Rokewood Common Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2182

Our second park for 20th November 2022 was the Rokewood Common Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2182. Due to the flooding and heavy rain Marija and I had to detour significantly to get to there.

Above:- Map showing the location of the Rokewood Common NCR. Map c/o Google maps.

The Rokewood area commenced as a crossing place on the Kuruk A Ruc Creek, aboriginal for place of the frog. It was gazetted as a town in June 1853. It is believed that the name of the town was inspired by English miners after the Rokewood family in Suffolk, although this is not confirmed. In 1854 a hotel was opened. The Rokewood Post Office opened on 1 October 1857. Rokewood became the main town for the gold mining are which included Dereel and Rokewood Junction.. By the early 1870s there were 54 dwellings and three hotels in Rokewood. The 1871 census has 276 people living in Rokewood.

Above:- Shearers at Rokewood, c. 1905. Image c/o collections.museumsvictoria.com

Do not confuse the Rokewood Common NCR with the Rokewood Reserve. This is not part of VKFF-2182.

The park can be located to the south of Wilson Street and adjacent to the Rokewood Golf Club, and on the eastern and western side of Meadows Road.

Above:- Aerial view of the Rokewood Common NCR. Image c/o Google Earth.

The Rokewood Common MCR protects a remnant Plains Grassland which was once widespread across the Victorian Volcanic Plains. Less than 1% of its original extent remains today. The Reserve also contains historical sites from Rokewood’s gold mining days which are listed in the State Heritage Register.

We set up on the western side of Meadows Road and ran the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.

Above:- An aerial view of the park showing our operating spot. Image c/o Google maps.

We made a total of 76 QSOs, including 18 Park to Park contacts.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3SQ
  2. VK2VH
  3. VK4AAC
  4. VK3NBL
  5. VK5MRD
  6. VK7XX
  7. VK3PF/m
  8. VK3GRX
  9. VK2MET/p (Tomaree National Park VKFF-0490)
  10. VK1AO/p (Tomaree National Park VKFF-0490)
  11. VK3TKK/p (Macedon Regional Park VKFF-0972)
  12. VK1ACE/p (Old Naas Travelling Stock Route (TSR) Nature Reserve  VKFF-0992)
  13. VK3ZPF/p (Arthurs Seat State Park VKFF-0750)
  14. VK2APC/p (Burragorang State Conservation Area VKFF-1292)
  15. VK2LP/p (Burragorang State Conservation Area VKFF-1292)
  16. VK2EG/p (Medowie State Conservation Area VKFF-1349)
  17. VK3TUN/p (Tooloy Flora Reserve VKFF-2459)

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3SQ
  2. VK2VH
  3. VK4AAC
  4. VK3NBL
  5. VK5MRD
  6. VK7XX
  7. VK3PF/m
  8. VK3GRX
  9. VK2MET/p (Tomaree National Park VKFF-0490)
  10. VK1AO/p (Tomaree National Park VKFF-0490)
  11. VK5WU
  12. VK3BBB/5
  13. VK2CCP/5
  14. VK3SH
  15. VK3VIN
  16. VK3VRA
  17. VK1DI
  18. VK5FANA
  19. VK7JFD
  20. VK2HHA
  21. VK2YK
  22. VK5GA
  23. VK3CWF
  24. VK3TKK/p (Macedon Regional ParkVKFF-0972)
  25. VK3VB
  26. VK4FW
  27. VK8MM
  28. VK1ACE/p (Old Naas Travelling Stock Route (TSR) Nature Reserve  VKFF-0992)
  29. VK3GJG
  30. VK3ZPF/p (Arthurs Seat State Park VKFF-0750)
  31. VK2APC/p (Burragorang State Conservation Area VKFF-1292)
  32. VK3HBD
  33. VK2LP/p (Burragorang State Conservation Area VKFF-1292)
  34. VK3MRG
  35. VK3UH
  36. VK2EG/p (Medowie State Conservation Area VKFF-1349)
  37. VK3LSR
  38. VK5DW
  39. VK2JES
  40. VK3MDC/m
  41. VK3FMRC
  42. VK5IS
  43. VK3PMV
  44. VK3UAO
  45. VK3ABI
  46. VK5FB
  47. VK5CZ
  48. VK3UN
  49. VK3TUN/p (Tooloy Flora Reserve VKFF-2459)

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. ZL3MR
  2. VK4NH
  3. VK4DXA
  4. VK4SMA
  5. VK2MET
  6. VK1AO
  7. VK4TJ
  8. VK4KC
  9. VK4MAD
  10. VK4DOG

Once we packed up we had a quick look around the town of Rokewood. The Rokewood Uniting church is one of the impressive structures in the town and was built in 1866.

