09082004 – VK3/VE-073,VK3/VE-122,VK3/VE-124 and VK3/VE-204
with VK3YY Glenn,
Posted an alert for Mt Timbertop Thursday and received a email from Glenn as he was also looking to go out. Always up for company so we planned for a early start which saw us a 8:00 in Mansfield. We have both have recently aborted and cancelled activations due to weather so both planning a lot of contingency time and looking for summits with good access.
The initial plan was for Mt Timbertop and the Paps assuming snow and bad weather.
The day was shaping up to be one on the best for a while. Whilst overcast, no rain and only a biting wind.
First call was to track down some snow shoes. Snow shoes have become a activators favourite given the amount of snow in the hills. The bloke in the hire shop informed us we did not need for Mt Timbertop as not enough snow. So off we went to the first summit ahead of time.
VK3/VE-073 (Mt Timbertop)
View from Timbertop towards Eagles Peaks,
Great access down Howqua track and clear path to follow to the summit. Up and down Mt Timbertop in 2:20 including activation. Have been carrying a flu for the last coupe of weeks but still managed good time.Very exposed at the top but the weather was on our side. Qualified the summit and as ahead of time and with the great weather, decided to add more summits to the day.
The activation zone for includes a property once owned by Glenn. Given we were ahead of time it was decided to go up investigate this site.
Glad I had a local on board as the GPS was not giving good directions.
The activation zone is long and level, actually the road. You require permission to needed to operate from the road on Gears Hill as technically private property. Glenn still knew some of the locals and had obtained permission on the way there. So we were OK to operate from the road. We had to walk down the road and back to stay in the rules. Due to earlier fires, a lot of the fences are gone and whilst you can see where the fences were, we still had to be careful to ensure not infringing on property we did not have permission for.
Three S2S from Gears Hill Rd,
VK1NAM/P on VK1/AC-043 (Mt Stromlo)
VK3TCX/P on VK3/VG-074 (Mt Elizabeth No 2)
VK3IL/P on VK3/VE-011 (Mt Stirling)
Comfortably qualified the sumitt and still ahead of time. A unusual position to be in. Whilst driving up to VE-122 we noticed Wombat Hill. Hard not to as this summit dominates the area. An unactivated summit so close… this became the next target.
VK3/VE-124 (Wombat Hill)
This summit in in private land. Took a bit of time to gain permission for access as difficult to determine the boundaries. Picked the correct road by sheer luck. Followed a road up the hill and eventually found the owners having a boys day on the top of the summit.There were no issues with access but I would not go without permission. Once they worked out we were harmless they invited us to join in with the red wine and sausages. Declined as there was still the serious business of activations to address. Apparently this is the highest residential property in Victoria. It has a great view.
The cows are built for Alpine conditions and have right of way.
GPS tracks of finding the summit. There were a lot of locked gates.
As we drove into the activation zone again walked out and back in to qualify the activation. Ended up walking through blackberries watching the GPS to ensure out of the activation zone before walking back up the hill. I dare say this part of the practice amuses onlookers. Setup on the survey marker and comfortably qualified the summit with Glenns inverted ‘V’ end fed.
VK3/VE-204 (The Paps)
Finished up the day with the Paps. Straight forward activation. Access from the highway across private property. Leave the gates as you find them. This is a good but rough road with decent drains.
APRS – Good cover with my car and VK3RLE
A great day out SOTAing.