Thursday, 28 May 2015

EI2GEO - Geoparks 2015

Tankardstown, Co. Waterford
For the 8th consecutive year, South Eastern Amateur Radio Group were QRV as EI2GEO from the same location at the Old Copper Mine at Tankardstown (near Bonmahon) on the Copper Coast Geopark over the 23rd and 24th of May 2015 for European Geoparks Week. (Loc: IO62hd)
The annual Geopark communications weekend is co-ordinated from GB6GEO at Kents Cavern in Torquay, in the heart of the English Riviera Global Geopark.

The Copper Coast European Geopark is located on the South East coast of Ireland. It extends from Fenor in the east to Stradbally in the west and as far north as Dunhill. The Copper Coast gets its name from the 19th Century copper mines that were once predominant in the area.

The Copper Coast consists of 25 kilometres of spectacular coastline. Oceans, volcanoes, deserts and ice sheets all combined to create the rocks, which provide the physical foundation of the natural and cultural landscapes of the Copper Coast.

The Copper Coast is an outdoor geology museum with geological heritage that reflects a variety of environments under which the area has evolved over the last 460 million years. Sedimentary and volcanic rocks illustrate the closure of the Iapetus Ocean, the resulting volcanic activity, evidence of the collision of two continents leading to the creation of Ireland and finally the effects of glaciation from the Ice Age. Cross-sections of these are exposed on the many spectacular cliffs along the Co. Waterford coastline.

Activity for the event was on HF and luckily the weekend produced not only good band conditions but also good weather. There were many visitors to the station from the amateur radio community and the general public alike. QSOs were made all over Europe with many into the US and Canada during late Saturday evening. 40, 20 and 17 metres were the main bands of operation for the event. Amazingly, our first contact was made with GB6GEO at Kents Cavern. Contact was also made with GB2MAC which was operated by the Lough Erne Amateur Radio Club from the Marble Arch Caves Global Geopark in Co. Fermanagh.

Paula McCarthy (Copper Coast Geopark) and
Eddie McCarthy (Castle Cafe, Dunhill Ecopark)
As usual, the food, drinks and camp-fire were the highlight of Saturday evening and special thanks to Eddie McCarthy of Castle Café, in Dunhill Ecopark who provided the catering. Later that night, Eoghan (EI5HBB) put on a very impressive light show using the old mining building at Tankardstown.

We would like to thank everyone who helped out, participated, called in to visit or made contact with us via radio. Special thanks to Paula McCarthy, Manager of the Copper Coast Geopark, for whom sadly, this is the last year that she is managing the Geopark. On behalf of SEARG we would like to wish Paula the very best of luck for her future endeavours as she retires from The Copper Coast Geopark Centre after almost 10 years. Paula has worked closely with SEARG for the past 8 years in running the EI2GEO activation from Tankardstown and has additionally facilitated other events for us. Without her help and support, the Geopark event would not have grown in to the massive success it is today.

QSL Info: QSL via Sean Byrne, EI2HZB (Buro). Note: NO eQSL!

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