SOTA – 22 Oct 16 VK/ZL EU Summit to Summit Party

Saturday evening 22 October 2016.  SOTA activators in Australia, Japan, New Zealand and countries across Europe have made their way to local and distant summits for the opportunity to work SOTA Dx, Summit to Summit (S2S) from 0630 to 0830 UTC,   0830 UTC being sunset on the east coast of Australia.  Radio amateurs in Australia and Europe are hoping for good ‘long path’ propagation (24,000 km) to equally enthusiastic SOTA activators in the opposite hemisphere.   🙂

My local weather forecast is looking a little dodgy with the forecast of thunderstorms and wind gusts up to 50 km/h.  😦        I didn’t want to risk being caught out on a distant high altitude peak so I chose my local summit, Mt Taylor VK1/AC-037 also a VKFF Park reference Mt Taylor Nature Reserve.

VK1AD SOTA station equipment:

  • Yaesu FT-857D
  • LiFePO4 4S 8.4 Ah battery
  • 20m 1/2 wave wire J-Pole
  • Linked inverted V dipole
  • Antenna switch
  • Watts Up meter
  • Headphone
  • Paper Logbook
  • Katun backpack

Photos: © Copyright 2016 Andrew VK1AD

Winds on the mountain peak are calm permitting an easy set up

left 20m, coax stub 1/2 wave single element wire J-Pole

Left 20m coax (RG58AU) stub 1/2 wave single element wire J-Pole antenna. Right linked inverted V dipole for 6/10/20/30/40m.   The antenna switch is to the right of the FT-857D.

Storm clouds moving in

view north-east Canberra city

view north Canberra city, in the center Black Mountain Tower and Mt Ainslie and Mt Majura to the north-east

Storm front – winds gusting 50 km at the front of the storm

Wind gusts up to 50 km/h buffering the 10m telescopic pole. I am pleased to report the pole didn't snap

Wind gusts up to 50 km/h buffering the 10m telescopic pole. I’m pleased to report the pole didn’t snap.  😉

VK1AD SOTA radio shack

VK1AD SOTA Shack at Mt Taylor Canberra, Australia's Capital Territory

VK1AD SOTA Shack at Mt Taylor Canberra, Australia’s Capital Territory

If you haven’t experienced the pleasure of operating portable in a low noise floor environment, I recommend you try SOTA or a WWFF Park activation.  IMHO the results shown in the log extract below speak for themselves.  Seriously, try operating portable as a SOTA station, get out of the radio shack and live life to the fullest.   🙂

Summit to Summit (S2S) QSOs include: John VK6NU, Rob VK1QR, Peter OE5AUL, Herbert OE9HRV, Christos SV2OXP, Takeshi JS1UEH, Al VK1RX, VK8GM Greg, Martin OE5REO, Franz DL/OE7FMJ, Gerard VK2IO and Andrew VK3ARR.

On this occasion propagation favoured the 20m J-Pole, all Dx 20m QSOs were made using the vertical antenna.  On Rx the J-Pole had 2 S-Points over the 20m inverted V.

Special thanks to Christos and Takeshi for my first SV and JA summit to summit QSOs   🙂

Extract from VK1AD SOTA Activator Log:  22 October 2016 – Mt Taylor VK1/AC-037

Time Call Band Mode Notes
06:10z VK6NU/P 14MHz SSB John S2S VK6/SW-043 S58 R55
06:11z VK5CZ 14MHz SSB Ian S59 R57
06:13z VK1MA 14MHz SSB Matt S59 R59
06:18z VK2QR/P 14MHz SSB Rob S2S VK2/SW-021 S55 R51
06:21z 9A7W 14MHz SSB S59 R57
06:24z 9A3NM 14MHz SSB S59 R58
06:25z VK6MB 14MHz SSB Mike S57 R57
06:25z VK5IS 14MHz SSB Ian S59 R55
06:35z OE5AUL/P 14MHz SSB Peter S2S OE/OO-330 S52 R43
06:38z OE9HRV/P 14MHz SSB Herbert S2S OE/VB-509 S59 R44
06:42z SV2OXS/P 14MHz SSB Christos S2S SV/MC-077 S55 R44
06:44z ZL2ATH 14MHz SSB S56 R58
06:47z F1BLL 14MHz SSB S59 R59
06:53z JS1UEH/1 14MHz SSB Takeshi S2S JA/IB-001 S55 R55
07:04z VK1RX/P 14MHz SSB Al S2S VK1/AC-037 S59 R59
07:10z ZL4IG 14MHz SSB Robin S55 R55
07:23z VK8GM/P 14MHz SSB Greg S2S VK8/AL-001 S58 R58
07:34z OE5REO/P 14MHz SSB Martin S2S OE/OO-084 S52 R31
07:51z DL/OE7FMJ/P 14MHz SSB Franz S2S DL/KW-008 S55 R52
07:56z VK2IO/P 14MHz SSB Gerard S2S VK2/SY-002 S55 R56
08:00z VK3PMG 7MHz SSB Mick S59 R59
08:00z VK3GGG 7MHz SSB Mick S59 R59
08:00z VK3CAT 7MHz SSB Tony S59 R59
08:00z VK5FANA 7MHz SSB Adrian S59 R59
08:01z VK3LED 7MHz SSB Col S59 R59
08:02z VK5WG 7MHz SSB Nev S59 R59
08:02z VK3PF 7MHz SSB Peter S59 R59
08:02z VK3HN 7MHz SSB Paul S59 R59
08:04z VK7DW 7MHz SSB S59 R59
08:04z VK3ARR/P 7MHz SSB Andrew S2S VK3/VC-032 S59 R59
08:07z VK2GPT 7MHz SSB Glenn S59 R59
08:08z VK2LDN 7MHz SSB Glenn S59 R59
08:08z VK3FSPG 7MHz SSB Steve S59 R59

I would like to acknowledge the efforts of SOTA chasers in Australia, New Zealand, France and Croatia, thanks everyone for a fun evening on Mt Taylor.  Look out for a repeat SOTA S2S event in late March 2017.

P.S.  I am yet to work North America S2S, 3 years and 10 months of SOTA in VK1 and still no S2S with an enthusiastic SOTA activator in ‘W’ land.

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