Other SOTA sites: SOTAwatch | SOTA Home | Database | Video | Photos | Shop | Mapping | FAQs | Facebook | Contact SOTA

Lord Preserve me from one-point summits!

The bald facts, then the rant (I bet you can hardly wait!)

SW-033, the Wentwood, activated on five megs on Friday, Oct. 7th, not much activity on the band so only six contacts. Many thanks to them and for the posts.

I like the higher summits, they stick up a bit, you can hardly miss them! The tiddlers, though, that’s an entirely different thing…

Well, to start with, I could have sworn that OS sheet 171 was in my collection - the evening before setting out, packing my gear, I found it wasn’t! I had it covered on a museum piece, Bartholomew’s Half-Inch map number 13, published in 1963! Fine, I thought, I’ll navigate to it using that, and sketch the summit from Get-a-Map. Good plan - not! Half the side roads we passed were not on the map, at times I wasn’t even sure where I was to a couple of miles, not my usual standard, but eventually I spotted a sign to Wentwood. Eureka! Wonder of wonders, I even found the parking spot - and the path - and a firebreak leading to the summit - and a jungle of mature conifers standing in a bed of windfall branches - but not the summit! Well, I was certain that I was in the activation zone, and pretty sure I was no more than 100 metres from the trig point, but after a lot of bush-wacking I gave up on finding the trig point, set up the gear and activated.

In future I will stick to bald summits where you can see the trig point a couple of miles away, having to fall over it before you see it is not my thing at all!

Nothing else done, rain stopped play yesterday, and we nearly went hang-gliding taking down the tent this morning, with the wind roaring in the tree tops. Yep, I’m chicken!

73

Brian G8ADD

Must have been “rubbish activations weekend” Brian. Mine and Jimmy’s on Satuday was a rotter (apart from the surprise appearance of a friend of course!).

Tom M1EYP

In reply to G8ADD:

Hi Brian

Excellent to work you on Friday, even better with a S2S from Summitsbase HuMP G/HSP-026 - The Roaches. I ended up with just the poultry 4 contacts, not because 60m was in a bad way, but because the weather was truly awful at that particular time!

I was sat down behind one of the massive boulders, but still got drenched. Luckily I had my Paramo Waterproof jacket on, however my Waterpoof trousers were 120 miles South! However I did wear my fast drying walking trouser, by the time I got up Gun I was dry.

I think that was my first HuMP to Summit QSO, so that was pleasing. To anyone that has not been up the Roaches, it is next door to Gun and Cloud. IMHO the walk is better, the height is an advantage and the satisfaction you get from being one of two people to activate it is great, rather than the 700 odd activations that have happened from Cloud (no offence intended here). Honestly go and and check it out, it is fantastic for a Dog walk, Rock Climb, HOTA Activation or a Geology Trip.

If you want to see what your signal was like then check out the Video I took Brian, you will find it at the below link - It was longer but due to Flickr’s time constraints I had to cut it down to 1.30 minutes.

Imgur

Anyway as always a pleasure to work you and Summitsbase NVIS writer Dave M0MYA, Dave was the kind sole that modified my 817 for 5MHz so it was fitting that he was the first SOTA regular to work me with it!

73 All

Matt G8XYJ

Hi Matt,

Sorry to hear about the chickens.

IMHO the walk is better

Agreed. So is another nearby one, Shutlingsloe. Prevented from being a Marilyn by its parent peak Shining Tor, but a far superior hill and associated walk. Highly recommended for when you’re next over this side.

the satisfaction you get from being one of two people to activate it is great, rather than the 700 odd activations that have happened from Cloud (no offence intended here)

None taken - but bear in mind that you are not comparing like with like. The Cloud might have had 700+ activations, but a far far fewer number of people have activated it. More than 1 or 2 though, granted.

Tom M1EYP

In reply to M1EYP:

Shutlingsloe and Kinder are next on the SP list! Chickens??? Probably being thick but don’t get that one?

Matt G8XYJ

In reply to G8XYJ:
I think you mentioned you had 4 poultry contacts. I suppose that made the activation experience somewhat fowl.

:slight_smile:

73 Marc G0AZS

In reply to G0AZS:
Fully Understood!!! Doh!

