Tom Read - click to email meBDXC ISWL WAB SOTA RSGB IOTA - see my radio page for more detailsLiam & Jimmy

Gun SP-013

 

Gun, G/SP-013 - 385m ASL - SJ 970 615 - OS Explorer OL24 - 1 SOTA point         Map & summit information from SOTAwatch    Click to return to summit index

Sunday 6th January 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

I had a pair of really good activations in this morning, and might just had got the hang of this FT8 business.  Even so, in my entirely personal opinion, it’s harder/more fiddly to operate than CW or phone modes, and this is indicated by the significantly slower QSO rates.  Good fun nonetheless!  The FT8 activation probably went well, as much as anything, because preparation was solid.  I’d been chancing a few outings on a damaged 20m GP antenna, cobbling together the increasingly frequently required fixes in the field.  On the Saturday night, I sacrificed Match of the Day to repair it properly.  I’d checked the charging on my tablet a couple of times since the failure earlier in the week, and all seemed well. 

Tom M1EYP        20m GP set up on Gun

I got up at 5am and was QRV on Gun summit just before 7am.  It was a bit nippy and I spent most of the activation inside my bothy bag.  The tablet had full charge and the antenna was working perfectly - hurray!  (I knew the antenna was in good shape when ZL1BYZ came back to my first CW CQ call…!)  I made a total of 53 QSOs:

20m FT8: 34

20m JT65: 1

20m CW: 13

2m FM: 5

S2S with MW0XRT/P on Moel y Gamelin GW/NW-042, and later on Cyrn-y-Brain GW/NW-043

Wkg cndx inside the bothy bag        WSJT-X running on my Windows 10 tablet

An amusing moment came when I decided to emerge from the bothy bag for “a breath of fresh air”.  When I got back in the shelter, I discovered that I’d just made a QSO with a Russian station!  Following descent and a warm-up in the car, I couldn’t resist popping over to The Cloud G/SP-015 on the way home.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

06:59z

UV5ENO

14MHz

FT8

 

07:05z

LZ3SD

14MHz

FT8

 

07:07z

US1GDQ

14MHz

FT8

 

07:10z

UT0HB

14MHz

FT8

 

07:57z

ER1PB

14MHz

JT65

 

08:09z

SV2MJY

14MHz

FT8

 

08:46z

ZL1BYZ

14MHz

CW

 

08:47z

SV2HSZ

14MHz

CW

 

08:50z

EW/DL7VFM

14MHz

CW

 

08:51z

SV2OXS

14MHz

CW

 

08:53z

EW4WE

14MHz

CW

 

08:54z

RA9FF

14MHz

CW

 

08:55z

HA2MN

14MHz

CW

 

09:00z

9A1AA

14MHz

CW

 

09:05z

MW0XRT/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-042

09:14z

YO6CFB

14MHz

CW

 

09:16z

EU6DX

14MHz

CW

 

09:17z

LY2BNL

14MHz

CW

 

09:21z

9A2HF

14MHz

CW

 

09:27z

RA7R

14MHz

CW

 

09:51z

RV9DC

14MHz

FT8

 

10:00z

CT1EUW

14MHz

FT8

 

10:10z

SP5TE

14MHz

FT8

 

10:13z

YT3ADA

14MHz

FT8

 

10:25z

SQ9EJ

14MHz

FT8

 

10:28z

IQ0GH/P

14MHz

FT8

 

10:31z

IU6JMK

14MHz

FT8

 

10:34z

R1CBP

14MHz

FT8

 

10:38z

9A4ZM

14MHz

FT8

 

10:45z

EA7UW

14MHz

FT8

 

10:49z

9A3CX

14MHz

FT8

 

10:55z

RU3WR

14MHz

FT8

 

10:56z

OH7HAP

14MHz

FT8

 

10:59z

IU4DAF

14MHz

FT8

 

11:05z

EA4GAO

14MHz

FT8

 

11:14z

IW3SMU

14MHz

FT8

 

11:23z

OK5CW

14MHz

FT8

 

11:25z

HA7BN

14MHz

FT8

 

11:31z

S57JK

14MHz

FT8

 

11:33z

SP9AJM

14MHz

FT8

 

11:35z

SP5UFE

14MHz

FT8

 

11:37z

SP6CVB

14MHz

FT8

 

11:45z

A45XR

14MHz

FT8

 

11:50z

R4WZ

14MHz

FT8

 

11:54z

R1BEQ

14MHz

FT8

 

12:06z

UA9LL

14MHz

FT8

 

12:09z

SP7MOW

14MHz

FT8

 

12:12z

UR7ID

14MHz

FT8

 

12:23z

RA1WF

14MHz

CW

 

12:29z

MW0XRT/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-043

12:40z

G7WKX/P

144MHz

FM

 

12:47z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

12:48z

MW6SHJ

144MHz

FM

 

 

Tuesday 8th January 2019 - Gun G/SP-013

I fancied doing a 30m FT8 activation.  Problem was, my 30m dipole was broken, and I hadn’t yet built my new 30m GP antenna.  But then I remembered my SOTABEAMS Bandhopper 4 linked dipole - and off I went!  18 QSOs made, including a call from US chaser N1GB, so pretty pleasing.  My routines on WSJT-X seemed to work well, so I took a photo of a full QSO:

FT8 QSO with EA2LU

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:48z

IQ2CU

10MHz

FT8

14:02z

PA3CPS

10MHz

FT8

14:04z

PA7ZZ

10MHz

FT8

14:04z

N1GB

10MHz

FT8

14:06z

IZ1UJM

10MHz

FT8

14:08z

OK1ZE

10MHz

FT8

14:16z

EA2LU

10MHz

FT8

14:25z

SP5UFE

10MHz

FT8

14:27z

F4BAL

10MHz

FT8

14:31z

DH7WW

10MHz

FT8

14:36z

OH8MXJ

10MHz

FT8

14:40z

SA4BLM

10MHz

FT8

14:43z

9A2RI

10MHz

FT8

14:45z

OK1HEH

10MHz

FT8

14:49z

EA3HYF

10MHz

FT8

14:55z

US5IW

10MHz

FT8

15:00z

IK2RFI

10MHz

FT8

15:05z

9A5CW

10MHz

FT8

 

Monday 14th January 2018 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Dad’s Taxis was running with a 1930 drop-off and 2130 pick up.  Time therefore for G/SP-015 & G/SP-013 in between - if I got my skates on.   I invited the local FM chasers to be at their radios!  Well Paul M0PLA in Telford got them both!  I made 7 QSOs on The Cloud and 4 on Gun.  All 2m FM with the handie.  Pleasant couple of walks.  The gales had calmed right down. 

Next, it was time for a different type of FM radio - my son Liam’s weekly programme on Canalside Radio 102.8.  It’s a small scale station and the signal only covers Macclesfield, Bollington, Wilmslow and Poynton, but the internet means you can listen from anywhere in the world - so if you like proper old fashioned radio and good interesting music, have a click on the link.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

20:44z

2E0IXM/M

144MHz

FM

20:46z

M6IXM

144MHz

FM

20:47z

M0PLA

144MHz

FM

20:50z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 15th January 2018 - Shining Tor G/SP-004, The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

A similar routine to the previous night - a bit of a time window between dropping Liam off at the pub (on this occasion) and picking him up.  Remarkably, it was 7 contacts on The Cloud, then 4 on Gun.  Again.  All on 2m FM with the handheld.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

21:28z

M0XOC

144MHz

FM

21:29z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

21:31z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

21:35z

M6AIF

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 24th January 2018 - Shining Tor G/SP-004, Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Summit of Gun        Tom M1EYP

Moving across to Gun from Shining Tor G/SP-004, I was now well below the snowline, and the scene was much different to earlier.  The temperature seemed even higher too, and the gloves were left in the car.  Four QSOs were made, no other takers, so back down and over to The Cloud G/SP-015.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

15:44z

G0OHY

144MHz

FM

15:47z

G3VBA

144MHz

FM

15:47z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

15:48z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

15:49z

M0NZO

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 21st February 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & Shining Tor G/SP-004

There was little chance of answering the question “30m - what can it do?” - not when I’d left the 10m Travelmast at home!  I’d been a sensible chap for once, taking my pole in from the car after a damp activation, wiping it down with towels and storing it with the end caps off.  Unfortunately, this change in MO caused me to forget that the mast wasn’t it in the car as I left the house!  No problem I thought, instead I’ll check out the Youkits HB1B CW transceiver.  Richard G3CWI had kindly repaired this for me a few days earlier.

