Unfortunately, the mobile signal is not as strong at the far end of Teichalm, so I decided to wait until I got back home to finish off the report. There was quite a big thunderstorm on the evening of the 31st. Luckily, there was no lightning on the Hochlantsch. I was able to collect about a litre of water off the roof of the tent, which was one advantage at least. The next morning was bright and fine and I set off for the Hochlantsch as planned:
The view from the summit was stunning with a strong inversion in the Mürtal:
The antenna was a bit rough and ready, but I had a nice desk to operate on:
At first there were no takers when I called CQ, so I tried 20m, to no effect whatsoever. Luckily, it was just a case of chasers finishing off their breakfast, and when I went back to 40m the contacts started to flow. With the Hochlantsch in the bag I packed up and headed back down to the tent; which had dried out nicely in the morning sun. I certainly needed the extra water as the temperature was now getting into the upper 20s. I had a nice swim and a bath in the Teichalm See, which was deliciously cool and refreshing. After a large bowl of salad and plenty to drink I headed off towards the Schweineck and Rote Wand. The forecast had improved since the day before and no thunderstorms were expected in the evening, I could just lie back and relax:
Unfortunately, I forgot about the cows lower down the mountain; the cow pats should have been a clue here. As I was dozing off in the evening the tink tink of the bells got louder and louder. I had to quickly shove everything back in the rucksack and head off up to the summit of the Schweineck, which funnily enough, being somewhat overgrown, is a bit of a schwein to climb last thing in the evening. To cap it all off, the soles of my boots came off:
They hadn’t done that many miles, certainly not as many as my old Scarpa SLs which never failed me. I can only assume that at €70 they were seconds and thus defective in some way. I was able to sacrifice some line from the antenna reel in order to tie the soles in place. They still flapped ridiculously, but at least they held out till the end off the trip.
The next morning I broke camp and got ready to activate the summit. There was a Hochsitz a bit lower down the slope that I decided would provide a nice seat and desk from which to operate. A Hochsitz is like a bird watching cabin, only it is used by hunters for shooting instead. This one was in good condition (many hunters are killed every year when they collapse) so I opened the door and started unpacking my my gear. Suddenly, I heard a buzzing sound. I looked round and there was a wasp hovering round. I batted it away, as one does, but this one got quite angry for some reason. Then I heard more buzzing, and three more wasps appeared low down around knee height. I realised there must be a nest somewhere and I leapt out of the door with my rucksack. I looked under the bench, and there was a nest about the size of a grapefruit with the inhabitants piling out to see what all the noise was about. My water and fuel were still inside, so I had to quickly lean in and grab them, before making a sharp exit and bolting the door. Oh well, back up to my original position I went and activated the Schweineck. Because I had changed campsite the day before, I was quite early in getting to the Rote Wand. This was good, because it meant I would get home early the same day, but it also meant I was well ahead of the alert time I had posted the day before. A quick call to OE6RDD (Gerhard), and I managed to get a new alert posted. It was incredibly hot on the Rote Wand and I had a hard time keeping my phone and radio cool in the heat. With the Rote Wand activated my trip was complete and I headed down into Mixnitz and the awaiting furnace in the valley. 36 points in 4 days was pretty good going, certainly, the weather was on my side this time. Thank you to all the chasers who worked me, this trip would not have been possible without you.
73 de OE6FEG / M0FEU
Sorry about the panorama photo being on its side. You can download it and turn it round if you like. If anyone knows a way to post panorama photos the right was round, please let me know, thanks.