This is a short(ish) report, posted mainly to close the loop from another thread where I sort of publicly talked myself into doing this activation today.
There are only two summits in South West England with a winter bonus, G/DC-001 and today’s target, G/SC-001.
There are two parking places for reaching the summit of G/SC-001. On my first activation I used the one directly south of the summit. This is the shortest route but it starts much lower down than the eastern parking which I chose today. It took me just 20 minutes to reach the summit and I think this is the best place as the walk was very gentle on a good path. You can approach from other directions of course, but the walk will be longer.
I set up downwind of the summit cairn. There wasn’t much of a breeze but it wasn’t warm - probably about 5°C.
The ground is not tent peg friendly, it was a struggle to get the guys in. I remember this from my first activation and worth remembering if you plan to activate with a strong wind blowing.
Assuming of course you need a mast!
While I was sitting up I had my HT tuned into 145.500 and it broke into life! First QSO in the log with MW6IVK near Swansea in South Wales.
After erecting my Slim Jim from the mast things opened up and another 9 callsigns were logged. Things then went quiet but probably more due to the time, 1300 and time for lunch for everyone but me as mine was in the car.
Here is a map of some of the 2m QSOs. These are a bit of a novelty to me as 2m isn’t a reliable band down my way normally but it is clearly alive and well in South Wales - which I could see from the summit.
Dropping the mast and hoisting the BandSpringer random wire antenna attracted a huge pile-up on 30m CW. The second QSO was with a callsign which threw me: OL90ZE. A search on QRZ revealed this was Vasek who has a special callsign this winter to celebrate his 90th birthday! I shall raise a glass to you Sir this evening!
My CW skills are (possibly) improving. I managed to recognise an HB9 call on the second attempt by Bruno, HB9CBR/P who was on HB/JU-009.
After logging a total of 12 QSOs on CW after the 10 on VHF it suddenly struck me I was getting cold, really cold although not yet shivering. I rapidly packed everything up at 1330 and set off back to the car. A trip which warmed me up in time to be reunited with my lunch.
Map of the QSOs.
I did go QRT when it was quiet but I suspect if I had sent out another CQ call it would have generated more replies. I also need to keep practising CW!
I have been using a Helinox Chair One on activations up until today when deployed my new Black Friday deal Chair Zero.
I hope to post an equipment review soon comparing this with the Chair One. There are more differences than just the reduced weight.
Many thanks to all chasers. It is your work which keeps SOTA going.
I should add today is my 44th wedding anniversary but for some reason Mrs M0WIV preferred her dental appointment to an afternoon on a chilly summit so we can’t match Ben’s (@GW4BML) romantic activation.