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Hi folks

The activation of Mt Stromlo VK1/AC-043 this evening started with CQ calls on 17m 18.140 MHz. No 17m contacts in 15 minutes so I moved to 20m. On 20m 14.315 MHz the band performance was good between VK, JA and ZL with signal report exchanges ranging from 5-7 to 5-9.

SSB QSOs on 20m included: Tadashi JA1VRY, Phil ZL3JD, John ZL1BYZ, Jacky ZL1WA and Hatori JH1MXV. I did hear Herbert OE9HRV calling me, even with a short burst of 80 watts I couldn’t make the LP return journey to Austria. OTH radar signals were very annoying ranging from 14.150 to 14.300 MHz, I settled for 14.315 MHz.

I tried 15m, 21.280 MHz for 20 minutes or so, zip, zilch, nothing!

Next, I moved back to 17m this time 18.145 MHz to work John ZL1BYZ, Sanyo JA1COR and John VK6NU. Finally I moved back to 20m 14.315 MHz to work Jan OK2PDT 5-5 in the clear and John VK6NU. :smile:

17m - 06:50 to 07:10 UTC (nothing)
20m - 07:10 to 07:30 UTC, 5 QSOs JA and ZL
15m - 07:30 to 07:55 UTC, (nothing)
17m - 07:55 to 08:10 UTC, 3 QSOs ZL, JA and VK6
20m - 08:10 to 08:30 UTC, 2 QSOs OK2 and VK6
Sunset: 08:40 UTC

73, Andrew VK1AD


Hey were you hearing those? I thought it was only the European end - of course they could be coming in (or going out) via LP as well I guess.

Sorry I couldn’t hear you at all this morning, but I’m glad you managed a contact with Jan.

73 Ed.


Hi folks

DX activation of Mount McDonald VK1/AC-048, with the threat of some rain which thankfully didn’t materialise.

Wow!! What a cracker of a DX activation, it reminded me of a typical 2014 20m DX activation between VK and Europe. The climb to the summit takes 40 minutes, I had set up by 0700 UTC for a 1.5 hour SOTA DX session with big hopes of working Mike 2E0YYYY/P on G/CE-002 and chasers from New Zealand, Japan and Europe. Well the activation played out as planned, working the last 1.5 hours of VK1 daylight I worked Mike at 07:21 UTC on 14.325 MHz and again at 07:44 UTC. Our second QSO held up for a good 5 minutes with signal reports at 5-7 (Mike) and 5-5 (me).

Don G0RQL left me gobsmacked when his punching audio jumped out of the radio’s speaker with a solid 5-8 peaking 5-9 signal and others in Europe followed. Inbound EU signals ranged from 5-6 to 5-9+, my average signal received in Europe was 5-5. My SOTA station set up is a Yaesu FT-857D @ 40 watts powered by a 4S 8.4 Ah LiFePO4. My antenna for this summit is an Inverted V linked dipole with the apex at 8 metres. Antenna 1/2 wave element alignment was north-south with the broadside east-west for LP propagation. I was so busy on 20m I didn’t find time to work 17 or 80m.

Summary: 26 unique QSOs on 20m and one local 2m chaser.


In addition to the group above I did hear a couple of ‘G’ and ‘DL2’ chasers calling, I did respond, sorry you didn’t hear me.

On 2m 146.5 FM: Wade VK1FWBD

I stayed on the summit till sunset (08:25 UTC) then walked back to my car, 3.5 km in the dark :smile:

Mount McDonald summit

Set up on a disused concrete pad

Looking west sunset over the Brindabella Ranges

Great to catch up with so many AR friends in Europe. Thanks everyone :wink:

73, Andrew VK1AD


Exact same spot I sat on the weekend for my activation! Glad you got the openings you were looking for.




I could have been one of those calling. I could “just” hear you until the QSB hit. I thought you queried my call but I wasn’t sure so I waited but you were gone and then an Italian station fired up on frequency and started calling CQ - no “is the frequency in use? call” just decided he was going to call there! Listened again but then heard nothing and I had to get a few things sorted before heading off for my activation today. Had great fun on 60m and 40m in the spring-like sunshine on Bussen.

Well done on the contacts . it looks like there are contacts there to be made if we get on at just the right time.

73 Ed.


Hi folks

This evening I activated Mt Ainslie VK1/AC-040 for Europe Dx with a slim chance of working SM6/LB4FH/P on SM/VD-003. Unfortunately I didn’t see any 20m spots for LB4FH. I was blessed with persistent radar pulse signals operating between 14.250 and 14.320. 17m 18.140 MHz was radar free where I found John ZL1BYZ with a 5-9 signal.

Nevertheless, I did work a good sample of EU chaser stations starting at 06:45 UTC: Jan OK2PDT, Pete YO7MPD, Chris F4WBN, Michael DJ5AV and for a final jump further north to the UK to work Terry G0VWP at 07:37 UTC. Don G0RQL I did hear your calls, I did reply but failed to confirm the QSO.

From the Pacific region on 20m: Warren ZL2AJ, Novy JH1OLB, JH1MXV, Steve VK2NSS, John ZL1BYZ (17m), Tadashi JA1RVY, Phil ZL3JD and Wynne ZL2ATH/p.

Around VK on 40m: Mark VK4SMA, George VK2FF, Glen VK4FARR, Lee VK2LEE and Stef VK5HSX/3

My one and only VK1 local was Wade VK1MIC on 2m simplex 146.5 FM.

Sun setting on Mt Ainslie summit VK1/AC-040, Australia’s Capital Territory, Canberra.

FT-857 operating on 20m at 40 watts

73 Andrew VK1AD


At 06:20, I could JUST hear something on your frequency, too weak to make intelligible words, then came the what I guess was the OTHR radar and you were too weak to overcome that. The fact that you and I hear the same interference says something about the power being used. Do we know if it’s Australian, Indonesian or Chinese OTHR?

Bodes well for Saturday if the K stays at 0.

73 Ed.


Hi Ed,

My first 20m Dx contact was with Warren ZL2AJ at 06:42 UTC. You didn’t hear me at 06:20 UTC. Michael DJ5AV had a 5-9 signal. What power level/antenna are you using?



Sorry that should have been 06:40 not 06:20 - I PMed Mike about it and there I correctly said 06:40. It could still have been someone else on the same frequency of course, as I really could JUST tell there was some audio in the noise. From what you have now said, I suspect it was you though. Shame that I had to go out. From what you say, you got contacts later than that into Europe.

TRX at home QTH is an IC-7300 with a RM-Italy HLA-300 amp (they claim “up to” 550w PEP out) and a 40m Skyloop at 8m AGL. In this case of course the amp is irrelevant - until I can hear you, I can’t work you.

Michael has a 3 element full size beam I believe - that makes a BIG difference compared to a wire antenna.

73 Ed.