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Advice needed for my week of activations

I finish work this friday for a week and have decided to dedicate it to SOTA. Only been involved with SOTA for a couple of months and only done one activation so far, my plan is to do as many summits as possible, im looking for the voice of experience here to help me plan the week properly to make the most of my time, so far my list includes…

G/SC-003 Beacon Batch
G/SE-001 Walbury Hill
G/WB-021 Ruardean Hill
G/CE-001 Cleeve Hill
G/WB-019 May Hill
GW/SW-033 Wentwood
G/CE-003 Bredon Hill
G/WB-009 Worcestershire Beacon
G/SC-002 Wills Neck

Im looking for ideas how best approach this, such as how many could i do realisticly in a day and are they anymore near the ones i already stated which could be done on the same day as others, such as finding something to go with Wills Neck would be good?? like i said completly new to activating so any answers would be appreicated, easy access ones would be good hi hi
will be 2M SSB/FM Only, not planning on any overnight stays it will be back home everyday.

Cheers
Lee 2E0LMA (Stroud, Gloucestershire)

In reply to 2E0LMA:

This resource by Marios DC7CCC may help you planning your week:
http://www.adventureradio.de/mapview/index.php

…also don’t forget the summits pages here. For example:
http://www.sotawatch.org/summits.php?summit=G/SC-003

If you have a sat nav, my PoI resource will save you time:
http://www.sotabeams.co.uk/cards.htm

73

Richard
G3CWI

In reply to 2E0LMA:

Have a read of M1EYPs recent travels aeound DC and SC… Tom and Jimmy cram a few each day!

G/CE-001 -002 and -003 are an easy trio for one day, and there are a number of G/WB-xxx near to you to hatch a combination, as well as GW land

Heading further afield, G/SC-007 and -008 would be a pair… be warned about the ascent on -007 though! Possibly combine these with G/SE-001 (easy summit) if you are heading this way on an all-dayer

Andrew
M6ADB

In reply to 2E0LMA:

Hi Lee!

Great to hear that you are planning a “SOTA Activation Week”! As it is your first attempt, I would suggest you don’t try to do too much in one day. Perhaps two summits a day would be a good start … especially bearing in mind that you are going to be travelling home each night. I have activated all but two of the summits in your current list, and based on my experience I think the following “pairs” would be easily possible on consecutive days:

  1. Wentwood and Ruardean Hill (both easy-peasy - very short walks from the parking spots).

  2. Worcestershire Beacon and Bredon Hill - both about 2 km walk to the summit, but not too steep.

  3. May Hill (length of walk depends where you park, but the shortest route is less than half a mile) and Cleeve Hill (250 metres walk from the parking spot beside the radio masts).

  4. Walbury Hill on its own … it’s a bit out on a limb from all the others! (And don’t attempt to drive up the by-way unless you have a 4x4!) You could maybe manage Dundry Down (G/SC-010), near Bristol Airport on the same day if you’re keen … it’s a very easy “drive-on” one!

  5. I have done Staple Hill (G/SC-004) and Selworthy Beacon (G/SC-005) on a single day … both very easy access, but it needs an early start because it’s a long drive home at the end of the day! Alternatively, Staple Hill and Will’s Neck would be a good one-day pair.

  6. Walton Hill (G/CE-002) is a nice hill … and only a 15 minute walk from the parking spot. I can’t think of any others nearby, though, apart from Bredon and Cleeve Hills which are already accounted for.

  7. You could consider one or two more of the South Wales ones on a day trip. Mynydd Machen (GW/SW-030) is about the nearest, although it is not a very pleasant place. One Sunday I did Mynydd Sylen (GW/SW-036) and Mynydd y Betws (GW/SW-028) … both very easy access, but it’s a lot of miles driving there and back.

There’s some ideas anyway. Good luck … and I hope to “chase” you for a few points during the week. Fingers crossed for dry WX!

73,
Walt (G3NYY)

In reply to 2E0LMA:

The most important thing is not to attempt too much at first. When you are trying to work out timings don’t forget you need to park the car, put boots on and make last minute preparations to your gear. You also need to allow time to setup when at the summit and pack up. You’ll need a break for “natural activities” and to take a drink and eat something. Also stopping for just a moment to admire the view and take photos takes time. Finally when you get back to the car you need to take boots off and stow gear before driving to the next summit.

All of those items can add up to a significant amount of time. As you get more experienced, setup and take down times become smaller and consistent. You also get able to more accurately guess the ascent time looking at the map. You can use Naismith’s rule to work out walking times. Start with the original values and tweak them to you. In my case I have 5km/hr on flat good ground, 600m ascent adds 1 hour to the time. My descent times are still in accurate. The ground varies these times a lot.

Best of all have fun. You’re only competing with yourself against your own goals and aims not against anyone else. So make sure you enjoy yourself first and get points second. Although you can enjoy getting points aswell!

Finally if you alert for a few summits and decide to cancel one, chasers will appreciate if you either update SOTAwatch yourself or ask someone to spot the fact your plan has changed. You can’t always do that but you will be appreciated if you try to.

Andy
MM0FMF

Lee,

I have done the following pairs:

CE-001 & CE-003 - one short walk no real climb, one longer with some climb.

WB-008 & WB-011 (These are so close you just have to do them the same day) - one reasonable walk and one short walk (Look out for the Golf Balls).

CE-002 and would have done WB-004 but the black clouds looming put me off.

WB-004 and WB-002 in one day (before I did any SOTA)

I have not done them but WB-016 and WB-017 look two more that could (if you are feeling energentic) be done same day as WB-008 and WB-011 .

Perhaps you might look at:

SW-011 (quite a walk/climb very popular) and SW-026 (or perhaps SW-016)
SW-016, SW-020, WB-013
WB-024, WB-022
WB-020, WB-023

Stewart G0LGS

In reply to G0LGS:

Thanks to everyone who has given info and tips for my week of SOTA and now have the final plan for it…

30/08…G/CE-002 + G/CE-001
31/08…GW/SW-033 + G/WB-021
01/09…G/SC-005 + G/SC-001 + G/SC-002???
02/09…G/WB-019 + G/WB-004 + G/WB-002???
03/09…G/WB-009 + G/CE-003
04/09…WELL EARNED REST AT THE GREAT DORSET STEAM FAIR!!
05/09…G/SE-001 + G/SC-003

As i stated on my alerts timings are approx especially on 01/09 due to travelling down from Gloucestershire, and weather will obvioulsy be a factor but thats the plan and looking forward to it again many thanks to all for the advice.

Please feel free to comment on the activations if you have further suggestions?

73 hope to work you from the summits!
Lee 2E0LMA

In reply to 2E0LMA:

Hi Lee!

Looks great to me! Have fun and take care. Hope to catch you on the air from a few of the summits.

P.S. If you have a TomTom, you will find G3CWI’s “SOTA Points of Interest” file invaluable! It takes you straight to the best parking spot for each summit. You can download it from Richard’s web site at:

http://www.sotabeams.co.uk/cards.htm

73,
Walt (G3NYY)

In reply to G3NYY:

P.S. If you have a TomTom, you will find G3CWI’s “SOTA Points of
Interest” file invaluable!

It can easily be converted to work with most SATnavs - not just Tomtoms.

73

Richard
G3CWI