Highly unsatisfactory

Tuesday 6th August 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Two highly unsatisfactory activations.

The first one, on Gun G/SP-013, I was not too bothered about. It was just an excuse to stretch my legs after a sedentary few days and the stark realisation that until another regular gig came in, I wouldn’t be gallivanting around the country getting my cardio (and SOTA) in.

Just one 2m FM QSO made from the summit on the handheld, although I did call CQ for quite a while.

Later on, I headed up The Cloud G/SP-015 for the 2m UK activity evening. I’d done all* my prep with kit packed - and charged up (Tracer battery, headtorch, Windows 10 tablet), for the FT8 (MGMAC) in the first hour and the SSB (UKAC) thereafter.

*except one bit.

I’d forgotten all about all about the lead that goes from the back of my 817 to a Powerpole connector to connect with my Tracer LifePO4 battery. I had remembered however to remove the 1400mAH NiMH internal pack from the 817 after the GU trip - and this meant I had no way whatsoever of powering on the radio on summit!

What a wally.

At least the Contest Manager of the TTCG would be pleased. He doesn’t like me doing the MGMAC because they are not club contests, whereas the concurrent FMAC is. And I now had one option - make a few QSOs on the FMAC using my FT70D handheld.

I rummaged around my coat pockets and drybags to see if I had a BNC to SMA adaptor enabling me to use the SOTAbeams SB5 which was already set up - but no joy. So I just had to make do with the rubber duck. I was worked by the current custodian of HEMA, who kindly offered his condolences. I wondered if this was a sign of improved relations and asked if I might be allowed to enter this chase of his HEMA summit, but the response was silence, so I guess not. Then I fell over into a horrid patch of sticky mud which managed to attach itself to most of my clothes and much of my exposed skin. My goodness, the lads on FE are going to have a field day with this one! Fill yer boots chaps!

Steven 2W0JYN/P was giving out reference GW/NW-062 Hope Mountain, but he wasn’t in the activation zone, so any such “chases” won’t be valid. Two or three stations were heard operating on frequencies that are “out of bounds” for this contest.

So, this second activation of the day concluded with 13 QSOs. But why originally in the “People from Andy’s Formative Years…” thread? Well I just wanted to record my thanks to the many people who expressed their condolences on-air. That was genuinely appreciated in each and every case - thank you.

Anyway, one of the moderators moved it to the “SOTA on Tour 3” thread - understandable they didn’t want an activation report in the Formative Years thread. But as I didn’t do a gig on this activation day, it’s not right for the “SOTA on Tour 3” thread either - so here’s a new one. Ironically, had we not lost Joe at the weekend, we were scheduled to be in the recording studio in Blackpool Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday this week, putting the finishing touches to the new album - and therefore any SOTA activations I did squeeze in would have definitely gone in the “SOTA on Tour 3” thread!

My sincere condolences, Tom, for having lost your close good friend and work mate.




I thought you’d just continued after the post about Joe’s passing and hit reply instead of wandering over to the other thread. But I have had a few unsatisfactory activations and so have many others, there’s probably lots to post in here.

Only working 3 on Rombalds Moor… good enough for a unique but no points.
Only working 3 on FL/NO-047 (Moulin de Thilay) … again a unique but no points
Walking 2/3rd to Stronend before seeing the snow avalanche off the crags I was about to climb through and turn back.
Getting half way to Black Hill SS-167 with Mrs. FMF and having to stop as the snow was getting up to waist deep.

highly unsatisfactory:
Setting up and self spotting on Ord Ban only for the heavens to open and for me to pack up and run down with 0 contacts.

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I did state why I’d appended the report to that thread, at the end of the report. But no worries, it’ll do here (but not in the SOTA on Tour 3 thread - it won’t do there…).

I just started to muse over what I would contribute to the list of “unsatisfactory” and “highly unsatisfactory” - but as I started to recount an appalling catalogue of scores of dismally rubbish activations or failed non-activations, I realised I’d already had my fair share of “a bit fed up” (understatement) this week.

So I won’t. I’ve had a couple of thousand of fantastic activations under my belt, so I’ll reminisce on those instead :slight_smile:

Interpret, please.

What are:

Walt (G3NYY)

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The google-fu is weak with this one Obi-wan.


It would appear the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard are real hard on amateurs participating in the MGMAC.

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Tall Trees Contest Group
Machine Generated Mode Activity Contest
FM Activity Contest
Free Expression - an unofficial SOTA Facebook group from which I am ironically banned.

HTH (or do I need to spell out that one too?)

And there was me thinking it was some 60m net…

You’re not alone in this - to the best of my knowledge all the MT or at least the UK contingent of the MT are personae non gratae on FE. I guess they are afraid that we would spoil the fun!

Thanks for the plug Brian. We normally pick up a few more members when you mention Free Expression on here.

Got well over 2000 members now, so we must be doing something right. BTW, there is a representative of the MT in Free Expression, someone I’ve worked quite a few times in ZL.

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Even I’m on there, just not under a profile where the admins would recognise it was me :smiley:

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You too? I thought it was just me and Brian.

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Hi Tom,

Thanks for the SOTA chaser point and the contest QSO. I was on High Wheeldon for a change [not SOTA or HEMA or anything else :slight_smile:] High Wheeldon - Wikipedia
Good views back along the valley of Parkhouse, Chrome Hill and beyond.

I plan to be on Shining Tor next week for the 70cm FMAC. Hope to catch you S2S then.


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Mike, I am always happy to plug FE, it does a good job despite the antipathy towards members of the MT, which I see as a badge of independance.

Sadly not Simon, as that is the day of Joe’s funeral. I’ll be on 6m MGMAC and UKAC tomorrow night (I have already deposited the errant power cable into the car), then looking at the September ACs. GL on 70cm next week.

Ah fair enough Tom, my bad :frowning:

I hope the arrangements go well - having read the details of it, I expect many attendees and an impressive procession!

Best wishes from me & Nic.

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Cheers Simon, yes there’s going to be hundreds lining the streets in Hull on Monday then probably even more on Tuesday in Blackpool. I doubt I’ll ever get another gig where I’m asked on stage every night what summit I’ve been up as part of the show. End of an era.

I thought it might have been some obscure channel on 60m. I do not use “channels” … only frequencies.

Thanks for interpreting the others. Perhaps I can be forgiven for not understanding the abbreviations for various contests, because they have nothing to do with SOTA and therefore are off topic in this forum.

Walt (G3NYY)

Ah, you’ve clearly not read the activation reports then, if the context is lost on you. After you’ve done so, you might conclude that they are in fact more on-topic than your post complaining that they’re not :wink: