SOTA Activation Reports 2008 (9)

SOTA Activation Reports 2008
Activation reports previously submitted  to the Summits On The Air Reflector


Devon and Cornwall summits March 2008

 

Our trip to Cornwall came about when Helen and I both realised we had to use our 2007 holidays before the end of March. Unfortunately both the way my shifts fell and Helen’s workload meant that the more usual Easter week vacation was not possible. Fortunately this meant that by going a week earlier we missed the usual queues of traffic, the cottage was more than 50% cheaper and as it turned out I think we got the best of the weather.

One of the reasons we chose Cornwall was that I have an Aunt who lives in Tintagel and she has, like Helen, been researching the family tree. It would be a chance for them to compare notes. As this was intended to be a family holiday my initial idea was just to do the nearest summit G/DC-002 Brown Willy. However during discussions with Helen this got expanded to ‘one on the way there, one on the way back and Brown Willy’, but as Helen delved into all the usual web sites for information on access we realised that due to the nature of the hills there was a good chance we could fit in all seven DC summits if the weather was good, still have days out with the kids and see my Aunt in the evenings. 

Thursday the 13th of March was not a good day for me and I woke with a sore throat, coughing and sneezing, just what I needed to enjoy my break, a cold. 

15th March 2008 G/DC-005 Christ Cross

Saturday 15th started damp in CQ town as I loaded up the Discovery, but as soon as we were on the road the weather started to look brighter. We were getting a good clear run at it and the sun was shinning as I worked Tom M1EYP/P on the Cloud G/SP-015 at 10:05 GMT while on the M6 about 10 miles from M5 Junction. At 11:35 we stopped at the Michael Wood Services on the M5 for a bathroom break and on returning to the vehicle 15 minutes later both Helen and I worked M3VXX/P Tristan on G/CE-001 Cleeve Hill and it started to rain.

The rain got heavier and heavier until it was beginning to really slow our progress but we still had a fair way to travel and I had high hopes it would dry out further south. As we got closer the rain did abate but it remained very dark and gloomy overhead. Unfortunately with the satnav showing only 10 minutes to G/DC-005 Christ Cross the rain started again. We arrived at the parking spot for the summit about 30minutes before our alerted time and we had lunch while we waited for the rain to stop again. It did not stop but got worse and worse, but as the car was rapidly becoming like a steam bath with five bodies I decided to put on my waterproofs and check out the summit.

I got well and truly drowned simply putting on my kit and I wandered down the muddy lane to the summit working Helen /M and Don G0RQL from the handheld on 2m FM. By the time I had returned to the car Helen had her waterproofs on and we threw caution and common sense to the wind and decided to activate.

Access to G/DC-005 Christ Cross is via a muddy farm track and on this occasion it resembled a small stream, it at least proved that our boots were as waterproof as they claimed to be and my feet were the only dry part of my body by the time we finished.
The track leads to a transmitter building at which point the GPS told us we were at the summit. An initial scan showed no sign of the now almost mythical trig point but hopefully I will return one day in better weather and prove to myself if it is still there or not. I set up on HF running the linked dipole over the barbed wire fence surrounding the building while Helen set up on the opposite fence with the 2m beam.
I rapidly worked my way through the pile up on 5mHz and Helen got three on 2m FM before coming on to grab David G3RDQ on 60m to make sure of qualifying the summit. We were too cold and wet to bother with any other bands but before I packed up I managed a quick 23cms contact with Don G0RQL from my little Icom. I headed back to the car once again and then worked Helen from outside the activation zone while she was still at the summit. The two older children had waited in the car but my youngest Emily gets the award for being as daft as her mum and dad and joined us getting as wet as a wet thing while we play radio. We got such a soaking that I was fairly convinced that none of the radios would ever work again but so far everything still seems to work.

Date:15/Mar/2008 Summit:G/DC-005 (Christ Cross) Call Used:G7AAV/P Points: 1 Bonus:

Time

Call

Band

Mode

Notes

13:53z

G7AAU/M

144MHz

FM

 

13:57z

G0RQL

144MHz

FM

 

14:30z

G8ADD

5MHz

SSB

 

14:32z

G0RQL

5MHz

SSB

 

14:33z

M1MAJ

5MHz

SSB

 

14:34z

GW0VMZ

5MHz

SSB

 

14:35z

G3RDQ

5MHz

SSB

 

14:36z

G1SAA

5MHz

SSB

 

14:37z

G0NES

5MHz

SSB

 

14:38z

M0COP

5MHz

SSB

 

14:39z

G0TRB

5MHz

SSB

 

14:40z

G4BLH

5MHz

SSB

 

14:41z

G0AZS

5MHz

SSB

 

14:42z

G4JZF

5MHz

SSB

 

14:43z

G3FUJ

5MHz

SSB

 

14:44z

G4ERP

5MHz

SSB

 

14:45z

G0LGS

5MHz

SSB

 

14:46z

G0HNW

5MHz

SSB

 

14:47z

M0EAV

5MHz

SSB

 

14:53z

G0RQL

1240MHz

FM

 


Date:15/Mar/2008 Summit:G/DC-005 (Christ Cross) Call Used:G7AAU/P Points: 1 Bonus: 0   

Time

Call

Band

Mode

Notes

14:20z

2E0VCC

144MHz

FM

 

14:25z

G0RQL

144MHz

FM

 

14:27z

G4RRA

144MHz

FM

 

14:36z

G3RDQ

5MHz

SSB

 

15:15z

G7AAV/M

144MHz

FM

 


After another hour of driving we saw the welcome sight of our holiday cottage. Once we had changed into some dry clothes and turned the place in to something resembling a Chinese laundry we started to appreciate how lucky we had been in our choice of accommodation. The place had only been done up 18 months earlier and was one of the nicest we have ever stayed in. The 36 inch wide screen HD TV was most appreciated by the kids for use with the X-Box and the views of the Atlantic out of the upstairs lounge diner French windows were superb. Someone had really thought about this place in a lot of ways, but building it upside down with the bedrooms and bathroom on the ground floor was inspired. There was soon an inverted vee dipole running out of the windows to the corners of the garden and I felt well at home.
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