My first ever SOTA activation on Easter Monday (6th April) 2014 was typical of my radio activities of late — unplanned, somewhat ill-considered, but great fun nonetheless. The drive from the north-east suburbs of Melbourne to Healesville, then on to the mountain, the maiden activation with homebrew radio and antenna, and the descent and return drive all went without a hitch, suggesting that my basic portable station is well and truly ‘fit for purpose’.
The mountain is well known to Melburnians and a popular destination out of Healesville. There is a section of unsealed winding road which presented no problems, and may only be difficult during winter after snow. At the top I found a sealed car park, a large cleared area, a covered picnic shelter where a log fire burned low, and a four storey lookout tower. There are some popular walking tracks from the summit, including Mt Donna Buang to nearby Mt Victoria and back, a moderate 6km 3 hour return walk. There are lots of activator’s pictures of Donna Buang so I did not bother add further to them.
Among the tree ferns and mountain ash on VK3/VC-002.