So …

Made it over to the Isle of Wight, no problems. Was put on an earlier ferry, got to my first summit which was pretty much a drive up. No hassles setting up the 20m/40m linked dipole and beach shelter for the shade. A herd of cows came over the brow of the hill and terrorised me…

One of them chewed off the coax feeder to the dipole, by the time I had got the rest of the expensive bits to safety. I’m going to be spending the rest of the night unravelling this birds nest:

The beach shelter also bought the farm, so as frustrating as this is (not going to be able to do tomorrows summit either; no antenna anymore) I’ve come off relatively Scot free. The antenna can be repaired with some new coax feeder and the beach shelter was less than £20. It could have been alot worse if they’d trampled the ic-705 or worse still, me!

The first couple were just curious and not much of an issue (I could shoo them off) but as more joined the heard, they got pushy and I’m enough of a country boy to know when to retreat from cows. Once the heard is big enough they can become more aggressive… There were also a few bull calves in the herd too, which didn’t help.

Got to the campsite, and all setup. Just need to go foraging for a jalfrezei or chicken chow mein :smiley:

I’ll chalk this one up to experience, and I’ll have to come back another weekend to activate the two summits here.




Not sure why, but I ended up with a duplicate post. Have written these from my phone… Hopefully have deleted the other thread.

On one of my activations, the Mountains to Sea Trail passed through a pasture. The linked dipole was set up on a 20 foot crappie pole used for a mast. Within a few minutes, here came cows checking us out. One walked right through the tie out line, snapping the mast pole. Sounded like a .22 shot.
Crazy cows.
73 Gary

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How frustrating! Especially having made the effort to get to the IoW. Glad to read that you managed to keep the 705 safe.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your time there despite not being able to carry out your activation. At least you have some lovely weather.

73, and better luck next time,

Matthew M0JSB

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On OE/TI-285 my XYL is explaining to big sheep not to touch parts of my antenna :wink:

They were really very big

73, Jarek


I’d get into a fight with some sheep. I think I could manage one or 2 of those, but cows can be nasty once they decide they don’t like you! All biting and hair pulling :joy:


Just tell them to moov away Dave :wink:


The most frustrating that I nearly always carry multiple antenna, and tools and a butane powered soldering iron and could have made field repairs.

Space was at a premium on the bike, but I’ll sacrifice a pair of socks and my pillow next time :rofl:


Order restored from the chaos!

The cow chewed through the feeder about 18" from the toroid. I’ve still got the rest of the feeder with the BNC attached, so I’ll just need to dig out the hot glue, remove the toroid from the old coax, remove the old coax, rewind the toroid and resolder the feeder onto the legs of the dipole. If only had the few tools I need!


Good idea! There are more people killed by cows than bulls!

Glad you saved the radio.




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This is where you need to carry a Swiss Army knife or equivalent and a reel of electrical tape. For HF, a simple strip back of the coax and twist together of the ends of the centres and the ends of the braids should get you going. I’ve even run 2m through such a mash up… and repaired a dipole on my 2m beam with a stick and the foil off my sandwiches. Where needs must… :grinning:


My Swiss Army Knife was a present from the HB9SOTA group. I have carried it with me every day since they gave it to me. Unless I’m flying of course !


Some luck with the trx and not so much damage on the other parts, it could be worse. So hope you will fix the equipment for the next activation(s).

Your report reminds me of a discussion some years ago.

73, Ludwig

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I’ve carried one every day for the last sixty years, in that time I’ve got though just three - they are almost indestructable, and like Gerald I’ve used mine for running repairs to feeders!

Would you rather have a Swiss Army Knife or a Leatherman (which weighs double)?

No one mentioned one of the serious cow problems, so I guess all know that you never get between a cow and her calf.

Elliott, K6EL


Unfortunately most leathermen have locking blades which makes them a bit more problematic to carry routinely over here.

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I’ve never had a bad experience with cows but as I’ve got older I have become wary of them. I walked Ingleborough last night and I had to walk through a herd of young cows. The cows were being a bit boisterous so I kept my distance as much as I could and walked quickly! I was worried about meeting the herd in the dark on my way back down the mountain but I only saw sheep. I don’t know where the cows were but I was thankful that they weren’t near the path!


Sorry to learn about your gear, it’s definitely worth squeezing in some kind of back up plan if you can.

73, Colin


Same. Well I actually won mine for leading one of the categories on European SOTA Day. When my DIN cable kept falling out and wouldn’t properly connect in the back of my 817 thus scuppering FT8 operation on Gun G/SP-013 recently, this knife was really handy to strip back some of the plastic coating from the connector and get things going again.


Jimmy @M0HGY (then @M3EYP ) once did so accidentally while walking the Pennine Way in 2006. Suddenly we were encircled by a stampede! Fortunately this came to a halt and the cows moved away, but we’ve been ultra-careful ever since! Liam and I were walking in the Staffordshire Moorlands a couple of weeks ago and spotted that the public footpath ahead would pass between two mothers on one side of the path, and two very young calves on the other. We plotted a very wide detour around the boundary of the field in order to keep well away! (Made me wonder if that action - deliberately leaving a PROW by 100m or so - constituted a “trespass” regardless of the sensible/necessary reason for doing so?)

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