Suffolk boys in the Peaks

Saturday 2nd May
Leaving home at 04:45 we set out to collect Bryan G4UZF and hit the A14 to make good our escape from the flat lands of Suffolk. After stopping for a quick comfort break on the M1 at Donnington Park Services, we got to the parking spot at Pym Chair for the walk in to Shining Tor SP-004.
Passing over Cats Tor then on to the summit of Shining Tor we selected a position to work from to hear Jimmy calling on 2FM from G/SP-013 Gun. This was the first time Tom M3XFG and I had activated a summit so to start the day with a S2S was a real bonus. Thanks Jimmy!
Using a FT60e with the standard rubber duck antenna a string of contacts followed including another S2S with 2W0CYM/P on GW/NW-076.
Thanks to GW7AAV for spotting me.
Tom then took over using the 5 ele beam and logged a steady stream of contacts including S2S with GW6WRW and MW0YHB on GW/SW-041 followed by GW1FOA on GW/SW-009 (166 km ).
We had planned to use a link dipole for 10 to 80 metres, but there were a lot of walkers about and I really didn’t want to inconvenience them by our activities so we didn’t run out the dipole. That said a couple of walkers out enjoying the day came and spoke to us and we did a little ad hoc marketing for SOTA and Ham radio.
Setting out for the descent MW3ZCB on GW/NW-018 was worked from Cats Tor for some chaser points.
For a first activation for Tom and I, we felt we had a good day. Thanks to all the chasers.
We then set off for our overnight stop at Hayfield campsite and a Steak and Ale Pie with a pint for supper at the local.
Sunday 3rd May
After a night under canvas with a bit of wind and rain, we had a light breakfast and a cuppa, got kitted up and began our ascent of Kinder Scout G/SP-001. Kinder has been on my ‘list of things to do’ for quite a while and the ISW gave us a good reason to ‘go do’.
Taking the route up from Hayfield via Tunstead Clough Farm, Harry Moor, Oaken Clough, Swine’s Back and Edale rocks to the Trig Point at Kinder Low, we found ourselves time for a photo opportunity and scanning the horizon spotted the antennas of M1EYP, M3EYP and M0GIA. Tom gave Jimmy a call on 2 FM to confirm their position.
We set out across the plateau and met up with Tom, Jimmy and Sean. Time for a group photo or two, a chat and refreshment followed by the chance to work Luc ON6DSL on ON/ON-016. Thanks Tom.
Time for goodbyes and the start of the long trip home, we set off retracing our ascent route. On the way, and whilst still in the AZ, I worked 3 more stations on 2 FM using the FT60 including MW3ZCB/M and MW1MAJ/M on their way to GW/NW-032.
Arriving back in Hayfield we packed up our now dried out tent into the car and got on the road with a warm feeling of satisfaction and achievement. I have always had an admiration for activators and now, having had a go, that admiration has grown.
Many thanks to the chasers, the other activators we were lucky enough to S2S with, the drivers of the ISW weekend and the originators of SOTA.

Being part of the SOTA family is a good thing!

73 to you all……

James G7MLO and Tom M3XFG

Photos here G7MLO | Flickr

Great photos and report James. I didn’t realise that you guys were making your debuts as SOTA activators this weekend.

Good to hear that you got the rest of your requisite four QSOs back over at Kinder Low (where the trig point is). Did Tom and Bryan get their contacts too?

It was nice to meet you all.


Glad to hear you had a good time on your first activations. You do know this is addictive don’t you? Photos are nice too.

Are you sure they’re from this May? Looks like it must winter from the hats, coats and gloves everyone is wearing. That or it’s true what they say about shandy drinking southerners like Tom being soft! :wink:


In reply to MM0FMF:

…shandy drinking southerners like Tom being soft! :wink:

Oh and I thought I was the Southern Shandy Drinker? What does that make me now then?

Tom is from “Up North” …and you’re an [edit] Polar Bear Andy :slight_smile:

73 Marc G0AZS

In reply to G0AZS:

Oh and I thought I was the Southern Shandy Drinker? What does that make me now then?

My introduction to Yorkshire hospitality… “What ye havin’ lad? I hopes yer not won of them there cissy arsed lager drinkers, cause we only do it in glasses for the ladies!”. “I’ll have the Extra Special Bitter please and put it in one of those half gallon jugs, mere pints are just for wimps on Merseyside”.

73 Steve GW7AAV

In reply to M1EYP:
it was good to meet up with you all on Sunday morning. Tom and Bryan didn’t do any more radio on the descent. However, this gives us the excuse to return to Kinder in the summer for Tom to activate.
Andy, you are right about the addiction and Tom has it real bad. He’s already plotting to do Watch Croft when we are in Cornwall in the summer. He’s also looking to do Snowdon as well.
As for the ‘Shandy Drinking’… I am pleased to confirm I’m a fully paid up member!!

Cheers all


Hi James and Tom,

Please be aware that Watch Croft G/DC-007 is overgrown with brackon, so it would be an idea to wear some long trousers with some water proof trousers on top of them.

Jimmy M3EYP

In reply to M3EYP:
Hi Jimmy,
Yes, Tom and I had a quick look at it last year when we were in Cornwall on holiday. There seemed to be a lot of vegetation over all of the paths. We didn’t activate it last year as it was raining so hard. We’ll have to hope for better weather this year!



In reply to G7MLO:
The vegetation on Watchcroft conceals some pits and trenches probably from the old tin-streamers, walk past the house and the ruined engine house and you should see a faint track on the right which avoids the worst ground. There is a man high standing stone near the summit pile which you can fix a mast to with gaffer tape (the spirits didn’t seem to object!)


Brian G8ADD

In reply to G7MLO:
It was good to meet you guys on Kinder Scout and hope to work you guys in the future. Sean M0GIA

In reply to G7MLO:
Thanks everyone who came back to me on Saturday when I was up Shining Tor. It was also good to meet you Tom, Jimmy and Sean