Bandon Conservation Park 5CP-263 and VKFF-0999

My third and final planned park activation for the day was the Bandon Conservation Park 5CP-263 & VKFF-099  which is located about 16 km east of the town of Copeville and about 130 km east of the city of Adelaide. 

Screen Shot 2018-04-03 at 11.51.28 am.png

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

The park is about 700 hectares in size and was proclaimed on the 22nd August 2013.  It is named after the The Hundred of Bandon in which it is located.  The Hundred of Bandon was named after the birthplace in Ireland of Sir George Strickland Kingston (1807-1880), engineer and politician who emigrated to Australia in the 1830’s.


Above:- Sir George Strickland Kingston.  Image courtesy of wikipedia.

The park comprises of typical mallee country and is surrounded by cleared land for farming.

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Above:- Aerial shot showing the Bandon Conservation Park and the surrounding countryside.  Image courtesy of google maps

I found the mallee vegetation in Bandon to be a little lower in height compared to Ettrick and Lowan.  The soil here was very sandy, which made it a lot easier for me to drive the squid pole holder into the ground.

The park is a little piece of remnant mallee in the area which otherwise has been cleared for farming.  The photo below shows the park boundary, with the scrub to the right, and the stark contrast of the cleared cropping land to the left.


It was still pretty warm so most of the birds in the park were no doubt seeking the shade.  But I did spot these Crested Pigeons.


To get to the park from Lowan I travelled east on Gribble Bore Road onto Rosenzweig Road and then turned left onto Perponda Road.  I stopped briefly in Perponda.  Don’t blink as you will miss Perponda, which consists of just a house or two and an old hall.  Perponda was proclaimed on 1st May 1919, and is a corruption of the Aboriginal word  ‘peraparna’ meaning  ‘rain water’.  There is a small memorial plaque here for the Perponda School which opened in 1924 and closed in 1942.

My next brief stop was a little further up the road at Kalyan, which was proclaimed on the 10th August 1933.  Kalyan is anAboriginal word meaning ‘you stop here’.  The Kalyan School opened in 1922 and closed in 1952.  There is a small memorial plaque here for the old school.

As it was a warm day there were quite a few Sleepy Lizards out on the road enjoying the sunshine.  Fortunately I did not see any snakes.


Signage out here I found to be very poor.  Many of the signs had faded and the place names and road names were very hard to see.

I turned right onto Walshs Bore Road from the Perponda Road and then continued east on Kadie Bore Road.


Above: an example of the faded signs

I soon reached the north western corner of the park.  The park is not signposted.  Well I certainly could not find a park name signpost.  There was a sandy 4WD track following the western boundary of the park but I continued along Kadie Bore Road and followed a sandy track on the eastern side of the park for a few hundred metres off the road.  I set up underneath the shade of a tree.  

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Above:- Aerial shot of the Bandon Conservation Park showing my operating spot in the north eastern corner.  Image courtesy of Location SA Map Viewer.

I headed to 7.144 on the 40m band and called CQ.  Geoff VK3SQ in Beechworth answered my call, followed by Peter VK3PF, Dennis VK2HHA, and then Jim VK1AT.  The 40m band had really opened up nicely, with no fading detected and most signals being nice and strong.  Within 6 minutes I had qualifed the park for VKFF, with 10 contacts in the log.  Contact number ten being a QSO with Cliff VK2NP.

The band was quite busy, and was just opening up to Europe, so I experienced quite a bit of interference.  I was hoping to hear Yves ON8ON in Belgium who was activating a park, but sadly this was not to be.

I logged 40 stations on 40m before heading off to 20m hoping to get some European long path action.  I ended up logging a total of 11 stations on 20m including two DX contacts: Gianluca IK4LZH in Italy, and Max IK1GPG in Italy.

To finish off the activation I put out a few CQ calls on 3.160 on the 80m band.  I logged 5 stations there, from VK3 and VK5.  Again, despite band conditions on 80m being quite good, there were not a lot of callers there.

It was now just after 4.00 p.m. local time and I decided to pack up and head home.  I had a total of 56 contacts in the log at Bandon, and a unique park for me under my belt as an activator for WWFF/VKFF and the VK5 Parks Award.

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3SQ
  2. VK3PF
  3. VK2HHA
  4. VK1AT
  5. VK2EXA
  6. VK3AHR
  7. VK3FRAB
  8. VK4TJ
  9. VK3ZPF
  10. VK2NP
  11. VK3ZMD
  12. VK3RW
  13. VK2PKT
  14. VK3TKK/m
  15. VK3BBB
  16. VK4NH
  17. VK4DXA
  18. ZL4TY/VK4
  19. VK3YB
  20. VK3KMH
  21. VK2LEE
  22. VK3UP
  23. VK5KLV
  24. VK4FDJL
  25. VK3KTO
  26. VK4HNS
  27. VK3KKP/2
  28. VK2FF
  29. VK1DI
  30. VK2KYO
  31. VK2YW
  32. VK4AAC/2
  33. VK3VVC
  34. VK7JON
  35. VK7FOLK
  36. VK3FMKE
  37. VK2NEO
  38. VK3FLES
  39. VK4SMA
  40. VK3KMA

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4SMA
  2. VK4TJ
  3. VK4/AC8WN
  4. VK4/VE6XT
  5. VK4NH
  6. VK4DXA
  7. ZL4TY/VK4
  8. VK6GLX
  9. IK4LZH
  10. VK3SX
  11. IK1GPG

I worked the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK5FMAZ
  2. VK3ZPF
  3. VK3SQ
  4. VK5FANA
  5. VK5BJE

Following the activation I decided to take a different route home, along the Karoonda Highway.  I stopped briefly in Karoonda, which is an aboriginal word meaning ‘winter camp.  The town is located in the centre of the Murray Mallee region of South Australia.  The town has a population of around 600 people and was founded on wheat growing in the early 1900’s but is also well known for Merino sheep production.

There is a memorial in town for Constable Harold Pannell who was shot and killed on duty back in March 1957.  Pannell had attended a property to serve a warrant on John Fischer for the seizure of property after Fischer had failed to pay damages awarded against him in a court case.

I also had a brief look at Karoonda Pioneer park which has a very interesting collection of old buidlings, railcars, and other memorabillia.

After leaving Karoonda I worked Brett VK3FLCS/p on 40m.  Brett was activating the Tooborac Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2212, and had a good signal into the mobile.

I continued on my journey back home, arriving home just after tea.  Along the way I enjoyed a magnificent sunset.  I had a terrific day, with three parks activated and a total of 178 QSOs.  THANKS to everyone who called, and a big THANKS to those who took the time to spot me on parksnpeaks, Facebook, etc, as I had virtually no internet coverage all day.






Cockburn; R, 2002, ‘South Australia.  What’s in a Name?”

Monument Australia, 2018, <> viewed 3rd April 2018

State Library South Australia, 2018, <>, viewed 3rd April 2018

Wikipedia, 2018, <>, viewed 3rd April 2018

Wikipedia, 2018, <,_South_Australia>, viewed 3rd April 2018

2 thoughts on “Bandon Conservation Park 5CP-263 and VKFF-0999

  1. Hi Paul
    Thanks for activating three Parks on one day. Your photos as great, especially the sunset and those around the Karoonda Pioneer Village.
    John D

  2. Hi John,

    As per our conversation on the phone this morning, I love the western, north western & Riverland regions of South Australia. Yes, dry and desolate in parts, but it’s great country and lots of history out there.

    Thanks for getting in my log.


    Paul VK5PAS.

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