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GW/SW-MW mini expedition, Wildlife and the 'Beast

Thanks to all chasers and others who provided contacts on our recent mini-expedition to South and Mid Wales, 7th-14th April. We are concentrating on unique summits all via 2m operation, which makes things exponentially more and more difficult.

In particular, midweek operation from relatively low summits can take some time. Fortunately we had (picked) good weather for our activations; only on the last day was the weather cool and (very) windy. It was pleasing to have a good number of S2S’s.

In addition to some super walking, we had some great wildlife moments plus one strange encounter. The truth is out there!!

Activations:

07/04/10 WB-009 Worcester Beacon—great view point–on way down.
08/04/10 SW-009 Mynydd Troed pleasant. Easily combined with next.
08/04/10 SW-015 Mynydd Llangorse–again easy and pleasant.
09/04/10 SW-003 Fan Brycheiniog–super walk.
09/04/10 MW-025 Begwyn Very pleasant evening activation.
10/04/10 SW-010 Craig Y Llyn easy to access, forested summit.
10/04/10 SW-008 Cefn Yr Ystrad–very interesting summit–aircraft wreck nr.
11/04/10 SW-012 Coity Mntn. Sadly little to recommend.
11/04/10 SW-011 Sugar Loaf Justifiably popular–great views.
12/04/10 MW-002 Great Rhos Nice walk–make a circuit. Park for waterfall.
12/04/10 MW-010 Gwaunceste Approached from west–sea of heather summit.
13/04/10 MW-003 Drygarn Fawr Brilliant remote hill-interesting beacons.
14/04/10 MW-004 Pen Y Garn Easy but look out for the ‘Beast’!!
14/04/10 MW-001 Plynlimon Fairly easy–interesting mining remains.

Wildlife.
We heard our first Cuckoo and Woodpecker of the year from the col between Mynydd Troed amd Mynydd Llangorse. Also the first Swallows of the year from the same point.
Red kites are now everywhere–the re-introduction has been a fantastic success. We were lucky to spot a pair of kites make a kill–another bird/ pigeon.
At one location we visited we talked to a local who was trying to positively confirm two recent sitings of Britains largest eagle–the one with a golden plumage. If confirmed it would be the first siting in Wales of said eagle in more than a hundred years–location under wraps.

Strange Wildlife.

On the morning of the last day, 14th April, on the ascent to Pen-Y-Garn my wife and I were stunned to see what can only be described as a large jet black cat with long tail at about 125m distance. On seeing us it moved off smartly to a conifer plantation. Talking on air to local GW3BV, Quentin, it seems there have been a number of sitings of large black cats, locally dubbed the ‘Beast of Bont’. We know what we saw–a large black cat like animal, jet black, long tail—definitely larger than your domestic moggey. Lone SOTA activators beware!!

Best wishes all, G0EWN, Sheffield