Today’s adventuring saw Warren dabbling his SOTA feet on the hills and air-waves of Taihape. This morning we left home at 4.30am to meet up with other HAM’s for a visit to Irirangi to see the workings of the army radio operations sites. There was a good turn out for this event and after lunch at the Waiouru Army Museum Cafe we high tailed it out to the hills.
High in the hills surrounding Taihape is home to the local 6775 repeater. It also lays claim to a SOTA summit and since we were in the area, Warren wasn’t about to let it go un-activated. We couldn’t find a house that seemed to match up with the land that is home to the hill top and so we made our way through the access gate, Warren climbed the hill to the repeater site and down the other side. I took the much easier track around the side and met him as he was coming down to meet up before making the final short climb to the trig that marks the hill top summit. Warren came across the local land owner on horse back herding sheep and gained full permission to be at the sight. The farmer told us that on a clear day, he can see for miles, out to Mount Taranaki, and down as far as the South Island even. The mountains of the Tongario National Park can be seen in the photos on the blog.
Starting out on 7 MHz I made contact with a few locals. After that dried up we switched to 14 MHz and worked many eager VKs. To my pleasure a summit to summit chance contact came up with VK6AXB from VK2/SM-001. Whilst the contact was hard, and a few that struggled to hear us were thinking we were working them (it’s ok guys I understand) we made exchanged summit references and a 4/3 signal report. I could hear NS7P calling on 20 but he couldn’t catch my reply so we switched to 21 MHz and worked Phil there. A quick trip back to 7 MHz to pick up a local and that was us for the day making 14 contacts. A beautiful day with light winds and blue skies made for an enjoyable excursion.
Summit height –866 m
Access via – Ridge Rd – gate near microwave site.
Nominal time to summit – 5 minutes or less walk to trig from the gate.
Summit marker – Trig Station
Land access permission – Required – Land owner lives on southern half of trig road.