I was very pleased as the rig had been out of action for a long time, and it is a favourite of mine that I really enjoy operating with.  Anyway, that plan was soon as dead as the 30m plan, once I realised I hadn’t thought to bring any earbuds out with me (the HB1B doesn’t have a speaker).  So there I was at the parking spot for Gun, in my car, with unexpected heavy rain lashing down. Both my radio agenda items were not possible - see above - and I even thought about going home activationless.  I then started to think about nipping up to the summit with the HT and just putting up with the weather for half-an-hour or so.

Then the rain stopped and the skies began to clear. I decided to do an activation on good old 20m using another of my groundplane antennas.  The going was fairly slow, but a variety of modes allowed a respectable number of contacts to enter the SOTA log.

 

20m SSB: 3 QSOs

20m CW: 5 QSOs

20m FT8: 6 QSOs

2m FM: 4 QSOs

 

A change of plan at home and a glorious sunny afternoon gave me the opportunity, and idea to have another crack at testing out my 30m GP and HB1B. I invited Richard G3CWI out for an activation of Shining Tor G/SP-004.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

08:36z

SV3IEG

14MHz

SSB

08:38z

9A1AA

14MHz

SSB

09:03z

RV9DC

14MHz

CW

09:05z

SM2BLY/M

14MHz

CW

09:08z

GW0WPO/P

14MHz

SSB

09:17z

R1BCO

14MHz

CW

09:18z

G3RKF

14MHz

CW

09:22z

IK2LEY

14MHz

CW

09:28z

LY2EW

14MHz

FT8

09:33z

RN1CW

14MHz

FT8

09:39z

M0NZO

14MHz

FT8

09:51z

IW3SOI

14MHz

FT8

09:54z

G1IKH

14MHz

FT8

10:02z

G8MIA

144MHz

FM

10:05z

SP5GLK

14MHz

FT8

10:29z

2E0EZT

144MHz

FM

10:31z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

10:32z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

The walk up to Gun was calm and pleasant for my ninth and final activation on Sunday 3rd March 2019.  I assumed that Freya had indeed passed through and was well on her way to Scotland.  Then I touched the trig point.  Then all hell broke loose and the gusts were chucking me round all over the place. 

Gun        Tom M1EYP

I planted my size 12s as firmly as I could, gripped my paper logbook as firmly as I could, and made my CQ call.  The bands had gone quiet again, and several CQ calls were required.  Well, that, and I think despite my best attempts to shelter the microphone, considerable wind noise was still getting into it, and no doubt putting most casual monitors off my giving me a call.

Nonetheless, the four QSOs were recorded inside five minutes, and I could be on my way home. Any lingering thoughts of Shining Tor G/SP-004 were now completely extinguished; I had no desire whatsoever to discover what the gusts on Gun would be like some 172m higher up on a hill that is completely exposed to the south west!  So I guess I’ll award Freya a “goal” for that one!  A total of 45 QSOs were made in the day.  All 2m FM handheld.  My thanks to all the chasers that worked me on this memorable SOTA day.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

21:55z

G0OHY

144MHz

FM

21:57z

G1HIP

144MHz

FM

21:58z

G4HZW

144MHz

FM

22:00z

M3ISJ

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 13th April 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig: Joe Longthorne

Venue: Pelsall Community Centre, Walsall

Right up to the last minute, I considered a wide detour to take in the Welshpool summits, or the Craven Arms summits, but ultimately I decided that amount of additional time and mileage was not really justifiable.  I was going to do 30m FT8 on Gun, but it was rather windy at the parking spot - and still unfathomably cold for April.  No wonder Easter has been put back so late this year!

So just a walk up to the trig with my FT70D, and 4 QSOs made, including S2H with Rob G7LAS/P on HSP-006 - Bolehill.  The contact ended abruptly when I asked if I may be allowed to enter my activation log of HEMA summit Sir William Hill from the previous weekend!  An SWL log was recorded for MW1CJE/P on GW/MW-007 - I tried a few times to call in, but he wasn’t hearing my handheld & rubber duck!  Going 2m FM handie-style meant that I now had a bit of spare time - enough to pop across the Dane Valley and also activate The Cloud G/SP-015 before going home.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:11z

2E0DIJ

144MHz

FM

10:17z

G7LAS/P

144MHz

FM

10:28z

M0YZY/M

144MHz

FM

10:31z

M5UK/M

144MHz

FM

 

Easter Monday 22nd April 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

This was a completely unplanned pair of activations.  I was walking out of the Moss Rose football stadium after watching a goalless draw in the League 2 match between Macclesfield Town and Newport County.  I suddenly felt some sense of guilt that I’d spent much of the day plunging calories down my throat, but not particularly exercising.  I made the decision there and then to undertake two SOTA activations on the way home!  It was a beautiful sunny and warm April early evening, and shirt-sleeve order ruled again. 

 

On Gun G/SP-013, I made four QSOs on the VHF FM handheld, all on 2m, and all with stations beginning with the number ‘2’!  The same four stations were worked again over on The Cloud G/SP-015, with the addition of an M0 and an M6.  So 5500 steps recorded on my Fitbit watch and submitted to the MyFitnessPal app via the magic of Bluetooth - unfortunately still wholly sufficient to balance the calories consumed in the form of beer and curry.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

16:57z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

16:59z

2E0DIJ

144MHz

FM

17:03z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

17:03z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 1st May 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

 

Gig: Liam Read (Open Mic)

Venue: Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

With the likelihood of doing supply teaching work, I needed to put in an early morning walk in order to attach an activation to a gig!  I put my suit and tie into the car and got off to the usual hill.  During the journey I got asked for, and accepted jobs at three different schools in Norrh Staffordshire.  One by one, each cancelled! I kept my phone on as I walked up The Cloud G/SP-015 in case of any further offers, but none came through, so it was looking like a day off from maths teaching!

 

It then transpired that Jimmy M0HGY needed a lift to work in Wilmslow so I thought I’d collect some brownie points by sparing Marianne that task.  Still no supply work transpired so off to the Staffordshire Moorlands.  2m FM handheld-style again.  I was going to do 30m FT8 & CW but a phone call came from the XYL advising me that we were going for a bluebell walk at Rode Hall (which never happened in the end…).  This time just two QSOs.  But another SOTA activation nonetheless.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:03z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

10:04z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 12th May 2019 - Shining Tor G/SP-004, Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

 

It had really warmed up by the time we were on Gun G/SP-013, and the layers were off accordingly.  On here, Jimmy stuck to his 2m FM, while I stuck to my 30m FT8 and CW, though I did take up opportunities for S2S on 2m. 

