Saturday 23 March 2019
Saturday was wet and windy in the morning. I had been considering heading out to support the South Australian National and Conservation Parks Awards anniversary weekend. With the rain, I decided to chase for a while from home, working several stations. Late in the morning I checked the weather forecast and the weather RADAR. It looked like the rain would be clear of my intended target Park by time I arrived on site. I packed the required items into the vehicle and headed off at about 1240 local time.
I drove west to Nilma, then north through Neerim South and worked my way up to the Park via New Turkey Spur Road. Federal Road passes through the Reserve, with around 120 metres of the road inside the reserve boundary. I parked close to the lowest point in the road, roughly in the middle of that section of the Reserve.
I managed to toss a line over a branch at around 15 m and soon had the ZS6BKW with the centre at almost 14 m high. The rest of the antenna was strung out and the station assembled on the tray at the rear of the vehicle. The major problem with this operating site is that you are well away from major roads AND in a low gully, so there is no mobile phone coverage. I would need to rely on Hunters to spot me.
I switched on and had a quick hunt around on 40 m SSB. I worked John VK5FLEA.p in VKFF-0790, followed by Andy VK5LA/p in VKFF-0372 and Tony VK5MRT/p in VKFF-1767. I settled on 7.135 and soon had more callers.
Further Park to Park contacts included:
Adam VK2YK/p in VKFF-1410,
Gerard VK2IO/p in VKFF-2784,
Alan VK5AR/p in VKFF-0022,
Peter VK5PET/p in VKFF-1767,
Mike VK6MB/3 in VKFF-0764,
Paul VK5PAS/p in VKFF0791,
Tony VK3XV/5 in VKFF0805,
Hans VK4YX/p in VKFF-0890,
David VK5DG/p in VKFF-0793,
Adrian VK5FANA/p in VKFF-0813,
Andrew VK5MR/p in VKFF-0935,
Angela VK7FAMP/p and Tony VK7LTD/p in VKFF-1147,
Lesley VK5LOL/p in VKFF-0890, and
Jon VK7JON/p and Helen VK7FOLK/p in VKFF-1152.
I also worked Matt VA3OZI/VK2 on VK2/IL-002.
I moved down to 80 m SSB to work a couple of locals plus Steve VK7CW on CW before returning to 40 m for only one more contact. In just over two hours I had managed to make 53 contacts, so the Park was now well qualified.
I packed up and headed back to Neerim South. I decided against a second activation as I was feeling a little weary and tomorrow required an early start, so simply headed for home.
A good fun afternoon of Park radio activity. Thanks to all who worked me during the activation.