References.

  1. Discover the Kuruc a ruc trail brochure
  2. Victorian Places, 2023, <https://www.victorianplaces.com.au/rokewood>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  3. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rokewood,_Victoria>, viewed 8th January 2023.

Day 26 and the Inverleigh Flora Reserve VKFF-2336

Marija and I arrived back to mainland Australia from Tasmania on Sunday 20th November 2022. After disembarking from the Spirit of Tasmania we drove into Geelong and got some breakfast. We then headed west out of Geelong to the Inverleigh Flora Reserve VKFF-2336, the first of a handful of parks we had hope to activate that day.

I last activated the Inverleigh Flora Reserve back in November 2018 and made 31 QSOs, so another 13 for me this time would mean I had qualified the park for the global World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program.

The Inverleigh Flora Reserve is located about 32 km west of Geelong.

Above:- Map showing the location of the Inverleigh Flora Reserve. Map c/o Google maps.

The park is about 1,050 hectares in size. About 300 fauna species have been recorded in the park, including about 50 species of orchid. The dominant species of flora in the park is the Manna Gum and River Red Gum.

Above:- An aerial view of the Inverleigh Flora Reserve. Image c/o Google maps.

Of all the grassy woodlands that previously existed in the state of Victoria, only 1% remains. Of that 1%, 2/3rd is the Inverleigh Flora Reserve.

A total of 119 bird species have been recorded in the park. Native mammals found in the park include Eastern Grey kangaroo, Black-tailed wallaby, koala, and echidna.

The park has a Friends Group. Their Facebook page can be found at…..

www.facebook.com/people/Friends-of-the-Inverleigh-Nature-Conservation-Reserve/100066716989178/

The Inverleigh area was once occupied by the Wathaurong of the Kulin aboriginal nation.

During the 1830s and 1840s the Derwent Company had runs in the area totalling about 26,000 acres. A crown survey of the area took place in 1854, with the town of Inverleigh officially proclaimed in 1855. Inverleigh was an important stop on the colonial trade links between Geelong and the western district and the Woady Yaloak goldfields to the north. By the 1860s a number of public and commercial buildings were built in the town including the town’s two bluestone hotels.

The origin of the town’s name comes from the Leigh River, which was named by Colonial Surveyor John Helder Wedge in 1835.

Above:- John Helder Wedge. Image c/o Wikipedia.

There was a lot of water from all of the recent heavy rains, so our options were a little limited as many of the tracks in the park were flooded.

We set up on the side of a track off the Teesdale-Inverleigh Road. We ran the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.

Marija and I made a total of 72 QSOs from Inverleigh. This included 22 Park to Park contacts.

Marija made the following QSOs on 40m before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK5FB
  2. VK3PF/m
  3. VK3TCP/m
  4. VK3TKK/p (Macedon Regional Park VKFF-0972)
  5. VK2OKR/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)
  6. VK2YAK/m
  7. VK4YAK/m
  8. VK2IO/p (Scheyville National Park VKFF-0444)
  9. VK3GJG/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  10. VK5BJE
  11. VK3SQ
  12. VK1RF/p (Meroo National Park VKFF-0312)

Marija made the following QSO on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK3TKK/p (Macedon Regional Park VKFF-0972)

Marija made the following QSOs on 40m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK2IO/p (Scheyville National Park VKFF-0444)
  2. VK3GJG/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  3. VK3PT
  4. VK1RF/p (Meroo National Park VKFF-0312)
  5. VK2MET/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)
  6. VK1AO/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)

I made the following QSOs on 40m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK5FB
  2. VK3PF/m
  3. VK3TCP/m
  4. VK3TKK/p (Macedon Regional Park VKFF-0972)
  5. VK2OKR/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)
  6. VK2YAK/m
  7. VK4YAK/m
  8. VK2IO/p (Scheyville National Park VKFF-0444)
  9. VK3GJG/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  10. VK5BJE
  11. VK3SQ
  12. VK5AKR
  13. VK5FANA
  14. VK5AR/m
  15. VK3VIN
  16. VK2EXA
  17. VK2VH
  18. VK4AAC
  19. VK1RF/p (Meroo National Park VKFF-0312)
  20. VK7JFD
  21. VK5CZ
  22. VK7EE
  23. VK3ADX
  24. VK3GRX
  25. VK3ZSC
  26. VK3UAO

