Long Knoll 2018

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G/SE-007 – Another wet one

After a long run of hot sunny days with temperatures up into the 30’s we were invited to a bbq with Peter in Westbury. I decided to bag Long Knoll whilst I was there as it’s only a few miles from his house.  After no rain for nearly 2 month unbelievably the forecast was for wind and rain!

Parking is a bit of a problem for this walk unless you park elsewhere and make it a longer day.  There is room for one car on the verge at ST 801 378.  We took this option and parked there before heading up the path onto Long Knoll itself.  The route up is very obvious and an easy climb with only about 90m of ascent to the top.

About a third of the way along are the remains of an old shelter which was fortunate as just as we approached this spot the rain came down really heavily, and with the wind blowing it was coming at us almost horizontally.  We sheltered behind the wall whilst it passed, whilst sat there I checked access back into the Swindon repeaters which were coming in at 5/9.  After a short QSO with Rob G4XUT the rain abated and so we continued on towards the summit trig point.

At the top it didn’t take long to set up the station.  There is a very useful fence right next to the trig point which made a good support for the antenna.  I soon had the required four contacts in the log and went on to complete another ten contacts for a total of fourteen.  Coverage was good ranging from Cowes to the South and up into Shropshire to the North with a couple of contacts into South Wales to the West and another into Witney to the East.  The highlight of the trip was adding Peter M6XPE to the log as the fourth contact qualifying the summit.  It was Peters first SOTA chaser point and his first QSO since passing his foundation exam.

The return back to the car was by the same route we came up along and we just managed to reach the car before the rain started again in earnest.

Journey Details

Date – 28th July 2018

Postcode – BA12 7HN

Parking – ST 801 378

Radio – Kenwood TH-D74 + 50W PA on 2m

Antenna – 2 ele yagi

Band – 144 FM

Contacts – 14

SOTA points – 1

Group – Myself and Belinda

Log

Walking Route Summary

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Walbury Hill 2018

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G/SE-001 – VHF NFD

VHF field day (NFD) seemed like a good time to activate Walbury hill again and at the same time enter the next backpackers contest.  Unfortunately when the day came around it did not work out as planned.  NFD started at 15:00 on the Saturday and almost immediately I heard a strong signal giving out the locator IO91gi which is Walbury Hill.  I quickly established who it was on the hill and realised there was no way I was going to be able to enter the backpackers contest from the same hill.  Instead, I relocated my backpacker entry to Granham hill nearer home and rearranged my SOTA activation for 15:00 on the Sunday when the NFD finished.

I met up with Ken at the car park for the walk up to the trig point.  Unfortunatly we were busy chatting and missed the gate into the field so had to backtrack a little.  The NFD station had set up near the trig point so we detoured over to say hello before heading for the trig point.  Once again I set up next to the trig point and soon had seven contacts in the log.  With the point in the bag I packed up and gave Ken a hand trying to operate on 20m before returning back along the same route we arrived on.

Journey Details

Date – 8th July 2018

Postcode – RG17 9EL

Parking – SU 370 620

Radio – Kenwood TH-D74 + 50W PA on 2m

Antenna – 2 ele yagi

Band – 144 FM

Contacts – 7

SOTA points – 1

Group – Myself and Ken

Log

Walking Route Summary

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