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G4OBK in CT/ES this week

I have a few minutes here before meeting up with PEDRO CT1DBS and DAVID CT1DRB SOTA Men for a drink.

It was a good day in the Estremadura region today. Mild, with some sunshine, like a good September day in the UK. Well over 200 Km driven and 3 activations, totalling 72 QSOs, around 5 miles walked in total. I have a slight problem with battery power for my FT-817. I think my old 3.3 AH LiPO is shot. Not surprised - it’s almost ten year old. I hope it will support another 2 full days supplementing the internal batts in the rig then its going to the dump for recycling…

A couple of chasers did not make it into my log today and may think they did, as they sent their 73s… In particular F6EAZ who repeatedly sends his callsign 3 times in CW ending with K and then cannot hear me… It needs saying, as a Chaser myself I hear this “Pile up blocking” and not listening in between calls very frustrating. I went back to the guy at least 3 times today from ES-001 and he did not give me a report when I was receiving… He was sending his callsign 3 times over and over with quite a clicky note at 59 strength and was wiping out other possible contacts with other stations calling and operating the right way, yet he could not hear me. The operator is close to being blacklisted due to bad operating, sorry. Desperate or what…I will work him, no problem if he calls me by sending his call once only. I will work him and await a report, lets see if the OM hears my QRP signal next time!!

The other station not worked and this is not criticism, but he did try hard but could not hear me was OK1SDE on ES-002.

73 and see you tmw when I will likely be out with CT1DRB. We’ll try between us to activate 4 CT/ES summits.

73 Phil

PS Best DX N1GB and AC1Z. No S2S and the 30m band was very poor today :disappointed:

Hi Phil,
Thanks for the three summits today. You will know from my reports to you how things varied for me.
Good job - well done.
Lucky you - weather is still horrible here.
Night night.
Edit PS: Heard N1GB chasing - here about 52.

PPS: Please buy a drink for David when you meet up. We had a great time when he came over to the UK and we did my local summits. :wink: I will repay you via PP !

Missed you on the first summit Phil (out walking the dog), Got you on the second one but I definitely have to improve my receive side! Listened for you on the third but could hear nothing. (these all on SSB of course). What power was the 817 running on the final summit?

Possibly time to fit an internal 2500maH LIPO into the 817 Phil? So much easier than carrying an external battery. Then for capacity take a spare one in the car / suitcase in case you need more capacity. I get three activations out of the 2500mAH and it’s still about 33% full (but don’t want to take it down further than that).

I’ll show you how it’s fitted when I’m over again in February.

73 Ed.

Back now after a great evening spent talking SOTA, QRP operating and finding out more about the real Portugal, not what is the Algarve…
We were joined by Joao CT7ABE who lives very close to Pedro CT1DBS. David CT1DRB lives some distance away. Lisbon is not unlike our part of North Yorkshire where within a 10 mile radiius there are at least 6 radio amateurs into SOTA big style.
Mike - by the time I saw your post it was too late to buy CT1DRB a beer as we had had our fill, a moderate drink of course with tomorrow to look forward to…
Ed - yes, I think the battery mod will be necessary. Battery voltage was down to less than 10v on that last summit ES-002 at times. I activated the flashing icon to give a supposed 5 watts…
Here we are in a very nice beer house earlier this evening:
Left to right: Joao CT7ABE, Pedro CT1DBS, Phil G4OBK and David CT1DRB.

73 de Phil



Appols for yesterday, am terrible remembering names with calls and yours should be one of the foremost.

Thanks for the first summit before being dragged away for shopping, but was interesting as sat monitoring 14285 heard the qrm and thought hmm. Then one key word came through I did catch, SOTA. That set up a reaction to flick up and down and found you calling away 1kz down.

No shopping today loads radio play LOL

Enjoy while you can its even turned colder down here on SW.

Karl 73s

Hi Phil, the blinking L3 power indicator means that you have set the rig to 5W output but the battery voltage is low and hence may not be able to produce 5w output. No Icon showing at all means the full 5w is being put out.


P.S. the long awaited snow arrived here this morning - we now have a full ground (and antennas) cover of white “stuff”.

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Well dispute the flashing light :kissing:
Loud, proud signal here this morning :grinning: from CT/ES-007

roll on the next one


Thanks all for an enjoyable day… I was accompanied by David CT1DRB on 3 out of 4 summits and we did what we could with the QRP… I say sorry to the DL station that did not get through on my last summit of ES-005. You know who it was that spoiled things again, the man who calls three times K with the loud and clicky signal and he kept doing his usual today, however on my first summit he did only call twice K which is slightly more acceptable! Eventually I worked him in desperation on ES-005 but by that time conditions has deteriorated to DL and I did not work you. So sorry, but I am blaming the french station for repeating his 3 call K performance again and again…

For tomorrow David CT1DRB has helped by obtaining for me a government permit to enter the Natural Park which is restricted. So I can reach ES-003. I plan a much harder round tomorrow, plenty of driving of cours, but 3 fairly tough summits compared to the 4 easy ones we did today. These will be ES-008 > ES-003 > ES-009. I hope I do not run out of daylight and power, so please keep the overs short and we’ll do it. Also excuse the lack of name and pleasantries I don;t want to be rude - it is just to save power and time. And if you use CW do like the Phone guys do - send your call once. Most of the time I will answer someone first call. Oh, yes and if the above mentioned 3 calls K station is there again don’t be surprised if I start to work split and listen one KHz up ±. Then I can avoid him and he will not be logged.

