VK3/VC-007 – Mt Macedon
Mt Macedon was another of those summits needing urgent activation prior to the new years. Having not managed to convince my children to give up a few hours drive, I completed my chores at home, then jumped in the car on my own, with instructions to pick up dinner on the way back. A quick calculation meant I’d probably only have 30 minutes or so on the summit to set up and activate.
I set up on one of the picnic tables near the car park, away from the crowds, and closer to the summit marker cairn. I got onto 40m, and scanned around, finding Gerard VK2IO low down on Mt Solitary VK2/CT-056. Try as I might, I couldn’t break in with a S2S call, which made me suspect a problem in the antenna system, as per the previous activation at Mt Warrenheip, despite using the linked dipole rather than Buddistick.
Deductive reasoning managed to narrow it down to my Power/SWR meter, so I ran without it, and miraculously, Gerard came up from 3/1 to a 5/8. The S2S was completed easily, and I worked 11 more stations on 40m, moving every so often to escape QRM.
An earlier request to move to 10m was padded away, as I wouldn’t have a lot of time, and the antenna fixing had taken up some time, but I figured I could spend maybe 5 minutes there, so dropped the links to 12m, figured the abuse to the radio wouldn’t be too bad (it wasn’t), and worked 7 stations on 10m, taking much more than the 5 minutes expected!
I packed up, drove home, stopping briefly to phone in an order so that it would be ready to pick up as soon as I arrived, and then delivered the pizza home to a happy bunch of kids.