Sunday, 26 June 2022

Justice Robert Hope Park VKFF-3181

With a sunny Sunday afternoon decided to activate a newly published Nature Reserve, Justice Robert Hope Park, VKFF-3181. This park is in Watson and an easy 15 minute drive from home. Drove through Dickson, Watson, down Antill St and spotted an entry point into the park. A side gate allowing access.

Map and some information on the park

I could see a star picket nearby so used this as squid pole support. As only a short walk was able to bring my table and chair into the park for a bit of comfort operating.

Looking back the other way towards the gate and Antill St.


Shack on the table.


Got on 40m. Started with a park to park contact with VK2PCT Paul on VKFF-2018 Wianamatta Nature Reserve on 7.144

Also worked VK1DA Andrew activating SOTA summit VK2/IL-005 Mount Alexandra on 7.164

I got called by VK1ACE, Rod who asked me to move up to 7.169. Worked him, then VK3SQ, VK5MAZ and VK5PAS. While working them some strong digital interference started up. I found out what it was when next called by the owner of the signal, VK1TTY/3 Tim, who was operating SSTV on 7.170 Mhz. We were both wiping each other out with strong signals... Moved down to 7.160 after spotting myself. As per Jaramlee Nature Reserve the park was not on ParksnPeaks, so used another VK1 park and added the real park number to the comments.

Worked another park to park there from VK3DL Dean in VKFF-0757 Enfield State Park, just finishing up on the frequency. Then

VK2DHN, VK4NH, VK4DXA, VK5LA,VK2IO, VK2EXA, VK3VIN,VK2VAR, VK2MI, VK3PF, VK2PKT, VK2MET, VK3GJG, VK3ANL

Another park to park with VK1RF/4 Jim in VKFF-1669 Vernon Conservation Park

VK4HAT, VK5FANA, VK5DW, VK3APJ, VK1CT, VK4EMP, VK4SMA, VK3NRB, VK3MAP, VK4TJ.

Briefly tried 20m, but no hunters there.

As getting cold and the sun setting packed up and headed home.



Saturday, 18 June 2022

Jarramlee Grassland Nature Reserve VKFF-3180

Five new WWFF parks were added recently to VK1. With a nice sunny Saturday decided to activate one of the close by ones, Jarramlee Grassland Nature Reserve, VKFF-3180


The park is located at the back of the Canberra suburb of Macgregor, on the North Western edge of the Australian Capital Territoty. Drove to Macgregor and parked in the suburb on Hugh-McKay Cres. Running off this a road leading to a locked gate.


Walked past the gate and along the road. This is part of the Bicentenial Trail, a horse riding track. The road runs to Jarramlee farm, about a Km away. Road to the farm


Reached the NSW/ACT border, and the entrance to Jarramlee property, a cattle farm. Sign for the farm, private property.


The Bicentenial trail heads right here on the border. To the left a gate and entrance to Jarramlee Grassland Nature Reserve. 


Headed into the reserve, and to a collection of fallen dead trees on the left. Found one suitable for squid pole support and an operating seat.


Operating spot. Map from Openstreetmap.org


Looking back the other way, towards the NSW border.


Shack on the fallen tree. Note the nearby power lines, they generated about an S6 of noise...


Got on 40m. Started with a park to park contact with VK2HBG/p Gerald in VKFF-1924 Dharawal Nature Reserve. A good strong S9 signal.

Spotted myself on 7.144, a bit tricky as the park is not yet listed in VK-Port-a-log. I just picked an existing VK1 park and added the park number in the comment field. 

A bit of a pileup followed. Worked VK3SQ, VK2BYF, VK2IO. 

Another Park to park with VK3OAK/p Malcolm in  VKFF-2233 Winter Swamp Nature Conservation Reserve

VK3PF, VK2CDB, VK2VH, VK4AAC, VK2EXA, VK2PKT, VK4KC, VK4MAD, VK4DOG, VK4HNS, VK3VIN, VK2MET, VK2MZ, VK3UH, VK5PAS/mobile VK2, VK4NH, VK4DXA, VK2XIC, VK4HMI, VK2MOE.

