After leaving the SERG clubrooms, I decided to head out to the nearby Telford Scrub Conservation Park VKFF-0805 and 5CP-226. I had activated this park previously for both the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program and the VK5 National and Conservation Parks Award, but the VK Shires Contest was on. So although it wasn’t going to be a new park for me, I had hoped for an hour or so of fun in the VK Shires.
Above:- Map showing the location of the Telford Scrub Conservation Park. Map courtesy of Location SA Map Viewer.
Telford Scrub is located just 14 km north of Mount Gambier, just off the Riddoch Highway. The park is 175 hectares in size and contains 11 species of plants that are considered to be of conservation value. Over 20 species of native orchids can be found in the park including pink fingers, common donkey orchid, tiger orchid, and purple cockatoo. The park contains a 100 metre long and 4.2 metre high boardwalk which provides a birds eye view of the forest.
I set up in a little clearing in the scrub adjacent to the carpark on Grundys Lane. I ran the Yaesu FT-857d, set at 30 watts, and the 40m/20m linked dipole supported by the 7m telescopic squid pole.
Above:- Aerial view of the Telford Scub Conservation Park, showing my operating spot on the southern boundary. Image courtesy of Location SA Map Viewer.
Prior to calling CQ I had a listen around the 40m band which was quite busy with VK Shires Contest stations. My first contact was with Norman VK6NJW. I then found Gerard VK2IO who was activating the Sea Acres National Park VKFF-0606. I then propped on 7.095 and called CQ Contest and CQ Parks. First taker there was Paul VK2HV, followed by Shaun VK3VH. Sadly after working just 10 stations I was pushed off the frequency by a station who decided to come up on 7.093. I just could not compete with his high power signal, so I moved to 7.105 and called CQ again. This was answered by Hauke VK1HW, followed by Nev VK5WG and then Rhett VK3WE. I worked a further 25 stations from VK2, VK3, VK4 VK6, VK7, and New Zealand. The ZL callers were Roly ZL4AU in Ivercargill, Bill ZL2AYZ in Blenheim, and Mike ZL4OL in Waitati. I also managed to work Stef VK5HSX/4 who was portable in Blackdown Tableland National Park VKFF-0037.
When things slowed down a little I had a further look around the band and logged a few more contest stations and then put out some final CQ calls on 7.130. To finish off the evening I headed to 80m where I logged 5 stations from VK3, VK6, VK7, and New Zealand.
I finished up with a total of 54 contacts for the activation in around 90 minutes. It was absolutely freezing and it was time to head back to the warmth of the hotel, a hot shower and a relaxing night watching the footy on TV.
The following stations were worked on 40m SSB:-
- VK2IO/p (VKFF-0606)
- VK5HSX/4 (VKFF-0037)
The following stations were worked on 80m SSB:-
Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Telford Scrub Conservation Park brochure, 2010