Part of the reason for the first activation was to test the equipment in preparation for the second, more difficult and higher scoring activation. The first test, to my mind proved that the Bazoka Pro mobile HF wideband whip on a tripod, is not a reliable way to go. Even though it had worked acceptably from exactly the same location the previous year. My fall-back was the SOTABeams Linked-dipole that has served me very, very well on many activations and was what I used on my 5 summits in a day activations about 10 days previously.
The second activation was stopped on safety grounds due to lack of visibility on Hochgrat, so that was not an equipment related cancellation:
This was for the Ski Slope from the top station of the lift.
This is what I could see there - about 10m visibility - IF that!
And I wasn’t that far away!
On returning to the hotel, I decided to attempt Attensberg again, this time with the squid pole and SOTABeams linked dipole - that has to work “it always does”. Not this time - after setting everything up, the rig indicated that the SWR was “through the roof”. I visually inspected the antenna and could not find any fault so had to abort that activation as well.
I’ll look into this and the other problems now that I am home.
Previously I have carried two bags on SOTA activations in some cases giving me a second backup of major components like the antenna however given the fact that I wasn’t sure of how much I could carry up Hochgrat, I reduced to one small rucksack.
Realistically I was just unlucky with these activations but it started to feel as if, they weren’t meant to happen! I had no more time to try again in any case.
I now need to concentrate on getting everything working for the S2S event on the 10th. of March. You can be sure, I’ll be back to the two bag configuration with duplicate back-up options for rig and antenna for that 10 pointer!