Last Friday I managed to activate the final two summits in my local region of G/SE, G/SE-007 (Crowborough) & G/SE-014 (Cliffe Hill). Time was a bit limited, so I didn’t hang around for too long on either summit. In the end I worked 14 on 30m CW on G/SE-007, and 7 on 20m CW plus 1 S2S with EI3KA/P on 30m from G/SE-014. I know that completing a region made up exclusively of 1 pointers could hardly be called an epic achievement, but I was happy to complete my own target of getting them all in the log book before 2021 was over.
On the one hand I can’t say it was the most inspiring day of SOTA. The weather was pretty cold and dull, and G/SE-007 could hardly be described as the most inspiring summit to visit and play radio from.
However, as I got into my car to start the journey home, I was struck by how lucky I feel to have got involved in SOTA. With so much grim news and uncertainty affecting all of us again, I really appreciated having a few hours of what felt like an escape from all of the doom and gloom and have something completely different to focus on. Somehow I felt lighter on my drive home.
I also reflected on how lucky we activators are to rely on a loyal band of chasers out there who always seem on hand to help us complete our activations. Even though most of our QSOs tend more towards the rubber stamp variety, I always find it somehow reassuring when called by a familiar callsign. I won’t list the regulars I have in mind as there’s a danger I’ll leave someone out, but thank you all! That is not to say that I don’t equally appreciate QSOs with non-regular chasers at all! Every contact is always very welcome.
I have loved getting involved with SOTA this year. It has given me something positive to focus on, and I really would like to say a huge thank you to all of the chasers, fellow activators for the S2S points and of course all of the team who put in the blood, sweat and tears to keep the show on the road!
Wishing everyone a peaceful and Happy Christmas and look forward to catching many of you on the air in 2022.
Well done for completing all the summits in your region. I see two of them are on the Isle of Wight which must have been interesting from a logistical point of view - unless you used them as an excuse for a short break on the island!
We’ve only half the G/SE total here in G/DC, just 7 summits and I’m savouring them slowly. I don’t expect to complete until 2022 having started the quest in 2020! But one hill doesn’t inspire me so I might leave it until 2023… or a little later.
I took the car ferry from Portsmouth to activate the two IoW summits, and managed to combine the radio with an enjoyable costal walk. We often used to go the island for day trips during school holidays in my childhood, so it brought back lots of happy memories for me.
Good luck with all of your SOTA endeavours, and hopefully we’ll get a S2S QSO in the log sometime in 2022.
I was expecting this to be about using AS to get your contacts but no, it isn’t. Glad you have enjoyed your first SOTA activations and completing a region. Shame you will now be unable to handle the addiction and is downhill (metaphorically speaking) now
This is what helped seal my interest in SOTA back in 2006. After years of working here, there and everywhere around the world and rarely working anyone twice, I found the camaraderie in SOTA and the fact that I could speak to people time and time again (primarily on 2m SSB) really enhanced my operations, almost as though I’d returned to the close-knit 2m AM communities of the early 1970s.
Well done on completing G/SE. I wonder where next. Beware of getting hooked on Uniques like myself and a number of others… it will only lead you to wander further afield.
Well done Matthew, I can remember my delight at completing my home region. Like you it was all 1-pointers ( and only 5 in G/TW), but that doesn’t detract from the achievement or enjoyment. If SOTA has taught me one thing it is that there is a lot of enjoyment to be had by searching out some of the lowly 1-pointers that previously I would never have thought of travelling to walk. (Not sure I’m including Crowborough in that, but it takes all sorts! )
PS Crowborough is a bit rubbish. For SOTA, not the nice town and its inhabitants! It didn’t help that it was dry all day except for when I set up and operated, then immediately stopped raining when I had packed up again… you couldn’t make it up!
Thanks Gerald. Quite right to point out that our grumbles about Crowborough are not any sort of reflection of the town itself! I’m sure I remember someone mentioning that there is a pub garden which falls within the activation zone. Perhaps that’s something to research for next time!