Our second activation for Sunday (29th March 2015) was the Warrenben Conservation Park, which is located about 260 km by road from Adelaide.
Above: Location of Warrenben CP. Map courtesy of mapcarta.com
This was another park that Marija and I had visited and activated during the 6 month anniversary of the VK5 Parks Award. For information on the park and details of that activation, including a video, please have a look at…..
After leaving Leven Beach we headed south along the Hundred Line Road, and then turned right onto Ilfracombe Road. We set up in the scrub off Ilfracombe Road. This is a very different park to Leven Beach. Warrenben is very dry, rocky and typical mallee scrub. Certainly not as picturesque as the beach setting at Leven Beach.
Above: My operating spot. Map courtesy of mapcarta.com
Warrenben Conservation Park is a large reserve comprising 4,065 hectares, which was gazetted in 1972. Together with nearby Innes National Park, it conserves a substantial proportion of the natural habitat remaining on southern Yorke Peninsula. The park comprises an area of undulating limestone plains and low, stabilised dunes that remain well vegetated with mallee and tea-tree scrub and some sheoak woodlands. It provides habitat for a number of threatened species including the nationally and state vulnerable Annual Candles, state rare Goldsack’s Leek-orchid , and the nationally and state vulnerable Malleefowl and Western Whipbird.
Prior to calling CQ I had a look around the band and found Tony VK3VTH/5 calling CQ on 7.105 from the Flinders Ranges National Park in the Far North of South Australia. Tony had a beautiful 5/9 and was my first contact from Warrenben. I then found the dyamic duo from the South East, Tom VK5EE and Col VK5HCF on 7.100 in the Mary Seymour Conservation Park in the SOuth East. Again, beautiful 5/9 signals all the way to the Yorke Peninsula.
I then headed off to 7.095 and started calling CQ and this was immediately answered by Arno VK5ZAR, followed by Adrian VK5FANA, and then Tony VK5ZAI who was portable in Jip Jip Rocks Conservation Park in the South East. Following my contact with Tony I had another park to park contact, this time with Tom VK5FTRG who was activating the Gower Conservation Park. And then a few contacts later I was called by Andrew VK5KET who was portable in the Calectasia Conservation Park.
I worked a further Richard arrived at the park. Richard had taken a punt that we would set up, on Ilfracombe Road and he was right. After our introductions and a chat, and a look at my portable set up, it was time for Richard to jump into the operating chair and make some contacts. But not before Richard offered to take us to the Point Davenport Conservation Park after our activation here at Warrenben. I jumped at this opportunity after our failed attempt of yesterday.
Whilst Richard was operating he was called by Peter VK5FLEX who at first was a little cryptic, but we eventually got it out of Peter that he was bogged in the Peebinga Conservation Park in the Mallee near the South Australian/Victorian border. This is quite a remote location and Peter had no mobile phone coverage. So for the next 90 minutes I made a number of phone calls on Peter’s behalf, with Richard relaying information back to Peter via the radio. Finally, we secured the assistance of a mate of Peter, to head out to Peebinga and pull Peter out. I am pleased to report that Peter was pulled out of his bog and made it home safely that night. It proved the power of amateur radio when other forms of communication fail.
After we had helped out Peter, Richard continued on working some more stations, and then it was my time to hop back into the operating chair again. I was hoping to get my 44 contacts for the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program, but the day was now getting on. I worked a further 15 stations, including 1 SOTA activator, and four VK5 park to park contacts.
My first contact after jumping back on the mic was with Tony VK3CAT who was on SOTA peak, The Knobs, VK3/ VE-040. My park to park contacts were with David VK5NQP portable in the Brookfield Conservation Park, Gordon VK5GY portable in the Kenneth Stirling Conservation Park, Tim VK3MTB portable in the Little Dip Conservation Park, and Peter VK5FLEX portable in the Peebinga Conservation Park. Peter decided, ‘well why not get a park to park while I’m waiting to get pulled out’.
Unfortunately I did not reach the 44 contacts. But I did get a total of 29 contacts in the log. I will be revisiting Warrenben another day for the remaining 15 contacts to reach the 44.
Off to Point Davenport Conservation Park. I was excited.
The following stations were worked:-
- VK3VTH/5 (Flinders Ranges National Park)
- VK5EE/p (Mary Seymour Conservation Park)
- VK5HCF/p (Mary Seymour Conservation Park)
- VK5ZAI/p (Jip Jip Rocks Conservation Park)
- VK5FTRG/p (Gower Conservation Park)
- VK5KET/p (Calectasia Conservation Park)
- VK3CAT/p (SOTA The Knob)
- VK5NQP/p (Brookfield Conservation Park)
- VK5GY/p (Kenneth Stirling Conservation Park)
- VK3MTB/5 (Little DIp Conservation Park)
- VK5FLEX/p (Peebinga Conservation Park)
The following station was worked on 20m SSB:-
Department for Environment and Heritage, Management Plan Mainland Conservation Parks of Yorke Peninsula 2009