The weather was ideal for SOTA activities on Saturday and Sunday this weekend and there was plenty of on-air action for activators and chasers alike. With the VK1 crew out in big numbers, it was an opportunity to really get the S2S tally up so I canned my original plan to go portable locally at Warrandyte State Park on Sunday morning and activate Mt Disappointment instead.
I left home early enough to get to the summit and on air before the UTC roll-over but events on the way slowed me down. Driving through Whittlesea I saw an oncoming cyclist lose control of his bike on the edge of the bitumen, somersaulting over the handlebars and landing heavily on his hip. I stopped and rendered assistance. Other cyclists arrived on the scene a moment later and took care of the situation. I moved on and it wasn't long before I was compelled to stop again, not far off the Wallan-Whittlesea Road. I approached a dead kangaroo by the side of the road and all of a sudden a little head popped up as I drove past. Once again I stopped and found a joey struggling next to it's mother. It seemed to have no broken bones and was quite alert with only a small wound on it's rump. I suspect it had been hit by another vehicle only moments earlier as the body of the adult roo was still warm. I wrapped the joey in a sheet and decided to take it back to Whittlesea. Not finding a convenient vet, I went to the police station where they were able to ring a local wildlife carer and take care of the joey in the interim.
My first contact was an S2S with Al VK1RX/p logged at 0025 GMT. I worked a solid pileup that lasted quite a while. I wasn't going to activate any other summits today and was happy to sit and listen when things slowed down a little – a departure from some of the 2 or 3 summit activations I have done lately. I was rewarded with a few more S2S contacts that would otherwise have been missed such as Peter VK3PF/p on Toorongo Range, Tom VK5EE/p on VK5/SE-019, Allen VK3HRA/p on VK3/VS-005. I also had contacts with Terry VK3UP and Michelle VK3FEAT both on VK3/VC-023 MT Buninyong after an earlier 40m contact whilst they were in transit to their summit.
So that was it. A leisurely activation worth only 4 activator points for me but still within relatively easy reach of home with 45 contacts logged in around 2.5 hours. It was worth hanging around to catch the S2S contacts that I would have otherwise missed – 14 of them in all, making today a very worthwhile effort for chasing.
Thanks to all the stations I worked and hope to catch you on another summit soon.