Tuggeranong Hill VK1/AC-038 855 metres ASL, Canberra Nature Park 1 April 2014
Left work at 16:30 for a 30 minute drive to the base of Tuggeranong Hill, followed by a 25 minute walk to the summit. The ascent is an easy climb, 171 metres over 1.5 km. Plan is to start the activation at 07:00 UTC (18:00 local) on 14.310 USB for 45 minutes then 15 minutes on 40m for VK SOTA chasers. Sunset is 0800 UTC or 19:00 local.
Equipment: Rig Yaesu FT-857D, battery 4S 4.2 Ah LiFePO4, antenna 10/20/40 link dipole supported by a 7 metre squid pole. HT Yaesu dual band FT-60. FT857D power setting: 14MHz 40 watts and 7 MHz 5 watts.
Arrived at the summit Trig at 17:30 and spent 15 minutes setting up the SOTA station. The green stuff on the ground is weeds with a prickly spike on the leaf edge. To avoid the spikes I sat on a rock, not very comfortable. 🙂
Good news no interference (QRM) from the commercial and TV transmission tower
Set the antenna broadside to the south-west for long path to Europe and north-east towards North America.
Started the activation at 06:45 UTC on 14.310 MHz, first SOTA chaser was Mike G6TUH in Sussex followed by John VK6NU in Western Australia, Daniel NA6MG in California, and Colin G4UXH in the Lake District. Continued to work 20m for 21 more chasers from England, Germany, Italy, Hungary, France, Spain, Finland, Switzerland and Florida USA. Had to move away from 14.310 to 14.315 due to QRM from two German stations on 14.307. VK chasers on 20m were Ian VK5CZ, Paul VK2KTT, Peter VK6RZ, and Greg VK8GM.
At 07:11 UTC Bernard F9IE from Noirmoutier Island off the Atlantic coast of France, checked in with a cracking good signal 5-9, my signal was 5-6. Noirmoutier Island is IOTA EU-064, long path is 22,700 km.
At 07:30 UTC Paul CS8ABA from Horta Azores on Faial Island in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean, IOTA EU-175 also had an excellent signal 5-9, my signal was 5-5. Long path is 20,400 km.
Changed to 40m 7.115 MHz at 07:40 logging 10 VK chasers. QRP chasers were Peter VK3PF, Peter VK3FPSR, John VK3FCAN and Steve VK3FADU. Extract of the SOTA log is below.
Thanks SOTA chasers, 9 countries and two Island on the Air (IOTA) contacts, a perfect evening on a hill-top with an awesome sunset.
Eastern Grey Kangaroos congregate around the summit at dusk
Extract of SOTA log: 1 April 2014