After contacts dried up on 40m went to 20m. One call from VK4CJM, then no one else.

Packed up and headed home for lunch.







Thursday, 9 June 2022

75 US Grid Squares on 30m Award

 Another award from the 30m Digital Group, for working 75 US Grid Squares on 30m.



Monday, 30 May 2022

Worked 800 US callsigns award

Another award from the FT8 Digital Mode Club for contacting 800 US callsigns. Most of these would have been on 10m recently. Nice award.




Sunday, 29 May 2022

SIOTA - Greenway Silo VK-GRY1

Noticed recently a new silo added to Silos On The Air, located in the ACT. This is the only silo listed in VK1. Decided to check it out and activate it.

The silo is located next to Pine Island homestead in Greenway, a suburb next to Tuggeranong. Drove to Pine Island picnic area and walked along the National Bicentenial Trail, to find the silo. View looking over the fence to the silo, the homestead and silo are on private property.


A view of the silo a bit down the hill from the property.


At the bottom of the hill a sign regarding the history of the property.


Continued into Pine Island picnic area. Note the warnings about the gate being closed after 6pm, so not a spot to go late in the day...


I drove around to the picnic areas. Some tables that would have done to operate from, however they were not suitable for strapping a squid pole to. I should try to remember to take a stake I have for supporting the pole when nothing available... There was also a rather large noisy children's birthday party in progress... Decided to just set up against a fence and sit on the tarp. Operating spot, from Google Maps. Shaded area is the 1 Km activation zone.


Squid pole and antenna tied to an old fence in the reserve.


Shack on the tarp. The sun was nice as a chilly day, only around 13c... A cool wind blowing too.



Got on 40m. Band was quite good with strong signals both close by and far away. Spotted on 7.090 and called. Worked

VK1MA, VK5PAS, VK3GJG, VK5MAZ, VK1AAF, VK3OHM

A park contact with VK3OAK Mal in VKFF-2154 Mount Mercer Nature Conservation Reserve

VK2IO, VK3CAT, VK5BJF, VK5LA.

A Silo to Silo contact with VK2VH, VK4AAC Rob at VK-MRN2 Merrywinebone silo.

Getting cold as I lost the sun, packed up and headed home.


 

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Worked 1075 parks award

 The latest VKFF Honour Roll Award for me, for working 1075 parks.



Dunlop Grasslands Nature Reserve VKFF-0839

With a nice sunny Sunday afternoon decided to do a park activation. I visited Dunlop Grasslands Nature Reserve VKFF-0839 a few years ago and thought it would be good for a repeat visit for the Boomerang award. For something different I entered it at a different point, from the end of Douglas Waterhouse Drive in Dunlop. After a short walk reached the sign for the park.



Next to the sign an entry point for horses. This is part of the Bicentennial National Trail, a horse riding track.


Followed the trail for a while in the park.


Stopped by a fence that provided squid pole support. Strung out the dipole, using a fence and nearby tree branch for support


Looking back the other direction


Set up the radio in the shelter of a nearby tree, to get out of the wind...


Got on 40m. There was a spot for VK1MIC/p Wade on SOTA summit VK2/IL-001 Mount Gibraltar, so worked him first. Then spotted myself on 7.144 and called. Several hunters called me.

VK4HMI
VK2IO
VK3FIMD
VK3PF
VK2FJG
VK2MET
VK4SMA
VK2VW, VK2HFI
VK3GJG
VK5AYL
VK1CT
VK5FANA
VK2DJP
VK2YK, VK5GA
VK2OKR
VK3ZPF
VK2PKT
VK2EXA

After callers dried up switched to 20m. As mid afternoon expected Europe to start coming in, which is what happened, an EU pileup... Some familiar calls from regular WWFF EU hunters.

EA3AGQ
VK2YK, VK5GA
VK6NU
OH1XT
VK4CZ
F1BLL
OH1MM
IW2BNA
IW2NXI
HA0ML
EA5UJ

After callers stopped tuned around and found an old mate of mine, VK5MRD Dave calling CQ, so gave him a call. He was very strong. He was also popular with EU callers.

As the sun was getting low packed up and headed home.