 

Jimmy M0HGY        Tom M1EYP

 

Our descent was interrupted by an evangelist who asked us what we thought was wrong with our country today.  I offered a concise (polite) response, and quickly resumed my walk.  Next stop - The Cloud G/SP-015.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

Op

11:25z

MW3TMX/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-048

M1EYP/P, M0HGY/P

11:32z

2W0IXM/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-053

M1EYP/P, M0HGY/P

12:01z

DL1FU

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:01z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:02z

DL5DQZ

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:03z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:04z

OK2PDT

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:04z

DL2DXA/P

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:05z

YO6CFB

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:06z

DG1KJG

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:08z

DL6RDR

10MHz

CW

 

M1EYP/P

12:10z

G4VRX

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:15z

DB1HEF

10MHz

FT8

 

M1EYP/P

12:18z

LA5WNA

10MHz

FT8

 

M1EYP/P

12:19z

DL3IAK

10MHz

FT8

 

M1EYP/P

12:21z

F5PLR

10MHz

FT8

 

M1EYP/P

12:29z

M0PLA

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:31z

DL2RTJ

10MHz

FT8

 

M1EYP/P

12:32z

G4ZRP

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:33z

M6OBQ/P

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

12:34z

G8DRB

144MHz

FM

 

M0HGY/P

 

The LD SOTA weekend started here!  On a Wednesday in Cheshire…

Wednesday 15th May 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig: Liam Read

Venue: Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

I’d already told Paul HB9DST that I wouldn’t be able to meet him during his trip due to my work schedule.  However, I arrived at a school in the morning to be greeted by the news that they’d changed their mind and only wanted me for half a day.  Normally I’d be furious, but I immediately realised I could now meet Paul!

Tom M1EYP & Paul HB9DST        Paul operating on 2m FM

I’d seen on the spots Paul had activated Shining Tor G/SP-004 but wasn’t yet spotted on Gun G/SP-013, so after my lunchtime finish, I headed for the Staffordshire Moorlands.  There was Paul operating on 40 and 30.  It was great to meet and chat, and Paul - a SOTA veteran of 72 activated associations - made his first ever 2m S2S QSO - with Dave GW0NZN/P on Moel Gyw GW/NW-053.

I just operated on my HT collecting four contacts.  We then drove in convoy over to The Cloud G/SP-015.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

12:43z

G0SLR

144MHz

FM

 

12:44z

M0NZO

144MHz

FM

 

13:00z

GW8NZN/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-053

13:12z

MW6IXS

144MHz

FM

 

 

Saturday 18th May 2019 - Gun G/SP-013

Gig: Simon Faulkner Band

Venue: Bistro Live!, Leicester

 

Stage set for the Simon Faulkner Band

Back on the road again with a couple of bands.  I’d spent too much time during the morning adding new material to my website, meaning I only left enough time for a handheld 2m FM activation en route to the East Midlands.  I worked 12 stations even so, concluding with three consecutive S2S.  An unexpectedly satisfactory activation!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

14:26z

2E0SAE/P

144MHz

FM

 

14:29z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

14:29z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

14:30z

2E0DIJ

144MHz

FM

 

14:31z

GW0TQM

144MHz

FM

 

14:32z

M1IRM/M

144MHz

FM

 

14:33z

M0HMO

144MHz

FM

 

14:33z

M6CAG

144MHz

FM

 

14:37z

M6KIO

144MHz

FM

 

14:38z

MW0PLA/P

144MHz

FM

GW/MW-027

14:43z

GW8YHW/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-008

14:47z

GW7LEE/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-071

 

Saturday 25th May 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015, Gun G/SP-013 & Winter Hill G/SP-010

Gig: Liam Read Band @ Swanload Festival

Venue: Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

 

Gig: Simon Faulkner Band

Venue: Rivington Hall, Bolton

 

FT70D atop trig    Liam Read    Tom Read M1EYP

Next it was over to Gun G/SP-013, and another enjoyable short stroll in the lovely weather.  Unlike a little later in the day though, the band was quiet.  Just two QSOs made in this activation. Then, the Liam Read Band opening up the Swanload Festival.  A well received set of live music including covers of Joy Division, Radiohead, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, Beatles and Kinks.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

09:37z

2E1DTR

144MHz

FM

09:43z

2E0RKA

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 28th May 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

 

Gig: Joe Longthorne

Venue: Bellavista Restaurant, Milnrow

 

It was chucking it down as I drove from home to Cloudside.  By the time I’d arrived at the parking spot it was quite a nice day, albeit somewhat cooler than recent days.  Anyway, it was pretty quiet on the radio.  Just one contact from each summit on 2m FM.  I could have broken into other ongoing QSOs to try to further populate the logbook, but decided not to bother.  I suspected many radio amateurs in the North West were becoming pretty bored by my CQ SOTA calls from The Cloud on S20, and one or two actually somewhat irritated I don’t doubt!  I should probably be trying to get on 6m FT8 at this time of year though really.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:19z

M0WBG

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 1st June 2019 - Gun G/SP-013

 

Gig: Motown Gold

Venue: Branston Hall Hotel, Lincoln

Gig in Lincoln.  The direct route would have taken me past Shining Tor G/SP-004.  But I didn’t have time for that.  The closest summit to the venue was Normanby Top G/TW-005.  But the extra fuel for that detour threatened to make the gig uneconomical.  Gun ticked all the boxes. 

You know the routine.  Walked up with a handheld.  Activated.  Walked down.  Went to work.  Quite boring really, but kept the digits ticking over on my Fitbit tracker.  Just two contacts on 2m FM.

 

Super gig with a ten piece line up of Motown Gold, and especially fine bandwiches served up too - Lincolnshire sausage, bacon, black pudding, cheese and mushroom on large white rolls.  Due to my diet, I restricted myself to just three.  I was determined to get home without stopping for a nap, knowing that I would be up early to head out to GW with Jimmy M0HGY.  As it transpired, I received some shocking family news early in that journey and remained wide awake and focused throughout as a result!

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

14:13z

G3CWI/P

144MHz

FM

14:16z

M6NSV/M

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 9th June 2019 - Gun G/SP-013

It was a really good show in Dunstable.  I love my job!  I attempted to drive home but made it as far as the A50 near Uttoxeter, between Derby and Stoke - near Alton Towers.  At that point I succumbed to that pinnacle of showbiz glamour - a kip in the car in a lay-by.  (I actually keep two pillows in the car for this very purpose).  When I awoke it was about 4am BST, and my warped and slightly obsessive mind immediately turned to the greyline DX SOTA opportunities.  I added G/SP-015 as a waypoint to the satnav route, but when this directed me through Leek, I exchanged this for G/SP-013. 

