Thanks to everyone for all of the very kind comments about my quadruple Mountain Goatdom, but the really big thanks go to my partner Ann, who often comments that I “act the goat!”
My 4000th point was gained on a very fine Swiss summit, HB/GR-025 (Piz Picuogl) on the 8th April 2018, although there was a bit of climbing on the ridge to reach the summit. It was a lovely day and I was able to sit comfortably in the sunshine.
Overall, it has taken me 7 years and 3 months, with 8266 QSOs to reach this milestone.
Mountain Goat 1; 17th January 2011 – 16th September 2012 – 21 months
Mountain Goat 2; 16th September 2012 - 18th January 2014 – 16 months
Mountain Goat 3; 18th January 2014 – 4th January 2016 – 24 months
Mountain Goat 4; 4th January 2016 – 8th April 2018 – 27 months
The 8266 QSOs come from transmitting from 684 summits (183, 153, 180 and 168 summits respectively for each goat!) That is an average of 12 QSOs for each summit. This has ranged from 1 QSO (5 summits) to 59 on GM/CS-029 (Carn Liath) on 26th August 2017.
The 684 recorded summits comprise seven where I failed to make 4 contacts (most overseas, one in Scotland). I have transmitted from 500 Scottish summits, down to single summits in Denmark, Lichtenstein, Sweden, Poland, Slovakia, USA and Luxembourg.
I note, with some surprise that my second highest summit total (44) is Switzerland, third is Austria (OE on 27) and fourth is England with 25 summits. I have been very fortunate to travel overseas with work and holidays and officially I have transmitted from 25 SOTA associations so hold Platinum Mountain Explorer Award Status.
Of the 684 total there were 88 summits worth 1 point, 113 worth 2 points, 184 worth 4 points, 90 each worth 6, 88 worth 8 points and what would be my preferred option every time, 114 summits worth 10 points. I think the highest peak so far has been the Strahlhorn (4190m), HB/VS-016 in April 2017.
There are 2373 different call signs in my log, although some are duplicates when mobile/portable/etc, and I found a few errors which I corrected, so I have contacts with just under this number of people. A big thanks to everyone I have spoken with since January 2011; long may it continue.
There was apparently one data transmission, which is an error I’ll need to go back and correct, 1712 QSOs on FM and 6559 on SSB. It is great to speak to chasers across Europe and I have regular transatlantic contacts, which are always a pleasure. However, my QSO with Paul, VK5PAS, in South Australia was special. I have also spoken with a station (Palmer Station) in The Antarctic, although I was on VP8/EF-013, Two Sisters, in The Falkland Islands at the time!
My most popular SSB band is 14MHz with a total of 3991 contacts, 7MHz with 2340. I did attempt previous SOTA challenges and amassed a paltry 197 contacts on 24MHz, and on 28MHz only 23 contacts and a fine total of 3 on 50MHz. On FM I have 1712 QSOs on 144MHz.
My top 10 chasers are Don (G0RQL) on 205 QSOs. It is always a pleasure to hear from Don, also reassuring that all is well! Manuel (EA2DT with 155). Next is another Spanish station Pedro (EA2CKX on 147). Ken, who also lives in Edinburgh (GM0AXY on 105), keeps me up-to-date reporting the weather at home to help me while activating. Robin (GM7PKT/P on 88, plus 11 mobile QSOs, a total of 99, but most of those with Robin being summit to summit contacts), Mick (M0MDA on 94). Christine (GM4YMM with 78 QSOs) Marius (SP9AMH) with 77, Michael (DJ5AV) with 75 and number 10, Borek (OK1SDE) with 71 QSOs.
Thanks to MM0DHY (Adrian) who was a great help when I took up SOTA. Despite the excitement of activating The Old Man of Hoy in August 2016, I look forward to future joint activations, I think! A trip to St Kilda is still an aspiration and I understand that there are severe landing restrictions. I would also like to thank the members of the Cockenzie and Port Seaton Amateur Radio Club, especially Bob Glasgow BEM, for guiding me through amateur radio licencing.
Many, many thanks again to everyone for all of your help, 73s and I hope to speak to you all further down the log.