VK/ZL <> EU S2S - 11 March 2017

Hi all

Mike 2E0YYY, Ed DD5LP and I have spent the last week or so reviewing options for the next VK/ZL <> EU S2S event.

We have decided Saturday 11 March 2017 is the date! Saturday 18 March and 25 March were considered however both weekends have major AR contest activities and Saturday 1 April is reserved for SOTA AM mode day.

With 4 weeks notice please join us in promoting the next all mode VK/ZL <> EU S2S event to be held on Saturday 11 March 2017, everyone is welcome. SOTA activators in Japan please join us for an all mode northern and southern hemisphere S2S extravaganza.

Timing is up to individual activators, VK east coast sunset is 0830 UTC, I plan to operate from Mt Ginini VK1/AC-008 at 1760 metres ASL, 06:30 to 08:30 UTC.

May the SOTA Gods offer good WX and excellent band conditions, fingers and toes crossed :smile:

73 Andrew VK1AD


Thank you for work! :slight_smile:

It was fun last time. This time it will be better yet!

Just left a note in CT Sota site and CT facebook page.

BTW: 1 April will be CT SOTA day.

73 de Pedro, CT1DBS

I might do an overnight somewhere as LP looks a no go for VK6 but Short path would be a better option if anyone would still be out and about at 14:00-16:00 UTC.


John VK6NU

I think it’s time to offer some presents to the propagation gods - Listened for Andrew this morning - nothing heard.

John - I could possibly do Long Path from one summit, early morning my time, and then head out to a less impressive (and closer to home) summit late afternoon for the Short Path attempt.


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Hi Ed

Really think LP will be hard work unless there is a big change in propagation. On the other hand I think there is a reasonable chance of some SP. I know there was a good opening into the UK on Friday i think it was. Its a 10pm to 1am timeslot for VK6 so it pretty much rules out the Eastern States as its middle of the night for them.

I have checked with family and so far all is ok for an overnight activation.I just need to pick a summit, an easy drive up one or a hike in and camp one. Yet to be decided. I can make that decision later.

Looks like a challenge I want to do, so count me in for a SP to Europe Activation.14:00 UTC onwards.


John VK6NU

… weather permitting I’ll try to be on DM/BW-089 again, running 100 Watts CW.

Let’s hope the conditions for LP will improve as we approach equinox. Depending on condx I might try a Delta Loop for 40m and switch to 20m afterwards (again Delta Loop?)

73, Roman - DL3TU

Hi Roman, I’ll be line-of-sight from you on DM/BW-484 Bussen - beware of crashing gliders on your summit HI.

If the dellat loop works in a similar way to a “sky loop” (full wave horizontal loop) my 40 metre one here at the home QTH works very well on 20metres, so your 40m Delta Loop may well also operate well on 20m.

I intend running about 30w of SSB from Bussen just into a linked Inverted-V dipole.

73 Ed.

Hi Ed,

good to hear that you’ll be QRV from DM/BW-484. Do you plan to be on CW as well?

Regarding the gliders I really hope that activity will be low - at least before noon. I don’t like the idea of endless discussions with mistrustful glider pilots :wink:

The Delta Loop is a full wave vertical loop. My friend Uwe, DL4AAE, made a design which works well (http://dl4aae.darc.de/vortrag_p51_deltaloop_dl4aae.pdf - sorry, German only!). A little bit of gain compared to a dipol and a low vertical elevation angle. And no need for matching elements - it can be directly connected to a 50 Ohm coax.

Fingers crossed that the weather will be good.

Thanks for planning this event!

73, cu,
Roman - DL3TU

Hi Roman,
Sorry but this Amateur never could get to learn Morse Code - I keep trying and then get fed up that I can’t rememeber it! So no CW - sorry.

I’ll take a look at the article, thanks (Mann versteht Deutsch). That low angle radiation should be good for DX.

It’s more Andrew and Mike who are the planners of this event, I just do some publicity for it.

73 Ed.

Hi John,
Looking at the predictions for this month (February) for propagation between DL & VK6, it looks like 40 metres should be the best for short path contacts between 14:00 and 22:00 UTC. 20m could be possible (but at 4 S point lower lower signal strengths) between 11:00 and 17:00.

Of course March will be different, however in general it looks as if 40m rather than 20m may be better for any SP contacts.

