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Speikkogel (OE/ST-120) & Eiblkogel (OE/ST-158) Double Activation

The spring like conditions continue here in Austria, so I decided to take a chance and go for a double activation of two 8 pointers. The risk consisted in not being sure if the road up to the Zechneralm carpark would be open in winter, as it sits at about 1300m above sea level. With snow tyres and 4WD, it was not a question of being able to reach it, just a question of if the road itself was open. In the event, I got close enough to continue the activation attempt, although it would mean more walking overall (18.7km in total :sweat_smile:). The way up to the Kreuzsattel was fairly easy and the snow was quite firm early in the morning. The way ahead didn’t look too bad in terms of snow, just a long way:

I was tempted to go for the much closer Eiblkogel, which I had planned to do on my way back:

It looked like altogether a better proposition. However, I bit the bullet and pressed on. I was able to contour round the Schwalbenstein and save myself a bit of a climb. This is the view looking back:

Out of the wind, it was baking hot on that south facing slope. I was in shirt sleeves until almost at the Speikkogel:

I found a nice fence to set up on and got down to business. When I looked at my phone I saw it was 12:15, and that the walk up had taken a long time, as I expected. For that reason I just activated on 20m. Sorry if that annoyed any chasers, but I reasoned that, as this was a double activation, they would be consoled when I came on the air again later in the afternoon. I quickly packed up and headed back to the Kreuzsattel. By the time I got to the top of the Eiblkogel and ready to call CQ it was about 15:00, so I felt that the short activation on the first summit was somewhat justified:

At least I got some stateside DX for my trouble, as has been quite common in the afternoon these last few weeks. The view was incredible as ever:

I took one last look at the way I had come and headed back down the mountain:

Yep, they are big hills. I got back to the car at almost exactly 17:00, whilst there was still some light. Today was the longest I have walked for SOTA since la Gomera on New Years Eve; my legs are certainly feeling it now. Well, I can’t wait to take the winter pack and boots off in spring; I will feel light as a feather I’m sure.
73 de OE6FEG