DX with Kite-Lifted Antenna at the Beach

Judy and I went to the beach today. I launched my antenna with a kite and worked Greenland, Greece and Italy in less than 10 minutes.


It was a remarkable day. In the mid-90s and not a cloud in the sky. We headed to the New Hampshire coast and arrived at Rye Harbor for a picnic lunch. After a walk on the beach, Judy went for a swim, and I went up to the point and launched a parafoil kite.


There was a good breeze and it went up in a jiffy. I had it up about 120 feet. At about mid-point I placed a loop in the line and tied my 33 foot wire to the loop. I had a nice vertical and set up the KX3 right below the wire.


I started on 15 meters and heard Peter OX3XR in Greenland with a strong signal. He returned my call and gave me a 599. He went on to the next station. I was thrilled.


I switched then to 17 meters and quickly worked a special event station SV130PAP in Greece. Again there was a quick exchange of 599 and we signed. Back to 15 meters and I heard IK3VUT in Italy calling CQ. Luca gave me a 559 and I gave him a solid 599.

With that I shut the station down. In barely 10 minutes I had worked three nice DX stations with the kite wire and I was pretty excited. Who could ask for more? Besides I had agreed to meet Judy in a few minutes.

Jim Cluett, W1PID, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Hampshire, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

5 Responses to “DX with Kite-Lifted Antenna at the Beach”

  • Matt W1MST:

    That’s great, Jim! I’ve enjoyed kite aerial photography for years and have often thought of using the kite to hang an antenna. Most people who have only used toy kites have no concept of the amazing lifting power a kite has — even in low winds at ground level. Once aloft they essentially fly themselves and can literally stay aloft staked for many hours.

  • Chuck Heath, K6ZIZ:

    Hello Jim. So, what type of kite is required and what wind speed is needed to do this successfully? Up here on a ridge top, there’s not much open space to do this without entangling a kite string in the surrounding trees. Any advice?

  • Hi guys – thanks for the notes. Chuck, this kite is a parafoil about 2.5 x 3 ft. If you’ve got a steady breeze, you might not have to worry about trees. The beginner’s mistake is to run the wire parallel to the kite string. The kite string will generally be a sloper. You want the wire to drop down from the
    the middle of the kite string… so the wire is vertical. I’m really a beginner.
    The wind where I live is too fickle… so I need to do this at the shore where the wind is steady. This kite flies well if the wind is 6 to 10 MPH. Good luck OM. 73 JIm W1PID

  • Maarten van Damme (PD4M):

    NEVER forget RF choke and earth rod!

  • Jimmie KA5VEM:

    A nicely written article, I even shared it on my Face Book page and have already received one like, Just posted it.

Leave a Comment

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter
News, Opinion, Giveaways & More!

Join over 7,000 subscribers!
We never share your e-mail address.

Also available via RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook.

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on AmateurRadio.com!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: