The summit VK3/VC-037 was recently added to the SOTA database and it doesn’t have a name. The summit is just out of Gembrook in the Bunyip State Park. It is not too far from home and hadn’t been activated yet. It is only a 1 point summit at 415m height.
To get there from Gembrook, head out on the Gembrook – Tonimbuk road. After about 7.8km from Gembrook, there is the Tynong Nth Rd. on the right. Keep to the Gembrook-Tonimbuk Rd for 1.3km after this junction and turn left at Triangle 200 Rd (Oz topo maps) or Link Rd? About 500m up this road there is Nichols Hut Track to the right. If you feel like a walk, this will take you to the summit after about 2.2km. Otherwise keep going until the junction of Triangle/Link Rd and turn right. These roads are all good condition 2wd. Follow Link Rd for about 2km and then turn right at Burgess Rd. The summit gate is 1.5km further.
This is well in the activation zone. To lose 25m elevation on foot, it is easy to head down Nichol Hut track and back up again to comply with the rules.
I tried other more direct routes to the summit from the main road, but came up to locked gates.
I set up on the high side of the road where it was pretty clear and tied the squid pole to the Burgess Rd sign. This part of the road is closed off, so no problems with traffic.
The_small squid pole was used and I found out that it had suffered a cracked section from the last activation. Luckily there were some cable ties in the pack, so these were tied over the cracked section. As the squid pole is not very high, two tripods were made from branches at either end of the End Fed Half Wave to keep it off the ground. I really should have used the 7m squid pole as there is an average noticeable loss of performance compared to the 4.5m squid pole.
The first 3 contacts on 40m at 23:40 UTC were summit to summits with VK3IFM on Mt Dandenong, VK3NIG on Mt. Gawler and VK3ANL on Mt. Toolebewong. Another summit to summit was with VK3HRA on Mt. Bunninyong. Things were busy on the band, up until the UTC rollover. After the rollover, it all began again. In 25 minutes of operating, 27 contacts were made.
There was a combined M&DRC club activation from Mt. Dandenong including VK3AFW, VK3CAT, VK3IFM and others, providing several summit to summit contacts.
As this was an unplanned activation, it was time to go before my absence was noted at home! I said I was just going out for an hour and two had passed already. This is a great summit to operate from, nice bush and good access whether a walk or by road. Will definitely return here again!