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3UAO
  2. VK3VIN
  3. VK2YK
  4. VK5GA
  5. VK2IO/p (Scheyville National Park VKFF-0444)
  6. VK3GJG/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  7. VK3UH
  8. VK5LN
  9. VK3PT
  10. VK1RF/p (Meroo National Park VKFF-0312)
  11. VK2PKT
  12. VK3ZSC
  13. VK2MET/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)
  14. VK1AO/p (Port Stephens/Great Lakes Marine Park VKFF-1410)
  15. VK5NFT

I worked the following station on 20m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. ZL1BQD

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK4SMA
  2. VK4HAT
  3. VK4EMP
  4. VK4TI
  5. ZL1BQD
  6. VK4KLA
  7. VK4KC
  8. VK4MAD
  9. VK4DOG
  10. ZL1TM
  11. VK3TKK/p (Macedon regional Park VKFF-0972)

Marija and I then headed to our next park, the Rokewood Common Nature Conservation Reserve.

We stopped to have a look at the historic Shelford bridge which was built in 1873-1874 over the Leigh River. It is a wrought iron box girder bridge which was designed by Charles Anthony Corbett Wilson (b. 1827. d. 1923). The first bridge over the Leigh River was built in 1840 and is possibly the first bridge built in Victoria. It was replaced with a more substantial bridge in 1851, with the Shelford Iron bridge being constructed about 20 years later.

The little town of Shelford was established in 1836 with most of the local squatters coming from Scotland. On the 1st day of July 1847 The Leigh Post Office was opened. It was renamed Shelford in 1854. The former Shelford Hotel was built in c. 1855.

We continued west out of Shelford on the Cressy-Shelford Road but soon reached a road closed sign due to flooding and the recent heavy rain. Our short trip to Rokewood was now going to be about 30 minutes longer.

We took the opportunity of having a look at the Soldiers Settlement memorial on the corner of the Cressy-Shelford & Rokewood-Shelford Roads. It includes farm machinery and commemorates the Golf Hill and Shelford solder settlements which were created following the Second World War.

Our next brief stop was the memorial to commemorate the soldier settler families who settled on the “Barunah Plains” Estate.

References.

  1. Inverleigh, 2023, <https://www.inverleigh.org.au/>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Monument Australia, 2023, <https://monumentaustralia.org.au/themes/landscape/settlement/display/95929-soldier-settlers-memorial>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  3. Victorian Places, 2023, <https://www.victorianplaces.com.au/inverleigh>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  4. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inverleig>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  5. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shelford_Bridge>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  6. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shelford,_Victoria>, viewed 8th January 2023.

Pinmatik-Rocky Cape National Park VKFF-0432

The time had come for our final park activation in Tasmania (19th November 2022), the Pinmatik-Rocky Cape National Park on the north coast of Tasmania. It surrounds the town of Sisters Beach.

Above:- Map of Tasmania showing the location of the Rocky Cape National Park. Map c/o Google maps.

The Rocky Cape National Park is 30.64 km2 in size and was gazetted in 1967.

Birds found in the park include the White-bellied sea eagle and the Yellow-tailed black cockatoo. Eight of Tasmania’s ten honeyeaters can also be found in Rocky Cape. Native mammals include the Bennett Wallaby, pademelon, Tasmanian DEvil, echidna, Southern brown bandicoot, Eastern-barred bandicoot, and Spotted-tail quoll.

Above:- An aerial view of the Rocky Cape National Park. Image c/o Google maps.

The park was named by Matthew Flinders in 1798.

Above:- Matthew Flinders. Image c/o Wikipedia.

In 2022, researchers from Melbourne’s Monash University found that the park was home to some rocks which are believed to be from the Grand Canyon in Arizona in the USA. It is believed that Tasmania was once connected to the West Coast of the United States of America.

It was a very bleak, cold, and wet afternoon and operating spots were scarce away from the extremely high winds. We drove to the Rocky Cape lighthouse and set up there.

Above:- An aerial shot of the Rocky Cape National Park showing our operating spot. Image c/o Google Earth.

The Rocky Cape lighthouse is a relatively new lighthouse, having been erected in 1968. It is white in colour and squared shaped, made of concrete. It has a mains powered Chance Brothers 400mm catadioptric lens.

As it was so cold and bleak that we operated from the vehicle, using the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole. There wasn’t enough room to string out the 80m sections of the dipole unfortunately. The squid pole certainly got a lashing from the high winds and rain.

Marija and I made a total of 72 QSOs from Rocky Cape, including 19 Park to Park contacts.

