Friday 28 October 2016. During the week I posted a note to the SOTA Reflector seeking interest from fellow SOTA activators in Japan, Greece and Portugal for a Summit to Summit (S2S) QSO from the peak of Mt Stromlo VK1/AC-043 in Canberra, Australia’s Capital Territory.
The effects of a recent coronal hole were lingering yesterday, however later today the K Index had fallen to 1, almost perfect for DX propagation. With a low K Index, I was confident of working DX to Japan and some parts of Europe. Next problem the T Index over VK indicated suppressed conditions -27% for NVIS.
Not one to be deterred or discouraged from operating my radio gear from a low noise environment, I headed to Mt Stromlo as planned for a 0700 UTC activation. I arrived at 06:30 taking 20 minutes to set up two homebrew antennas; a 20m EFHW J-Pole and a 15m 1/2 wave inverted V dipole. My SOTA Dx rig is a Yaesu FT-857D operating at 40 watts powered by a LiFePO4 4S 8.4 Ah battery.
Having set up I checked SOTAWatch to find Japanese SOTA activator JI1IHV/4 was activating JA/YO-113 an unnamed summit in the Honshu region of Japan. At 0655 UTC I posted an alert for 21.260 MHz and called CQ for 10 minutes without a single JA chaser. I moved to 21.190 MHz for JI1IHV, again nothing heard 😦
Okay next try 20m for JA. Started on 20m 14.315 MHz at 07:05 UTC to immediately work 4 ZLs, F1BLL and VK6XN yet after 30 minutes still no JA chasers. At 07:40 UTC I thought of a second shot on 15m 21.190 MHz ‘bazinga’ spot on, I called CQ on 21.190 to hear Jun JI1IHV/4 calling in reply from JA/OY-113. Jun’s signal was 5-5 at Mt Stromlo while my signal was 5-1, fantastic my second JA SOTA Summit to Summit (S2S) in 7 days couldn’t be happier. 🙂
After working Jun, JS6SD called also 5-5 and 5-1. I moved back to 20m this time 14.330 MHz to work European, ZL and JA chasers ON4BB, ZL2ATH, 9A3NM, JL1ELQ, UA5D, DL/G8OFQ, and DG5LAC. See the log extract below.
Thanks Jun for a 2nd JA S2S 😉
Photos: © Copyright 2016 Andrew VK1AD
Photos at Mt Stromlo
30 minutes before sunset
Extract from VK1AD SOTA Activator Log: 28 October 2016 – Mt Stromlo VK1/AC-043
|07:07z||ZL1BAT||14MHz||SSB||Ian S59 R45|
|07:11z||ZL2AJ||14MHz||SSB||Warren S53 R53|
|07:12z||ZL1BYZ||14MHz||SSB||John S59 R59|
|07:14z||ZL1TZW||14MHz||SSB||Jacky S59 R59|
|07:44z||JI1IHV/4||21MHz||SSB||Jun S2S JA/OY-113 S55 R51|
|07:55z||ON4BB||14MHz||SSB||Luk S59 R55|
|08:11z||ZL2ATH||14MHz||SSB||Wynne S59 R52|
|08:12z||9A3NM||14MHz||SSB||Sasa S58 R55|
|08:18z||JL1ELQ||14MHz||SSB||Kazuhiko S59 R59|
|08:21z||UA5D||14MHz||SSB||Igor S58 R56|
|08:23z||DL/G8OFQ||14MHz||SSB||Geoff S58 R58|
|08:25z||DG5LAC||14MHz||SSB||Mike S59 R51|