My "hotel" for the night...        Great morning in the Staffordshire Moorlands

 

I set up the 30m vertical with elevated groundplane monster antenna on the 10m SOTAbeams Travel Mast, by the hawthorn tree made famous by Mickey 2E0YYY.  It was a beautiful morning with a lovely sunrise and mist filling the valleys below, albeit rather chilly.  VK and ZL briefly appeared on the WSJT-X band activity window, but none worked.  I did get a 30m FT8 contact into the USA though which was a nice surprise at this early hour.  I made a total of 54 QSOs on 30m FT8 / CW, and one on 2m FM.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

04:41z

F1PWS

10MHz

FT8

04:44z

YO7CGS

10MHz

FT8

04:47z

OK5CW

10MHz

FT8

04:49z

RK4FF

10MHz

FT8

04:51z

F4FSY

10MHz

FT8

04:58z

UR6QV

10MHz

FT8

05:02z

EU6KA

10MHz

FT8

05:08z

OH3EX

10MHz

FT8

05:09z

HA3HT

10MHz

FT8

05:13z

PA5MB

10MHz

FT8

05:21z

N4TUR

10MHz

FT8

05:24z

F4PCM

10MHz

FT8

05:27z

OE4BHF

10MHz

FT8

05:30z

HA7XC

10MHz

FT8

05:37z

OK1LV

10MHz

CW

05:38z

UR4LTX

10MHz

CW

05:39z

YL2AG

10MHz

CW

05:41z

DL9MDW

10MHz

CW

05:42z

US8IX

10MHz

CW

05:44z

HB9DCEX

10MHz

CW

05:52z

S52CU

10MHz

CW

05:52z

OK1DPU

10MHz

CW

06:03z

F1GBD

10MHz

FT8

06:06z

DL7VOG

10MHz

FT8

06:09z

US5TA

10MHz

FT8

06:14z

DC8SP

10MHz

FT8

06:17z

SB3A

10MHz

FT8

06:22z

SP7XIF

10MHz

FT8

06:30z

S52GU

10MHz

FT8

06:36z

HB9CGH

10MHz

FT8

06:38z

OH2BFG

10MHz

FT8

06:40z

DL1RV

10MHz

FT8

06:45z

YO2LOG

10MHz

FT8

06:51z

DG3NCZ

10MHz

FT8

06:56z

DL7VKD

10MHz

CW

06:58z

F6CFB

10MHz

CW

07:00z

DJ5AV

10MHz

CW

07:02z

OE3WMA

10MHz

CW

07:04z

EA1DR

10MHz

CW

07:05z

SP1MGM

10MHz

CW

07:06z

OH1CM

10MHz

CW

07:07z

F6ARL

10MHz

CW

07:08z

SP7P

10MHz

CW

07:09z

OK2BOB

10MHz

CW

07:11z

F5TO

10MHz

CW

07:12z

DK2BU

10MHz

CW

07:22z

DL1FU

10MHz

CW

07:22z

EA3AVV

10MHz

CW

07:23z

DL2LQC/P

10MHz

CW

07:24z

OK1DLA

10MHz

CW

07:25z

OZ7JZ

10MHz

CW

07:26z

DL6WT

10MHz

CW

07:27z

DL3HXX

10MHz

CW

07:29z

HB9BSH

10MHz

CW

07:49z

GW0HUS

144MHz

FM


Monday 8th July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: no gig, but Late Night Liam was coming up on Canalside Radio 102.8FM / streaming online, that night around 10.15pm.

Four contacts.  Trouble was they were split between two activations!  Not that I tried very hard - I was in a rush to get off the first summit in order to squeeze a second activation in before picking Liam back up, and I quit on Gun when it started raining - I was in shirt sleeves and no coat!  Still, two SOTA activations nonetheless. 

New information board for Gun Moor NNR  Close-up  First part of the route

It was interesting to see a newly erected information board at the start of the path on Gun.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

19:11z

G0SLR

144MHz

FM

19:12z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 11th July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

As I reached my car after descending from The Cloud G/SP-015, my Fitbit watch advised me that my day’s teaching work in Newcastle-under-Lyme, plus my Cloud activation, had totalled 7000 steps - so still 3K short of my daily target.  Only one thing for it then - a quick nip across to Gun G/SP-013!  I was expecting this to be very soggy given the downpour earlier, but the path was all dry.  At the summit, I couldn’t raise anything at all on S20, despite prolonged CQ calling.  Ultimately, I broke into the only QSO audible on the band - George 2E0GLW in Leigh with John M6JUR in St Helens.  That gave me a pleasant couple of contacts, and I walked back down to the car.  I was still short of my step target with my Fitbit watch showing 9,000 for the day.  The day had half-an-hour remaining, so I simply marched up and down the road close to the parking spot until my wrist vibrated!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

22:24z

2E0GLW

144MHz

FM

22:26z

M6JUR

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 23rd July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

The Cloud G/SP-015 had been activated during the morning before a day out in Manchester with Marianne.  After getting back, it was time to start running Liam about for his vocal lesson and ten-pin bowling social outing.  Between drop-off ad pick-up for his singing lesson, I hared down the A523 and activated Gun.  With extremely limited time, I didn't walk all the way to the summit, just a short distance that took me reliably within the activation zone.  Like the earlier activation, it was three QSOs on 2m FM with the handie.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

17:40z

G4XQB/M

144MHz

FM

17:41z

G6SGA

144MHz

FM

17:42z

M0UKN

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 25th July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Joe Longthorne

Venue:  Key Theatre, Peterborough

With the next gig after this being Saturday in Milton Keynes, I had been toying with the idea of booking theatre digs for a couple of nights and staying out.  The utter lack of summits in the Peterborough and Milton Keynes areas, or anywhere in-between, encouraged me to not bother, and just drive back home.  As such, I just wandered up my two local summits as I commenced my drive over to Cambridgeshire.

On Cloud I made four contacts on 2m FM, including S2S with Tim G4YBU/P on Worcestershire Beacon G/WB-009.  On both summits I contacted Alistair MW0TYM/P who was activating Cadair Berywn GW/NW-012.  After Gun, a long drive over to Peterborough, soundcheck in the Key Theatre, and burger and chips on a barge on the River Nene.  An excellent show with Joe on sparkling form, and a long, tiring drive home, culminating with a lightning storm as I drove over the Cat & Fiddle road.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

12:07z

MW0TYM/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-012

12:08z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

12:09z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

 

Friday 26th July 2019

Just a tea-time stroll to keep the legs moving and the step count up - though the scales informed me I'd put on weight again, so much more is required (and some better dieting too in all reality).  After a bit of holiday clothes shopping in Lyme Green (just south of Macclesfield), I drove down the A523 to Gun.  Three QSOs were made on 2m FM.  And then over to The Cloud G/SP-015 before returning home for tea.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

17:06z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

17:08z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

17:14z

M0PLA/M

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 27th July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Simon Faulkner Band

Venue:  Bistro Live!, Milton Keynes

After The Cloud G/SP-015 I nipped over to Gun to grab another quick activation.  And a quick one it was - just one contact on the handheld, and only about two thirds of the walk to the summit covered - enough to be well inside the activation zone though!  Still raining as it was on the earlier summit, so heater on full in the car as I started to dry off en route to Buckinghamshire.  Great gig that night.  The other three guys in the band were all college students of my dad's back in the 1990s!

Backstage with the Simon Faulkner Band

Time

Call

Band

Mode

12:36z

2E0IXM

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 28th July 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Joe Longthorne

Venue:  Viva Blackpool

Well these activations were really on the way home from the Milton Keynes gig rather than en route to the Blackpool gig!  It was a late finish on the Saturday night, and a drive through the night back home, with a couple of lay-by naps included!  As I drove from Stoke-on-Trent to Congleton and nearing the end of my journey, I decided to get my SOTA in for the day right then, rather than try and squeeze something in later on the way to the next gig.

