I was now on the downhill run of my 4 days away. My first park for Friday the 6th February, 2015, was the Clinton Conservation Park, which is located about 100 km north of Adelaide, near the town of Port Wakefield.
Map courtesy of mapcarta.com
The Clinton Conservation Park was established in 1972, and is 1,923 hectares in size. It is a boomerang shaped park, which is situated at the northern extremity of Gulf St Vincent. It stretches around the top of the Gulf from just north of Port Wakefield, around to the little town of Port Clinton on the Yorke Peninsula. The park comprises an expanse of mainly low-lying, coastal-fringe habitats, with mangroves and samphire communities, and extensive tracts of intertidal mudflats. It is an important refuge as a fish nursery and a significant site for migratory wading birds.
I found a nice quiet little track off the Yorke Highway, which took me right down to the water’s edge. I set up the fold up table and deck chair and then the linked dipole. This was going to be a quick activation, as the expected temperature today was 38 deg C. It was already approaching the mid 30’s and it was 9.30 a.m. There was no shade at this location, but I was facing the sea, and there was a nice cool breeze coming in off the Gulf.
The area was alive with bird life. Of the feathered variety! There were Pelicans, Silver Gulls, Pacific Gulls, and Sandpipers.
map courtesy of mapcarta.com
I ran the Yaesu FT-857d and 40 watts for this activation. I started off on 40m, where my first contact was with Mick VK3FAFK in Western Victoria. This was followed by Adrian VK5FANA operating QRP 5 watts, and then Jim VK5JW on the Eyre Peninsula. The voice of the Mid North then called in, Nev VK5WG, also operating QRP 5 watts. A few QSOs later, another familiar QRP caller gave me a shout, Greg VK5GJ at Meadows in the Adelaide Hills. I also worked Robin VK5TN who was mobile at the Blue Lake in Mount Gambier.
I did try calling CQ on 14.317 but had no takers. Whilst having a break from my CQ calls I heard a very distinct burst of noise on the 20m band. Initially I thought there was a problem with the antenna, but not so. It was across the entire band. Most likely a flare or CME. The noise settled down after a minute or so.
But it was just getting far too hot out in the sun, so I packed the gear up after getting a total of 13 QSO’s in the log, and headed further south on the Yorke Peninsula to my next park, Wills Creek Conservation Park.
The following stations were worked:-
- Mick VK3FAFK
- Adrian VK5FANA (qrp)
- Jim VK5JW
- Nev VK5WG (qrp)
- Trevor VK5ATQ
- Brian VK5FMID
- Greg VK5GJ (qrp)
- Ron VK3AFW
- Robin VK5TN/m
- Ian VK5IS
- Amanda VK3FQSO
- Tom VK5EE
- Greg VK2MTC
Department for Environment and Heritage, 2009, ‘Mainland Conservation Parks of Yorke Peninsula’.