In reply to G8ADD:

Now there are some truly wonderful 1pt summits Brian. A saunter through my activation records and memories leads me to the following excellent 1pt summits.

In no special order:

  1. Beinn na h-Iolaire GM/SI-176. After the fun which is driving along Callum’s Road you walk down from the parking area at Arnish to the old school house at Torran. From there, the walk through mature Birch woods followed by your emergence under the crags is exceptionally. After the lush woodlands the change to desolate rocks barely covered with vegetation is a real contrast. The view out to Skye is obscured much of the time. Finally having climbed up the wee summit you get to see Torridon to the NE and The Five Sisters of Kintail to the SE. Shame it was blowing a houlie when I was there.

  2. Norman’s Law GM/SS-262. Easy really apart from a bit of a scramble up the earthy bank. Big views out over the Firth of Tay to Angus and to some big hills way up North. Just very pleasant countryside.

  3. Dirrington Great law GM/SS-225. Sticks out from the rolling flatish lands out in the Eastern Borders. A gentle walk to its foot followed by a steep pull to the summit. Wonderful views all around from The Cheviot in the South around to The Pentlands and the up to the bigger hills of Bredalbane in the North. My first all CW activation.

  4. Craig of Monievreckie GM/SS-223. Starts of in manmade but pleasant forest. As you climb out onto the wild moorland everything changes. The summit feels very remote but isn’t really. Fine views of Lake of Menteith around to Loch Venachar, Loch Achray, Ben Ledi, Ben Vorlich and Stuc a’Chroin. The Crianlarich “gruesome twosome” Stob Binnein and Ben More in the distance.

  5. Cahuenga Peak W6/CT-037. Strange to walk on dry and dusty land with no bogs, heather etc. Looking down on the back of the famous “Hollywood” sign makes this worth the small effort. Finding a parking place with the thousands of visitors can be harder.

  6. Penycloddiau GW/NW-054. Another good walk that starts in a forest. Easy to reach the summit. Excellent views all abount and sitting amongst the obvious remains of the ancient hillfort lets you almost feel the history.

  7. Longridge Fell G/SP-014. Another easy walk though it was somewhat wet when I was there. The view to the South is occluded by the trees. But the view to the North is spectacular. Not only do Parlick and Fair Snape Fell G/SP-007 look impressive but the view along the valley running E-W between you and Fair Snape Fell is glorious. I was lucky to be there late in the afternoon on a day with clear air. The setting sun caused the shadows to lengthen and the relief on the improved farmland was highlighted. I’d never tire of seeing this and would love to return on a good frosty but clear afternoon. I can visualise the colours of the yellow sunlight on white frosty ground now.

Of those seven, the two I would do again and again are Longridge Fell and Beinn na h-Iolaire. So there are plenty of excellent 1pt hills Brian.

And there’s Law Kneiss GM/SS-168 :frowning:

Andy
MM0FMF

In reply to MM0FMF:

  1. Penycloddiau GW/NW-054.

A local one for us and one of our favourites too!

  1. Longridge Fell G/SP-014. Another easy walk though it was somewhat
    wet when I was there. The view to the South is occluded by the trees.
    But the view to the North is spectacular. Not only do Parlick and Fair
    Snape Fell G/SP-007 look impressive but the view along the valley
    running E-W between you and Fair Snape Fell is glorious. I was lucky
    to be there late in the afternoon on a day with clear air. The setting
    sun caused the shadows to lengthen and the relief on the improved
    farmland was highlighted. I’d never tire of seeing this and would love
    to return on a good frosty but clear afternoon. I can visualise the
    colours of the yellow sunlight on white frosty ground now.

Totally agree with you, Andy! We activated Longridge Fell after the Blackpool rally and were very pleasantly surprised by the stunning views down the valley. It was a glorious day/evening and we also watched the sun going down. We decided, like yourself, that we would happily do this one again and again - even without the 1 point!

So we really must get to see Beinn na h-Iolaire!

Karen
2E0XYL

In reply to MM0FMF:

I can add a few, myself: The Wrekin, Worcestershire Beacon, Mynnydd Carningli, all fine mountains in minature, but there are many that fail to achieve that certain something that demands a return engagement. And you know yourself, Andy, how many once fine mountains there are that have been desecrated by serried ranks of Sitka, and not just north of the border, either, though Scots landowners have a lot to answer for!

