(Aug) Radio Days
September 13, 2012 2 Comments
Mr. Mhor is not a creature of habit eh?
All those recent ‘Radio Day’ posts being up to six weeks late and now I post within two weeks of the end of the post’s month in question.
Let’s get going…
One SOTA and two WOTA this month.
There is a twist on that last sentence as my SOTA activation of Blencathra is also a WOTA hill to those who are unfamiliar with SOTA and WOTA, follow these links below and the explanation is there for you
Back to business…
On what now seems an annual trip to the Lake District, I had planned hills to activate but due to circumstances only Blencathra (Hallsfell Top) was done under the SOTA banner. We had travelled down with intentions being dropped off near Threlkeld and doing a round route whilst activating on the way. My descent took in a quick look at Sharp Edge then a quick descent back to Scales via Mousthwaite Comb, a good day contact and weather wise.
I followed up Blencathra with an activation of Latrigg Fell which over looks Keswick. Accompanied by Katie, my long-suffering XYL and the scran option was far superior to the previous day. An idea for the future although I must get a lighter car battery for her to humph up the hill.
This was another non stop month contact wise so take a deep breath.
First in the Aug log is Duncan CXM who activated Dumyat on the western end of the Ochil Hills whilst Colwyn YCJ was on the Isle of Arran but I only caught him on the one hill Caisteal Abhail the middle one of his triple activation that day, I had headed out to Corlic to work him on his third but was on my way back home due to the worsening weather and I missed him.
Next chased points were during my activation of Blencathra, first contact( and Summit to Summit) was Terry VWP who was to the south of me on Claife Heights on the west bank of Lake Windermere whilst one of my last contacts that day was Terry CJJ who was on the Isle of Anglesey high point Mynydd Bodafon, Terry was using the Baofeng UV5R with its stock duck antenna. It works well as this was over approx 170 kms.
Returning home it was soon back to serious business as Robin PKT appeared what turned out to be a day to remember on Stob Choire Easain east of Fort William and he proceeded to work into the near continent, I think only the oncoming darkness and long trek out forced him off the hill.
The next day I made my way to the trig point on Lurg Moor where I first worked Jim GLM who appeared on Ben Chonzie and back to a ‘liftless” activation was Robin this time on Stob Ghabhar whilst waiting to talk to Robin I heard Iain WJZ calling him from Creag nan Damh part of the south Glen Sheil ridge. A fine contact of over 140 km.
Busy ? we are not even at the mid part of the month yet.
The next weekend at Lurg Moor, I first got Robin PKT who was on Carn na Caim in the Drumochter Pass area whilst I had a longer than normal contact with Neil 2MØNCM who was on Grey Hill between Girvan and Lendalfoot. The next day on a busy day from the same trig point, Iain WJZ was first in the book, Iain was on Gael-charn then next was Robin on Beinn a’Chlachair and was pleased to contact fellow blogger Roddy 2MØIOB who was almost 150km away on Larriston Fell in the Borders area. There was some QSB but the contact made with no problem plus I had checked the elevation profile between our two points and had reckoned earlier there was only a slight chance. Roddy’s activation blog post HERE. Next was Jim GLM who turned up on Meall Bhuide just north of Lochearnhead whilst Robert GUF had returned to his normal haunt Tinto before I finally worked Robin PKT on his second hill of the day Geal Charn, note this is a different hill than Iain’s before mentioned for this day. Robin’s hill that day Gael Charn is to the south-east of Loch Laggan whilst the Gael-charn Iain WJZ was on is just to the west overlooking the Drumochter Pass. That ended what was a busy Sunday.
Still with me ? I did say a busy month..
On the last weekend, on the Saturday I worked Robin PKT on Meall Corranaich and just as I was leaving for Cappielow, I caught him on Meall a’Choire Leith both in the Lawers area. The following day I waited at home and caught Robin PKT from the daddy of all Scottish hills, Ben Nevis then I left to head to Corlic with my youngest, Ailsa in tow and as we headed on to open moorland I received a text from Roddy IOB telling me Colwyn YCJ had turned up on Cat Law to the north of Kirriemuir and using only my wee 2w Baofeng and a Nagoya 701 worked him over 130 kms, a fine contact on what was almost a line of sight contact. Returning home I had just turned on the radio and heard Bob AWV out on what is a line of sight Duncolm in the Old Kilpatrick hills.
A busy month and a few miles walked to make some of these contacts.
As you read above I had not much time to ‘play’ HF but still made contacts in Europe, Asia and N America mostly on JT65. On the last Sunday of the month whilst having breakfast I worked into Anchorage, Alaska a very good start to what was a good day SOTA wise as well.
Firstly I must recommend a book I read towards to the end of the month.
The title ? “Rocket Men, a story of the first men on the moon” by Craig Nelson, a well written account of how Neil Armstrong finally made the first step on the moon. It deals with the history leading up to JFK’s declaration of sending a man to the moon to the background politics, training plus a revealing insight into each astronauts life. A book which some reviewers say fragments at times and leaps from the story but I found this added to the overall story. Worth a read.
I’m still learning about SDR and hope over the winter months to do something along building a Softrock rx but still to look at what frequencies I’m really interested but if the new work being done on another tuner chip bears fruit then I’ll stick to this line of thought.
If you have been a long time reader of the blog, you will have read how my oldest Euan was with me on most of my first SOTA activations but fell away but all this paid off for him as he recently graduated from the University of Glasgow as a BSc with First Class Honours in Computer Science, Sergey Brin & Co watch out..
and a mention for my youngest Ailsa who also recently completed the ‘ hike’ part of her Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award, she only has her presentation of her days spent in the Border hills to do. The hike was done over what could be described as horrendously wet for the first two days.
Phew !! a biggie post this month, I hope you are still with me at the end…
Thanks again to all sites I have linked.
My thanks also to Neil 2MØNCM who let me use © his image of Grey Hill in South Ayrshire.