SOTA Sunday

Hazy sunshine and a stable forecast. What to do? My wife had the answer. I needed to re-roof a shed and put up some hooks in the kitchen. Obvious really. Fortunately this was finished by 12:15 leaving an afternoon for something more enjoyable.

The parking spot at the Cloud was inevitably full so Mai Ling and I parked along the road. The summit was busy with walkers, picnic-ers and fliers. I set up my simple 2m vertical and had some pleasant contacts. John GW4BVE was an especially welcome caller - good luck on Tuesday John. There was good news on the 10GHz microwave front too as Mike G4BLH is nearing readiness and Bob G8DTF/p called in to say that he had just made his first 10G contact from Winter Hill. I had to get back to Macclesfield by 2pm to drop ML off at a friend’s house so it was a rather short activation.

On the way back it occurred to me that I could pick up the new 30m radio and activate Shining Tor - so that was what I did.

The Cat and Fiddle Road was heaving with bikers and I expected the parking spot to be full. In fact to my surprise it was empty. The hill was busy with dozens of walkers though - including one who looked quite like Griff Rhys Jones…

I set up away from the trig along the wall to be out of the way and enjoyed watching the hang gliders soaring along the slope. I quickly rigged my hang glider trap (30m antenna). At that point I found that there was a small problem with the power connection to the radio. This was sorted with some hilltop butchery with a tent peg (really!). I then discovered that the tuner would not tune for some reason so I abandoned it and used the “emergency” configuration. I was immediately rewarded with the loud voice of an American evangelist. He was taking a telephone call from a young woman. “What I want to know is would it be right for us to do it or not” were the first words that I heard. Interest in SOTA was temporarily suspended. Disappointingly it appeared the the question related to drinking a toast at the funeral of a friend.

Given that the radio is crystal controlled and I was listening on 10.115, the level of broadcast breakthrough was disappointing to say the least. I put out few calls and all I heard was the evangelist asking me to telephone him and leave a message for prayer. I reached for my mobile and hesitated before deciding that a self-spot on SOTAwatch might be faster. I tried that and was soon called by Reg G3WPF. I enjoyed my contact with Reg - the background hymn was a pleasant accompaniment. Many more calls went unanswered (well at least I didn’t hear any answers). After a while a 9A7 called but he was drowned out by “Onward Christian Soldiers”. Time to pack up.

While packing up I was amused to find some SOTA litter. In the grass was the rubber end and plastic ring from the base of a fishing pole. I have never been certain that I have seen SOTA litter before although I did once return from a hilltop with more reusable cable ties than I took up.

Walking back in the hazy sunshine I found a 5p piece so it wasn’t a wasted trip after all.

If you were considering a DC30B for SOTA, I would not bother.The Rockmite is a better bet - and my Rockmite will soon be in the DC30B’s box.


PS Someone has just posted an advert for a PFR3 on my Fleamarket - that looks a better radio for SOTA

In reply to G3CWI:

Hi Richard.

Just to clarify, it wasn’t me transmitting the hymn in the background! Your sig was good copy and the note sounded fine. It was 9A7W you were working. Pity no others were around.



In reply to G3CWI:
I heard the 9A calling you but no copy here unfortunately.

Roger MW0IDX

In reply to G3CWI: Well a PFR3 is a whole other radio. The same could be said of a KX1.

I ordered a DC20B. Hopefully the broadcast breakthrough won’t be so bad.

In reply to G3CWI:

PS Someone has just posted an advert for a PFR3 on my Fleamarket - that looks a better radio for SOTA

FWIW I love my PFR3. It’s way better value than the KX1

5 watts out on 20, 30 and 40 from it’s internal AA batteries (that last ages).
Memory keyer built in
Tuner (balanced line and coax) built in
300 Hz passband
Nice yellow box…

I used it in last summers IOTA contest from SM and I heartily recommend it for SOTA although the pound is weaker than when I got mine when it cost me £117… bargain.

73 Marc G0AZS (QRL JA)

In reply to G0AZS:

Someone has a PFR3 for sale here:



In reply to G3CWI:
Just had a nice journey down south from manchester to northampton, had 10 qso’s in the 144mhz contest, and not one sota operator, did hear mw3wjz/p on 145-475 but never got him, being mobile can be a little bit hard, if im not working for the next contest i might
Give it a try
Steve m0sgb

In reply to G3CWI:


Thank you for posting the link to the PFR3 for sale. The radio has found its way into Austria. I plan to carry it on many summits…

Hope to work you soon!

73 Heinz, OE5EEP

In reply to OE5EEP:
FB news Heinz…

If you hear me calling from a summit or chasing during the summer using my SM call, I will normally be using my PFR-3 too.

Let’s hope for a PFR-3 to PFR-3 S2S soon.

73 Marc G0AZS