I have often thought of adding a vertical antenna to my SOTA kit for DX use.
This interest was re-kindled when I spotted this kit from Qrp Guys.
The kit also generated discussion on the SOTA Reflector here.
After some thought I settle on a vertical that would cover 15, 17 and 20m with 30m as a maybe.
Base of Antenna
Two SOTA’s and a Park
St Mary Peak vk5/ne-001
St Mary Peak is the highest peak in the Flinders Ranges. It is also one of the few SOTA peaks in the Flinders that is accessible via marked walking track.
Whilst it may only 14.6 Km return via the outside trail, it is still a fair walk with two steep sections which involve a bit of rock scrambling.
Whilst planning a family trip to Eyre Peninsula I was looking for suitable sota summits to activate.
One summit stood out, the unnamed vk5/sw-039 this summit is located within the Lincoln National Park VKFF 0286, but behind the lock gate that allows access to Memory Cove.
Gate to Memory Cove
Andrew VK1AD had posted some VK SOTA stats for the year 2016, looking these it was obvious that no one had activated on 160m in VK.
I made comment about this on the VK SOTA yahoo group, this then turn into a challenge with a weekend selected for 160m activating.
I have used four different radios for my Parks and Summit activation’s.
By far the majority have been done with either of my two KD1JV rigs the MTR and ATS4. Both these rigs run on little power and their compact size makes them quite portable. Batteries are external and if required the ATU is also external. This does make set up a little more time consuming but does provide other advantages such as rig cannot be turn on by accident in the pack, and an external ATU allows the active part of the antenna to be placed a little bit further away from the operator.
ATS4a and MTR 2 bander
I always had an interest in small portable radio’s
During the early 80’s I obtained a photocopy of a 1972 QST article by Wes Heywood W7ZOI of his Mountaineer CW transceiver, this unit was a crystal locked transmitter with a tuneable DC receiver.
QST August 1972
When the boss called to tell me I was off to Tassie (VK7) the first thing I did use the Local Sites Tool on Parks and Peaks to check the SOTA and WWFF opportunities.