Carn Daimh is a 2 pointer just North of Tomintoul and was my first activation for some time due to a combination of poor weather and knee problems. Weather was first class, knee not so great but it didn’t complain too much. This was also a first outing for a new-build Moxon for 6 and 10m which I had only tested in my garden.
I started from Glenconglass “car park” just North of Tomintoul - room for about 5 cars by a Glenlivet Estate map board and used the anti-clockwise part of Route 6, shown on the map. This route is also described on the Walkhighlands website.
Route map -detailed ©Crown copyright 2022 Ordnance Survey. Media 041/22
From the parking area, walk through Glenconglass farmyard and go through a gate into a field immediately on the left. On the day, this contained a herd of longhorn heifers, minding their own business. Cross a small stream by a wooden footbridge and a marshy area which has had planks laid down, then walk up to a stile at the top of the field.The next field contained sheep.Follow the fence line to the right - there is a faint path in the grass. The trees shown on the OS map have been felled.
Looking back towards Glenconglass
There are 2 gates with spring-locks and chains, easily negotiated, which pass into an open area of bracken and heather, with more sheep.
Here I lost the path, although I did find a waymarker with no obvious path attached.
I just kept to the grassier bits to the South of the streams until I saw a marker post for the Speyside Way and headed for that.
The Speyside Way path is obvious and takes you all the way to the summit, first through another gate into a fir plantation which is located at the gap in the trees shown on the photo below.
A short way after the gate there is a large signpost - follow the path which goes up left, indicated on the post as Ballindalloch. This goes all the way to the top.
The summit is marked with a large cairn and a compass rose viewpoint guide.
Looking NE towards Ben Rinnes, GM/ES-021
The walk took me about 1 hour 45m
Moxon for 6/10 plus mast for 40/20 linked dipole, 17/15/12 delta loops and 2m loop
I started on 2m FM, giving Mike MM7MWL a Complete. MM1FAS, Richard in Elgin then called in, but a spot and 5 minutes of CQs brought no further contacts - the limitations of a simple loop I guess.
Checking 6m I heard the GB3RMK beacon blasting in, but a spot and a lot of CQs brought nothing.
Moving to 40m brought a run of 17, mainly UK, including MM7MWL again and a S2S with MW0JKS/P. EA2CKX was the only non-UK.
On 20m a spot brought 14 chasers, with Chris F4WBN his usual 59+. HB9GKR/P was a second S2S.
I checked 6m again and a spot and calls brought silence, so I chased a couple of summits on 40 and 20 before trying 17m. A spot brought 10 chasers, including F4WBN again and 2 S2S. Dinos SV3IEG was my furthest East of the day.
On 15m, F4WBN got me for the third time, followed by 3 others including S57S/P for a S2S.
12m was dead as was 10. I checked 6, but again nothing but GB3RMK.
Went back to 20m and chased 6 more S2S.
Another spot on 17m brought a second S2S with HB9HTM/P and 3 others; by this time it was 1530 local. I had hoped for some Stateside chasers, as there were some strong signals from the East coast, but no.
Checking 10m I heard a CX8 looking for German and Swiss stations, so I quickly changed out the 6m mox for the 10m one and a spot brought 7 chasers with an interesting geographic spread: EA3EVL, EA7GV, LW2DO - best DX of the day and my first SOTA QSO with Argentina, EC8ADS, EA3HP, EI2JT/M and M0BHG.
After starting to pack up, I had a last look at 6m and heard F5DE calling CQ in CW but he faded out. A spot and CQs finally brought some contacts: F4EUL on Belle Ile EU-048, EA4HVS and GM4MOX in Tain off the back of the beam.
69 contacts for the day, which was gloriously sunny with just a gentle breeze. 360 views from the top were great.
During the day there was a steady stream of walkers passing through and about 20 bikers as there are also biking trails which include the summit. I also met the estate warden with dog who was walking around checking fencing.
Picnic bench on the North flank of the summit - probably just outside the activation zone.
Thanks to all the chasers and activators and see you again soon - I’ll be in Croatia from June 4th-19th as 9A/G4JXP/P.