Kinchina Conservation Park 5CP-277 and VKFF-1764

Yesterday (Friday 26th January 2018) was Australia Day, which is the official National Day of Australia.  It is celebrated annually on the 26th January and marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ships at Port Jackson, New South Wales and the raising of the Flag of Great Britain at Sydney Cove by Governor Arthur Phillip.

And each Australia Day, amateur radio operators in Australia are permitted to replace the VK prefix with the AX prefix.  Down here in Australia we can only do this three times a year: for Australia Day in January, ANZAC Day in April, and World Telecommunications Day in May.  So it is a relatively rare event.  

AX5PAS.jpg

Above:- My special AX5PAS QSL card for Australia Day

I was on Afternoon Shift on Thursday evening and had also been recalled during the wee hours of the morning, so my intended early start on Friday morning did not eventuate.  I had to work afternoon shift again on Friday, so I decided to head out to a local park to operate as AX5PAS for a few hours before heading off to work.  I chose the Kinchina Conservation Park 5CP-277 & VKFF-1764 which is about 40 km east of my home, and about 40 km east of Adelaide.

Screen Shot 2018-01-27 at 10.11.57 am.png

Above:- Map showing the location of the Kinchina Conservation Park.  Image courtesy of Location SA Map Viewer.

I have activated Kinchina on two previous occasions, and have qualified the park for the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program.  Details on those activations and full information and history of the park can be found by clicking on the following links…..

https://vk5pas.org/2017/03/25/kinchina-conservation-park-5cp-277-and-vkff-1764/

https://vk5pas.org/2016/11/03/kinchina-conservation-park-vkff-1764/

Kinchina Conservation Park is a relative ‘new’ park.  It was only gazetted in September 2016.  Kinchina is quite large, being 414 hectares in size.  The park protects grassy woodland communities considered of high conservation significance.  The park was named for the rail siding where local Monarto Granite was loaded to be sent to Adelaide by Jessie and Charles Duncan from 1879.  This granite was used in many buildings including Colonel Light’s statue, St Peters Cathedral stepgs, Electra House on King William Street and for kerbing in Adelaide’s central business district.

It was quite a warm morning, around the high 20’s, but it was also wet.  There were consistent light showers, making conditions very humid.  I set up under the shade of some gum trees in the western section of the park.

Screen Shot 2018-01-27 at 10.11.42 am.png

Above:- Map showing my operating spot in the Kinchina Conservation Park.  Image courtesy of Location SA Map Viewer.

I kicked off the activation by calling CQ on 7.144.  This was answered by Matt VK1MA in Canberra, who had a good strong 5/8 signal.  This was followed by Gerard AX2IO/p who was in the Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve VKFF-1921.  Gerard kindly spotted me on parksnpeaks.  Thanks Gerard.

Band conditions were very depressed and signals were well down compared to usual.  I logged a total of 24 stations on 40m from VK1, VK2, VK3, VK4, VK5, and VK7.  This included another two Park to Park contacts.  The first being with Mark VK4SMA/p in the D’Aguilar National Park  VKFF-0129, and then Giles VK5GK/p in the Flinders Ranges National Park VKFF-0176.  Giles was actually on his honeymoon.  He obviously had a very understanding wife.

IMG_1001

I then moved to the 20m band where I found Rob VK4AAC/p on 14.310, calling CQ from the Tallaganda National Park VKFF-0474, with a nice 5/7 signal.  After logging Rob I moved up the band to 14.315 and self spotted on parksnpeaks and started calling CQ.  I logged a total of 9 stations from VK1, VK2, VK3, VK4, and VK7.  This included two more Park to Park contacts, with Mark VK4SMA/p in the D’Aguilar National Park  VKFF-0129, and Gerard VK2JNG/p in the Guy Fawkes River National Park VKFF-0224.

I was set up very close to the main Adelaide-Melbourne railway corridor, and a few times during the activation I needed to take a break as the noisy freight trains passed by me.

IMG_1007

I also had to deploy the bothy bag on a few occasions to protect both myself and the radio gear from the showers.  It was a warm and humid day and it was particularly muggy under the bothy bag.

IMG_1009

I then moved to the 80m band hoping to log a few of the locals, as it was clear the 40m band and 20m band were not going to be fruitful for VK5 contacts.  My first contact on 80m was with my wife Marija VK5FMAZ/AX5FMAZ, followed by Adrian VK5FANA on the Yorke Peninsula, and then Allen VK3ARH in western Victoria.  But sadly they were my only callers on that band, so I headed back to 40m where I logged another Park to Park contact, this time with Peter AX3PF/p who was in the Churchill National Park VKFF-0621.

I then moved up to 7.150 where I spoke with Brett AX3FLCS/p who was activating the Taradale Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2205.  But band conditions were still quite poor, and I logged just 3 more stations.  I then tuned across the 40m band and found Sam VK2GPL/p calling CQ on 7.090 from SOTA peak Mount Trickett VK2/ CT-002.

To complete the activation I put out a few CQ calls on 21.244 and logged three stations: Mike VK6MB/p in Western Australia, John VK4TJ in Queensland, and Con VK7HCK in Tasmania.

I packed up and headed back home for a quick shower and then off to work.  I had a total of 48 contacts in the log including 8 Park to Park QSOs.

Fortunately my only scaly friend for the activation was a Shingleback Lizard.

