Mt. Larrogain EA2/NV-041 by EA2IF/P on 01-06-2014

Dear all,
After my failed attempt to activate this new unique last May 18th, I decided to try again today from the small village of Aintzioa (55Km drive from my QTH) instead of the small village of Urdirotz of my first attempt.
This is Mt. Larrogain with the village of Urdirotz down in the center of the valley. Picture taken from internet page Mendikat.

According to Mendikat web page, from Aintzioa is the easiest access, so this should be a success today.
In the road to Aintzioa, just 1 or 2 Km before entering the village, I got delighted with this nice waterfall:

When I arrived to Aintzioa a dense fog was covering everything.
I was just about to give up for a second time. I even met a shepard who told me not to try to go to Larrogain summit today, as it was very easy to loose orientation and get lost with that fog.
Bearing all this in mind, I decided to start hiking with my dog with the only idea of spending some time in the mountain not getting out of the path in order to avoid getting lost. It was 06h40 utc.

As the time passed, the fog slightly cleared and I started to have a clearer view of the area around me (not much due to the very dense forest but something when in the clear), so I continued hiking up.
The ground was very damped and water streams were coming down sometimes exactly on my very same way, so my boots and feet were getting very wet. Sometimes the ground was extremely muddy and dangerously slippery. At some points I had to enter into the very dense wild forest without a clear path to follow.
Probably this was not the right way but I guess I lost the right path at some point, so I had to do this in order to keep approaching the summit, according to my GPS.
After a very difficult and exhausting ascent I finally reached the summit at 09h09, one hour behind schedule. I’m sure I did get to the summit only thanks to the GPS and I wouldn’t have done it without it.
Since the descent was presumably going to be as difficult, long and complex as the ascent, I decided that I had no time for an HF activation and I would only activate on 2m-FM.
I want to apologize for this to all my devoted CW chasers. I hope you’ll understand the circumstances…
After just 2 QSOs on 2m-FM, I had an accident: the external battery pack fell down from the top of a stone where I had placed it, thus pulling and breaking one of the power cable wires used to feed my FT-23R handheld, while I was standing with my arm up holding the rig and antenna as high as I could in order to be better copied.
This made me waste some more time trying to fix this and finally having to get my FT-817 out of the rucksack to try to make at least 2 more QSOs for qualifying the activation.
I made 5 more QSOs with the FT-817. With a total of 7 QSOs in my log I made QRT and prepared for descent.
On my way down I didn’t follow the same ascent way, as it was not very clearly defined and I wasn’t able to find it due to the dense forest.
I continued descent following my GPS and I finally got to the car after a complicated descent.
I enjoyed watching the just born lambs on my return to the village of Aintzioa:

While driving home I had the pleasure to work Santi EA2BSB/P activating EA2/NV-107 (Belogain).
I got home right in time for a deserved and repairing delicious lunch in family, which had been prepared by my beloved wife Raquel.
Thanks to my 2m-FM chasers, particularly Ignacio (EA2BD) and Santi (EA2BSB) which were worried waiting for me as it was getting a bit too late by the time I showed up on the frequency.
Apologies to all the rest for not having activated HF today.
This is indeed a difficult summit.
Best 73 de Guru - EA2IF

In reply to EA2IF:

Congrats Guru and thanks for the new one. I’m happy that you did the deal and that you were clever enough to adapt the activation according to the circumstances.

Please take a lot of precautions and get a double pair of AA cells just in case the ones at your GPS fail!!
I presume it will take time to get this unique activated in HF…

Take care, 73
Ignacio EA2BD

P.s: wouldn’t be fair to add a 3 point bonus for such a hard mountain? ha ha!

I have editted this old activation report to add some few pictures.
I hope you’ll enjoy them.