Knott Hill Native Forest Reserve VKFF-2892

This afternoon (Monday 22nd April 2019) Marija and I decided to do another park activation and chose another one of the newly added South Australian parks to the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program.  This time we headed to the Knott Hill Native Forest Reserve VKFF-2892.

The reserve is located about 6 km west of the town of Meadows, and about 50 km south-east of the city of Adelaide.

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Above:- Map showing the location of the Knott Hill Forest Reserve VKFF-2892.  Map courtesy of Protected Planet.

The Knott Hill Native Forest Reserve is located in the Kuitpo Forest Reserve in the Mount Lofty Ranges ‘Adelaide Hills’.  It is 82.3 hectares in size and consists of native vegetation.  The primary management objective for the area is to conserve and enhance native flora and fauna and preserve biodiversity for the long-term benefit of the South Australian community.  The reserve conserves remnant native vegetation characteristic of the Mount Lofty Ranges.  It is estimated that less than 15% of the original vegetation remains.

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Above:- An aerial view of the reserve, looking west, showing the adjacent pine plantations.  Image courtesy of google maps.

Over 400 native plant species can be found in the reserve, with 63 of those being of conservation significance.  The Reserve provides a unique habitat for over 50 species of native orchid, including the Dark-tipped sun-orchid which is rates Critically Endangered Nationally.

The reserve takes its name from the area dedicated to Dr John Knott, an early settler in the Kangarilla District.  Mr Knott is credited with pioneering the road over Mount Panorama to ‘the Meadows’.  This road is now known as Stagecoach Lane.

The reserve is integrated with an area of pine plantation which is managed by Forestry SA.  These pine plantations are located to the north, south and west of the reserve, with privately owned land adjoining the eastern section of the reserve.


I travelled along Peters Creek Road which runs off Brookman Road, until I reached Knotts Hill Road.  I turned right and parked in the carpark.  Although google maps show that Knotts Hill Road continues to the east, this is not the case.  There are locked gates at this location.

It would appear from what I saw, there is no vehicular access to the reserve via Kingfisher Road.  This is a narrow dirt track which takes you passed a number of farming properties and then a sign which states ‘authorised vehicles only’.  You could park there and walk up the track to access the reserve.


I collected up all of my gear and then took the 500-metre walk to reach the western boundary of the park.  It took me about 3 trips back to get all my gear, including the fold up table and deck chair.

I set up on the side of a fire access track which dissected the reserve.

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First in the log was a Park to Park contact with Ian VK1DI/p who was activated the Macquarie Pass National Park VKFF-0298.  Ian had a beautiful bit 5/9 signal from New South Wales.  The 40m band had certainly been in very good shape over the Easter Break, and today appeared to be no different.

After logging Ian on 7.144 I moved down the band to 7.139 and asked if the frequency was in use, only to get 3 or 4 voices coming back to me to say it was clear.  I picked out Peter VK3PF who was very strong, and then logged Wayne VK2DWP and then Cliff VK2NP.

As this was a brand new park it did not take long for a mini pile up to ensue.  Within 4 minutes I had contact number 10 in the bag and had qualified the park for VKFF.  QSO number ten was with John VK4/VE6XT.

I logged a total of 68 contacts on 40m from VK1, VK2, VK3, VK4, VK5, VK6, VK7, New Zealand, and Italy.  This included a Park to Park with Peter VK3ZPF/p who was activating the Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465.  And a contact with Max IK1GPG who I have made contact with a few times now on 40m during my recent activations.


I then put out some calls on 14.310 on the 20m band and logged 8 stations from VK2, VK3, VK4, VK6 and New Zealand.  This included Gerard VK2IO/p who was activating SOTA peak VK2/ MN-098 in the Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504.

It was then off to 80m.  Our first contact there was with Peter VK3ZPF/p in the Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465.  We then moved up to 3.615 and started calling CQ.  Stuart VK5STU was first to call back.  It was a pleasure to log Stuey as he had posted on Facebook that he had been listening on 40m but could not hear us.  On 80m he was 5/9 and gave me a 5/5 signal report.

Next was Adrian VK5FANA who is a regular park hunter, followed by Charlie VK5VC.  As I had well and truly qualified the park, it was time for Marija to jump into the operator’s chair.  Marija logged 7 stations, all South Australian stations.


Marija now had 9 contacts in the log, and with no further callers on 80m, we headed back to 40m.  Marija started calling CQ on 7.130 whilst I placed a spot for her on parksnpeaks and on Facebook.  Perrin VK3XPT was first in the log on 40m for Marija, using his Clansman military transceiver.  Perrin had qualified the park for Marija.

Marija soon attracted her own little pile-up, with a steady flow of callers.  Within 35 minutes Marija had qualified the park for the global WWFF program, with 44 contacts in the log.  This included the following Park to Park contacts:-

  • Mike VK6MB/3 – Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944
  • Mark VK3FAMP/p – Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944
  • Gerard VK2IO/p – SOTA VK2/ MN-098 & Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504


I also logged Mike VK6MB/3 and Mark VK3FAMP in the Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944, and also Gerard VK2IO on SOTA peak VK2/ MN-098 & Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504.

