01 JAN 2017 – Mt Buller VK3/VE-008
Ah, UTC rollover, that glorious time of double points, and what better way to exploit it than with 10 point roughly drive up summits? Mt Buller fit that bill for me, being a relatively sane drive from Geelong, and also a unique. The drive up, through Alexandra, Yea and Mansfield took about 3 and a half hours, and the walk to the top less than 10 minutes, steep though it is from the summit car park.
Once there, it was clear it was going to be a very windy activation. Because of this, I set up closer to the fire watch tower, which was unmanned, and hit 40m for all it was worth. As expected, it was a S2S extravaganza, and the log was quickly filled up. I operated a mixture of search and pounce, and sitting on frequency, and there were a few instances of combined S2S operations as other activators heard me, or I heard others. Lots of cooperation, as always.
During this time, the fire watch person had arrived, and we had a quick chat; he wasn’t worried about my presence, but I did make it clear if I was getting in his way or causing interference he was to let me know immediately. There were no incidents from my side, although part of his UHF systems did seem to cause breakthrough when he used it occasionally. I wasn’t about to complain: fire watch takes precedence over SOTA.
In total, I had 52 QSOs across the rollover on 40m, and 1 on 20m, being Andrew VK3JBL/6 on VK6/SW-004, for my only VK6 contact, and in total, I added 255 S2S points to my tally, plus the 20 activator points, of course. As I packed up, I realised I’d also picked up some sunburn, which wasn’t as much fun.
I had a late lunch in Kilmore, before avoiding the temptation to throw in Pretty Sally on the way back, opting instead to get home at a sane and reasonable hour and not annoy my wife in the process. A fun UTC rollover again!