Almost Tropical Conditions - Buckden Pike - G/NP-009 3 July 2011 - G4OOE
A very fine weekend forecasted so it was up early again on the road for 0500. After 87 miles I arrived at my chosen parking spot at the White Lion Inn car park in Cray (SD 942791) at 0732. After a quick coffee and a sandwich, I left at 0752 walking over the stepping stones in the stream and into the field beyond. John G4YSS had kindly plotted me a route and using the GPS I more or less followed this and it looks very similar to the route used by Richard G3CWI from his tips on the SOTA summit details page. I found the route more difficult than I had anticipated, in my estimation it was almost as hard as my recent route up to G/NP-005 Ingleborough. The bridleway becoming very steep near the summit, I certainly couldn’t imagine anyone taking a horse up it anyway! After several stops for water, photographs and sheer tiredness I arrived at the summit at 0925.
After removing the heavy rucksack, I gave John GX0OOO/P, on G/NP-008 Great Whernside, a call on my 2m fm h/h and he came straight back to me, a brilliant start with an s2s contact bagging 6 chaser points. This summit is very good for aerials, there is a convenient wall with posts, a signpost and various other bits and pieces ideal for HF/VHF use. I attached my fibreglass pole to the sign post and fitted my 40m dipole centre to it, attaching the ends to fence posts sticking out above the wall in an inverted vee configuration. Then I fixed my 2m dipole and 2m 3 element beam to the same post.
At 1010 I started on 144-cw working GX0OOO/P, G4SSH and G0NUP a record for me 3 cw 2m contacts from a summit. A 2m fm tip off to GX0OOO/P and John was able to relay on to Roy G4SSH that I was ready to go on 7032-cw and I pulled in OK1AOV, GX0OOO/P, PA0WDG, G3VXJ, OK1ZE, G4ELZ, DF5WA, OK1ZE, HB9AGH, LA8WF, DL6KVA, S58R, DL3HXX, DL1FU, G4OBK, DL2HWI, F5SQA, G4WSX, OK2QA, DL3JPN, PA0ALW, PA0SKP, ON5JD, S51ZG, DL5ZG & DL3KUM. A qsy to 10118-cw brought in OZ4RT, EA1DFP, 9A7W, DJ5AVN, DL8YR, F6TDX, DL7BQ, SM0GNS & OE5EEP. By 1130 my SLAB was on its last legs so my 2m contacts were limited but I did manage M0XVF and G0VLF before switching to the h/h to get G3SDY, G4SSH, G4EKM/P, G4OBK and G5VZ. I did hear 2E0YYY/P Mike from Gun G/SP-013 but had no luck in contacting him.
After chatting to some bemused hikers, one of whom thought that I was working for the National Park, I left the summit at 1232 saying farewell to John GX0OOO/P on the h/h. It was quite a bit easier going down but after about half an hour, my rucksack rear strap popped out of the sewn in ladder on the back causing the rucksack to suddenly drop down almost pulling me over. Fortunately I was able to patch it up through other sewn in ladder points. I decided to stick to the bridleway for the rest of the walk in case I had to empty the rucksack, leaving some of the contents near an easy reference point so I could return and find it again if I had to make more than one journey. Luckily the rucksack held and I arrived at the car at 1330 and staggered in to the pub for a pint of ice cold coke which didn’t touch the sides. This activation had been very satisfying but I was wearing far too many layers for the warm conditions which made my walk up and down a lot more uncomfortable than previous ones.
The journey back to Scarborough went well apart from a slight hold up on Sutton Bank while a recovery truck removed a vehicle. I arrived home at around 1645.
FT-857D 20-90 watts
LDG-Z100 Plus auto tuner
40 m dipole as inverted vee
1 x 7Ah SLAB
MFJ403 Iambic keyer
FT-857D 20 watts / VX-7R 5 watts
2m SOTA dipole
2m 3el SOTA beam
7032-cw - 26
10118-cw - 9
144-cw - 3
145-fm - 10
Total = 48