Marija made the following QSOs on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3BEZ/p ( Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  2. VK3TUN/p (Crawford River Regional Park VKFF-0963)
  3. VK3TKK/p (Mount Charlie Flora Reserve VKFF-2396)
  4. VK2EXA
  5. VK3ZPF/p (Reef Island and Bass River Mouth Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2181)
  6. VK7GH
  7. VK3GJG
  8. VK3SQ
  9. VK3UH
  10. VK3VIN
  11. VK2HHA
  12. VK2OKR/p (Wallingat National Park VKFF-0512)
  13. VK3BEZ/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  14. VK2IO/p (Garigal National Park VKFF-0191)
  15. VK2EG/p (Sugarloaf State Conservation Area VKFF-1772)

Marija made the following QSOs on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK6MB/p (Canning River Management Area VKFF-2955)

I made the following QSOs on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3BEZ/p ( Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  2. VK3TUN/p (Crawford River Regional Park VKFF-0963)
  3. VK3TKK/p (Mount Charlie Flora Reserve VKFF-2396)
  4. VK2EXA
  5. VK3ZPF/p (Reef Island and Bass River Mouth Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2181)
  6. VK7GH
  7. VK3GJG
  8. VK3SQ
  9. VK3UH
  10. VK3VIN
  11. VK2HHA
  12. VK3MH
  13. VK3ZSC
  14. VK1DI
  15. VK3MIJ
  16. VK1TTY
  17. VI2022PRIDE
  18. VK3PMC
  19. VK5BJE
  20. VK2MET
  21. VK1AO
  22. VK3BWS
  23. VK4FW
  24. VK8MM
  25. VK3BNF
  26. VK2OKR/p (Wallingat National Park VKFF-0512)
  27. VK3DL
  28. VK3UAO
  29. VK3BEZ/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  30. VK3ACZ
  31. VK2IO/p (Garigal National Park VKFF-0191)
  32. VK3DCQ
  33. VK2KJJ
  34. VK3QH
  35. VK2EG/p (Sugarloaf State Conservation Area VKFF-1772)
  36. VK3KAI/p (Traralgon South Flora Reserve VKFF-2465)
  37. VK7JFD
  38. VK3ABI
  39. VK7IAN
  40. VK3YUN
  41. VK7AAE
  42. VK5AYL
  43. VK3OHM
  44. VK3SRC
  45. ZL1BQD
  46. VK3AHR
  47. VK2VW
  48. VK2HFI
  49. VK3HBG

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK3BBB/5
  2. VK2CCP/5
  3. VK4NH
  4. VK4DXA
  5. VK6MB/p (Canning River Management Area VKFF-2955)
  6. ZL1TM
  7. VK4HAT

Marija and I then hit the road and drove west towards Devonport. We stopped briefly in the little town of Penguin to stretch our legs.

The town of Penguin was proclaimed on the 25th day of October 1875. It had been settled in 1861 as a timber town. It was named by botanist Ronald Campbell Gunn for the Little Penguin population found along the coastline.

We continued on to Devonport and that evening we boarded the Spirit of Tasmania and headed back to the mainland of Australia.

It had been a fantastic three and a bit weeks in Tasmania.

References.

  1. Lighthouses of Australia Inc, 2023, <https://lighthouses.org.au/tas/rocky-cape-lighthouse/>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service, 2023, <https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/rocky-cape-national-park>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  3. Where in Tasmania?, Dennison, C.J., July 2003.
  4. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocky_Cape_National_Park>, viewed 8th January 2023.

Little Peggs Beach State Reserve VKFF-1812

After packing up at Peggs Beach (19th November 2022), Marija and I drove the short distance down the road to the Little Peggs Beach State Reserve VKFF-1812.

Above:- Map showing the location of Little Peggs Beach State Reserve. Image c/o Google maps.

The Little Peggs Beach State Reserve is located just a little further to the east from Peggs Beach. It is located on the northern and southern side of the Bass Highway and includes Little Peggs Beach and Brickmakers Beach. The nearby settlement of Cowrie Point was formerly called Brickmakers Bay also.

Above:- An aerial view of the Little Peggs Beach State Reserve. Image c/o google maps.

Little Peggs Beach State Reserve is 140 hectares in size and was gazetted on the 30th day of April 1999.

Marija and I operated from the Brickmakers Beach Rest Area. We ran the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.

Above:- An aerial view of the park showing our operating spot. Image c/o Google Earth.

It was the 10th anniversary of the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program and as a result we managed quite a few Park to Park contacts with the numerous VK park activators who were out and about to celebrate the event.

