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Best SOTA QSO 2012

Yesterday I was thinking about the activations that I carried out during 2012 and came to the conclusion that while it had been a fairly lean year in terms of the number of activations, the fact that I had been as far north as Westray in the Orkneys and as far south as the Algarve in Portugal made it rather special. Of all the activations one stands out in particular - that on 3rd May 2012 from the Knap of Trowieglen (GM/SI-110) on the island of Hoy, Orkney. On this summit I worked 7MHz CW followed by 144MHz SSB. Timing was a major part of what happened when I got onto 2m as I was fortunate enough to be at the end of a transient duct which netted me several contacts with regular chasers, ultimately producing a 2m SSB contact with Don G0RQL. IO88iu to IO70uv - a distance of 887km. Not a record by any means, but a very pleasing and unexpected contact at the end of several days on the islands with not much to show by way of contacts on VHF.

I wonder what other activators consider their most pleasing contact of 2012. I think I know some of the answers.

73, Gerald G4OIG

In reply to G4OIG:

Hi Gerald,

Tricky one this. 2012 was an exceptional year for HF DX. However, it`s difficult to class a best contact, as it probably needs to considered both in terms of DX and or rareity. As for most pleasing, there have been so many.

Best and most pleasing contact working VHF FM using a vertical must be a 600km contact with Bernard ON/KI6TSF on 08-Sep-2012 from GW/NW-044 Moel Famau. This would be a nice contact using a beam. Admittedly there was a big lift on that day.

Best HF contact in terms of DX must a 17400km hop on 20m in May, with Laurie VK7ZE in Tasmania, from G/SP-004 Shining Tor.

From G/SP-004 Shining Tor, V3MUR/VP9 in Bermuda, FG5GP Alain in Guadeloupe, Christopher 9Y4D in Trinidad were all very pleasing.

However, in the past few months I’ve noticed a big increase in the number of Stateside Chasers. My last four activations have produced nearly 40 contacts Stateside.

A couple of years ago it was the exception rather than the rule to leave a summit with a Stateside chaser in the log. Working the higher HF frequencies these days, you could class yourself unlucky to leave a summit without one!

There are some outstanding Stateside/North America chasers, Just off the top of my head, Rich N4EX, Barry N1EU, William W1OW, James K2SNJ, with apologies to all the ones I’ve missed.

Furthermore, the Stateside/North America operating procedure makes them a pleasure to work.

73 Mike

In reply to G4OIG:

Great idea for a thread Gerald!

My best contact in 2012 was with Barry, N1EU.

On 11th August on Great Whernside, G/NP-008, I self spotted, called CQ and bang, Barry came straight back to me at 1047utc. I was using an untried RcokMite for the first time. The RockMite was putting out about 90mW into the start of the feeder cable for the inverted vee dipole.

Easily my best ever QSO, not only my best ever SOTA QSO. I have the shack wallpaper (1000mpw) to acknowledge the event.

Thanks Barry - I’ll never forget that day and I’m amazed at your great ears!

Colin, M0CGH

In reply to M0CGH:

“My best contact in 2012 was with Barry, N1EU.”

Same here, mine was my first and only (hopefully only so far) SOTA chaser contact into the States. Just made the contact before 10m closed for the day:)

Thanks Barry.

Another Colin,

In reply to M0XSD:

“My best contact in 2012 was with Barry, N1EU.”

Can I say “me too”?

Worked Barry for my first Stateside S2S, G/CE-001 - W2/GC-115.
It also qualified me for Gold Mountain Hunter!

There ought to be a N1EU (or NEW) award!

In reply to G4ISJ:

Nov 23rd, on VE2/SG-030, running 5 watts and a par end-fed… Being called by:

16:37z C50C 14MHz CW

In the end, life is good.

In reply to G4OIG:
Am I allowed to say “any QSO with the little band of regular chasers I speak to on 2M in Wales, the Midlands or the North West of England”.

Even though they are usually quick chats I sometimes get to speak a bit longer.

I only started Amateur Radio in the summer of 2011 and I feel like I’ve made a new group of friends, none of which I have yet met face to face!

My wife accompanies me onto most summits and she even recognises the call signs and voices now.

I am not going to make a list as I fear I’m bound to miss someone out. But thanks to all of you for giving me such fun.


Working m3eyp, 2e0eyp and then m0hgy.

In reply to G3CWI:
Best one for me was OE/G4OBK/P on OE/TI-628 to ZL2IFB on 20m CW
23 July 1528z. Not that good though - was running 50 watts!

Got to have been 29th October 2012, S2S from The Cloud G/SP-015 to WO6M on W6/CT-136. On 28MHz CW with 5 watts!

That wasn’t just my best SOTA QSO of 2012, it was my best SOTA QSO ever - even topping when I worked several VKs from The Cloud a couple of years earlier.


In reply to M1EYP:

My first DX S2S with G3CWI on 2010 NA SOTA day was a great contact also… :wink:

Thanks for the kind remarks.

Memorable 2012 qso’s for me (sorry, I can’t just pick “one”) include the two with Colin/Colin mentioned above, innumerable qso’s with Mike YYY, Pete’s S2S and 10M SSB transatlantic S2S with Tom/Jimmy EYP on G/SP-015.

The bad news of late is that when I got back from my activation of W2/GC-026 on Sunday, my SteppIR yagi refused to come to life. I’m afraid my hearing will be greatly impaired (-15 to -20dB?) until I get it sorted out, which probably won’t happen for a few months. Just simple wires or a vertical in the mean time.

Barry N1EU

In reply to G4OIG:

I don’t really know what was my most satisfying QSO in 2012, but my most satisfying HF QSO ever on a SOTA activation was V85SS in Brunei, on 20m CW with 5 watts to an inverted V dipole from Walbury Hill, G/SE-001. That was in June 2011. He sent me a QSL card too! During the same activation I also worked HS0ZEE in Thailand.
I have also worked VKs and ZLs on several occasions, but the V85 was rarer.

Walt (G3NYY)

In reply to N1EU:
Hi Barry (off topic remark); my SteppIR SWR went through the roof overnight. 2 days of tests and checking everything - results - small creatures had chewed through part of the control cable where it entered the conduit. I suppose it may have tasted nice or they wanted to make room for a nest or something! They chewed one cable of the 4 so the element was stuck at a certain f. because no command line. Hope you get it sorted out - there is the motor test on the SDA 100 Controller…good luck.
Mike G6TUH

In reply to G4OIG:



W1OW 14MHz SSB 6.600 KM

All my contacts and antenna QRP y SSB 5w miracle …


In reply to G4OIG:
My best SOTA QSO is always my next one