Sota Activation – VK2/SM-053 (Wollondibby Peak)

IMG_8930After our morning Activations to Box Ridge (SM-065) we headed back into Jindabyne for some supplies and lunch. The local Bakery at Jindabyne has really yummy Tandoori lamb pies, and i was keen to have one for lunch. The road back to the camp site passed another Sota Summit, VK2/SM-053, this is unnamed, at the end of Wollondibby Rd. At the bottom of this road is a Distillery that makes schnapps and the like, they have food and often bands on the weekend. In all the years we have visited Thredbo, we have never visited the distillery, something to do in the future. The carpark was full and people where everywhere, a popular place it seems as we drove past.

The road is good and you quickly head up the side of the hill, this area borders the kosioskzio National Park, and is the last private land before the park, it has a lot of private holiday homes and ski lodges given how near the ski fields it is. You keep heading up the hill, following the road (fire trail) we passed a sign on the side of the road that seemed to be for a side road, that advised it was private property, that trespassers would be prosecuted and that hidden cameras were fitted to catch wood thief’s. Though as this seemed to be on the side road, and not the major road we were on, we continued up the hill. By the time we got to the top, we were not sure if this was still a public road or that private property the sign was referring too? Though the road was well constructed, and the hema topo maps I had indicated a fire trail over the ridge (the road we were on).

IMG_8936The road takes you to within 20m of the summit, the last 100m os a little rough, but 2wd accessible. I parked the car and walked down the hill outside the activation zone and back to return to the summit, a small outcrop of rocks, and setup the gear, wedging the squid pole between some of the rocks, and fired up the radio. Chrisitne and the kids stayed in the car reading books and the like given it was a little windy and some rain spots were starting to fall.

Mobile Coverage is a bit patchy and I tried to spot, but didn’t have much luck, but called on 7090Khz anyway and soon had a stream of contacts to work. it was mid afternoon now, and most of the S2S contacts from earlier in the day had already gone home and I only worked two summit to summit contacts, and sixteen contacts all up. Once again, i tried 14MHz and called in a number of spots 14.260 and 14.200 without any luck, I could hear some stations on 20m, the band wasn’t dead, but I guess no one was actively listening for a QRP sota station. The performance on 40m this afternoon was much better than earlier in the day, with strong contacts into Melbourne. The weather was starting to turn, and some spots of rain were falling, not enough to cause issue, but enough for me to get the tarp out just to cover the gear. Thanks for those who i was able to work for the afternoon activation.

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I packed up and we headed back to the campsite, as the weather progressively got worse as the afternoon continued, around 6pm, the camp site was hit by a pretty nasty wind storm, the BOM data shows 130km/hr+ gusts on the ridge above where we are camped, (thredbo top station) i guess we had some 70+ km/hr gusts last night and its still blowing a fair bit 18hrs later. Most of the camp site has packed up and left, either in the bad wind last night or first thing this morning, I added some more ropes and pegs to my camp site, just to be safe, but its been fine. You can see the cold front in the below photo.

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Time Call Band Mode Notes
03:48z VK2IO/M 7MHz SSB 55/51 driving
03:49z VK3ANL 7MHz SSB 41/22 home
03:53z VK1DI 7MHz SSB 59/57 home
03:54z VK3JY 7MHz SSB 55/54 Steve lake eildon qrp
03:56z VK2XD 7MHz SSB 59/54 Jeff
03:57z VK3AMB 7MHz SSB Bernard home
03:59z VK1MBE 7MHz SSB 55/44 Andrew home
04:04z VK3EK 7MHz SSB 55/53 rob home
04:05z VK3HJ 7MHz SSB 54/55 Luke home
04:07z VK3FPSR 7MHz SSB 55/55 peter home
04:09z VK3ARR 7MHz SSB 31/11 Andrew home
04:12z VK2TWR/P 7MHz SSB 57/57 rod s2s vk2sm092
04:13z VK3MEG 7MHz SSB 55/58 Steve home
04:24z VK1DA/P 7MHz SSB 51/55 Andrew s2s vk1ac008
04:30z VK3FB 7MHz SSB 55/54 Len home
04:31z VK3SAG 7MHz SSB 57/55 Fred home

 

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