Problem was it was raining very heavily.  Well I just put on full waterproofs and did a couple of activations anyway!  Three contacts on 2m FM on The Cloud G/SP-015, then just one on Gun G/SP-013.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

07:51z

G4VXW

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 6th August 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

I was out and about in the car running errands round town during the day.  I knew I would be activating The Cloud G/SP-015 for the contests that evening, but thought I'd grab a cheeky activation in the Staffordshire Moorlands while out.  It was a low-effort activation, with a corresponding low return - just a single QSO on 2m FM with the handheld, although I did call CQ for quite a while.  Really, it was just an excuse to stretch my legs after a sedentary few days and the stark realisation that until another regular gig came in, I wouldn’t be gallivanting around the country getting my cardio (and SOTA) in.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

12:52z

G4HZW

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 7th August 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Liam Read

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

Still trying to rediscover my good habits of getting my steps in every day, like the previous day, while out and about running errands, I squeezed in visits to my two local summits.  I was, I'm afraid, similarly lazy still when it came to working conditions.  I just took the 2m FM handheld again!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

14:20z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

14:21z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

14:23z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Friday 9th August 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig:  Liam Read Band

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

It was a gig day, so my compulsive nature dictated that it was also a SOTA day!  A swift afternoon round of my local two summits ensued!  An unfortunate moment came later on my way to the gig when a Ford Fiesta ran into the back of me causing damage to my car.  The other party's insurance is taking care of all that, but nonetheless, a nuisance that I could have done without.

The gig was great, with Liam in top form and delivering two excellent sets to a very enthusiastic and appreciative crowd.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:44z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:45z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

13:45z

2E0IXM

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 10th August 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Simon Faulkner Band

Venue:  Bistro Live!, Milton Keynes

A bit more of a drive for the following day's gig, but a fairly straightforward one down the A50 and M1.  Nothing en route that would score me any SOTA activator points, nor really anything significantly more interesting than my two local hills - so I just did those two at the start of my journey south!  A certain Alan M1DCG from Bentilee, Stoke-on-Trent was putting out a monologue on S20 for seemingly hours and hours!  This was disrupting the CQ calls from Richard G3CWI, operating as G8SRS/P (Stockport Radio Society) from Avro, Woodford.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:19z

G8SRS/P

144MHz

FM

13:24z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:25z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM


Sunday 11th August 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

I had no reason nor motivation to head out on the Sunday, other than to get a few thousand steps into my Fitbit tracker.  I activated my local two SOTA summits yet again.  Alan M1DCG was still announcing his views on world matters on S20, but this time I called him to see what would happen.  He actually QSYd and worked me on both summits, but seemed to be trying to manufacture an argument with me on the second QSO!  I declined to participate in the attempted escalation, thanked him politely and moved on!  Very pleasing QSO numbers with 20 shared between the two summits, despite me only operating with a handheld.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

09:37z

G8SRS/P

144MHz

FM

09:38z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

09:39z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

09:41z

M1DCG

144MHz

FM

09:57z

GW4TJN

144MHz

FM

10:02z

G6WXI

144MHz

FM

10:03z

M6NSV

144MHz

FM

10:11z

M1HLL/P

144MHz

FM

 

Monday 12th August 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Joe Longthorne's Final Show

Venue:  Sacred Heart Church, Blackpool

Well I was going to be setting off to Blackpool for my final duties as Joe Longthorne's bass player, so it was entirely appropriate to conduct a couple of summit activations beforehand.  He'd always interview me on stage in the shows about what I'd climbed earlier that day.  This was desperately sad though; I loved working on this gig, and I will miss Joe's company and friendship hugely.  He was a wonderfully inspirational man.

Blackpool Gazette        A moment of heartbreak yet great pride

Just one contact on 2m FM, a big contrast to the QSO bonanza of the previous day.  But it was a good one - that resulted in a new active SOTA chaser being recruited.  After the two activations, Marianne and I drove up to Blackpool, checked into the Imperial Hotel, and met my bandmates for a meal and drinks before a larger get-together at Joe's house later.

The following day - Tuesday 13th August 2019 - saw a lovely service - a full requiem mass - at Blackpool's Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church, followed by a wake at Viva, the venue at which we were scheduled to be doing every Sunday July to November again with Joe this year.  As Joe's band, we had the very great honour of carrying him into the church for his "final show".

Time

Call

Band

Mode

09:40z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 14th August 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Liam Read Open Mic Night

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

The weather was truly appalling with constant heavy rain.  This had persisted all day from Blackpool from where we set off home that morning.  Nonetheless, I had a gig that night, so activations needed to be done.  Five QSOs on each hill - and two very wet socks.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

17:07z

2E0EZT

144MHz

FM

17:08z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

17:08z

G6TET

144MHz

FM

17:11z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

17:12z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 1st September 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig:  Stu Clark & Friends

Venue:  The Venue, Lymm

I hadn't been home from the previous night's Simon Faulkner Band gig in Newark-on-Trent.  I'd kipped for about four hours in a lay-by somewhere between Newark and Derby, then drove to the parking spot for Gun, where I kipped for another three hours or so!  At that point, I decided I really needed to make some attempt to rejoin the land of the living, and went for a walk up to the summit with my handheld.

Just Roy G0SLR answered my CQ calls.  But one contact maketh an activation, and on this occasion, one hundred contacts would not maketh an activation point!  So all was good, and I could get off to The Cloud G/SP-015 before finally getting home.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:09z

G0SLR

144MHz

FM

 

Monday 2nd September 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Another wander up Gun as part of getting my steps in for the day.  And another one QSO activation!  This summit was seemingly not in demand from the chasers.  Anyway, still an activation in the logbook, and off I went to The Cloud G/SP-015.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

14:04z

M0TVU

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 3rd September 2019 - Shining Tor G/SP-004, Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

After Shining Tor G/SP-004, I darted though the lanes via Wildboarclough and Wincle, to the well-known parking spot on the high corner between Rushton Spencer and Meerbrook.  The quarter-mile easy path to Gun starts opposite here, and only gains 30m of height in that distance.  For the third activation in a row, I made just a single contact on 2m FM! 

 

I then went back home for a while before venturing out for that evening's 2m contests, which I looked forward to participating in from the summit of The Cloud G/SP-015.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:58z

M0NZO

144MHz

FM


Monday 9th September 2019 - Gun G/SP-013, The Cloud G/SP-015 & Shining Tor G/SP-004

My first and most important duty of the day was delivering two new Late Night Liam radio shows to Canalside Radio in Bollington.  While at the radio station, I ended up having quite a natter with the station manager Nick Wright.  I then drove back into Macclesfield via Hurdsfield Industrial Estate, where I had lunch at the TTS Meats Cafe, somewhere I'd been planning to visit for a while.  Delicious chicken stroganoff with rice, and a can of Lucozade - £3.65 - amazing value.  I will return!

Then off down to Gun.  Again I ended up with wet socks and very soggy trainers, but at least I got five QSOs into the logbook, rather than the single one that had become rather customary of late from this summit!  Wet feet or not, I pressed on with my plan to also activate The Cloud G/SP-015 before returning home.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:33z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:34z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

13:40z

GW4TJN

144MHz

FM

13:46z

M0XGS

144MHz

FM

13:48z

M1DCG

144MHz

FM


Tuesday 10th September 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

The day began annoyingly.  Three iPads I had ordered, to be used as music stands in Liam's band, arrived by courier.  Two of them were great.  One of them was still locked to the previous owner's Apple account.  Obviously the "checks" carried out by the distributor (Cex) were wholly insufficient.  I took the unit down to the branch in Macclesfield and got a full refund - then ordered another online, hoping for better service.

I went to our favourite cafe - Velo Cafe on Chestergate - only to arrive as Marianne was leaving.  Oh well.  Instead I went to Fatima's in the indoor market.  This is a Turkish food stall, and I had the chicken adobo with rice and salad, which was absolutely delicious.  I will definitely return.