In about an hour Marija and I logged 74 QSOs including 22 Park to Park contacts.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3TUN/p (Burgess Swamp Wildlife Reserve VKFF-2285)
  2. VK2HQ/p ( Parma Creek Nature Reserve VKFF-2698)
  3. VK2BYF/p (Parma Creek Nature Reserve VKFF-2698)
  4. VK2OKR/p (Hunter Wetlands National Park VKFF-0595)
  5. VK3APJ
  6. VK5TRM
  7. VK3SQ
  8. VK2EXA
  9. VK2HHA
  10. VK3ZPF
  11. VK3AMO
  12. VK2MET
  13. VK1AO
  14. VK2HBG/p (Bargo River State Conservation Area VKFF-1272)
  15. VK3BEZ/p (Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  16. VK3UAO
  17. VK2VW
  18. VK2HFI

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK2VW
  2. VK2HFI
  3. VK3BEZ/p (Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  4. VK3CLD/p
  5. VK1DI/p (The Pinnacle Nature Reserve VKFF-0862)
  6. VK2OKR/p (Hunter Wetlands National Park VKFF-0595)

Marija worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK2IO/p (Barrenjoey Head Aquatic Reserve VKFF-3246)
  2. VK4MGL/p (Tingalpa Creek Conservation Park VKFF-1660)

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3TUN/p (Burgess Swamp Wildlife Reserve VKFF-2285)
  2. VK2HQ/p ( Parma Creek Nature Reserve VKFF-2698)
  3. VK2BYF/p (Parma Creek Nature Reserve VKFF-2698)
  4. VK2OKR/p (Hunter Wetlands National Park VKFF-0595)
  5. VK3APJ
  6. VK5TRM
  7. VK3SQ
  8. VK2EXA
  9. VK2HHA
  10. VK3ZPF
  11. VK3AMO
  12. VK2MET
  13. VK1AO
  14. VK2HBG/p (Bargo River State Conservation Area VKFF-1272)
  15. VK3BEZ/p (Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  16. VK4NH
  17. VK4DXA
  18. VK3UAO
  19. VK2VW
  20. VK2HFI

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK2VW
  2. VK2HFI
  3. VK3BEZ/p (Tarra Bulga National Park VKFF-0480)
  4. VK3CLD/p
  5. VK7GH
  6. VK2EXA
  7. VK3SQ
  8. VK1DI/p (The Pinnacle Nature Reserve VKFF-0862)
  9. VK3HKV
  10. VK5ZSA
  11. VK3NDG
  12. VK3FACD
  13. VK2OKR/p (Hunter Wetlands National Park VKFF-0595)

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4NH
  2. VK4DXA
  3. VK4CZ
  4. VK4SMA
  5. VK3BBB/5
  6. VK2CCP/5
  7. VK4TJ
  8. VK2VW
  9. VK2HFI
  10. VK5KLV
  11. VK2IO/p (Barrenjoey Head Aquatic Reserve VKFF-3246)
  12. VK4MGL/p (Tingalpa Creek Conservation Park VKFF-1660)
  13. VK2YK
  14. VK5GA
  15. VK4EHI

Marija and I packed up and we decided to go for a drive to Dip Falls and the Big Tree. We travelled south along the Mawbanna Road and then on to the Dip Falls Road.

The Dipps Falls are located in the Dip River Forest Reserve. There are two viewing points of the waterfalls. One of those includes a staircase which takes you down to the base of the falls. We did this walk and despite it being a challenge coming back up, it was highly worth it.

The falls themselves are a two tiered waterfall, with the largest drop at the base of the waterfall.

Whilst we were at the falls a group of 4WD buggies arrived. What a great way to travel.

We then drove a short distance to The Big Tree, a 400 year old, 65 metre tall Stringybark tree with a 16 metre circumference.

We then drove back along Mawbanna Road and stopped at Blue Hills Honey where we had a beautiful meal and enjoyed the live music. We also purchased some of their magnificent honey and a few gifts for the grandkids.

We then headed to our final park for the day, the Rocky Cape National Park.

References.

  1. Waterfalls of Tasmania, 2023, <https://waterfallsoftasmania.com.au/waterfalls/dip_falls>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Where in Tasmania?, Dennison, C.J., July 2003.

Day 25 and Peggs Beach Conservation Area VKFF-2913

It was now our final day (Saturday 19th November 2022) in Tasmania. We were to drive from Stanley to Devonport, a distance of about 124 km and catch the ferry that evening back to the Australian mainland.

Above:- Map showing our route between Stanley and Devonport. Map c/o google maps.

Our first park activation for the day was the Peggs Beach Conservation Area VKFF-2913, which is located about 16m south of Stanley.

Above:- Map showing the location of Peggs Beach Conservation Area. Map c/o google maps.

Peggs Beach stretches from the southern side of the Black River mouth and curves slightly to the southeast for about 3.5 kilometres.

