Monday, 5 October 2015

SOTA Reactivation Mt Gingera VK1/AC-002

With a public holiday in the ACT and a warm day predicted decided to head for the high mountains to escape the heat, and grab the last of the SOTA winter bonus points. Mt Gingera is up around 1800 m and is typically 7-10 C cooler than Canberra, which was expecting around 30 C, so looked ideal.

The drive up was a bit less than the usual 1.5 hours it has taken me before, the road to Mt Ginini seemed smoother than before, suspect has been graded to allow easier access for fire tankers in the coming bush fire season. Stopped at the Mt Ginini car park and got out the mountain bike for the ride to Priors Hut

The first couple of Km are all downhill, meaning I could coast along, at times getting up to around 20 Km/h, but having to brake to avoid rocky patches. Then I got to the uphill bit, where I got off and walked, I'm not a great mountain bike rider...After half an hour arrived at Priors Hut, which would normally have taken me a good hour or more to walk the 5 Km to.

Locked up the bike here and started walking the 1.4 Km to the turnoff to Mt Gingera, marked by a blue rock on a post

Looking back to the road from the start of the track

The track climbs fairly steeply to a ridge, then winds its way up to the summit. The track goes to the Northern end of Mt Ginini, I saved some walking by cutting up the slope when around 100 m from the top.

Reached the top. The trig had been straightened and now has a hat! As usual the views are magnificent. Looking South towards Ginger Ale and Bimberi Peak

Looking over to South West and the Snowy Mountains. Could see white on some of the higher peaks, last of the winter snow. None on Mt Gingera though.

To get out of the sun set up near a small snow gum, putting up the 2 m Slim Jim and the 40 m dipole.

Looking the other direction towards the summit.

Got on 40 m. Heard Paul VK5PAS activating VI5ANZAC a good S8. Tried calling him, no answer, and not getting any power out!... Checked on 2m FM, able to drop a carrier, so the transmitter was fine, just no audio out... I checked by listening to my signal on the 2 m HT. Looked like the microphone was broken.

So with no other option set out to qualify the summit on the 2 m HT. The FT-60R has an SMA connector, the Slim Jim had a BNC connector for the FT-817 so couldn't even use the slim jim, just the 2 m whip :( Although did have one advantage, an 1800 m high antenna...

I put a spot on SOTAwatch and got Andrew VK1NAM/p on Mt Stromlo. He must have contacted some of the locals as I then got Matt VK1MA with a strong signal, then Tony VK1VIC/P on VK1/AC-038 Mt Tuggeranong. Al VK1RX nice and strong, then Andrew VK2UH at Yass. So with 5 contacts got the required 4 contacts to qualify the activation :)

Thanks guys for helping me out to qualify the summit.

Packed up and headed back to Priors Hut for lunch. Here is the interior.

Rode back to the car, going downhill then walking uphill. On the way startled a couple of wild pigs. These are a pest in the park and are baited and trapped by rangers. They vanished into the scrub.

On the drive home the outside temperature rose from around 23 C to around 32 C in town, a hot day.


  1. Hi Ian,

    Sorry to hear about your dramas with no audio out. Pity I couldn't have got you into my log as VI5ANZAC. But pleased you qualified the summit.

    Nice shot of the wild pigs. They are a big problem here in SA as well. Not where I live, but up north, along with the goats. Its the wild deer that are the issue here in the Adelaide Hills.



  2. Thanks Paul

    At home I played around unplugging the microphone from the radio, and also the cord to the microphone head. Then plugged back in and it worked? Loose connection somewhere. Happy going again.

  3. Hi Ian, I just noticed the vane is on top of the trig pole. The vane was on the ground two weeks ago!
    Glad to read the microphone connection is now okay, it was a pleasure to round up the chasers. :)
    Cheers Andrew VK1NAM

  4. FYI it appears you can no longer ride a bike to Priors Hut anymore, park authorities have a sign at the car park. So need to walk from now on...