I then tuned across the band and heard Samuel EA1DLU calling CQ on 7.155 with his normal big signal.  As he was not busy I gave him a call and had a successful QSO.  I had spoken with Samuel yesterday.  Today my signal report was 2 S points lower.

Marija and I had seen a post on Facebook from David VK5PL stating that he was only hearing the park hunters and not us, so we finished off the activation by putting out some CQ calls on 3.610 on the 80m band, hoping to log David.  Alas, it was not to be.  We did not hear from David, but I did log VK3PF, VK5AYL, VK5WU, and VK3FDZE.

It was now freezing cold and time for us to pack up and head back to the vehicle.  It had been another successful activation, with both Marija and I qualifying the park for both VKFF and WWFF.  We made a total of 134 QSOs including 12 Park to Park contacts.

THANKYOU to everyone who called us, and a big thanks to those who took the time to spot us.


Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3ZPF/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  2. VK3XPT/p (military tx)
  3. VK3SQ
  4. VK4AAC/3
  5. VK2VH/3
  6. VK4SMA
  7. VK3OHM
  8. VK3PI
  9. VK6MB/3 (Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944)
  10. VK3FAMP/p (Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944)
  11. VK2IO/p (SOTA VK2/ MN-098 & Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504)
  12. VK4RF
  13. VK4HA
  14. VK2UH
  15. VK7FJFD
  16. VK2HHA
  17. VK3ARH
  18. VK3FORD
  19. VK5PET
  20. VK3MPR
  21. VK3FRAB
  22. VK4NH
  23. VK4DXA
  24. ZL4TY/VK4
  25. VK5ZEA
  26. VK3FSPN
  27. VK2NP
  28. VK4MWB
  29. VK3VKT
  30. VK3MAB
  31. VK4TJ
  32. VK4/AC8WN
  33. VK4/VE6XT
  34. VK3TKK/p
  35. VK5FLEA
  36. VK3PF
  37. VK4FDJL

Marija worked the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK3ZPF/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  2. VK5VC
  3. VK5FANA
  4. VK5DW
  5. VK5WU
  6. VK5KDK
  7. VK5BJE
  8. VK5FLEA

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK1DI/p (Macquarie Pass National Park VKFF-0298)
  2. VK3PF
  3. VK2DWP
  4. VK2NP
  5. VK3SQ
  6. VK4RF
  7. VK4HA
  8. VK4TJ
  9. VK4/AC8WN
  10. VK4/VE6XT
  11. VK3PI
  12. VK3AHR
  13. VK3MDH
  14. VK2HHA
  15. VK4SMA
  16. VK2VW
  17. VK3TKK/m
  18. VK3MKE
  19. VK2JAZ
  20. VK4CZ
  21. VK3BSG
  22. VK3BYD
  23. VK2PKT
  24. VK2CEC/m
  25. VK5KLV
  26. VK4FARR
  27. VK3ARH
  28. VK4FDJL
  29. VK2EXA
  30. ZL1TM
  31. VK4HNS
  32. VK3OHM
  33. VK2ADB
  34. VK4NH
  35. VK4DXA
  36. ZL4TY/VK4
  37. VK2HOT
  38. VK3PAT
  39. VK3XL
  40. VK5VCR
  41. VK4VXX/6
  42. VK3DBP
  43. VK3DOU
  44. VK3FPSR
  45. VK2MOP
  46. VK3NLK
  47. VK5FLEA
  48. VK3CM
  49. VK3BMT
  50. VK7KT/m
  51. VK3ZPF/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  52. IK1GPG
  53. VK3MLU
  54. VK3FLES/2
  55. VK2KEV/m
  56. VK7ZGK
  57. VK2BLP
  58. VK3FRNS/p (military manpack)
  59. VK6XC
  60. VK5KBJ
  61. VK7KR
  62. VK7DW
  63. VK2FPAR
  64. VK3FN
  65. VK3DJY
  66. VK7HRS
  67. VK3JMA/m
  68. VK4HAT
  69. VK6MB/3 (Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944)
  70. VK3FAMP/p (Wabba Wilderness Park VKFF-0944)
  71. VK2IO/p (SOTA VK2/ MN-098 & Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504)
  72. VK3MCK
  73. EA1DLU

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4HAT
  2. ZL1BYZ
  3. VK3XL
  4. VK2IO/p (SOTA VK2/ MN-098 & Ulidarra National Park VKFF-0504)
  5. VK6XC
  6. VK4SMA
  7. VK2ARL
  8. VK6NDX

I worked the following stations on 80m SB:-

  1.  VK3ZPF/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  2. VK5STU
  3. VK5FANA
  4. VK5VC
  5. VK3PF
  6. VK5AYL
  7. VK5WU
  8. VK3FDZE



Forestry SA, 2016, Mount Panorama, Knott Hill & Christmas Hill Native Forest Reserves Management Plan.

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