Sunday, 26 November 2017

WWFF Activation Crace Grassland Nature Reserve VKFF-0838

For the Sunday of the VKFF Activation Weekend I was planning to visit VKFF-0992 Old Naas Travelling Stock Route, however with wet weather forecast later in the day decided to do another closer by park, Crace Grassland Nature Reserve, VKFF-0838.

It is about a 20 minute drive from home. I took Gungahlin Drive, turning off onto Sandford St in Mitchell, then South into Hoskins St until coming to the park gate at the bend in the road.

A close up of the park map on the gate

Not far from the gate was a metal picket spike in the ground, this made a good support for the squid pole, set up the radio shack there. Able to get one dipole leg to a nearby bush and the other to the fence.

Operating location on a map of the park, map courtesy of Openstreetmaps

Radio on the table. Note the blue Aerogard insect repellent, there were lots of flies here...

Got on 40m. First contact a park to park with Rob VK4AAC/p in VKFF-1511 Clear Mountain Conservation Park. Not very strong but readable with the low noise in the park.

Spotted myself on parksnpeaks and got some park hunters. VK4PDX Col, VK7FRJG Rod, VK4TJ John.

Another park to park with Gerard VK2JNG/p in VKFF-0268 Koreelah National Park. Followed this with park to park contacts with Paul VK5PAS/p and Maria VK5FMAZ/p in VKFF-0832 Swan Reach Conservation Park. And another park to park with Mick VK3PMG/p/VK3GGG/p in VKFF-2111 Illawarra Nature Conservation Reserve.

Then some more of the usual park hunters. VK2VW Brett, VK3PF Peter, VK4RF/VK4HA Rick.

After 40 m went quiet decided to try 20m. Lowered the squid pole and changed the links to 20m. I got John, VK4TJ again, a lot easier to copy on 20m as the storm static crashes were not as bad.
I worked Gerard VK2JNG/p again in VKFF-0268 Koreelah National Park. A bit stronger than 40m but lots of QSB.

Didn't seem to be much activity on 20m so returned to 40m. Got VK4NHS/p Neil in VKFF-0198 Girraween National Park. Followed by another park to park with Gerard VK2IO/p in VKFF-1984 Pitt Town Nature Reserve. The NVIS short hop propagation had only just opened up from him to me.

Some more park hunters. VK2YK Adam, VK3ARH Allen, VK1CT Chris in nearby Gungahlin.
VK2PKT Keith in Parkes.

A couple more park to parks. VK5GY/p Gordon in VKFF-0875 Caroona Creek CP, VK3ANL/p Nick in VKFF-2113 Ironbark Road Nature Conservation Reserve.

A hunter contact with VK7JON Jonathon. Then another park to park with VK4SMA/p Mark in VKFF-0121 Crows Nest National Park

At this stage I could see rain approaching over the hill, so quickly packed up. The first few drops were falling as I drove off. Got quite heavy driving home. After getting home it stopped, however glad I had packed up when I did as the rest of the day the rain was on and off.

Total of 25 contacts so another park I'll need to revisit for the 44 needed for WWFF.

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