IMG_1013

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:

  1. VK1MA
  2. AX2IO/p (Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve VKFF-1921)
  3. VK3YSA
  4. VK3KMH
  5. VK5FMAZ
  6. AX5FMAZ
  7. VK2YW
  8. VK3PF/p
  9. AX3ZPF
  10. VK4NH/2
  11. AX4DXA/2
  12. ZL4TY/VK2
  13. AX3ANL
  14. VK3ANL
  15. VK3GGG
  16. VK3PMG
  17. VK4SMA/p (D’Aguilar National Park  VKFF-0129)
  18. VK4CPS
  19. AX3FMKE
  20. AX5GK/p (Flinders Ranges National Park VKFF-0176)
  21. AX3FMMB
  22. AX3MRG/p
  23. VK5KLV
  24. AX7FOLK
  25. VK3VEK
  26. AX3PF/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  27. AX3FLCS/ p (Taradale Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2205)
  28. VK7AP
  29. VK3FPSR
  30. VK2PKT
  31. AX2GPL/p (SOTA Mount Trickett VK2/ CT-002)

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. AX4AAC/p (Tallaganda National Park VKFF-0474)
  2. VK6MB/p
  3. VK2VW
  4. VK2VK
  5. VK1AT
  6. VK2NP
  7. AX3ZPF
  8. VK4SMA/p (D’Aguilar National Park  VKFF-0129)
  9. AX3MRG/p
  10. VK2JNG/p (Guy Fawkes River National Park VKFF-0224)

I worked the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK5FMAZ
  2. AX5FMAZ
  3. AX5FANA
  4. VK3ARH

I worked the following stations on 15m SSB:-

  1. VK6MB/p
  2. VK4TJ
  3. VK7HCK

 

References.

National Parks South Australia, 2018, <https://www.environment.sa.gov.au/parks/find-a-park/Browse_by_region/Murray_River/kinchina-conservation-park>, viewed 27th January 2018

Top 44 Activator (QSOs) certificate

Each year the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program issues certificates to activators who have made it into the Top 44, with respect to the number of QSOs made during activations.

In 2017 I came in at position number 27 with a total of 7,037 QSOs from 102 different references.  That works out to around 69 contacts per activation.

I am a long long way from the top.  The Top Activator (QSOs) was SP5UUD in Poland with an amazing 61,105 QSOs from 505 activations.  That equates to around 121 QSOs per activation.

Other VK’s to get into the Top 100 were Bill VK4FW with 3,387 QSOs during 15 activations.  That equates to a very impressive 226 QSOs per activation.  Gerard VK2JNG made 3,127 QSOs from 99 activations (about 31 QSOs per activation).  Gerard VK2IO made 3,002 QSOs during 57 activations (about 53 QSOs per activation).

Thankyou to everyone who called me during my 2017 activations and thankyou to the Awards Manager, YO3JW for the certificate.

VK5PAS TOP 44 2017 QSO.jpg

2017 VKFF Photographic Competition

I have finalised the results for the 2017 VKFF Photographic Competition.

There were a total of 31 entries. Thankyou to everyone who submitted photos (VK3FLCS, VK3GGG, VK3PF, VK3ZPF, VK4HNS, VK4JAZ, VK4SMA, VK4SOE, VK5FMAZ, VK5PAS, VK7JON).

A total of 17 amateurs took the time to cast their vote/s. It is a shame that more did not take part.

1st place – SHARED by Neil VK4HNS & Paul VK5PAS (will share a $50.00 voucher from Jaycar and also receive a winners certificate)

 

VK5PAS 2017 VKFF Photographic competition 1st place.png

2nd place – SHARED by Grant VK4JAZ, Marija VK5FMAZ & Paul VK5PAS (will each receive a certificate).

 

VK5PAS 2017 VKFF Photographic Competition Second place.png

3rd place – SHARED by Jonathan VK7JON, Peter VK3ZPF, Peter VK3PF, & Paul VK5PAS (will each receive a certificate).

 

VK5PAS 2017 VKFF Photographic competition third place (2).png

VK5PAS 2017 VKFF Photographic Competition Third Place.png

More info, including photos, etc, can be found on the WWFF Australia website at…..

https://www.wwffaustralia.com/2017.html

Again, thanks to everyone who took part.

And a BIG THANKS to JAYCAR, who again sponsored the event.

Keith Roget Activator certificate

In the past couple of days I received in the mail my latest certificate for the Keith Roget Memorial National Parks Award (KRMNPA), which is the VK3 National Parks Award.  It is issued for having activated a total of 25 different Victorian National Parks.

Many thanks to Tony VK3XV the KRMNPA Awards Manager, and thanks to everyone who has called me during those activations.

VK5PAS KRMNPA 25 activated.jpg

Top VKFF Activator certificate

Each year the VKFF program issues certificates to the Top VKFF Hunter and the Top VKFF Activator.

This year the Top VKFF Hunter with a total of 548 different VKFF references during 2017 was Peter VK3PF.  An amazing effort.  Coming in at 2nd place was Gerard VK2IO with 547 different VKFF references, just 1 behind Peter.

The Top VKFF Activator turned out to be myself with 102 different VKFF references activated during 2017.  This was very closely followed by Gerard VK2JNG with 99 different VKFF references activated.  Gerard has certainly taken to park activating.

VK5PAS Top Activator 2017

More info on the Top Operators can be found on the wwff website at…..

http://wwff.co/logsearch/top-operators/

And also the WWFF Australia website at……

https://www.wwffaustralia.com/top-vkff-hunter.html

https://www.wwffaustralia.com/top-vkff-activator.html

Thankyou to everyone who took part in the VKFF program during 2017.