Next on the agenda was a quick walk up Gun with the 2m FM handie.  Three minutes, four QSOs, and back home.  I would be back out for The Cloud G/SP-015 later.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

14:34z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

14:35z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

14:37z

M3RYL

144MHz

FM

14:37z

2E0FGK

144MHz

FM


Wednesday 11th September 2019 - The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-015

After The Cloud G/SP-015, I went up Gun, and enjoyed a 100% increase in the QSO rate compared to the earlier summit!  I guess that's one way to put a positive spin on it!  Nonetheless, it did enter my mind that in two SOTA activations in the day, I had actually failed to gather even enough QSOs to qualify one activation!  It was still satisfying though to break the S20 monologue of a Stoke-on-Trent amateur and engage him in lucid conversation, away from the calling channel!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

11:46z

M1DCG

144MHz

FM

11:50z

M1MLM/M

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 12th September 2019 -  Shining Tor G/SP-004, The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

I had originally intended activating Gun after the end of the 6m UK activity contest on The Cloud G/SP-015.  I figured this would have me on Gun summit in good time to attempt a 20m FT8 S2S with a planned activation from Taiwan BV.  It might be a long long shot, but would be fun to try.  However, the early finish on The Cloud mucked that schedule up, plus of course the data cable was identified as broken - so no FT8 would be possible anyway!

I still wanted the walk and the activation though, so I drove across the Dane Valley, and walked up to the trig point.  Four QSOs were made on 2m FM with the handheld, before I drove home.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

21:29z

2E0IXM

144MHz

FM

21:31z

G0WDT

144MHz

FM

21:32z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

21:33z

MW6SHJ

144MHz

FM

 

Friday 13th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015, Gun G/SP-013 & Shining Tor G/SP-004

I knew that Marianne was coming out for a big walk in the Peak District sunshine later on.  That would likely include Shining Tor G/SP-004, so I wanted to get the other two local summits activated before we set off.  I nipped out first thing and activated The Cloud G/SP-015 then Gun G/SP-013, achieving a grand total of just three QSOs across the two activations!  I returned to the home QTH, the Marianne and I went out for lunch an a long walk that has the summit of Shining Tor along its route.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

08:31z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 14th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015, Gun G/SP-013 & Shining Tor G/SP-004

After The Cloud G/SP-015, I made my way over to Gun to grab a quick VHF activation - and a few more Fitbit tracker steps - before going home.  Four contacts made with the Yaesu handheld.  Later in the day, I treated myself to an afternoon on Shining Tor G/SP-004.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

06:59z

2E0IXM

144MHz

FM

07:09z

G1EBW

144MHz

FM

07:19z

2E0RYR

144MHz

FM

07:21z

GW6CWD

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 15th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

I drove over from The Cloud G/SP-015 as I typically do, in order to bag an extra walk and activation.  Usually this low-effort approach with the handheld results in 1, 2 or 3 contacts, but on this occasion, I was delighted to make eleven QSOs including three summit-to-summits.

The afternoon saw Jimmy, Liam and myself having Sunday dinner in one of the local pubs, accompanied by a few beers and games of pool.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

10:13z

2E0EZT

144MHz

FM

 

10:18z

M6DRW/P

144MHz

FM

G/WB-005

10:19z

M7AJL/P

144MHz

FM

G/WB-005

10:23z

MW3TMX/P

144MHz

FM

GW/SW-005

10:24z

2E0FMH

144MHz

FM

 

10:26z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

10:26z

M3STG

144MHz

FM

 

10:28z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

10:29z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

10:30z

2E0FGK

144MHz

FM

 

10:31z

MW6SHJ

144MHz

FM

 


Monday 16th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

After The Cloud G/SP-015, I made my way over to Gun.  There was no sign of the Macc club members, so I was still running early.  I ascended to the summit nonetheless, with the intention of getting some operating in before the others arrived.  I wasn't able to stay for long in the actual event anyway.

Macclesfield club members - Adie M0PAI, Greg M0TXX, Damo M7TUX & Chris M0VWT        Greg M0TXX enjoying the fine views while activating in the Staffordshire Moorlands

I operated initially on 30m CW, making a good number of QSOs.  Opening with Guernsey was an unexpected surprise!  The highlight of the activation came later on FT8 mode, when I worked the African country of Mauritania for the first time in my amateur radio career.  It was actually a very easy and quick contact.  It was nice to see all the lads - Adie M0PAI, Greg M0TXX, Damo M7TUX and Chris M0VWT - but time was getting on and I needed to get home for my tea!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

16:13z

MU/KA9P

10MHz

CW

16:15z

EA2DT

10MHz

CW

16:16z

IK2LEY

10MHz

CW

16:16z

DL2YBG

10MHz

CW

16:17z

EA2IF

10MHz

CW

16:18z

IK2CFD

10MHz

CW

16:19z

EA4MZ

10MHz

CW

16:21z

ON3ND

10MHz

CW

16:22z

SP9AMH

10MHz

CW

16:24z

IU3HMB

10MHz

CW

16:24z

SP5ICQ

10MHz

CW

16:25z

RA4HPI

10MHz

CW

16:26z

SM5LNE

10MHz

CW

16:27z

DL6KR

10MHz

CW

16:28z

DL1TSM

10MHz

CW

16:29z

SP1JQJ

10MHz

CW

16:30z

HB9CZR

10MHz

CW

16:30z

OH1MAW

10MHz

CW

16:31z

G3WPF

10MHz

CW

16:32z

SV2OXS

10MHz

CW

16:34z

OK2CLL

10MHz

CW

16:34z

DL4ZBY

10MHz

CW

16:35z

IK5OWC

10MHz

CW

16:35z

SA2CLU

10MHz

CW

16:36z

DL3JPL

10MHz

CW

16:38z

IW2BNA

10MHz

CW

16:38z

DJ9EG

10MHz

CW

16:39z

DL8IH

10MHz

CW

16:40z

DH0DK

10MHz

CW

16:40z

LY2BNL

10MHz

CW

16:50z

UA3FBG

10MHz

FT8

16:52z

F1DSZ

10MHz

FT8

16:57z

5T5PA

10MHz

FT8

16:59z

DL7OAP

10MHz

FT8

17:04z

LX1CC

10MHz

FT8

17:04z

SP9TTG

10MHz

FT8

17:06z

HB9CRY

10MHz

FT8

17:09z

EA3HBG

10MHz

FT8

17:12z

S57ILF

10MHz

FT8

17:40z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

17:40z

M0BEW

144MHz

FM

17:40z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

17:41z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 17th September 2019 -  Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

After a 3pm finish in my teaching work in Poynton, I drove straight down to Gun to record an activation.  This was more typical of my low-effort handheld-only VHF activations - two QSOs!  It was good to work Leigh M5GWH, who was operating the club station at his school - Ormiston Horizon Academy - where I occasionally do some supply teaching work myself.

I then intended to go to The Cloud G/SP-015 - but events conspired against me.  I got there eventually - but much later!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

15:08z

MX0OHA

144MHz

FM

15:10z

M1DCG

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 18th September 2019 -  Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig: Liam Read - Open Mic

Venue:  Swan With 2 Necks, Macclesfield

With a full day's teaching in Poynton during the day, and a gig in Macclesfield in the evening, I needed to be pretty efficient if I was also going to squeeze in any SOTA.  But I was, and I did.  Three 2m FM QSOs made on Gun G/SP-013, shortly followed by another four on The Cloud G/SP-015.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

15:26z

MW6SHJ

144MHz

FM

15:27z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

15:27z

M0NZO

144MHz

FM

 

Friday 27th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: Simon Faulkner Band

Venue:  Leigh Cricket Club

I had a a few hours supply teaching in Poynton ahead of me.  I couldn't be 100% that I would manage to take in Billinge Hill G/SP-017 between school and gig in Friday rish hour traffic, plus the venue wasn't all that near to that summit anyway.  However, I wasn't needed in the school until 11am, so I took the opportunity to get my walks and activations in first thing.  Just one QSO was made from each summit!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

07:57z

M0NZO

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 28th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: Elvis & All The King's Men

Venue:  Derbyshire County Cricket Club, The Pattonair, Derby

 

Pattonair, Derby        Tom with Alan & Shelley

It was a long time since I last played an Elvis tribute gig, so I was looking forward to this!  Usual pairing of Cloud and Gun as I headed out to Derby.  Interestingly I worked Viki S2S from both summits, even though she remained on the single summit as I transferred from one to the other.