73

Brian G8ADD

In reply to MM0FMF:

After 350 unique summits I’ve come to realise that the weather makes a real difference as to whether or not a summit is on your “to do again” list. I agree Andy that Dirrington Great Law GM/SS-225 is a super summit, but had I activated it in torrential rain, would I feel the same about it?

I’ve yet to experience any repeat summits, but I certainly have a list for the when I break out the other callsign. Will those summits be relegated to my “never again” list on account of the weather when I activate them for a second time? Who knows? It’s a subject which Paul and I have mulled over many times. One thing that we are agreed on is that we won’t be activating Fair Snape Fell G/SP-007 for a long long time… we don’t want to spoil the image we have in our minds of our moonlit ascent in the snow!

And there’s White Hill G/SP-006 :frowning:

73, Gerald G4OIG

In reply to MM0FMF:
I agree strongly about Cahuenga Peak W6/CT-037. It’s the only one on your list that I’ve visited! If you can pack a bicycle it would be better because it’s a long walk from near the Hollywood observatory up the closed road to the start of the scramble up Cahuenga Peak proper.

I wonder if I’ll get back to activate it and W6/CT-034 HP Verdugo Mtns rather than watch Stu KI6J working the radio? [I was 2E0DAI at the time]
73 David

In reply to MM0FMF:

I think Ysgyryd Fawr, GW/SW-016, rates as a fine 1 pointer.
It’s a proper mountain, being steep and rocky and has long been a favourite of ours. I have spent many hours on the summit (from long before SOTA was thought of) in every possible weather, waiting for Duke of Edinburgh groups to appear. The views of the Black Mountains and the South Wales hills in snow are really wonderful. In wet and wind it is as unpleasant on the summit as anywhere else I know but has the great advantage of a short and sheltered walk back to the car.

73,
Rod

In reply to G0AZS:

In reply to G8XYJ:
I think you mentioned you had 4 poultry contacts. I suppose that made
the activation experience somewhat fowl.

G8XYJ wrote:

Dave was the kind sole that modified my 817.

Perhaps not exactly fowl play, but definitely something fishy going on!

:wink:
73,
Walt (G3NYY)

Excellent 1 point SOTA summits:

Ysgyryd Fawr GW/SW-016 (agreed)
The Cloud G/SP-015 (of course)
Brown Willy G/DC-002
Long Knoll G/SC-007
Caer Caradoc G/WB-006
High Vinnalls G/WB-012
Moel Gyw GW/NW-053
Moel y Dyniewyd GW/NW-056
Holyhead Mountain GW/NW-069
Mynydd Enlli GW/NW-072
Sharp Haw G/NP-029
Dufton Pike G/NP-027
Cringle Moor-Drake Howe G/TW-002

Loads more gems as well, but I’ve tried to keep it concise.

Rubbish one point summits:

Wendover Woods G/CE-005
Botley Hill G/SE-005
Crowborough G/SE-007
Carnmenellis G/DC-006
Billinge Hill G/SP-017
Bishop Wilton Wold G/TW-004

Discuss.

Tom M1EYP

In reply to MM0FMF:
Hi Andy.I have to agree with you regards Longridge Fell.Another that is worth a visit is Sp012 Easington Fell.http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=373084&y=448963&z=120&sv=easington+fell&st=3&tl=Map+of+Easington+Fell,+Lancashire+[Summit]&searchp=ids.srf&mapp=map.srf.73 Geoff G6MZX

In reply to M1EYP:

What makes a summit a great experience? Every one of us will have different ideas but here is mine.

For me a narrow ridge with not too many false summits leading to a shapely peak that gives that “top of the world” feeling. A great distant view. A foreground view with little or no signs of the major works of man (a few farmhouses is OK, a town or an active quarry isn’t!) Not having to share it with too many visitors. The sea not too far away, hence my love of the Western Highlands.

