West Wail Flora and Fauna Reserve VKFF-2484

It was now Sunday (1st December 2019) and day two of the 2019 VKFF Activation Weekend.  To kick off the day we went to the Dimboola Cafe and had a magnificent breakfast and coffee.

IMG_2393

We then headed to our first park for the day, the West Wail Flora & Fauna Reserve VKFF-2484, which is located about 360 km northwest of the city of Melbourne, and about 10km west of the town of Pimpinio.

Screen Shot 2019-12-09 at 4.27.52 pm.png

Above:- Map showing the location of the West Wail Flora & Fauna Reserve in western Victoria.  Map courtesy of Protected Planet.

The West Wail Flora and Fauna Reserve is a large piece of remnant bush surrounded by cleared farming land.  It is located in close proximity to the Little Desert National Park.  The park can be accessed via the Wail-Polkemmen Road.

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Above:- An aerial view of the West Wail Flora & Fauna Reserve, looking north.  Image courtesy of Google maps.

The park is also referred to on maps as the West Wail Nature Conservation Reserve.  It is about 1,455 acres in size and conserves remnant Buloke woodlands and a number of threatened species including Wimmera spider orchids and Rigid spider orchids.

During the rain breaks in the park, I went for a walk to do a bit of birdwatching and spotted a number of native bird species, some of which appear in the photographs below which I took.

EBird Australia has a total of 106 species of bird recorded in the park.

We set up off a 4WD track in the park off the Wail-Polkemmen Road.  We ran the Yaesu FT-857d and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.  As it was a relatively wet morning we had to roll out the awning on the side of the Toyota Hi-Lux.  At times we experienced quite heavy rain.

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Above:- An aerial shot of the West Wail Flora & Fauna Reserve showing our operating spot.  Image courtesy of Google Earth.

I kicked off the activation, calling CQ on 7.120 on the 40m band.  As this was a Sunday morning, the broadcasts from the Wireless Institute of Australia were in full swing, and as a result, we could not get near 7.144.  First in the log was Grant VK2LX with his normal strong 5/9 signal and excellent audio.

I logged a total of 22 stations on 40m from VK2, VK3, VK5, and VK7, including the following Park to Park contacts:-

  • Nik VK3ZK/p – Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961
  • Peter VK3ZPF/p – Moondarra State Park VKFF-0764
  • Pete VK2FPAR/p – Thirlmere Lakes National Park VKFF-0486
  • Rob VK4AAC/3 – Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053

It was a pleasure to log Peter VK2FPAR in his very first park activation.  Marija and I were also his first-ever Park to Park contacts.

DSC_6721

I then swapped the mic with Marija who within 10 minutes had qualified the park for VKFF.  Contact number ten was with Danny VK5DW in the Riverland region of South Australia.

Marija pushed on and within 40 minutes had contact number 44 in the log and the park qualified for the global WWFF program.  Contact 44 was with Rob VK2VH/3.  Marija’s contacts included the following Park to Park contacts (I also logged the P2P):-

  • Peter VK3ZPF/p – Moondarra State Park VKFF-0764.
  • Angela VK7FAMP/p – Lake Dulverton Conservation Area VKFF-2907.
  • Tony VK7LTD/p – Lake Dulverton Conservation Area VKFF-2907.
  • Nik VK3ZK/p – Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961.
  • Gerard VK2IO/p – Rouse Hill Regional Park VKFF-2784.
  • Malcolm VK3OAK/p – Corindhap Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2070.
  • Ian VK5CZ/p – White Dam Conservation Park VKFF-1122.
  • Rob VK4AAC/3 – Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053.
  • Rob VK2VH/3 – Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053.

DSC_6731

I then jumped back on the mic and logged a further 23 stations on 40m including the following Park to Park contacts:-

  • Ian VK5CZ/p – White Dam Conservation Park VKFF-1122.
  • Nik VK3ZK/p – Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961.

I then moved to the 20m band where I logged a total of 13 stations from VK2, VK3, VK4, VK5, VK6, VK7, and New Zealand.  This included the following Park to Park QSOs:-

  • Liz VK2XSE/p – Lachlan Valley State Conservation Area VKFF-1338.
  • Gerard VK2IO/p – Rouse Hill Regional Park VKFF-2784.

I then moved down to the 80m band where I logged three contacts, all Park to park QSOs:-

  • Malcolm VK3OAK/p – Corindhap Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2070.
  • Peter VK3ZPF/p – Glenmaggie Regional Park VKFF-1877.
  • Peter VK3PF/p – Gormandale Flora Reserve VKFF-2325.

To conclude the activation I headed to 15m where I found conditions quite good, logging a total of 7 stations including a Park to Park on another band with Peter VK3ZPF.

We packed up and hit the road for our second park.  We had 117 QSOs in the log from West Wail, including 28 Park to Park contacts.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK2FPAR/p (Thirlmere Lakes National Park VKFF-0486)
  2. VK4AAC/3 (Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053)
  3. VK3PF
  4. VK2KYO
  5. VK5WG
  6. VK3SX
  7. VK5VGC
  8. VK5FANA
  9. VK3ZPF/p (Moondarra State Park VKFF-0764)
  10. VK5DW
  11. VK5CZ/m
  12. VK2EXA
  13. VK5HS
  14. VK5FBBJ
  15. VK3UH
  16. VK5AYL
  17. VK7FRJG
  18. VK7FCIA/m
  19. VK5NJ
  20. VK3MPR
  21. VK5BWA
  22. VK5KLV
  23. VK7QP
  24. VK2VLY
  25. VK2PKT
  26. VK7FAMP/p (Lake Dulverton Conservation Area VKFF-2907)
  27. VK7LTD/p (Lake Dulverton Conservation Area VKFF-2907)
  28. VK3LY
  29. VK3ZK/p (Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961)
  30. VK5FB/p
  31. VK3MCK
  32. VK5YX
  33. VK4FDJL/5
  34. VK2IO/p (Rouse Hill Regional Park VKFF-2784)
  35. VK7TW
  36. VK2LX
  37. VK3SQ
  38. VK3JP
  39. VK3CA
  40. VK3OAK/p (Corindhap Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2070)
  41. VK5CZ/p (White Dam Conservation Park VKFF-1122)
  42. VK2HHA
  43. VK4AAC/3 (Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053)
  44. VK2VH/3 (Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053)

Marija worked the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK3PF/p (Gormandale Flora Reserve VKFF-2325)
  2. VK3OAK/p (Corindhap Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2070)
  3. VK3ZPF/p (Glenmaggie Regional Park VKFF-1877)

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK2LX
  2. VK3ZK/p (Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961)
  3. VK3SQ
  4. VK3MCK
  5. VK3ZPF/p (Moondarra State Park VKFF-0764)
  6. VK3ELH/2
  7. VK3PF
  8. VK3SX
  9. VK5AYL
  10. VK5HS
  11. VK2YW
  12. VK3DAC
  13. VK2XXM
  14. VK2HHA
  15. VK7QP/m
  16. VK2HHA
  17. VK3FRAB
  18. VK2KYO
  19. VK5WU
  20. VK2FPAR/p (Thirlmere Lakes National Park VKFF-0486)
  21. VK5DW
  22. VK3BCM
  23. VK4AAC/3 (Boxwood Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2053)
  24. VK7FAMPp (Lake Dulverton Conservation Area  VKFF-2907)
  25. VK7LTD/p (Lake Dulverton Conservation Area  VKFF-2907)
  26. VK2EXA
  27. VK4TJ
  28. VK4/AC8WN
  29. VK4/VE6XT
  30. VK4SSN
  31. VK5VGC
  32. VK3SQ
  33. VK3NCR/m
  34. VK5CZ/p (White Dam Conservation Park VKFF-1122)
  35. VK5LA
  36. VK3MPR
  37. VK5FANA
  38. VK5FB
  39. VK5NJ
  40. VK3ZK/p (Cobram Regional Park VKFF-0961)
  41. VK3UH
  42. VK3JP
  43. VK3CA
  44. VK3MAB
  45. VK3STU
  46. VK4FDJL/5
  47. VK3BCM
  48. VK2PKT

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK5WG
  2. VK2XSE/p (Lachlan Valley State Conservation Area VKFF-1338)
  3. VK2LEE
  4. VK4BXX
  5. VK4VXX
  6. VK4/AG7WB
  7. VK4RF
  8. VK4HA
  9. VK2IO/p (Rouse Hill Regional Park VKFF-2784)
  10. ZL1TM
  11. VK2LX
  12. VK7QP
  13. VK6MMB

I worked the following stations on 80m SSB:-

  1. VK3OAK/p (Corindhap Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2070)
  2. VK3ZPF/p (Glenmaggie Regional Park VKFF-1877)
  3. VK3PF/p (Gormandale Flora Reserve VKFF-2325)

I worked the following stations on 15m SSB:-

  1. VK3ZPF/p (Glenmaggie Regional Park VKFF-1877)
  2. VK2LUV/p
  3. VK7QP
  4. VK4MGL
  5. VK2LPF
  6. VK4TJ
  7. VK4HDY

 

References.

Protected Planet, 2019, <https://www.protectedplanet.net/west-wail-f-f-r-nature-conservation-reserve>, viewed 9th December 2019

Trip Advisor, 2019, <https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Attraction_Review-g255353-d9869550-Reviews-West_Wail_Flora_and_Fauna_Reserve-Horsham_Grampians_Victoria.html>, viewed 9th December 2019

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