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

Moel y Gamelin 2011

 

    Click to return to summit index

 

What is the Winter Bonus all about?  For me, it has always been about selecting decent mild nice weather days, and pleasant straightforward summits in the 500-600m height band. Like the Ponderosa Pair of Moel y Gamelin GW/NW-042 and Cyrn-y-Brain GW/NW-043 on a sunny February day, making the 4 points transform into 10 each. And that is precisely what Jimmy M3EYP, Edward M6NSR and myself did on Saturday 12th February 2011.

Jimmy setting up 2m on Moel y Gamelin    Ed has a cup of tea after arriving on summit

We left Macclesfield at about 7am and headed directly for Lymm Truck Stop. Here we each availed ourselves of the 7-item cooked breakfast and a mug of tea. The breakfasts here were always good, but now they are better with much higher quality black puddings than previous years.  After continuing along the M56, M53 and A483, Jimmy directed me a few turnings and onto Horseshoe Pass (the A542) up to the Ponderosa Cafe. It would put us behind schedule, but we all agreed to go in for another brew before commencing the walk.

We motored quite quickly up the semi-steep pull to the subsidiary summit of Moel y Faen, before dropping down again ahead of the steady kilometre's climb to Moel y Gamelin's summit. Jimmy and I were equipped, unusually, with a flask of tea today. Ponderosa is a must for lunch on these days, so soup was unnecessary. But a hot drink was nonetheless welcome.

Tom M1EYP    Jimmy & Edward

Jimmy and Ed got going with their handhelds and SOTA Beam on 2m FM, working a decent number each including several summit-to-summits. I was having a bit of a change by doing 80m, first on CW and later on SSB. Obviously the QSO rates were not what I enjoy on 20m and 40m, but it was very enjoyable to be working friends in G that I rarely get on the higher bands.

As we began to pack away, we were all surprised by the start of a rain shower. The day had been confidently forecast as completely dry, so I told Jimmy and Ed that in all likelihood, it would very soon be over. The rain turned to sleet and then light snow, before stopping quite quickly as the bright sunshine and blue skies returned.

80m dipole, mast bending in the wind    Final approach to Moel y Gamelin summit    Looking across to Cyrn-y-Brain

When you look from the summit of Moel y Gamelin across to that of Cyrn-y-Brain, it looks a fair old distance, especially knowing that every step will be walked. It isn't all that far, and it is just a lovely walk which I am happy to repeat year-in-year-out. I might even return to Moel y Gamelin for one of my Backpackers entries this year, even though there won't be any more SOTA points available.

Back at the Ponderosa Cafe, the place was heaving. As expected, the car park was nearly full, and half of it by an array of impressive motorcycles. The queue for food was considerable, but we joined the end of it in confidence. This place is a very well-run establishment, and as usual, we were served within a couple of minutes, despite the volume of customers going through. I had the homemade steak & kidney pie with chips, peas, carrots and gravy, and a large sized drink of Irn Bru. The grub was of exceptional quality, and served in large hiker-sized portions. A very good plate of nosh for 4.85, setting us up nicely to walk up Cyrn-y-Brain GW/NW-043.

M6WSB

80m

SSB

T

GW8OGI/P on Corndon Hill MW-013

2m

FM

J

M6HBS

80m

SSB

T

M3ZCB

80m

SSB

T

M1MAJ

80m

SSB

T

PI4CG

80m

CW

T

2E0XYL/P on Titterstone Clee Hill WB-004

2m

FM

J

2W0CYM

2m

FM

J

MW6BDV/P on Moel-ddu NW-045

2m

FM

J

G1NVY

2m

FM

J

G4SSH

80m

CW

T

G4OOE

80m

CW

T

G0BPU

80m

CW

T

G4BLH/P on Boulsworth Hill SP-008

2m

FM

J

G3WPF

80m

CW

T

G0HRT

2m

FM

J

2W0DAA

80m

CW

T

2E0YYY/P on Shining Tor SP-004

2m

FM

J

G0NUP

80m

CW

T

G6ODU

2m

FM

J