Nww to put my alerts in and go out for some food…

73 de Phil G4OBK

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Hi Phil, strong Wind here… anyway i’ll look for a S2S.
I just send a mail to F6EAZ, he will probably change the way he calls us.
73 Gerald F6HBI

FB Gerald. I am setting out a little earlier and skipping breakfast here. Alert times adjusted and very much a guess…

I hope we can make an S2S.

73 Phil

So happy to clock your Sotas yesterday.
But you guessed by now 14285 is being monitored by at least two of us, one after another LOL.

But getting onto the subject of more than one call at time, there is no need for it, its not going to last long the pile up if one and always be others climbing said same summit in future for sure. s this is the wonder of Sota so many summits ands so long time to do it in.

Listening out for you again today and by way thanks for your time and doing what your doing for us lazy chaps/lasses in our shacks.

Just need ES 003 and ES 009 now for a completed region :smile:

73s Karl

Well Phil activated ES-003 and ES-009 today Karl - did you get a complete region?

Phil, thanks for your efforts - would have loved to have worked you on more summits, but in a lot of cases I got back to the rig after completing chores too late. I also had some difficulty hearing you on several of the summits, it seems you were booming into the UK on most of them though, so well done!

73 Ed.

Good to work you on ES-003 as GB2IWM from Duxford today Phil, you’ve def got the best of the weather.

73, Colin

:scream: :cry:

Nope dragged away from shack kicking and screaming.

Oh well next time :smile:

I returned home last Thursday evening after my visit to all ten of the CT / ES tramadura summits in three days. I enjoyed perfect dry weather for the tour with the temperature reaching 17c on my last day with full sunshine for most of the day.

I average 21.6 QSOs per summit with a total of 216 contacts using QRP power of 5 watts output on the 30m and 20m and 2m bands.

Day One 3 summits: 73 Contacts (47 CW - 26 SSB)
Day Two: 4 summits: 76 Contacts (36 CW - 39 SSB - 1 FM) (Plus David CT1DRB = 47 CW)
Day Three 3 summits: 67 Contacts (47 CW - 26 SSB)

Gear: Yaesu FT-817 - 3 amp external battery - Link dipole for 10/20/30m on 5m travel pole (RG-58 fed with no balun)

Hopefully someone will activate CT/ES-003 for me as a Chaser soon to give me the full set of CT/ES for SOTA Complete.

Here are a few pictures from my tour, more [in my blog][1] in due course. Several routes used have been uploaded into the [SOTA Mapping Project][2].

Planning is now underway for the next overseas SOTA tour in April with GI4ONL, G4OOE, G3TQQ and M0HQO…

73 Phil

Day One - CT/ES-010 Monte Serves - 5m support pole dwarfed by the trig point

Day One: CT/ES-002 Serra de Sintra - Castle in Royal Park seen from the summit

Day Two: Part of the interesting landscape seen from CT/ES-007 Serra de Socorro - terraced housing in the countryside

Day Two: CT/ES-001 Serra de Montejunto (activated on Day One - seen from CT/ES-007 Serra do Socorro)

Day Two: My companion on three summits David CT1DRB on CT/ES-006 Monte de Santa Eulalia

Day Two: Simple station set up on tower viewpoint on CT/ES-005 Monte do Alqueidao

Day Two: Elevated antenna on the viewing platform on CT/ES-005 Monte do Alqueidao

Crumbling trig point on CT/ES-003 Serra da Arrabida. A challenging summit when climbed from the north.

Pidgin English Google Translate of the permit obtained for me by David CT1DRB to allow me access to the summit of CT/ES-003 Serra da Arrabida. Proving once again that CB radio is more likely to heard of by the layman than Amateur radio…

Job done - Selfie picture on final summit of ten CT/ES-009 Serra de Sao Luis
[1]: http://catterblog.blogspot.co.uk/
[2]: http://www.sotamaps.org/


Thanks to:

OE7FMH - G6TUH - DL4DZ - G4CMQ - N1GB - AC1Z for confirming QSOs - QSLs this week with CT7/G4OBK/P on Logbook of The World:

73 de Phil

Good morning Phil,
A great tour by you. Well organised and accurate sequencing.
Thanks for the summits and the bonus of eight uniques for me - good stuff.

Good Morning Mike

I suspect you had 8 out of 10 uniques because most of the SOTA guys living around Lisbon are very much into CW - at least the guys I met are. I was surprised myself the tour went so well as it was only put together on the day I flew out there, (the day before I activated) when the opportunity to activate for 3 full days presented itself. My original plan was to activate on one day and visit three summits - not all 10 in the Estramadura area. The excellent 4G signals on all summits meant I could use SOTAWatch to spot myself whilst RRT was being repaired, so that helped give advance notice that I would be coming on the air shortly before I did. Thanks for all those QSOs and the help also in finding me on 20m SSB quickly when I came off CW and for spotting me immediately afterwards.

73 Phil


Hi Phil,
Glad to hear that you had a good trip and thanks for the QSO’s we did make.
I very nearly had the honour of being your first and last contact.
According to your log I managed the last QSO you made but was just beaten to the first by that big signal DL3HXX.
73’s David , G3RDQ