcases have been stirred completely. However Russian licenses were  persuasive enough for them, so we didn’t have any problem.

После выхода с контроля, забрал колья и коаксиалы из чемоданов Сергея и Александра, простился с ними. Теперь наши пути снова расходились, мне с Женей в Подмосковье, Александру в Тамбов, а Сергею с Никитой в Ижевск. Так закончилась история 5H1WW.

After we exit customs control I took pins and coaxial cables from Sergey and Alexander’s suitcases, we did shake hands and say goodbye. Now our paths diverged again, me with Eugene - to Moscow, Alexander to Tambov, Sergei and Nikita to Izhevsk.

It was the end of 5H1WW’s adventure.

Some statistics:

11850 qso.

160m-722 qso, 80m-891 qso, 40m- 1180 qso, 30m-1361 qso, 20m-2371 qso,

17m-2724 qso, 15m-2293 qso, 12m- 292 qso, 10m-16 qso.

CW 82,55%, SSB 15,27%, digi 2,19%


Sergey RZ3FW (aka «Yan»)

P.S.  I want to express my gratitude for the cooperation and assistance of our expedition to


P.P.S. Special thanks to the property owner Eddie and his brother Moha, for their hospitality and the full support of our plans and intentions.

Latest plaques


TI9A plaqueUnited Kingdom  To get this Plaque you need to work and confirm all 24 territories of United Kingdom any time any mode.   Vanuatu 2019 plaque

The Plaque "Vanuatu"  The Plaque "Vanuatu". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club 2019.

7Q7RU plaque 2
To get this Plaque you need to work 3 QSO with 7Q7RU from 07th till 19th of November 2020.

R207RRC plaque 2 0190

The Plaque "Chukotka 2020 R207RRC". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club to Kosa Dvukh Pilotov Island IOTA AS-207 New, Arctic.


 E44RU plaque

The Plaque "Palestine 2020 E44RU". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club 2020.

RI0B 2020 Golden plaque

This plaque is still dedicated to the 125-th Anniversary of the expedition on the ship "FRAM" leg Fridtjof Nansen.

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 The Award for QSOs with RI1F pedition EU-190 is the "Victoria" plaque.


ОС 265 Plaque

"Coral see Islands". Work VK5MAV/9 OC-265 on any two bands any mode


RT65KI plaque6 0190

The Plaque "Chukotka 2018 IOTA"

MOZAMBIQUE Plaque1 0190

"MOZAMBIQUE 2018" plaque.  This award is dedicated to the 25-th anniversary of the Russian Robinsone Club.


ALASKA 1 Plaque

The Plaque "ALASKA 2017.The Plaque "ALASKA 2017. Rare Islands on the air". Work VE7ACN peditions to 3 Islands of Alaska in 2017: 

   NOBILE 90 Plaque

The Plaque "NOBILE-90". In connection with the 90-th anniversary of reaching the North Pole by the Umberto Nobile's expedition on the airship and the rescue ....


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The Plaque "MALAWI 2020 7Q7RU". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club 2020. This plaque is issued for contacts with the Russian... Read more
"United Kingdom" (M0OXO awards) Terms and conditions. To get this Plaque you need to work and confirm all 24 territories of United... Read more
RI0B IOTA DXpedition. This plaque is still dedicated to the 125-th Anniversary of the expedition on the ship "FRAM" leg... Read more
The Plaque "Chukotka 2020 R207RRC". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club to Kosa Dvukh Pilotov Island IOTA AS-207 New, Arctic. To get... Read more
The Plaque "Patagonia 2020 XR8RRC". Expedition of Russian Robinson Club to Wellington Island IOTA SA-032,Patagonia, Chile. To get this Plaque... Read more
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