Spring Mount Conservation Park 5CP-219 and VKFF-0789

Yesterday (Saturday 17th August 2019) I drove down to the Fleurieu Peninsula and activated the Spring Mount Conservation Park 5CP-219 & VKFF-0789.  My noise floor at home has dropped from strength 9 down to strength 7, but it is still annoying enough that every opportunity I get I like to head out and activate portable.

This weekend was the International Lighthouse & Lightship Weekend (ILLW) and the Remembrance Day Contest (RD).  Unfortunately, in my opinion, the two events clash.  Some may disagree, but I believe the two events should remain autonomous and should be held on different dates.  I was hoping to log some of the ILLW operators but was happy to hand out some numbers for the RD contest.

I have activated and qualified Spring Mount previously.  This is one of my favourite parks.  It is a beautiful stringybark forest which has a number of great walks within the park.

The park is located about 72 km south of the city of Adelaide and about 15 km (by road) south-east of the town of Myponga.

Screen Shot 2019-08-17 at 9.03.26 pm.png

Above:- Map showing the location of the Spring Mount Conservation Park.  Map courtesy of Protected Planet.

I drove down to Willunga along Brookman Road and onto the Victor Harbor Road.  I then turned right onto Pages Flat Road and then left onto Hindmarsh Tiers Road.  I soon reached Springmount Road and headed up towards Spring Mount.  There are some very nice views of the surrounding countryside to be enjoyed from Springmount Road.

DSC_0066

Above:- View of the countryside from Springmoutn Road.

Spring Mount Conservation Park is about 2.79 square km in size and was established on the 3rd day of February 1966.  Spring Mount preserves a relatively undisturbed mature stringybark forest and is located in an undulating ironstone plateau with a handful of small but quite steep valleys.

Screen Shot 2019-08-18 at 1.16.05 pm.png

Above:- Aerial shot of the Spring Mount Conservation Park, looking north back towards the wine-growing region of McLaren Vale.  Image courtesy of Google maps.

The park first acquired protected area status as a Wild-Life Reserve on the 3rd day of February 1966.  On the 27th day of April 1972, the Wild-Life Reserve was reconstituted as the Spring Mount Conservation Park under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972. In 1973 and 2013, additional land was added to the park.

During my visit to the park, some of the native flowers were out in bloom.

The park’s large trees provide breeding habitat for the Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoo, a large cockatoo with is native to the southeast of Australia.  Its plumage is mostly brownish-black and it has prominent yellow cheek patches and a yellow tail band. 

The park also contains some nice walks through the stringybark forest.

Birds SA have recorded about 90 species of bird in the park including Adelaide Rosella, White-throated Treecreeper, Superb Fairywren, Crescent Honeyeater, Grey Shrike-thrush, Grey Fantail, Scarlet Robin, Brush Bronzewing, Sacred Kingfisher, Yellow-faced Honeyeater, Buff-rumped Thornbill, Bassian Thrush, and Beautiful Firetail.

During my visit, I observed a number of birds, many of which were too quick for me.  But I did manage to snap the shots below of a female Superb Fairy Wren and a Scarlet Robin.

I parked the 4WD in the carpark on Springmount Road and claimed a small fence and set up on a boundary rail that ran parallel to Springmount Road.  There was plenty of room here to string out the 20/40/80m linked dipole.  The park is very heavily forested and the gap between the forest and the roadway offered a good operating spot.

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Above:- Aerial shot of the Spring Mount Conservation Park, showing my operating spot.  Image courtesy of Protected Planet.

Before calling CQ I tuned across the band to log some of the ILLW operators.  First in the log was VK3ILH at the Port Albert Museum Citadel Light AU0110.  Next was VK2MB at the Barrenjoey Lighthouse AU0046, followed by Dick VK7DIK/p at the Table Cape Lighthouse AU0039.

I then propped on 7.135 and logged a total of 52 stations from VK1, VK2, VK3, VK4, VK6, and VK7 before 0300 UTC which was the scheduled starting time of the RD Contest.  This included a further 5 lighthouses and 3 Park to Park contacts.

I took a few minutes off-air with some radio silence for the RD Contest and about 3 minutes after 0300 UTC I started calling CQ again.  I logged 15 stations, and although I wasn’t really competing in the RD, I handed out a few numbers for those who were taking part.  I also logged Patrick (VK5MPJ) operating as VK5BAR from the Marino Conservation Park VKFF-1056 and Allen VK3ARH/p who was activating SOTA peak VK3/ VW-002 in the Grampians National Park.

DSC_0069

Above:- View from gate 3 to my operating spot.