Peggs Beach takes its name from the Pegg family who grazed stock in the area.

Above:- An aerial view of Peggs Beach Conservation Area. Image c/o Google maps.

There are two campgrounds in the park, at Black River and Peggs Beach.

Birdlife in the park includes White-bellied sea eagles, Wedge-tailed eagles, Striated pardalotes, and Spotted pardalotes. Native mammals include Tasmanian devils, Spotted tail quolls, and wallabies.

Marija and I drove into the Black River campground area and set up in one of the clearings amongst the scrub.

Above:- An aerial shot of the park showing our operating spot. Image c/o Google Earth.

We ran the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3VIN
  2. VK3PF
  3. VK2MET
  4. VK1AO
  5. VK7JFD
  6. VK3NRB
  7. VK3DX
  8. VK3AHR
  9. VK2NWT
  10. VK3AAF
  11. VK3SQ

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3VIN
  2. VK3PF
  3. VK2MET
  4. VK1AO
  5. VK7JFD
  6. VK3NRB
  7. VK3DX
  8. VK3AHR
  9. VK2NWT
  10. VK3AAF
  11. VK3SQ
  12. VK5FANA
  13. VK5KLV
  14. VK3GJG
  15. VK2ENA
  16. VK4NH
  17. VK4DXA

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK2VW
  2. VK2HFI
  3. VK4SMA
  4. VK4NH
  5. VK4DXA
  6. ZL3MR
  7. KG5CIK

References.

  1. Beach Safe, 2023, <https://beachsafe.org.au/beach/tas/circular-head/black-river/peggs-beach>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service, 2023, <https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/peggs-beach-conservation-area>, viewed 8th January 2023.

Tatlows Beach Conservation Area VKFF-2921

After packing up at Stanley (18th November 2022) we drove to the Tatlows Beach Conservation Area VKFF-2921.

Above:- Map showing the location of Tatlows Beach Conservation Area. Map c/o Google maps.

Tatlows Beach is about 4.5 km in length.

Above:- An aerial view of the Tatlows Beach Conservation Area. Image c/o Google maps.

It was named in honour of the Tatlow family who ran a coach service to Stanley and Smithton. For many years the only link that settlers had to the north west of Tasmania was via Tatlows coaches which was established by Charles Tatlow (b. 1858. d. 1938).

The Tatlow Coach business grew to the point that he had over 200 horses. It was reported that the Postal Department gave Tatlow 60 pounds as a thankyou for his good work in the carrying of mail bags over the years.

Above:- Tatlow’s coach service. Image c/o Stanley Discovery Museum Facebook site.

There is a nice walk from the gate down to the beachfront.

We parked our 4WD at a gate on the Stanley Highway and walked a short distance into the park and set up on the side of a walking track.

Above:- An aerial view showing the Tatlows Beach Conservation Area. Image c/o Google Earth.

We ran the Yaesu FT857, 40 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole for this activation.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3VIN
  2. VK2HHA
  3. VK3GRX
  4. VK3BWS
  5. VK2MET
  6. VK1AO
  7. VK7DW
  8. VK2EXA
  9. VK2VH
  10. VK4AAC
  11. VK3AFW
  12. VK3PMV/p (SOTA VK3/ VC-033)

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3VIN
  2. VK2HHA
  3. VK3GRX
  4. VK3BWS
  5. VK2MET
  6. VK1AO
  7. VK7DW
  8. VK2EXA
  9. VK2VH
  10. VK4AAC
  11. VK3AFW
  12. VK2MOP
  13. VK3AMO
  14. VK3UAO
  15. VK3YUN
  16. VK7OT
  17. VK3SQ
  18. VK5AYL
  19. VK7XX
  20. ZL3RIK
  21. VK3EJ
  22. VK2IO
  23. VK3PF/m
  24. VK2VW
  25. VK2HFI
  26. VK3CJN
  27. VK1DI
  28. VK3UH
  29. VK4FW
  30. VK8MM
  31. VK3PDC
  32. VK3PMV/p (SOTA VK3/ VC-033)
  33. VK7ALB
  34. VK7WY
  35. VK3SMW
  36. VK3UCD
  37. VK3BEL
  38. VK7AN
  39. VK4NN
  40. VK4DXA

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4HAT
  2. VK4MGL
  3. VK4TJ
  4. VK7XX
  5. ZL1TM
  6. KG5CIK
  7. VK2MET
  8. VK1AO

We packed up and headed back into Stanley and freshened up and headed to Herseys Seafood restaurant in Stanley.

References.

