Yesterday (Sunday 11th January 2015), my wife Marija and I decide we had enough of being indoors doing paperwork, including Marija’s mum’s tax. So we headed out to the Charleston Conservation Park, which is located not far from our home. To get to the park we travelled out via the little town of Nairne, and then just before reaching Woodside, we turned right onto Pfeiffer Road and headed north. This took us passed the Country Fire Service Aircraft Operations Centre. This is where a number of Fixed Wing Air Tractors are based, along with a number of helicopters.
We continued along Pfeiffer Road and then turned into Lewis Road, and then right into Bell Springs Road and headed east. This is a very beautiful part of the Adelaide Hills. The park is a few km up Bell Springs Road on the southern side of the road.
map courtesy of mapcarta.com
I have activated the park twice before. Once back in 2013 and then again in 2014. For information on the park and those activations, please have a look at my previous posts…..
Charleston Conservation Park preserves a pristine remnant representative of the transition between the wetter stringy bark forests on the western side of the Mount Lofty Ranges and the drier mallee woodlands to the east. A large diversity of flora and fauna are represented in the Park including at least seventy-six bird species.
I set up in the same spot as previous activations, which was the south eastern corner of the park off Bell Springs Road. There is a track here which allows enough space to set up the dipole. It is very hard in other parts of the park, because the scrub is so thick.
With the help of Marija we set up the fold up table and deck chair, and the 40m/20m linked dipole, supported on the 7 metre telescopic squid pole.
image courtesy of http://au.geoview.info
I called CQ on 7.095 and this was answered by Greg VK5GJ who was running QRP again, with just 5 watts. Greg was a good 5/8 signal, however he was not as strong as I have heard him previously. I was then called by Roy VK5NRG with a nice strong 5/9 signal, and then Peter VK5KPR at Port Augusta with his normal strong 5/9 signal.
I had just 1 other QRP caller during this activation, and that was Norm VK5GI, who was running his little home brew transceiver and 5 watts. I also spoke with parks stalwart Peter VK3TKK who was mobile. I had one more mobile contact and that was with Bill VK5MBD who was mobile on the Port Wakefield Road, about 5 km north of Dublin. Bill was on his way home to Red Hill in the Mid North, after shopping in Adelaide. I was also called by Giles VK5FFAA who was trying out a new antenna. I explained the VK5 Parks award to Giles, and don’t be surprised if you hear Giles calling CQ from a park soon.
After the callers slowed down on 30m I lowered the squid pole and removed the links in the antenna for 20m. I went to 14.310 and put out about 6 CQ calls with no takers.
So after about 90 minutes in the park, it was time to pack up and head home for a roast and a nice red. I had a total of 24 contacts in the log on 40m ssb from VK2, VK3, VK5, & VK7.
The following stations were worked:-
- Greg VK5GJ (qrp)
- Roy VK5NRG
- Peter VK5KPR
- Arno VK5ZAR
- Stuart VK5STU
- Norm VK5GI (qrp)
- Mick VK3FAFK
- Giles VK5FFAA
- Peter VK3TKK/m
- Richard VK5ZRY
- Tom VK5EE
- Andrew VK2UH
- Paul VK5FUZZ
- Jeff VK5JK
- Les VK5KLV
- Bill VK5MBD/m
- Peter VK5BWH
- Jim VK5TR
- Nev VK5WG
- Peter VK7ALB
- Peter VK5NAQ
- Nigel VK5NIG
- John VK3FPUP
- Bruce VK5BMC
Australian Heritage Places Register, <http://www.heritage.gov.au/cgi-bin/ahpi/record.pl?RNE7606>, viewed 11th January 2015