The "All The King's Men" band        Tom Read & Rik Gaynor

Time

Call

Band

Mode

S2S

13:47z

G0SLR

144MHz

FM

 

13:48z

MW6BWA/P

144MHz

FM

GW/NW-059

13:50z

MW6BWA/P

433MHz

FM

GW/NW-059

 

Sunday 29th September 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: Liam Read Band Bandeoke

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

 

Very damp on Gun!               Waterlogged path

The first SW2N Bandeoke hosted by the Liam Read Band was eagerly anticipated by musicians, singers and audience members alike.  During the daytime ahead of the gig, I got Cloud and Gun activated for the third time in three days!

Liam Read Band Bandeoke    Liam Read Band hosting Bandeoke

Time

Call

Band

Mode

11:43z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

11:44z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

11:44z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 12th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: Funky Doctors

Venue:  Styal Lodge

After The Cloud G/SP-015, on this busy October Saturday, it was across to Gun, as is often the case.

Gun Moor        Tom M1EYP

Just the 2m FM handie was carried, and just one QSO resulted - with a certain Richard G3CWI/P in his motorhome somewhere near Leek.  That would do though, that's another activation, and it was time to go to the footie - via the pub!

Meeting up with my old workmates for the match        The Moss Rose Stadium

It was brilliant to catch up with all my old pals at Wetherspoons in Macclesfield, before we all walked the couple of miles up to the ground.  We posed for a group photo before splitting off to take our positions in the respective home and away ends of the stadium.  I was the one smiling at 5pm, after an excellent Macclesfield performance saw Port Vale defeated by two goals to one.

Soundcheck for Funky Doctors gig        Stage set up

Finally off to work at Styal Lodge Weddings, and my first gig with Funky Doctors, a great band with some very talented musicians.  A very packed - and enjoyable day!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

09:19z

G3CWI/P

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 16th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig: TribFest Bahrain - The Cream of Clapton & U2 Tribute

Venue:  Bahrain Rugby Club

 

Well I simply had to contrive a way to record this gig in my "SOTA on Tour" activation blog!  With no M0HGY in tow, and with no SOTA association in A9, there was no prospect of operating in Bahrain.  So I just needed to activate my local ones before setting off for my flight!  Again, they were low-effort handheld activations.  I just went for the walks really - and to record a SOTA activation!

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

10:03z

M0VCS

144MHz

FM

 

Very plush hotel room in Bahrain!        Relaxing by the pool ahead of soundcheck

The hotel we were accommodated in was the Juffair Best Western, and it was really nice.  I had a very plush suite room all to myself, and I loved the breakfasts platters of vegetable fried rice, mixed dhals and chilli omelettes.  Not to mention the mango juice and - a favourite of mine - masala tea!

Someone left an ice bucket full of beer for me...       Soundchecks continuing into the evening

At soundcheck - and again on gig day - we were provided with ice buckets full of beer and cider, which was very refreshing.  Not very hydrating though, so I limited myself to sensible quantities in the stifling 35 degrees Bahrainian heat.  It was a good gig, a good experience and one I'd happily do again.  There was a lot of travelling, a lot of waiting around and a lot of sleep deprivation - but it was worth it overall.  I found Bahrain to be a very tolerant and harmonious place - not at all like the picture some people tried to paint to me before I went.

Tribfest Bahrain        Tom M1EYP relaxing with a beer

There are more Bahrain photos on my activation report for The Cloud G/SP-015, which I did before Gun.

 

Tuesday 22nd October 2019 - Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

After nearly a week off SOTA activating resulting from the Bahrain gig and resulting catching up with sleep, it was time to get back out on the hills.  No supply teaching work came in on the Tuesday morning, so after dropping Liam off in town, I drove south to Gun.  The path up Gun, for the first time in a while, was actually a path as opposed to a river.  OK, it was still very muddy, but a big improvement on the 6 inch deep torrent of recent weeks.

 

I made three QSOs on the 2m FM handheld on a chilly summit, before returning to the car and driving over the Dane Valley for The Cloud G/SP-015.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:50z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:51z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

13:52z

G1ZGZ/M

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 23rd October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Liam Read - Open Mic

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

 

After The Cloud G/SP-015, it was over to Gun, where again just two stations were contacted.  However, one of them mentioned he had C4FM (Fusion) mode available, so we made a contact on digital voice as well as analogue FM.

Tom M1EYP accompanying San at Open Mic!        Liam & Tom

Liam was hosting Open Mic that night, so I tagged along to give him a hand, and as anticipated, I was kept busy on guitar and bass duties all evening.  It was a fairly quiet night so at one point I even devised a "Guess the 80s bassline" quiz (at the request of a couple of regulars)!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:59z

M0UKN

144MHz

FM

14:01z

G0MIX

144MHz

FM

14:06z

M0UKN

144MHz

C4FM


 

Thursday 24th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

After The Cloud G/SP-015, it was over to Gun (where have I heard that before...?) and the path was mercifully dry again.  The walk up, which is quick and easy anyway, seem to flash by in an instant and I found myself at the summit trig, on a cold but pleasant night.  Again, with just the 2m FM handheld and rubber duck, I was pleased to record 7 QSOs in just 8 minutes.  The 2m band was still busy, though not as congested as observed on the earlier activation.

I called at the Harrington Arms, Bosley for a "swift one" on my way home, and made it back just in time to watch Question Time with Marianne and Liam.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

20:12z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

20:13z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

20:14z

G0HIZ

144MHz

FM

20:16z

M6AIF

144MHz

FM

20:17z

2E0EZT

144MHz

FM

20:18z

M0XOC

144MHz

FM

20:20z

M0HGY

144MHz

FM


 

Friday 25th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

After The Cloud G/SP-015, it was over to Gun (I really need to think of a better opening line...) for a second SOTA activation before the wet weather moved in.  Like on The Cloud earlier, the 2m band was very quiet, and just one station answered my CQ call.  I was glad I didn't need the four contacts!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

08:52z

G7UXW

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 26th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015, Gun G/SP-013 & Shining Tor G/SP-004

Gig:  Motown Gold

Venue:  Ye Olde Bell Hotel, Barnby Moor, Retford

After The Cloud G/SP-015, it was over to Gun (no, not thought of one yet).  Immediately I could see that it was going to be a battle to keep my socks dry!  While this battle was ultimately failed, it was mitigated by me only walking about two thirds of the way to the summit!  This got me to a spot that was comfortably in the activation zone, and with a decent enough take off towards the North West.

Waterlogged!        Gun Moor

Three stations were worked in as many minutes, using the Yaesu FT70D handheld.  I retreated to the car and drove via the A53 to Shining Tor G/SP-004.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

12:57z

M0AIF/A

144MHz

FM

12:58z

M0XOC

144MHz

FM

13:00z

M0MVK

144MHz

FM


Sunday 27th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Liam Read Band - Bandeoke

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

After spending 90 minutes or so working CQWW SSB contest stations on The Cloud G/SP-015, I was running short of time before that night's gig.  So for Gun I just popped the Yaesu FT70D handheld into my pocket and planned for a quick "low-effort" activation.  Just two QSOs were made.