  1. Beach Safe, 2023, <https://beachsafe.org.au/beach/tas/circular-head/stanley/tatlows-beach>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Trove, 2023, <https://trove.nla.gov.au/>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  3. Where in Tasmania?, Dennison , C.J. July 2003.

Stanley Conservation Area VKFF-2919

After lunch (18th November 2022) we activated the Stanley Conservation Area VKFF-2919.

Above:- An aerial view showing the boundaries of the Stanley Conservation Area. Image c/o Google Earth.

The Stanley Conservation Area is a small piece of coastal bushland and beach just to the south of the town of Stanley.

Above:- An aerial view of the Stanley Conservation Area and its close proximity to the town. Image c/o Google maps.

The park is named after the town of Stanley, which in turn was named in honour of Edward Smith-Stanley, who at the time was the Secretary of State for War and the Colonies. He later became the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on three occasions.

Above:- Edward Smith-Stanley. Image c/o Wikipedia.

The area around Stanley was originally known as Circular Head.. The Van Dieman’s Land Company was granted land in the Stanley area in 1825. In October 1826 employees of the company from England settled in the Stanley area. By 1827 a port had opened and the first school was built in 1841. Stanley officially became a town in 1842.

In 1936 a submarine telephone cable was built between Stanley and Apollo Bay in Victoria. This provided the first telephone to Tasmania from the mainland of Australia.

Above:- 1936 Australian stamp re the cable to Tasmania. Image c/o Wikipedia.

It appeared that you could access the beach via 4WD but there was a sensitive bird breeding area sign, so we decided not to drive along the beach.

We operated from the vehicle adjacent to the Stanley Golf Cub. We ran the Icom IC-7000, 100 watts, and the 20/40/80m linked dipole, supported on the 7 metre heavy duty squid pole, in an inverted v configuration.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3SQ
  2. VK3SMW
  3. VK2HHA
  4. VK2VH
  5. VK4AAC
  6. VK3PF
  7. VK3VIN
  8. VK7DW
  9. VK7JFD
  10. VK7OT
  11. VK3EJ

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB:-

  1. VK3SQ
  2. VK3SMW
  3. VK2HHA
  4. VK2VH
  5. VK4AAC
  6. VK3PF
  7. VK3VIN
  8. VK7DW
  9. VK7JFD
  10. VK7OT
  11. VK3EJ
  12. VK2MOP
  13. VK2MET
  14. VK1AO
  15. VK3TBR/p (Redbank Nature Conservation Reserve VKFF-2180)
  16. VK3PF/m
  17. VK7ID
  18. VK3UAO
  19. VK3NDG
  20. VK3FACD
  21. VK3CMC
  22. VK3AMO
  23. VK3SPX
  24. VK1DI
  25. VK5NFT
  26. VK3CAS
  27. VK3YSA
  28. VK2EXA
  29. VK3SH
  30. VK3ZGY
  31. VK3KAI/m
  32. VK3GV/m
  33. VK3ZSC/p (Churchill National Park VKFF-0621)
  34. VK3HDX
  35. VK2IO
  36. VK3DNQ
  37. VK7AN
  38. VK5AYL
  39. VK5VST

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4TJ
  2. VK4FW
  3. VK8MM
  4. VK2MET
  5. VK1AO
  6. VK2VW
  7. VK2HFI
  8. VK1ARQ
  9. VK2IO
  10. VK4WJW/m

Marija and I then packed up and we headed to our next park, the Tatlows Beach Conservation Area.

References.

  1. Aussie Towns, 2023, <https://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/stanley-tas>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanley,_Tasmania>, viewed 8th January 2023.

Day 24 and The Nut State Reserve VKFF-1831

It was now our penultimate day (Friday 18th November 2022) in Tasmania. We had just one more night left in Stanley and it was then back to Devonport to catch the ferry back to the mainland.

After breakfast we visited The Nut State Reserve VKFF-1831 at Stanley.

Above:- Map showing the location of The Nut State Reserve. Map c/o Google maps.

The Nut State Reserve incorporates The Nut, a geological formation called a volcanic plug which rises from Bass Strait and sits over the top of the town of Stanley. A volcanic plug is formed when magna hardens within the vent of an active volcano.  The volcano at The Nut was active about 25-70 million years ago.

Above:- An aerial view of The Nut State Reserve. Image c/o Google Earth.

Unfortunately The Nut is 143 metres high, just 7 metres short of it qualifying for the Summits On The Air (SOTA) program. It is believed that the name originates from the Tasmanian Aboriginal name, “munatrik” (moo-nut-re-ker). It was originally known as Circular Head and named by European explorers Matthew Flinders and George Bass in 1798.

