Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Kinder Scout

Walked up Kinder Scout (SOTA SP-001) yesterday. I'd stayed at Ashton-Under-Lyne the night before so didn't have very far to go after getting breakfast at Asda. Parked near Hayfield.
I'd advertised this on Sotawatch as a 6 metre FM activation, so set up my 6 metre half wave at the top (another fishing pole construction) taped to an aluminum pole. Luckily there was some mud at the top to push the pole into. Made 4 QSOs on 6m FM, the furthest was to G0TQN/M at the Clent Hills near Halesowen, who was using an 18 MHz mobile antenna. He also tried the real 6m mobile antenna and there was no great difference. 3 * 18 = 54 so it would be like a 3/4 wavelength at 51 MHz.
If it wasn't for the Sotawatch website there would probably have been 0 QSOs on 6 metres, and it wasn't easy getting my phone to work on the summit, too many cell sites within range, but I managed to get a minute of Orange reception (I'm with 3 but it fails over to Orange if there is no 3G signal) which was enough to post a spot. Maybe they could reserve some cellular frequencies for use near to hilly areas so that there was always one cell that was well above the background noise. For Kinder Scout it would be Birch Vale mast, for the Lake District probably Coniston High Man and some others around the edge of the hills.

It's the 70cm activity contest tonight. I've been taking part in these for the last year and usually coming somewhere close to last. This doesn't really surprise me as I've been using a dual band colinear from home. But I do seem to be higher up the results table than on 2 metres so maybe more people are having a go with basic antennas on 70cm. I think there should be a section in VHF/UHF contests for vertically polarised stations (single vertical antenna, <100 watts etc.).

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