My report from today’s Activation Mt.Solus VK6/SW-030.
With a warm autumn day forecast in Western australia and with a hope of some LP DX to Europe on 20 metres a SOTA Activation sounded like a nice way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Chosen summit was Mt.Solus VK6/SW-030 not one of my favourites as its a bit of a hard slog to get there. 6.5kms mostly soft gravel.
Trip to the parking area took about 90 mins where you are greeted with…
I had rang mine site security and got the ok, just for peace of mind as someone might come along the road and ask what you are doing. so at least you are covered.
Old tree that has been through a few bushfires.
Takes about 90 mins to get to the summit and its not that nice a summit, lots of comms gear and really generates a lot of QRN across all the bands. The main feature of the Summit is a Fire lookout that is probably manned during high fire season, but was unmanned today.
I setup and was on the air just before 06:00 UTC but after having a quick tune around I wasn’t expecting much in the way of DX.called CQ on 20 meters and soon had John and Jacky ZL1BYZ and ZL1WA in the log. They were followed by my old mate VK1HW who used to be a VK6 and member of my local Club. Ian VK5CZ called and it was nice to work him again .
Quick switch to 18 MHz got Ernie VK3DET in the Log on SSB. Then back to 20 meters to get Andrew VK2UH on 20 SSB. Signals were not good so decided to go on CW where I worked some regulars, VK4TJ, VK3ARH,VK2IO and VK3BYD. had some issues with the KX2 Paddle as the DAH contact post had worked its way loose, left my tool kit at home so it was tightened the best I could. All the time looking at spots but nothing really heard that I could determine was anyone of my possible S2S contacts from Europe. Also worked VK6XN and VK2YW to bring up a Dozen contacts for the day. Not my best day out but not my worst either.
I had to pack up shortly after 08:00 UTC as I had a welfare check with mine security at 09:30 UTC.
I activated from the shade of the old hut today, may have been used by the Fire look out people in days gone by. antenna just visible.
This pic is taken from Mt.Solus looking over to Mt.Cooke VK6/SW-031 which is 2 metres lower than Mt.Solus at 572 metres.
Thanks all for trying we can do it again sometime, great to see all the photos, love them all.
MY lesson learned from today…
After 5 activations where I never met one person, you take 10 seconds to have a PEE in the bush when I look over my shoulder and a couple are walking towards you 40 metres away down the track. You are never alone.