It might be argued that the weather and the season might influence this, but I think not, as I will illustrate from a higher summit. The first top I climbed in Scotland was Stob Corrie nan Lochan in Glencoe, the summit was shrouded in cloud, I never saw the distant view but as the clouds ebbed and swirled I got tantilising glimpses of the north ridge as I followed it from the “Dinnertime Buttress”, and abrupt shuddersome views down the gullies that I climbed under snow in later years. Finally, at the small rocky summit there were glimpses of the shapely ridge dipping and rising to Bidean nam Bian (later to become GM/WS-007.) Unforgettable, it just had to be repeated, and next time there were the distant views to enjoy, too - my first view of The Ben, snow capped and looking like an iced bun with a bite missing, and this time I followed the ridge to Bidean and round to Stob Coire nam Beithe, names still music to me!

I’ve not climbed in the Coe for a quarter of a century, but whilst you can take a man out of the mountains, you can’t take the mountains out of a man!

73

Brian G8ADD

In reply to M1EYP:

Hi Tom

I suppose every summit has it’s memories depending on the day and conditions.

Billinge Hill SP-017 was my first ever summit ascent, if it can even be called an ascent. I remember it well for the noise overload of my handheld, and little else.

Brown Willy DC-002 is not on my list of favourites either. I like my hills to go up, rather than up and back down before up again - It was very windy too and needed my 14mHz vertical to complete the activation.

I agree about Carmenellis Hill DC-006 - simple but boring, a bit like Christ Cross and Kit Hill - also DC.

Dundry Down SC-010’s views of the local scrapyard not the most inviting of sights either.

Imgur

Lewesdon Hill SC-009 was a fantastic summit, although there is no trig point at the top. I activated it on a beautiful summers day in what was a gladed, shaded and very pleasant spot.

Imgur

Long Knoll SC-007 was great too, the steep climb took my breath away before allowing me time to recover on the way to the trig.

Although some way behind Gerald, I have only visited unique summits so far. I am not sure if I want to spoil the memories by revisiting them or not. The problem is it gets expensive finding new ones, as you know.

Hi,

As a comparison, casually visiting other than one-point summits is not possible to most Finnish activators. From my home QTH in Jyväskylä, the nearest two-point summit is almost 500 kilometers away along roads and the nearest four-pointer almost 700 kilometers away.

Also, very often the best overlooks are not on the summits that meet the prominence criteria. Most summits in Finland, apart from Northern Lapland, are naturally covered with forest, so unless there is a steep cliff or a viewing tower, it’s often not that easy to realise that you’re on top of a summit.

Lullinvuori, OH/JS-058 is a good example. The hills of the summit are mostly not very steep, but covered with forest. The highest point lies about 370 meters horizontally from the end of the forest road. Doesn’t sound very bad, but there is no path, and the forest in the area has been cut within the past ten years or so. That means that today the area has a very thick cover of trees about 2-3 meters tall. When pushing through the needles, long-sleeve shirts and pants would’ve been a better choice, although the day was quite warm. Also, there were two quite steep cliffs on the way. The actual summit is in the area between a small nature reserve, with old, standing trees and an area cut down some years ago. High winds blowing over the lake Päijänne had also cut down quite a lot of big trees in the edge of the nature reserve, and the trees were left there to rot. So the place where we put up the station looked a bit like a war zone. Because of the trees, you can’t really see very far from there. In fact, if you woke up on the summit, you wouldn’t easily realize that you’re on a hill to begin with. But it was definitely an interesting activation, and the needle scraches and insect bites healed in a few weeks…

On the other hand, only 3,5 km west from OH/JS-058 as the bird flies, lies Riihivuori, OH/JS-056. It is a relatively steep hill and has a pretty decent, although rather steep gravel road all the way to the top. The hill is home to a downhill skiing resort, so the northern side and the very top don’t have any trees. Because of this, there are very nice views to the south over the lake Päijänne, to the north towards Jyväskylä and also to the east.

So, my point is, even one-point summits near major towns can make interesting activation trips. Also there is no single group of one-pointers, since the summits can differ a lot from each other, even if they’re only a few kilometers apart.

73,
Jaakko, OH6FQI

In reply to G8ADD:
Hi Brian I also like that type of summit.I think that Np022 Calf Top fits your description.On a clear day you can see Blackpool tower and the sea.But dont do what I did and go from the cattle grid its near vertical73 Geoff G6MZX. http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=366399&y=485802&z=120&sv=calf+top&st=3&tl=Map+of+Calf+Top,+Cumbria+[Summit]&searchp=ids.srf&mapp=map.srf