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30m CW / FT8 DX S2S event - Good Friday 19th April 2019


Had a great activation from Mt. Donna Buang this afternoon. Fantastic to have a summit to summit with Mike 2E0YYY. There were a lot of yankee yankees in the exchange!
That’s a complete for me for Shining Tor.
My plan was to activate Mt. Beenak, but arrived at the gate to be greeted by an access prohibited sign (due to logging operations).
VK3ZPF suggested Mt Donna Buang, so I hot footed it in that direction, arriving later than originally planned.
40m was in fine shape with dogpiles of VK and ZL stations. Unfortunately, I took the antenna without the 30m sections so was confined to 40 and 20.
Glenn VK3YY


Yes Chris you and Armin DL6GCA made my log.
I was running 5watts in to a 5m vertical with base loading to make it resonate on 30mx.
The ground system is 8 x ~4m on ground radials

Warren vk3byd


I used the quarter wave vertical on 30m, with the ic706 set to about 40w output. An easy contact with M1EYP and a difficult contact with a DL, then some stronger signals from DL and ZL, a few VKs and then I went to 40m to try for YYY, found Mike was not too strong and under a heap of QRM, in the midst of a contact. 5 mins later no sign of him. Worked a GW on the low end of 40m with a big signal.
On 40m I was using a ZS6BKW doublet. Used the 706 with an LDG ATU hooked up properly this time with an interface cable.
When Andrew vk1ad told me the sun had set at Mt Stromlo, I still had plenty of sunlight and it was nowhere near setting. But by the time I packed away it was dark.
Conditions are certainly favouring the lower bands so those big antennas are essential at the moment.
Andrew VK1DA/VK2UH


The difference between sunset and last light is about 20 minutes. I packed up as the sun dipped behind the Brindabella Range. For me that’s sunset whereas for you the horizon is a long way out to the west.

How were the mozzies at Mundoonen? I had one single mozzie at Mt Stromlo, it had a short life.

Andrew VK1AD


Hi Tom,
A great thrill to work you for the first time. No other dx copied although I did have a good listen for all Eu SOTA spots. One other station seen intermittently on the spectrum but no decodes… YO???. Later the band chosen by you had half a dozen on. The normal band was very busy. Did not see you again. A few summits in VK1,2,3,7 worked. A lot of deep slow QSB on all bands. Conditions apparently better 400 km north.

I am running a 5 MHz dipole in a leaned over inverted vee arrangement to fit in the yard. 40 ft at apex. 75 W on FT8.


Mozzies were awful, had to juggle sending cw and slapping mozzies most of the time. Had some insect repellent but it must taste like a cold beer on a hot day to them.


Absolutely terrific morning! Plus I’ve got a gig tonight too, so it gets the “SOTA on Tour” treatment!

Good Friday 19th April 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig: Joe Longthorne
Venue: Lyceum Theatre, Crewe

I was exhausted when I got in from my matinee gig the previous day, so I was in bed before 10pm the night before this early morning event. As a result, I awoke naturally at 0430 BST, half-an-hour before my alarm was due to go off!

As such, for once, I was actually early for one of these events, and QRV shortly after 0530 UTC, with my FT-817 running 5 watts, and homemade 30m groundplane antenna with elevated radials. I heard Mike 2E0YYY/P calling CQ from Shining Tor G/SP-004. I attempted the S2S, but as anticipated, it went into the logbook as a SWL entry.

I then made five early 30m CW QSOs around Eastern Europe, and I could see that my set up was all working well. I would normally have spent longer on my initial mode choice, but with the time approaching the nominal 0600z event start time, I decided it would be a good idea to get going on FT8.

I started on the suggested QRG of 10.132MHz, and worked three chasers almost immediately. The next QSO was a 30m FT8 S2S with YO6PIB/P on YO/EC-367 - so that was highly satisfactory! Then the next station to call me on FT8 was none other than Ron VK3AFW - so I was now feeling somewhat delighted!

I could now hear VK3BYD/P calling on 30m CW from VK3/VE-178, but he wasn’t copying my replies, so that would be my second SWL entry of the day. I didn’t have to wait long for my first VK S2S though, with a surprisingly strong and easy contact with VK1DA/P on VK2/ST-053. This was followed by Ian VK5CZ. I continued on CW, adding a further six QSOs culminating with another DX S2S - VK1CT on VK1/AC-042.

I now switched back to 30 FT8, and worked nine European stations quite rapidly. A spot appeared which suggested a viable S2S opportunity though, which caused me to return to CW. S53XX/P on S5/CP-024 was worked first call, followed by two more chasers.

15 stations were then added on FT8, before returning again to CW to record 16 QSOs including S2S with OK2SAM/P on OK/JM-026 and HB9DBM/P on HB/BE-169.

It was now a gorgeous hot and sunny morning, and as we neared 11am local, I suspected there would be S2S opportunities on 2m FM. I managed to work MW1HAX/P on Snowdon GW/NW-001, and Dom MW0BLF/P on Y Garn GW/NW-004. Five more stations were added on 2m FM, including a welcome return to my logbook for the King and Queen of Heald Green - Pete 2E0LKC and Anne 2E0LMD.

As I was getting ready to descend, I decided to do a quick head count on The Cloud summit. It was very busy - and there were over 80 people up there at that very moment!

Total QSOs: 67
30m CW: 31
30m FT8: 29
2m FM: 7
SWL: 2
S2S: 8

DXCCs: 22
9A (1), DL (10), E7 (1), EA (7), ES (1), F (4), G (7), GW (2), HA (2), HB (2), I (5), OE (1), OH (2), OK (3), OM (3), OZ (1), RA (1), S5 (4), SM (2), SP (2), VK (4), YO (2)

So a massive thank you to all the activators and chasers that took part this morning, it was a very enjoyable fun event.

@DK9JC - John, I use a 16Ah Tracer LifePO4 battery pack. I really like it, and it can keep my 817 going for many activations!

There was an enforced 40 break in my operating 0751 to 0831z when an old friend from my teaching days at Brownhills turned up on summit. He was out for a morning job and was as surprised to see me as I was to see him! We had much to mutually catch up on!


My wife ist of or skiing … and so i did some summits. I was at FL/VO-167…a litte place in the middle of the wood… and called as F/DL6GCA/P

I think the condx were better than at the EU - VK/JA/ZL Party…

I got VK3BYD/P, VK1ARH/P and VK1DA… and I heared some more, but didn’t get throug because of QRO stations…

I’m using KX2 with 10 watts and a vertical 10m wire along the pole with a 5m counterpoise…

73 Armin


Whilst swatting mozzies, I made 6 contacts on 30m CW: ZL1BYZ, VK5CZ, GW3YDX, VK4TJ, M1EYP/P (S2S) and VK1DA/P (S2S). It was amusing to watch loads of tourists driving up the summit and quickly getting out of their cars to snap pics of the sunset. I was using my FT817 with quarter wave vertical. All good fun. :smile:


Well, for me, 40m is still the money band. 55 contacts logged, all 40m ssb…

DX worked, 5 x VK and 2 X ZL. Two VK s2s logged.

My QSO with ZL4RMF, may well be a contender for G’s longest SOTA contact, a very close call indeed. From my home QTH, it would have been 11842.6 miles short path but from Shining Tor, not too sure.

My last four early morning SOTA outings have produced 25 VK and 5 ZL contacts working 40m ssb. Also 2 VK contacts working 20m ssb. Therefore, I have no plans for any other modes right now.

Thanks to all the callers.



The trouble is, you’re just not strong enough!

Walt (G3NYY)