2019-12-01 VKFF Activation Weekend – Bouddi National Park (VKFF-0049)

Today was the second day of teh Annual VKFF Activation Weekend.

Unfortunately I had more than a few things to do today (including two trios to Jaycar to pick up some bits for my new nanoVNA; one to get some cables and BNC adapters, and the second to pick up the second BNC adapter that I’d left behind and a couple of others to get me to PL259).

Anyway, as such I ended up leaving just around 2:30pm and as a result arriving at this park and starting operation just after 4pm.

I chose this park as it now brings the eligible activations with regards to the Boomerang Award up to the required five. Now I just need to do this with two other parks to qualify (this park takes me to three qualified).

APRS

aprs-1So you can see, it’s a bit of a drive. About 50 minutes. You can actually see my stop at Jaycar on Tuggerah Straight, as I had to track back 12 hours to get this map.

aprs-2The route there is the eastern one. For some reason the GPS thinks the western one is the quickest way home.

aprs-3

You can see me walking around the car park while activating.

Google Earth

img_1109The dot is pretty close to where I set up. I set up in the same place that I have done previously in this park. The difference being that there was someone parked where I normally park so the car was not beside where I set up. Fortunately it didn’t rain so I had no mad dashes to get stuff covered up.

img_1110Quite definitely within the park boundaries.

img_1111Putting things in to some geographic context. This is pretty close to the southern most tip of the Central Coast/

Setting Up

img_20191201_160421I didn’t have the larger table with me today so I used my camp table, which is more than sufficient. It just meant I needed to use this little stool instead of the comfy chair.

Oh you may (or may not) notice that these photos are not quite the quality that I normally post. While I brought the good camera with me, I left it’s memory card in the computer here at home and the “spare” was stuffed.

I used the Lenovo tablet that I use for logging to take some photos.

img_20191201_160441So I remembered to put the flag up, though there was very little wind today.

img_20191201_160454Instead of putting up a 7m pole to attach each end of the 80m segments, I again left the 80m segments off, electing to throw the ends over some branches. I found some excellent ones, getting me probably 4-5m up at the ends. This was the southern end.

img_20191201_160502Looking back from the southern end.

img_20191201_160520Looking at the northern end. You can see the rope angled down to the right and tied off on the fence.

img_20191201_160539Looking back from the northern end.

The Activation

I figured I would be happy to get the ten contacts required to make this my fifth VKFF activation of this park, given how late I was starting.

I kicked off on 40m at 04:19pm (05:19UTC) as it seemed pretty active there.

Wow!

By 4:39pm (05:39UTC) I had 19 SSB contacts on 40m!

Up to 20m.

Five SSB contacts between 4:46pm (05:46UTC) and 5:56pm. I continued to call for a bit and got no response. Strange, as I could hear Paul VK2PAS was pulling folks in hand over fist, and I was hearing them all.

OK, I dropped down the band to try CW.  I then noticed that I was getting a High SWR warning on the FT-818.

It turns out that I had one leg of the dipole set up for 17m. No wonder things didn’t look good.

Picked up seven CW contacts on 20m between 5:08pm (06:08UTC) and 6:15 before going back for some more SSB on 20, picking up another seven by 5:30pm (06:30UTC).

The higher bands had treated me well yesterday so I headed up to 10m.

Between 5:37pm (06:37UTC)and 5:51pm I added ten more SSB contacts there.

Headed to 30m and between 5:58pm (06:58UTC) and 6:01pm added six more SSB contacts.

Back to 40m at 6:11pm (07:11UTC) to add another thirteen to finish the day off at 6:41pm (07:41UTC).

Packed up and left by about 7:05pm and was horrified to see that I had left myself less time than I thought to get home, set mu guitar and effects up and start performing online at 8pm. I got home with 9 minute remaining to do this (and surprisingly started pretty much on time!).

I was a little disappointed tat I didn’t give myself time to try 15m.

The Statistics

Modes
 CW: 7
SSB: 60

Parks
 VKFF-0444: 1
 VKFF-0092: 1
 VKFF-2389: 1
 VKFF-0344: 1
 VKFF-2326: 1
5 park contacts - 5 unique

Bands
 40M: 32
 20M: 19
 30M: 6
 10M: 10

67 unique contacts (0 duplicates)

67 log entries

If I was happy with getting 84 contacts yesterday over the time that I spent there, I was amazed at getting 67 in 2 hours and twenty odd minutes!

 

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