Also looking at the Eastern states, the same table of predictions does not have the MUF even getting up to 14MHz for LP contacts from DL. Again, we know February is presently not performing well. We’ll need to see what March brings.

If anyone in EU has had any contacts into VK/ZL in an afternoon on 40 or 20 metres from a portable installation so far this month, it would be interesting to hear.

We really are (of course) dependant upon what the propagation does over the next 3 weeks though.


I wonder what others are hearing, but from here I am not hearing VK or JA Long Path signals until around 0900 UTC at the moment, where this used to be earlier in the day (0730-0800 UTC).

Looking at the long path predictions for CE to VK for next month (March), the MUF only gets up to 14MHz about 0845 UTC and drops back down about 0915 UTC, so that would seem to reflect what I am witnessing at the moment.

Unfortunately either scanning or photographing this part of the magazine is out of focus.

adding to the list of 09:00UTC stations - just heard ZL1BYZ (John) at 5/5 working DL/HB9EIV/P on DM/BW-115 at 09:08 today (19/2).

I saw a news item last night that Dom M1KTA plans to be active from Rarotonga in March as E51KTA. I know Dom so I read the story, it turns out that he going to operate during the BERU CW contest (Commonwealth Contest) RSGB Commonwealth Contest

Arghhh, the contest is on 11th March!

The contest starts at 1000utc, so the main operating window for SOTA long path activity should be clear but I know a lot of these contest stations like to operate with QRO before the start of contests to establish a frequency.

I looked at the propagation predictions and it looks like long path is going to be poor but short path should be better, the trouble is that short path is due to peak right in the thick of the contest!

The contest rules states that no operation should take place above 14.060, so there is a glimmer of hope.

The VK/ZL NA event planned for later on in the day might be affected more.

Nothing we can do!

Hope to take part.

73, Colin

Yes, I checked that Colin, as you say the VK-NA experiment may be affected though. Our original date clashed with the CQWW - so that was a non-no!

It’s hard to find a weekend when there isn’t a contest on!

73 Ed.

P.S. current tests are indicating that it would be advisable to take equipment to cover 15, 17 & 20 metres if possible as propagation on the higher two bands appears to be somewhat better than 20m at the moment - of course the added benefit of operating on 17m is that contesters do not use the band.

Hi Ed,

usually I’m in the office from 7:00 UTC.
Yesterday I heard ZL2AIM on 40m around 6:15 UTC LP. His signal was rst 459. Q4 basically due to local QRM from the neighbourhood.

73, Roman

Hi Roman,
On 40m? That’s very interesting.

I worked ZL1BYZ on SSB from DL/AM-001 at 08:40 UTC yesterday on 20m for a 5-9 / 4-3 exchange, and could still hear him working into Europe at 09:30 UTC.

73 Ed.

I know it’s a CW contest and not everyone will be able to take part but wouldn’t some of the contest stations provide useful propagation indicators/beacons? OK they’ll be contest stations so may be rather well equipped with antennas and amps but still could be useful. (For various definitions of could!)

Hi Ed,

sounds like condx must have been good yesterday on 20m. Let’s hope we have propagation like this in March.

Listening to ZL2AIM was quite impressive - more than one hour before sunset in ZL. However, having played with VOACAP a bit, it looks like chances for 40m LP are fading as we approach equinox. Maybe I’ll change my mind regarding the 40m delta loop and bring an antenna for 17m instead. This would also help avoiding the contest…

73, Roman

Top billing on the RSGB News this week - see here - GB2RS News: Long path propagation SOTA event

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Early weather forecast here for Saturday morning - light rain :umbrella:️ and force 4 winds :wind_face:
Could be worse, but a bothy might be called for. If I can throw off this persistent man flu, I’ll be up G/TW-002. I’ll alert as the week (and my near death experience) progress

I’m in for this. I expect one of the organisers will refuse to work me, though I will try a few times just in case. I’ve alerted for G/SP-015 though I’ve not collected my winter bonus from G/SP-004 yet and time is running out. If I do that I’ll take 15m as well so I can respectfully not cause QRM to Mickey who alerted first for this summit.

These short focus SOTA “community” events have been spectacularly successful so far, so thanks to Mickey, Andrew and Ed for all their hard work in putting it together.