The Nut State Reserve protects a nationally endangered straw daisy. The reserve is almost treeless except for some remnant coastal white gum woodland.

The park is an important breeding site for Short-tailed Shearwaters, Peregrine Falcons, Australian Kestrels, and Little Penguins.  The Orange-bellied parrot, which is listed as endangered, uses The Nut as a staging point during its migration annually between Tasmania and Victoria.

Native mammals which call the park home include the Pademelon, Tasmanian Devil, the Eastern barred bandicoot, the brushtail possum, and the ringtail possum.

After some deliberation, Marija decided to climb The Nut and I chose the easy option of the chairlift to the top.

It was a nice sunny morning and I enjoyed some brilliant views as the chairlift took me to the top in comfort, while Marija sweated it out walking to the top.

Once at the top Marija and I enjoyed the magnificent views of the town of Stanley, the coastline, and the surrounding countryside.

We had a walk around the top of The Nut to the trig point and the Tatlows Beach lookout.

We both then headed back down via the chairlift to the carpark.

Once back down we activated The Nut State Reserve VKFF-1831 for the World Wide Flora Fauna (WWFF) program. We operated from the carpark in the $WD, running the Icom IC7000, 100 watts, and the Codan 9350 self tuning antenna. Unfortunately we had strength 5 noise floor on 40m and this made it very difficult to receive a number of stations that were calling.

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3UAO
  2. VK2VH
  3. VK4AAC
  4. VK3PF
  5. VK3DFG
  6. VK7HOB
  7. VK3VIN
  8. VK3ZK
  9. VK3KUG

Marija worked the following stations on 40m SSB after the UTC rollovere:-

  1. VK3PF
  2. VK3UAO

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB before the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3UAO
  2. VK2VH
  3. VK4AAC
  4. VK3PF
  5. VK3DFG
  6. VK7HOB
  7. VK3VIN
  8. VK3ZK
  9. VK3KUG

I worked the following stations on 40m SSB after the UTC rollover:-

  1. VK3PF
  2. VK3UAO
  3. VK3ZK
  4. VK2EXA
  5. VK3BEL
  6. VK3AMO

I worked the following stations on 20m SSB:-

  1. VK4TJ
  2. VK2VW
  3. VK2HFI
  4. VK4HAT
  5. VK2MET
  6. VK1AO
  7. ZL1TM
  8. VK5IS
  9. VK4XCS

With the park qualified for the VKFF chapter of WWFF, we then headed to the Highfield Historic Site. We stopped at the Highfield lookout along the way which afforded us with a brilliant view of Godfreys Beach and The Nut.

The Highfield Historic Site includes the magnificent Highfield homestead. Construction by convict labour commenced in 1826 under the supervision of Edward Curr, the chief agent of the Van Dieman’s Land Company.

Above:- Edward Curr. Image c/o Wikipedia.

The original area of land that the homestead sat on was 350,000 acres granted under Royal Charter by George IV.

The homestead contains beautiful gardens.

Other than the homestead on the 9.5 acre property, there is also the chapel, the barn, and the stables.

In 1835 while playing on the property, the Curr’s 2 year old daughter Julianna was killed. A monument for Julianna can be found on the property at Highfield.

There are other historic buildings on the property, some of which now serve as accomodation.

On the property is a memorial for Suicide Bay which is located about 50 km west. It was within the borders of the Van Dieman’s Land Company and is the site of one of the few documented killings of Tasmanian aboriginal people.

Suicide Bay is also known as Taynayuwa and is located at the site of the 1828 Cape Grim massacre. On the 10th day of February 1828, a group of aboriginal people gathering food at the beach, were ambushed and shot by workers from the Van Dieman’s Land Company. Some of the bodies of the 30 men killed were thrown from a 60 metre cliff. This was in reprisal for an earlier aboriginal raid on a flock of sheep. It was part of the ‘Black War’, the violent conflict between European settlers and the aboriginal people between the mid 1820s to 1832.

Just outside of the Highfield garden and outbuildings, on Green Hills Road are the ruins of the convict barracks. Most of the har labour in construction of Highfield was done by convicts. About 70 were housed in the barracks.

We headed back in to Stanley for some lunch.

References.

  1. Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service, 2023, <https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/the-nut-state-reserve>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  2. Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service, 2023, <https://parks.tas.gov.au/explore-our-parks/highfield-historic-site>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  3. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volcanic_plug>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  4. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Nut_(Tasmania)>, viewed 8th January 2023.
  5. Wikipedia, 2023, <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cape_Grim_massacre>, viewed 8th January 2o023.