Federation Range’s days as a SOTA summit are numbered as VK3ZPF found a higher summit to the north within the prominence. I thought it best to head out while it is still a SOTA summit and during the winter bonus period. It is a short 2-3km walk from the Lake Mountain car park up Royston Trail to the Triangle and a few hundred metres more to the SOTA peak. From the car park head roughly north between the main building and the two Kleenheat gas tanks to the gate on the Royston Rd. Follow the Royston Rd. through the Triangle and you are in the activation zone.
Weather.was.fine and snow had completely melted, the only snow left was a dirty patch near the carpark and restaurant. Managed a summit to summit with Paul, VK3PAS and 24 other contacts over the 28 minutes on air. Also worked Tony, VK3CAT and Ron, VK3AFW on 12 metres. The antenna on 12 metres was just the 40m EFHW coupled via an Elecraft T1 tuner, so it would not have been optimum.
Mt. Gordon is on the Melbourne side of Marysville. Near the trout farm there is a turn off to Mt. Gordon Rd., a very good condition gravel road that goes to the top of Mt. Gordon. There is a gate a few hundred metres from the summit, it only takes about 5 minutes from the gate to the summit. There are two commercial towers on the summit and not a lot of room to set up an antenna in the clear.
The squid pole was tied to sapling with bungy cords.
I set up on the side of the loop road at the top and did not suffer any interference on HF from the commercial towers. From here I worked summit to summit to Brian, VK3MCD on Mt. William and Peter, VK3PF on VG030. Again 2 contacts on 12 metres were made (just) to VK3CAT and VK3AFW.
25 contacts were made from here including 2 VK4 stations but did not hear the VK4 activator.