I work at Thames Valley Park, Reading and in the evening was due to go to a colleague’s leaving do. What to do between leaving work and the do ? - answer, a quick jaunt to Walbury Hill about 30 miles west.
I left work mid afternoon so arrived on site about 1430z with sunny weather but clouds building. Access is easy here so I quickly got to work assembling the antenna. Mid way through this there was a heavy shower but fortunately this didnt last too long so I was able to safely get the FT857D out. I have been working 60/40/30M a lot recently so for this activation I thought I would try the higher bands. I took along my End-Fed Half-Wave (EFHW) vertical, which covers 20m to 12m. It almost works on 10m but there is too much stray C in my matching box limiting its upper freq to 27MHz.
The EFHW vertical is an excellent SOTA antenna as it is easy to set up and doesn’t need radials. I use a 10M pole and tape a wire to it, which has links for 20/17/15/12M. I built my matching box to easily handle 100W so it is perhaps bigger than it needs to be for the 5W I was using.
I started out on 14059 and there was a nice run of chasers. I then switched to 14260, which was great until some 20M contest started and a guy with no ears started calling 1KHz lower. I can’t believe he couldn’t hear me even with 5W. So then I tried 18086 and was very pleased to work VE1WT and KK1W who was very loud. Unfortunately I then ran out of time and had to pack up.
Overall a nice activation. I must come back here as the views are spectacular. Maybe try 2M next time. Thanks to all the chasers who worked me.