SOTA – Tuggeranong Hill VK1/AC-038 and VKFF-0863

Sunday 6 December 2015.  Today’s activation starting at 2230 UTC (9:30 am local) was meant to include a session dedicated to working amateur radio operators on 28.480 MHz (10m) and the chance of working SOTA chasers in Japan and North America.  Whilst the latter didn’t work out, (no DX or even QRM from Indonesians) local VK1 and VK2 amateur radio operators turned out in numbers to boost my 6 & 10m Challenge score to 139 unique callsigns and 25 unique summits for a total of 3475 points.  If you are interested in working a SOTA activators on 28 and 50 MHz, the current SOTA 6 & 10m Challenge concludes at 2359 UTC, 13 February 2016.  For amateurs with the privileges to operate on 6m either 50.150 or 52.2 MHz, please consider expanding your capability by installing a simple 6m dipole, it may be temporary or a permanent fixture.  🙂

A bonus from today’s activation and I must declare here and now as unplanned, is a change to my Summit to Summit (S2S) score from 4951 to 4993 with a further 7 points required to claim the SOTA Summit to Summit 5000 point Platinum Award, I’m almost there!   My personal view is the SOTA Summit to Summit (S2S) awards, Red, Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum are the pinnacle of all SOTA Awards and recognise the extra effort made by activators to make contacts between summits in Australia and overseas.  Activators in VK have been known to extend their time on a summit for the chance to make a S2S contact.  Myself, I have waited an extra hour just to bag a few S2S points 😉

Summit to Summits contacts from today’s activation of Tuggeranong Hill in Australia’s Capital Territory:  Nick VK3ANL/P at Mt Samaria VK3/VE-157, Matt VK1MA/2 at Mt Mundoonen VK2/ST-053, Ian VK1DI/P at Boboyan Range VK1/AC-044 in the Namadgi NP, Paul VK3HN at Mt Saint Philliack VK3/VT-005 and to cap off a terrific morning Glenn VK3YY/P at Mt Vinegar VK3/VC-005.  The S2S contact with Ian VK1DI/P counted as a unique chase on both 6 & 10m while the S2S exchange with Matt VK1MA/2 counted as a unique callsign.  Thanks Ian and Matt.

On 40m 7.095 MHz exchanging signal reports was difficult at times with deep fading (QSB) around the band, I experienced similar conditions on 30m, 10.130 MHz.  😦

The summit of Tuggeranong Hill is within the Tuggeranong Nature Reserve VKFF-0863 and counts towards the VKFF Parks Awards managed by Paul VK5PAS.  I will submit today’s log to Paul in the next day or so.

Photos showing my SOTA station set up on Tuggeranong Hill.  Since my last visit to this peak earlier this year, someone or a team of people have constructed a rock wall on the north side of the trig.  Sitting on the rock wall is far more comfortable than sitting in a field of prickly thistles.  The summit is known by some as Thistle Hill.  😉

VK1AD SOTA shack at Tuggeranong Hill Trig

VK1AD SOTA shack at Tuggeranong Hill Trig

In the back ground dominating the skyline Mt Tennent VK1/AC-025. Left to right - 6m 1/2 vertical elevated at 4m on a DX-Wire squid pole and a HF Link Dipole for 6/10/20/30/40m

In the background Namadgi NP and Mt Tennent VK1/AC-025 dominating the skyline. Left to right – 6m 1/2 vertical elevated at 4 m on a DX-Wire squid pole and a HF Link Dipole for 6/10/20/30/40m

T-shirt covering the FT-857D to reduce the heating effects of direct sunlight on a black case.

T-shirt covering the FT-857D to reduce the heating effects of direct sunlight on a black case.  Temperature at 12:25 local is 32 degrees C.


Tip of the 6m vertical is at 7.5 meters. With sufficient elevation at 855 metres ASL and 200 metres above the surrounding terrain, I chose not to extend the DX-Wire Travel Pole to 9 metres.

7 thoughts on “SOTA – Tuggeranong Hill VK1/AC-038 and VKFF-0863

  1. Hi Andrew

    Listened for you both on 30m and 40m, could hear your chasers and occasionally bits from you, but when Gerard VI2IO gave you a 3 1 ( or there abouts )I knew I was pushing it uphill

    So glad you’re using all your privileges (need to up my act)

    • Hi Phil, a huge struggle yesterday even 14MHz was quiet. No DX on 10m but happily supported by VK1 locals. 🙂
      I am fascinated by the low levels of interest around VK for the 6 & 10m Challenge, as I am sure you and Gerard must be equally frustrated given the amateur radio population in the greater Sydney area. I hope you both have an opportunity to work new callsigns soon. I really am enjoying the full-call privileges, 30m is a dynamic band and when conditions are good contacts to VK6 are possible. I am yet to try out 24.980 MHz that’s another link to install in the SOTA dipole. 🙂 Cheers Phil, thanks for writing.

  2. Andrew, I was looking forward to my first contact with VK1AD but unfortunately I just could not make you out on 7.095, too much noise my end. Cheers Garry VK2GAZ

    • Hi Garry, conditions on HF were as poor as they have been this year, chaser numbers on 10 and 7 MHz were very low. Sorry I missed you yesterday, I will rectify that issue and make a call to you soon. I hope to activate Mt Majura Thursday evening after work, lets hope for good propagation. Grant VK4JAZ/1 may join me for action on CW.

  3. Hi Andrew Good to Get You in Log and pleased the activation went so well
    sleep well
    73 Rod

    • Hi Rod, thanks for the note and good to work you on 50.150 MHz via ground wave. Ian VK1DI activating Boboyan Range and I appreciated the post on vklogger. I received a new call from Dave VK1KV. Cheers Andrew.

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