Me and my dad Tom M1EYP will in GI from Sunday 2nd July to Friday 7th July. Getting the day time ferry from Birkenhead to Belfast on the Sunday, staying at my grandad’s in Larne that Sunday night and will then be in GI/SM from Monday 3rd July to Friday 7th July and then getting the overnight ferry home that Friday evening. During that week we plan we activate the following GI/SM SOTA summits which are now our only remaining unique left over there to activate every single GI SOTA summit. These are:
Sawel Mountain GI/SM-001
Slieve Gallion GI/SM-007
I will be activating these summit on 2m FM, with HF SSB as back-up and my dad will be activating these summits on HF CW, so please listen out us us on the bands during that week and contact us if you can hear us. We will post alerts as well soon on SOTAwatch.
I would appreciate if anyone advise on any good routes for all the above SOTA summits.
Hmm those reference numbers all look rather small - meaning the mountains will be big. Have we got any natural pairs or even traverses in there Jim?
GI/SM-001 and GI/SM-002 you can ascend from the same parking spot as there are opposite sites to each other, similar to GW/NW-042 and GW/NW-043, GW/NW-044 and GW/NW-051 etc. As the the others, are are no traverses, however you can activate GI/SM-007 and GI/SM-004 (GI/SM-007 looks a fairly easy straight forward summit) in one day, same for GI/SM-003 and GI/SM-005 (GI/SM-005 is on a road track all the way to the summit, can’t drive up it though unfortunately due to looks gate at the bottom). GI/SM-008 will be a one summit day.
Caroline and I did all of these except 8 last May, and there are links to our activation reports on the relevant summit pages in the database. We did 1+2 and 3+5 as pairs on the same day. We paired 4 with 16 (which presumably you’ve already done), and 7 with AH-008 on the way back to the ferry.
Your “average summits per day” is much higher than ours so you shouldn’t have any trouble at all with any of the pairings that we did!
I can let you have GPS tracks for any of the ones we’ve done. They will be “whole day” tracks, including the drive to the parking place, unwelcome diversions, shopping trips etc.
As it happens we are just finishing bookings for a visit to GI in June so hope for some S2S on 2m FM. A few MM on 1st 2nd & 3rd June and then on to SM for a week or so. What we actually do will depend on the weather so no firm plans at all. As usual we are there for the sights and walks as well as the SOTA and may stray into IE and IN also. SW-001 is also on the list. A few AH and IE on the way home too.
We will be interested in any new hints and tips you get for SM, having already been looking at those from Martyn and Caroline; many thanks to them.
Jimmy has made a typo in the initial post. It’s actually those dates in July we will be in GI/SM. Pity, as I was starting to feel glad about the possibility of 2m FM S2S and even meet-up/beer opportunities!
Hopefully, like last year, there will be good levels of SOTA activity in GI during our trip anyway. And yes, will definitely have another look at Martyn and Caroline’s reports.
I have corrected this typo now. Would have been great though to have summit to summit QSOs on 2m FM with Rod M0JLA and Viki M6BWA and maybe meet as well, but we are there one month after you.
Martyn and Caroline, please can you send us your GPS tracks, I would be interested to see these.
GPX files sent to your email address on qrz.com.
Yes, a great pity. I am sure that qualifying on 2m FM would have been a lot easier had we coincided. Meeting up for a jar or two would have added to the fun also. However that is not to be because our dates are definitely JUNE.
Our dates are now pretty definite:- MM 1st to 3rd June; SM 4th to 13th June; AH 13th to 17th June and, possibly IE (M0JLA only) 17th, 18th. Of course we will not be doing SOTA every day; other interesting activities are available.
We will pass on any hints gained from our efforts if they add anything to what Martyn and Caroline have already recorded; no point in duplication. For the same reason we will stay on this thread if you don’t mind as I think two GI threads running concurrently will be unhelpful.
Yeah I agree. The single thread with more traffic will do a better job of building up interest in the GI-based chasers/activators too.
Mullaghash 008 is our local summit (along with Benbradagh). It is not a pleasant walk as there is no path to the summit so most of the climb is through long grass and heather. Typical of the sperrins with multiple false summits. Despite that we climbed it on a beautiful day (too hot nearly for me) and spent most of the time sunbathing (recuparating actually as I was exhausted after the climb). I don’t think our route is the easiest but will be doing it again at Easter. Mullaghmore 005 (Birren rd) is very easy - straightforward walk up the access road - although I needed our secret weapon to get over the gate (stepladder) as it isn’t a standard 5 bar gate We activated it last night in the dark, fog bound and snowing so very straightforward 4 mile walk there and back. Mullaghaneany 003 a is a good ask if you have a knee replacement! - mostly forest track which may or may not be open but they were cutting trees when we did it and then straight up the mountain from the clearing usual Sperrin heather and soggy top. We did Sawel 001 from Barnes Road at the cattle grid which is much shorter than the Tamnagh Rd access which is between Mullaghclogha 002 and Sawel. I still have to do 002 and 004.
You carry a stepladder on walks? And there’s no other way of getting over the gate?
Thank you this information Esther. I did email you and Ian the other day asking if you would both like to join us for any joint SOTA activations or alternatively or a meal or drink. Just wondering if you will be both like to meet us with us while we are in the area?
Tom - only carry one for that gate as I have had a knee replacement and due one on the other knee so I couldn’t get over that one. It has vertical bars not horizontal so even the jump down from the lock cover is too far!
Yes Jimmy got the email - haven’t replied yet as trying to sort out our travelling to England to collect Jenyth (MI6JHE) from Oxford Uni which may be that week but she hasn’t confirmed her finish date yet. Prob not do joint activation as I would definitely hold even your Dad up (…runs to far end of room…) as I know the toll those summits would take on my knees!!
OK Esther, thank you for letting me know this. Maybe if you and Ian are in the area that week, we could just meet up and a meal or drink then, but I don’t think you will hold my dad up though, he is very slow going up the hills, especially in rough ground.
I knew he wouldn’t be able to resist
Our dates are now booked:-
Hilltown for a short visit to MM 1st to 3rd June ;
Greencastle for an attempt on most of SM (and a couple of EI?) 4th to 13th June;
Larne for a few AH (and other visits) 13th to 17th June and
Dublin for visits with a possible IE 17th, 18th June.
We very much hope to make lots of contacts in GI and meet up with some other SOTA enthusiasts, particularly Esther and Ian as we certainly intend to have a go at their local hills. More on this by PM.
Alerts are now on SOTAwatch for this GI trip. Our plans are below, these plans could change subject to weather and fitness levels. All times are in UTC:
Slieve Gallion GI/SM-007
5th July Mullaghash GI/SM-008
Sawel Mountain GI/SM-001
I plan to activate these SOTA summits on 2m fm with 20m ssb and 40m ssb as backup and my dad Tom M1EYP plans to activate these summits on either 40m cw or 20m cw, with the either 40m or 20m backup depending on with band he is using along with ssb backup on both bands and 2m fm backup as well.
Please listen out for the on the bands and work us if you can hear us.
Only 1 week until we are now in GI hoping the activate the remaining GI SOTA summits we have left to do to complete GI. Long term weather forecast looks to be unsettled so probably a good chance we may not complete GI on this trip if we do get any bad weather days, but hope to activate what we can while we are there.
Please listen for me on 2m fm, my dad Tom M1EYP on either 20m or 60m cw and also myself on either 20m or 60m ssb, if I cannot qualify a SOTA summit over there on 2m fm.