(Oct) Radio Days 2011

Autumnal snow on Ben Lomond
Autumnal snow on Ben Lomond

SOTA

One activation to report with a trip to the Isle of Mull to activate Ben More, the highest point on the island. The original plan was for a September visit but due to weather and other circumstances, we delayed the trip until the beginning of October, a good excuse for a 4 day trip. The weather certainly shone through for us on the Sunday, the activation blog post is HERE and the rest of the trip blog post is HERE.

Ben More from near Penyghael

Ben More from near Penyghael

Chasing….

This has been an excellent year for us chasers on the VHF frequencies here in Scotland and unless I’m mistaken activity on the hills has increased dramatically, I have accrued nearly 50% of my chaser points so far in ’11.( I only started in 2009).

October was quiet for me but the regulars were still out and about.

First out of the blocks for me was a Summit to Summit (STS) with Iain WJZ who activated Beinn Chaorach in the Luss Hills, I was to head there in early November and on the same day from the top of Ben More, another STS with Robin PKT was on nearby mainland hill Beinn Lora. We had glorious sunshine that day and both these hills are seen from Ben More but sadly not on our visit.

The following weekend I caught up again with Iain WJZ on the summit of Ben Chonzie whilst fellow PARC member Craig ANL later that day nipped up to enjoy the views from Conic Hill and to play radio. It was all weekend stuff this month for me, I headed up to the golfie trig point to work Neil 2MØNCM who was on Cairnkinna Hill whilst later on the same day, Robin PKT achieved the 5,000 activator point mark with a tour of the Lawers Round, I only managed to catch Robin on his final hill Ben Lawers but it was the hill which took him over such a magical total..I have 144 pts as I write this, a big difference you’ll agree but a fantastic achievement for him ‘5 Mountain Goatdom’. Dedicated and as always a pleasure to work.

The following weekend was my last ‘chase’ for the month, Colwyn YCJ activated Beinn Narnain in what was a wet and windy day, keen!

Loch Lomond from Conic Hill path

Loch Lomond from Conic Hill path

The quietest month so far this year but always glad to work those out and about….

The winter months are now upon us and it is time to get all organised for all the winter activities as hill height doesn’t matter and the basic survival equipment carried.

HF

Gave up on the V4 and concentrated mostly on JT65 with some PSK thrown in and with conditions being poorly over the summer roared back with a vengeance, 10m has been open mostly every day and some exotic DX has been noted. I didn’t spend so much time on the radio as I had been but still had a few CQs on most days.

The rest..

I have worked my winter plan for SOTA activations but as last year and the year earlier, we will see what I manage to do..

The weather turned wintry for a day mid month, Ben Lomond showed a fine layer of snow for one day, the tops of Donich, a’Mhanaich and Chaorach also had a little dusting, Donich more than the other two, the snow on the lower hills disappeared in no time at all then it was quickly back to the spell of mild weather we are having until as I write this.

A few plans over the winter antenna wise, I’m still wondering if I need a beam for 4m for the SOTA work, obviously it has to be portable but activity hasn’t been the best this summer on 4m when I have activated, Ben More being an exception.

Off into the final months of the year and with HF now alive and kicking, it is time to start hunting down some DX….

Click any image to see a full size photo..

The photo of snow on Ben Lomond was taken mid October 2011..

No animals were harmed in making of this blog post and music was provided by The KLF

Autumnal snow on Ben Lomond

Autumnal snow on Ben Lomond

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