I then tuned across the band and logged three more ILLW stations: Brad VK3SPL at the Split Point Lighthouse AU0032, Tony VK3WI at the Williamstown Timeball Tower AU0036, and Ken VK3ATL at the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse AU0028.

I then moved down to the 80m band where I called CQ on 3.610.  I logged 5 stations from VK3 and VK5 including Allen VK3ARH who was activating SOTA peak VK3/ VW-002 in the Grampians National Park VKFF-0213.

I then headed up to 14.310 on the 20m band and logged 8 stations including Nick VK6CNL at the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse AU0010 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283, and Anthony VK6CLL at the Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283.

I moved back to 40m and logged Ray VK4XXX/p at the Sea Hill Point Lighthouse AU0060.  To complete the activation I propped on 7.142 and logged a further 31 stations including Ian VK3ATL at the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse AU0028, and Alan VK2MG/p at the Bemboka National Park VKFF-0049.

DSC_0070

Above:- My operating spot in the park.

Lighthouses worked on 40m SSB:

  1. VK3ILH – Port Albert Museum Citadel Light AU0110
  2. VK2MB/p – Barrenjoey Lighthouse AU0046
  3. VK7DIK/p – Table Cape Lighthouse AU0039
  4. VK3CSH/p – Cape Schanck Lighthouse AU0012
  5. VK6CLL – Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008
  6. VK6XN/p – Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008
  7. VK2HBG/p – Warden Head Lighthouse AU0035
  8. VK3EG/p – Point Hicks Lighthouse AU0027
  9. VK3SPL – Split Point Lighthouse AU0032
  10. VK3WI – Williamstown Timeball Tower AU0036
  11. VK3ATL – Point Lonsdale Lighthouse AU0028
  12. VK4XXX/p – Sea Hill Point Lighthouse AU0060

Lighthouses worked on 20m SSB:-

  • VK6CNL – Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse AU0010
  • VK6CLL – Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008

Park to Park contacts worked on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK6CLL – Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283
  2. VK6XN/p – Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283
  3. VK3EG/p – Croajingolong National Park VKFF-0119
  4. VK4HNS/p – Cape Byron State Conservation Park VKFF-1295
  5. VK5BAR/p – Marino Conservation Park VKFF-1056
  6. VK3ARH/p – Grampians National Park VKFF-0213 (also SOTA VK3/ VW-002)
  7. VK2MG/p – Bemboka National Park VKFF-0049

Park to Park contacts on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK6CNL – Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283
  2. VK6CLL – Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283

Park to Park contacts on 80m SSB:-

  1. Allen VK3ARH/p – Grampians National Park VKFF-0213 (also SOTA VK3/ VW-002)

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3ILH (Port Albert Museum Citadel Light AU0110)
  2. VK2MB (Barrenjoey Lighthouse AU0046)
  3. VK7DIK/p (Table Cape Lighthouse AU0039)
  4. VK3FIAN
  5. VK3MKE
  6. VK2PKT
  7. VK3MPC
  8. VK3PF
  9. VK2LEE
  10. VK7QP
  11. VK3FLCS
  12. VK2MOP
  13. VK3MCK
  14. VK1MA
  15. VK4CZ
  16. VK3BNR
  17. VK3SIM
  18. VK3PKY/m
  19. VK3CSH/p (Cape Schanck Lighthouse AU0012)
  20. VK6CLL (Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283)
  21. VK6XN/p (Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283)
  22. VK2HBG/p (Warden Head Lighthouse AU0035)
  23. VK2EXA
  24. VK2VH
  25. VK4AAC/2
  26. VK3MPR
  27. VK3EG/p (Point Hicks Lighthouse AU0027 & Croajingolong National Park VKFF-0119)
  28. VK2NP
  29. VK2XXM
  30. VK3ELH
  31. VK2ADB
  32. VK3LK
  33. VK7OT/p
  34. VK3PNG
  35. VK3MB
  36. VK3SQ
  37. VK3ER
  38. VK7MMT/p
  39. VK4JSS
  40. VK3ACT
  41. VK7EE
  42. VK3FADM/1
  43. VK4TJ
  44. VK4/AC8WN
  45. VK4/VE6XT
  46. VK4SSN
  47. VK3AWG/m
  48. VK3AHR
  49. VK2MOR
  50. VK3ANL
  51. VK5VCR
  52. VK3YSA
  53. VK3RW
  54. VK3MDH
  55. VK3FTJS
  56. VK4HNS/2 (Cape Byron State Conservation Park VKFF-1295)
  57. VK3UH
  58. VK3AZZ
  59. VK5BAR/p (Marino Conservation Park VKFF-1056)
  60. VK2MB (Barrenjoey Lighthouse AU0046)
  61. VK3SIM
  62. VK2RSB
  63. VK7HSD
  64. VK3JK
  65. VK3ASU
  66. VK2VW
  67. VK3TNL
  68. VK3ARH (SOTA VK3/ VW-002 & the Grampians National Park VKFF-0213)
  69. VK6CLL (Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283)
  70. VK3OB
  71. VK3SPL (Split Point Lighthouse AU0032)
  72. VK3WI (Williamstown Timeball Tower AU0036)
  73. VK3ATL (Point Lonsdale Lighthouse AU0028)
  74. VK4XXX/p (Sea Hill Point Lighthouse AU0060)
  75. VK3ATL (Point Lonsdale Lighthouse AU0028)
  76. VK3ER
  77. VK2MG/p (Bemboka National Park VKFF-0049)
  78. VK3TNL
  79. VK7FOLK/p
  80. VK3NCC
  81. VK3MDH
  82. VK3ZAP
  83. VK2LX
  84. VK3AMW
  85. VK2MT
  86. VK4QH
  87. VK3ADW
  88. VK7JON/p
  89. VK2UXO