That night's Bandeoke at the SW2N was a really great event, well supported by loads of very good singers, who came along to try their hand at singing with a live backing band - as opposed to a karaoke backing track!  It was a lot of fun, and the landlady immediately rebooked us for November.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

18:28z

G1PHN

144MHz

FM

18:30z

G4HZW

144MHz

FM

 

Monday 28th October 2019 -  Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

I didn't have a gig on the Monday - unsurprisingly.  More unexpectedly, the phone never rang for any supply teaching work.  That meant I could head out at my leisure for another couple of SOTA actvations - well, almost.  I did have a couple of A-level maths private tutoring sessions booked between 4pm and 7pm in the Holmes Chapel area, so that became my "deadline".  Like the previous day, I was very sluggish at actually getting round to leaving the house, so both activations ended up being on 2m FM only via the HT.

Although I didn't have a gig on the Monday night, I did have a fantastic radio programme to listen to - the 50th edition of my son's "Late Night Liam" show on Canalside Radio 102.8 FM.  This special extended two hour programme included tracks from many of the artistes Liam has featured on the show over the past couple of years, all of whom appeared on this special 50th show to say a few words - including some big names.  If you missed the show, you can listen "on demand" from Liam's website.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

14:42z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

14:43z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

14:47z

2E0BCJ

144MHz

FM

14:52z

G0FEY

144MHz

FM

14:55z

M1DCG

144MHz

FM

 

Tuesday 29th October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Marianne and I took ourselves off for a walk during the day.  Looking at my OS Maps, I thought that Miller's Dale looked interesting.  We parked at Monsal Head and walked the Monsal Trail (disused railway line) through the Cressbrook and Litten tunnels to Miller's Dale.  Here we took the footbridge over the river to the Angler's Rest public house.  We had lunch here, and the food and beer was first class - we will definitely return!  Please see The Cloud G/SP-015 webpage for photos from this walk.

After returning home, it got to around 9.30pm, and I fancied another walk, so went out to activate my two local SOTA summits by headtorch and handheld!  Four QSOs on The Cloud, and then three on Gun.

Time

Call

Band

Mode

23:17z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

23:18z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

23:20z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Wednesday 30th October 2019 -  Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

Gig:  Liam Read - Open Mic

Venue:  Swan With Two Necks, Macclesfield

 

A Macclesfield Breakfast (a Spearings meat & potato pie) and cup of tea was enjoyed at SOTAbeams with Richard G3CWI as I called in to buy a replacement SOTA Pole.  I then drove down to Gun for my first activation of the day.  It was lovely to bump into Dave G3TQQ who was activating on the summit, and we had a really enjoyable natter for a few minutes.

 

Dave G3TQQ & Tom M1EYP        Dave G3TQQ

 

I left Dave to his HF and walked back up to the trig, where I performed a quickfire 2m FM activation on the handheld.  And then over to The Cloud G/SP-015.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:35z

G7RC

144MHz

FM

13:36z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

13:37z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:39z

2E0EZT/M

144MHz

FM

 

Thursday 31st October 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Omega Big Band

Venue:  Winwick Leisure Centre, Warrington

 

Same again really.  No teaching work during the daytime, so nipped out in the afternoon for a couple of SOTA activations ahead of my evening gig.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

13:49z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

13:49z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Friday 1st November 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

With the time approaching 11pm as I drove over from The Cloud G/SP-015, my mind turned to the possibility of snagging an "extra activation" by staying beyond midnight - and into the next UTC date.  I'd picked up a new SOTA Pole from SOTAbeams earlier in the week, and now was the time to give it its first outing.  I wondered if there might be any DX going begging on 20m - or indeed if the 20m band would be open at all?  In days gone by, I'd have assumed not, but FT8 changes the whole perception of whether a band is "open" or not!

 

Upon arrival at the summit, I gave a quick blast for the loyal chasers on the 2m FM handheld.  I did set up the 20m GP and spent a good 50 minutes or so monitoring, calling etc, but the band was indeed pretty dead!  The RBN showed that my calls on CW were being received in Scandinavia, but I didn't make any contacts.  I couldn't hear a thing anywhere across the whole 20m band.  On FT8, I could RX CQ calls from Brazil, but again didn't manage to complete any QSOs myself.  As midnight approached, I took the decision to pack up.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

23:03z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

23:03z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

23:04z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

23:04z

G4HZW

144MHz

FM

 

Saturday 2nd November 2019 -  Gun G/SP-013 & The Cloud G/SP-015

After packing everything away, it had become a new calendar day, and therefore a new SOTA activation.  I called on the handheld, and sure enough there were Pete 2E0LKC and Anne 2E0LMD.  We exchanged quickly, and I made for a sharp exit, acutely aware of advancing heavy rain.

 

I reached my car, at the parking spot on the shoulder of Gun Moor, just as the rain started.  I emptied my pockets - handheld, phone etc - but something was missing.  Where was my logbook?  I checked everywhere and everything but no sign.  It must have fallen out of my pocket!  There was only one thing for it, and that was to head out again back up the path, scanning the ground with my headtorch, until I found it.

 

So much for beating the rain.  I was now trapped in squally drizzle, and getting a deserved soaking for my carelessness.  Fortunately, unlike the previous time I performed this particular stunt, my logging software at home, and the SOTA Database, were both completely up-to-date.  I felt confident I could memorise sufficient information from the three activations on this outing should it come to it.  I continued scanning the ground as I walked back up Gun, but I was certain the logbook would have fallen out of my pocket when I put my rucksack on, and so would be at the summit.  Thankfully, it was not at all windy so little risk of it being blown into the heather or pages ripped out!

 

Sure enough, there it was, right by the trig point.  I descended for a second time.  I made a mental note to improve coat pocket discipline.  There would be another activation on this date - but not before I'd gone home and gone to bed!

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

00:13z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

00:14z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

 

Sunday 3rd November 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

Gig:  Stu Clark & Friends

Venue:  The Venue, Lymm

 

Good intentions to get out earlier and do some FT8 operating on 30m were no more than that - good intentions - when I didn't manage to get around to leaving the house until gone 4pm.  Needing to be on the road to a gig by 6.30pm reduced my opportunity to that of rapid 2m FM handheld activations only.  Pleasingly, despite the short operating times, five contacts were made from each of my two summits.

 

Time

Call

Band

Mode

17:31z

G7WKX/M

144MHz

FM

17:32z

2E0LKC

144MHz

FM

17:33z

2E0LMD

144MHz

FM

17:34z

2E0EZT

144MHz

FM

17:36z

2E0MGA

144MHz

FM

 

Monday 4th November 2019 -  The Cloud G/SP-015 & Gun G/SP-013

I had a lot to do.  I had plans to complete my 18-19 tax return, do a couple of hours bass practice, deliver a booked private maths tutoring session, and then be all settled in to listen to Late Night Liam on Canalside Radio 102.8 FM as we do every Monday night.  All those objectives were met, and I managed to shoehorn in a two-summit outing between 7 and 9pm.  This would again only permit 2m FM handheld activating, and it was a good job the number of QSOs was not relevant!

Time

Call

Band

Mode

20:26z

2W0JYN

144MHz

FM

20:31z

M6AIF

144MHz

FM

Gun 2002 Gun 2003 Gun 2004 Gun 2005 Gun 2006 Gun 2007 Gun 2008 Gun 2009 Gun 2010 (1) Gun 2010 (2) Gun 2010 (3) Gun 2011 Gun 2012 Gun 2013 Gun 2014 Gun 2015 Gun 2016 Gun 2017 Gun 2018