Activation Report: Broomy Law GM/SS-209

A beautiful day but not an early start so it had to be a fairly quick one. I pass Broomy Law by the A702 lots of times so it’s been in my mind to get up there. Not a big hill but as usual excellent views all round.

I decided on a lightweight activation, so just took the SOTA Beams SB270 - or at least, the 2m part of it, and a single 4Ah SLAB for the bare FT-817 - no mini linears! (Must give the new homebrew 6m linear a SOTA outing soon - it seemed to work well in the contest last Sunday.)

Access is not difficult; I picked a fairly direct route straight up the north slope of the hill from the A702 where I could safely park off the road, and avoid the many fields full of cattle. There is also a track up to the mobile phone masts on the summit (will put photos on Flickr later) from the south, which is longer but potentially easier I guess; there’s a good place to park there too, at a little place called Candy Mill.

On the alerts I had given the running order, so stuck to it - 2m FM first, with immediate responses from GM7GAX (thanks for the spot Bob) and GM0KZX. Next it was 2m SSB, not expecting a lot, but managed a good QSO with Victor MI0JST near Bushmills. Victor offered 70cm - curses, should have taken the 70cm elements after all! No further responses to CQ on the calling frequency though, so I moved to 80m.

No joy from my end there. I called CQ on the alerted frequency for 10 mins but nothing - I listened to quite a few people on the band, and called in at the end of a couple of QSOs, but didn’t seem to be heard. Ah well - move to 40m. This was much better - my alerted 7.118 had some horrible chattering noise on it, so I moved up to 7.121 and called CQ, to have an instant response from Don G0RQL (again, thanks for the spot Don). Andy MM0FMF had recently vacated the frequency so that was very fortunate. Sorry to have missed a couple of potential S2S with Andy today but we simply didn’t overlap time-wise. Anyway, many thanks to all who piled in for contacts after Don’s spot, and sorry to anyone who didn’t get it, since I had to shift up in frequency when a QSO with Jack GM4COX was clobbered by some very loud stations tuning up then having a QSO on top of us - they clearly simply couldn’t hear us. I found 7.140 clear and a short CQ brought several other contacts, long chats rather than SOTA chasers.

A very rewarding day - lightweight radio with a beautiful blue sky and lovely views all around, and some nice contacts. There are still a lot of summits in that area I haven’t yet done, so I’ll be back for more.


In reply to GM8OTI:

I didn’t even know you were going out! I’d seen Robert GM4GUF’s alert for Ben Lomond so I made sure the 2m handy was on 145.500 in case Robert called on FM after SSB. As it was someone Brian or I worked (sorry can’t remember who) told Robert we were listening on .500 and so both myself and Brian had an S2S with Robert. 2x S2S with yourself would have been the cherry on the icing.

Broomy Law is a nice little hill. I did it 2 years ago on another occasion when when Brian was staying with me. We did it on the farm tracks, easy apart from avoiding the bull!


In reply to MM0FMF:

No, I didn’t know I was going out until this morning - by which time I’d seen your alert, but guessed you would already have left for the hills.

Maybe need to use the old blower for cases like this in future - a couple of extra S2S would have been good, indeed.