I logged the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK5FANA
  2. VK3ARH/p (SOTA VK3/ VW-002 & the Grampians National Park VKFF-0213)
  3. VK5CB
  4. VK5CZ
  5. VK5BJE

I logged the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK2LEE
  2. VK4TJ
  3. VK4/AC8WN
  4. VK4/VE6XT
  5. VK4SSN
  6. VK6CNL (Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse AU0010 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283)
  7. VK4CZ
  8. VK6CLL (Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse AU0008 & Leuwin-Naturaliste National Park VKFF-0283)

With 118 stations in the log, I packed up and took a walk through the park for about 30 minutes. 

I then travelled down Mount Alma Road to Inman Valley Road.  I stopped briefly to log ZL6CC at the Cape Campbell lighthouse NZ0001.  ZL6CC was a genuine 5/9 into the mobile and gave me a 5/9 signal report which I was incredibly surprised with.  A big thank you to Greg VK2GJC who allowed me in to call the New Zealand lighthouse station.

I continued down Mount Alma Road enjoying some nice views of the Inman Valley which takes its name after Inspector Henry Inman, founder and first commander of the South Australia Police.

DSC_0109

I stopped briefly to have a look at Selwyn Rock, a glaciated pavement in the bed of the Inman River.  The rock was first described in 1859 and was named after ARC Selwyn, a Victorian Government geologist.  The rock dates back to the Permian period and was exposed when the Inman River eroded the topography to its present-day surface.

I then took Sawpit Road, and headed back towards Hindmarsh Tiers Road, stopping every now and again to view the dozens of Western Grey kangaroos grazing in the paddocks.

My next stop was Hindmarsh Falls which can be located at the end of Hindmarsh Falls Road.  A short walk from the carpark takes you to the falls.  The falls are located in the Hindmarsh Falls Recreation Reserve.

Along the way, I took the photo below of an Australian Golden Whistler.

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Above:- Golden Whistler at Hindmarsh Falls

It was then back to the 4WD and back off to home after a great day out.

 

 

References.

Birds SA, 2019, <https://birdssa.asn.au/location/spring-mount-conservation-park/>, viewed 18th August 2019

Wikipedia, 2019, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spring_Mount_Conservation_Park>, viewed 18th August 2019

Wikipedia, 2019, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellow-tailed_black_cockatoo>, viewed 18th August 2019

Wikipedia, 2019, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inman_Valley,_South_Australia>, viewed 18th August 2019

7 thoughts on “Spring Mount Conservation Park 5CP-219 and VKFF-0789

  1. Great post Paul, you really do take the time to provide context, from location, history, flora and fauna, the radio activity is just a part of your day trip. I did not get any radio time this busy weekend but feel like I know a little of what went on. Keep posting, 73 from Paul VK3HN.

    • Thanks a lot for stopping by Paul and leaving a comment.

      I really enjoy writing my blog. Researching the park and completing my WordPress site is all part of the fun of the activation for me. I have certainly learnt a lot from the research.

      I’m amazed at the number of people who read my blog who aren’t even amateurs.

      Cheers,

      Paul VK5PAS.

      • Keep going Paul. A few of the SOTA bloggers have remarked that they are told how useful their blogs are to bushwalkers. Not surprising, most activation reports describe navigation, access, conditions and general impressions, with pictures. And they are often recent visitors.

        Till next time, Paul VK3HN.

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