The saddle between Slieve Bearnagh GI/MM-004 and Slieve Meelmore (non-SOTA) by the Mourne Wall, for the second time on Tuesday 27th May 2014. Most walkers, from here, would now make for that latter summit, but we followed the more direct path that connected to the saddle between Meelmore and our next summit Slieve Meelbeg GI/MM-005. This isn't indicated on the map, but is quite clear on the ground. We made it to the Mourne Wall at J303282 in good time and took a breather and a choccy bar here, using the wall as some shade from the blazing sun.
We only had a little over 100m vertical ascent to go from here, over a horizontal distance of about 300m. Albeit steep, it wasn't too bad underfoot with plenty of horizontal "footprint steps" in the grass. It didn't take too long to top out at the summit cairn and another Mourne Wall corner.
We set our aerials and selected our operating spots, in the shade of the Mourne Wall. Baxters Scotch Broth soup was served, and enjoyed. Jimmy was first to be QRV, and with him finding two S2S opportunities almost immediately on 2m FM, I tail-ended him to also work Simon GW4TJC/P on Snowdon GW/NW-001 and Gerald MW0WML/P on Moel Hebog GW/NW-014. In between, Guy N7UN and Barry N1EU came in on 12m CW to give me the Challenge multiplier, before I offered the summit on 40m CW, for which there were four takers.
So I ended with eight contacts from a mixture of three bands, while Jimmy pipped me with nine on 2m FM. For the descent, we returned by the Mourne Wall to the previous saddle, but then turned left to follow the trodden path and then track downhill in a NNW direction. Once on flat farm land, this met the Ulster Way at J294294, which we then followed the 4km or so back to the car.
After the evening meal that night, I set up my 6m delta loop in the garden area of the cottages, and brought the feeder into the lounge. This was to try and contribute something for the Tall Trees CG in the 6m UKAC. As it was, I worked only two stations, one in IO64 and one in IO94. Jimmy just worked Dave in IO64. Some time later, it occurred to me that Jimmy and I could have taken in in turns to walk outside with the VX7R handheld and be worked on 6m FM. That would have added hardly anything to the distance km total - but would have given us each an extra multiplier, as we were in IO74 square. But possibly not in the spirit of the contest? In any case, the idea never came to be within the contest period anyway, so it didn't happen!
A rest day was planned for the Wednesday, on which we took a trip via ferry over to see Strangford Lough. The next SOTA mission of the GI holiday would be Slieve Muck GI/MM-007 on the Thursday.