I love it when a plan comes together, however it is much more satisfying getting lucky and being in the right place at the right time. One of those days I just happened to check the reflector I noticed a posting about the JA/VK/NZ/EU S2S party scheduled for 1, April, and we just happened to be in New Zealand to boot. So far this trip, SOTA had been somewhat frustrating, there are only about 10 CW chasers total between AU and NZ, and the sun was acting like a prima donna being all kinds of super active. To the point I should have been able to see the Aurora Australis when we were in Queenstown, NZ except that it decided to cloud over and rain that night. Also to boot, for some silly reason that escapes me I decided to leave my QCX Mini (18mhz edition) at home, so all I had with me was the MTR3. 3 bands, CW only and NONE of those bands were having it during daylight hours. That said while we had been traveling, I had taken it upon myself to do a couple of night activations, and those were where I made the bulk of my DX and had some fun activations. One on Mt Kaputar (VK2/NW-001), and Mt John (ZL3/CB-625).
I also just happened to be staying at a friends house in Christchurch who lived a 30 minute walk from the AZ of Mt Pleasant (ZL3/CB-822), so the idea of another fun evening/sunset activation that also happened to overlook the ocean and parts of Christchurch was quite appealing. This activation ended up being my most productive activation of the 2 months down under, and I managed to work 9 different countries, all on 20M. Five contacts were actual S2S contacts, and the breakdown of DX was Germany, France, Hungary, Switzerland, Spain, Australia, Czech Republic, Greece, and Italy. I operated for about 2 hours, and enjoyed the views to be had, but once QSOs dried up it was time to walk down. Oddly enough, no JA stations on this activation, despite the couple of times I managed JA in VK land.
Some parting shots.