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Summits on the Air (SOTA)

 

You will discover new places and come across beautiful scenery with often a stunning view from the summit. 

 

 

Other radio amateurs will be keen to make radio contact with you and short wave listeners (SWL) can participate too, earning points. 

 


 

My SOTA 2012 (February-March) holiday to Ireland included a stop-over in South England and South Wales.  I made a special effort to activate the 4m band from SOTA hilltops.  It was nice to get 4m contacts in the west of Ireland, especially in the Galway Bay area and Co. Mayo.

 

Having experimented with a variety of antennas on previous SOTAs I decided on wire verticals for 4m, 2m and 70cm, using a short Ecoflex-10 coax to minimise signal loss.  For HF 20m/40m I had a link dipole in inverted V configuration.

 

My destination was the West of Ireland, in particular Connemara. Temperatures were quite mild at around 8 to 10 degrees C, however, due to Atlantic weather systems moving in there were many days with low cloud, persistent drizzle, showers, hailstorms and gusty wind.  Some mountains are 800+ metres so at the top it is freezing cold!

 

I was glad to meet up with Joe Ryan EI7GY, the Association Manager for SOTA Ireland, to co-activate Tonlagee EI/IE-003 in Co. Wicklow.

 

On this holiday I bagged my 50th SOTA hilltop in EI, completed the cluster of SOTA hilltops in Co. Tipperary and used the "EJ" prefix from Inishturk Island.

 

I hope you will enjoy the photographs and comments of my 2012 SOTA activity.

 

Filip (Phil) ON4TA

 


 

Low cloud over Connemara precluded ascent on quite a few days, as alternative I operated /M.

 

 

My /M setup from Kilmichael Point on the Co. Wicklow/Wexford border.

/M operation from the old Marconi site near Clifden Co. Galway.

Kilmichael Point, start of a scenic cliff walk on Ireland's East Coast.

Dunguaire Castle (a 16th century tower house) near Kinvarra Co. Galway.

Site of the Marconi Corporation wireless service [transmitter station], 1907.

Only the antenna mast anchor blocks remain ...

Commemorative plaque (sadly vandalised now).

The area where Alcock & Brown landed, first non-stop transatlantic flight, 1919.

The monument to the British aviators Alcock & Brown.


 

 


 

 

The map below illustrates my 4m contacts from /M (purple marker) and /P (blue marker).

 

 

My 4m QSO's on this holiday from various hill tops and /M.


 

 

Operating /P from the eastern Connemara hills was a good choice to reach EI3GYB, EI7GMB, EI5DD (Galway Bay) and EI2HGB (east Co. Clare).

 

Driving around there were a few 'hot spots' on the R340 near Glinsk and also near Lettermore P.O. where I could receive EI3GYB Michael's signal (path to SW from his QTH). 

 

I tried 4m at various spots en route but could not detect any signals further west (near Clifden).  It might have been possible for me to reach west Co. Clare or even Co. Kerry but probably no radio amateurs on 4m?

 

My 2m APRS did not connect to any digipeater in Connemara, signals stopped about 50km west of Galway city.

 

 


 

 

 

 


 


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Subtopics: IRL Abbey Hill IRL Annagh Hill IRL Benlevy IRL Bohaun IRL Cashel Hill IRL Cashlaundrumlaha IRL Corcogmore IRL Croagh Patrick IRL Croghan Hill IRL Derroura IRL Errisbeg IRL Knockastanna IRL Knockmore IRL Knocknamuck IRL Lackavrea IRL Maumfin IRL Mtn Common IRL Slievecarran IRL Slievecoiltia IRL Tangincartoor IRL Tonatieva IRL Tonlagee IRL Tooreen IRL Tory Hill IRL Tully Mountain ENG Cheriton Hill ENG Garway Hill ENG Wilmington Hill CYM Craig Syfyrddyn CYM Mynydd Drumau