It’s been a few years since this was activated. It’s normally paired with an activation of Lochnagar but when I did Lochnagar I didn’t have the “oomph” left to do this as well. It’s been bugging me as there is not much that can be paired with it. But I was going to tag on something else on the way home.
The car park is at the end of a very narrow dead end road and people are warned in advance it’s £4/day to park. No problem, I had a fair bit of cash with me.
First problem, this is the car park at 9.35… no space But the nice lady on the car park was directing people to the coach park. Job done. But it was going to be busy on Lochnagar.
There’s an excellent path althought it’s nearly 5km and 300m of ascent to the start of the Conachcraig path. When you get to the top you get to enjoy Lochnagar and its cliffs (about 500m sheer).
These Granite Tors are the high point I think. I had to stand on them and wave my phone about to get a signal. When I sat down at the radio I lost the signal. Much faffing about to spot myself then.
Looking East-ish to Mount Keen. The sky looks miserable but it was about 18C and the sun was breaking through the clouds all the time. I’m quite bronzed up after being outside for so long.
Looking North to Conachcraig’s North Top, Caisteall na Caillaich showing the very boulder summit. Not much soil, hard work finding somewhere for a tent peg.
Looking South back the station, 60/40/30 dipole on 5m mast.
The waymark cairn. You fork left here for Lochnagar tourist path. You turn hard right for the excellent Conachcraig path. Don’t do what I did and decide to cut off the approach and go straight up. Bad, bad move. Added 40mins to the ascent time
Conachcraig itself. Looks a doodle but that ground is thick, dense Heather, hidden boulders, and it’s steeper than it looks. My 'shortcut was up the right hand skyline. Don’t! Follow the approach path to cairn and take the easy path.
Of course, the WX got so much better on the walk out. No clouds at the car park and 21C when I dropped down from 420m ASL at the car park.
The radio was rubbish. Just 1 on 60m, 8 on 40m SSB, 3 on 40m CW and 8 on 30m CW. Made hard by not being picked up by a skimmer and having to do a faffing dance to get a mobile signal. I was going to do something on the way home but I was hot, my legs were tired, propagation was rubbish. I drove home fast as there was cold beer in the fridge
Total walked 11km, total ascent 463m, total driven 252miles.