After long time without any Sota activation due to a respiratory infection, the weather forecast indicates that Sunday will be a sunny day. 🙂
It will be a cold but sunny day!
So, I decided to give a try to my lungs!
Early in the morning I went to Serra da Freita Power station and parked the car.
It was a perfect day for this time of the year, with a cold and strong wind. But who cares ?
My first bad decision was to take advantage of a tree instead of erecting the fishing pole.
A rock helped to launch the string over the tree. Then the rope get tangled in a branch.
The half burned pine tree shown no cooperation… Fires in the summer are enough. A SOTA activator seems to be too much!
But one should never give up, right ?!
Second launch and the rope was not in the correct position. So, I pulled a little.
Bingo! The rock turn around a branch and now is firmly tie to the stubborn pine tree!
Pulled from several directions and nothing!
So, the fishing pole was used to untie the rope and the rock .
Problem solved just after 40 min… 😦
Another small pine tree are waiting to hang the end of the rope…
Easy one. The rock will be used as weight.
My thought at that time was”…unwrap the wire, erect the fishing pole and it’s done. I will be on air.”
But things are never that easy…The small twigs left by the burn bushes made the task very difficult. The wire get rolled up and… It seems to be an easy task!…
At this point I start laughing ! It took me over 1 hour just to have the wire in the air!
Everything set, let’s CQ CQ on 60m…
What could go wrong ?!
I notice something strange in the SWR of the KX-2. At beginning the tune is perfect and SWR=1:1. Shortly after the SWR increased!
I stop. Checked SWR with ATU: “All systems go”…
Starting CQ again. CQ CQ CQ SOTA DE [SWR going up]. Stop.
Less power. Same problem…
Let’s give a try in another band. Same behavior!
Forcing CQ, I get one spot on 14 MHz (6 dB SNR in G-land)…
ZERO answers, no QSOs!
One must to understand when it’s a “no day”! 🙂
So let’s enjoy the mountain and forget SOTA, i e, phase 2 of Sunday.
11/12/2016 AM Text in English will be placed here ASAP
Rapidamente combinado na noite anterior com o João Fragoso, CT7ABE, pelas 09h30 deste domingo seguimos a curta viagem até ao sopé do Monte Serves.
Ao longe as pás das eólicas quase não rodavam com falta de vento e, apesar de alguma humidade, o sol mostrava-se num céu pouco nublado.
Um dia perfeito para uma activação SOTA! 🙂🙂🙂
Fomos apreciando as vistas na rápida subida e, ao chegarmos lá em cima, cada montou o seu shack, costas com costas, no marco geodésico de primeira ordem.
O CT7ABE usou 5W num dipolo com traps e este escriba usou 5W, numa antena end fed long wire, sendo que a parte mais alta do fio estava suportado nos cabos telefónicos que atravessam a zona…
Combinadas as bandas de trabalho, lá fomos alternando e tentando não interferir um com o outro.
Contudo, na zona, sentia-se, por vezes, uma forte emissão que além de QRM propriamente dito chegou a dessensibilizar o RX… 😦
Isto foi sentido pelos 2, sendo que a situação afectou mais o CT7ABE/p. 😦
Às 10h41 fiz o primeiro QSO, em 20m/CW, seguindo-se, depois, mais 16.
Dos 17 QSOs há a registar os simpáticos factos:
– Dois QSOs com estações CT em CW;
– Um QSO com ZL (Nova Zelândia), já confirmado via Clublog;
– Um S2S com o CT7AFR/p.
Antes que alguém pergunte, o rápido QSO com o CT7AFR foi feito em SSB, utilizando o microfone de um auricular e, confesso (!!!), com 10W PEP (aumentei a potência do KX-2 para o nível máximo que ainda é considerado QRP)…
Este QSO foi feito pelo meio de italianos e logo a seguir a um QSO do CT7AFR com o Manuel, EA2DT, que também é “cliente habitual” desta estação aquando de activações SOTA…
Uma radiosa manhã de sol que deu para espairecer as pernas e fazer rádio.
It was raining when I set off from home but after a while the sun is shining…Well, I thought, maybe this is a good idea!
On the road, start climbing the mountain my feeling drift a while: Rain and wind…Reaching the military barracks I realized that I’m in the middle of cloud for quite some time.
But rain and wind are also natural elements. So, wearing my hiking clothes and my backpack I started walking along the trail that lead to Nossa Senhoras da Neves (Our lady of Snow)
The trail were fixed from past problems. Essencials signs are clear now. 🙂
With a better weather that would be a worderfull walk!
Reaching the activaing zone, the weather is roaring (literaly) – See video
I took shelter near the Chapel of S. João Batista (the higher chapel in the summit), leaving behind the chapel of Nossa Senhora das Neves, which stay by the side of the road that heads to Portuguese Air Force radar station.
I found a small cubicle open, on the right side of the chapel. Even so, humidity was abundant in the interior
I used the holes in the rock wall to have a shack. The fishing pole and the EFLW was attached to a garden seat on the south façade. The RG-174 was runing along the unique window of the cubicle.
While avoiding to make a shelter with a tarp 🙂 I had to use my rite-in-the-rain notebook to log in the QSOs, because my usual notebook was almost wet!
I kept equipped because of humidity and cold. Also, the op position was standing up because that’s the unique position where the all the wiring was ok.
Started CQing on the 40m band but no answer.
I tried to hear CT2GSN and CT7ABG, that should be in MN summit (North of Portugal) but no luck.
This was happening in a day where I prepare everything to do a SSB QSO…
Next time, I guess!
CQing on the 20m gave me the qualification for this summit quickly. I made 10 QSO in a row, followed by 4 more in the 18 MHz… And I went off because of the weather.
Sometimes my gloves were taken off during QSOs because I’m struggling to use the CW paddle with gloves on. The gloves are waterproof…
Need more training with gloves on!
Descent with “usual weather”…
I tried to visit the Royal Ice Factory (18th century) but a heavy rain and a tight time table sent me back home!
Now, all stuff are drying, knowing that the KX-2 should almost waterproof…
Well cared trail
Passing by Nossa Senhora das Neves
Selfie with Chapel of S. João batista
Selfie with fishing pole and EFLW
My antenna farm, Chapel of S. João Batista and repeater tower in the mist
EuropeNorth America SOTA S2S Party, 19NOV16 1400 – 1700 UTC
I left the car at Fraguinha (nice lagoon and camping), climbing between the ravaged forest due to fires in summer.
The wx was cold and windy.
Between 1438z and 1546z 32 QSO were made in the 20, 17 and 15m band, all cw.
Of those, 4 were with North America (NA).
3 S2S, only one with NA : N1EU.
EU in suffix should mean something in this kind of events!…
I decide to quit before sunset because the mountain was almost engulfed by the clouds (1106 m high) and wind was stronger and stronger. And the temperature started to decline drastically.
I descent in the middle of the mist but I had the chance to view some fallow deer that crossed the path. They disappeared before I could take the camera out of the pocket but they were a nice view in a mountain that had no people in this cold day!
I reach the car when it starts snowing.
What a nice day!
Thanks everyone who took part. Looking forward for the next!
Vy 73 de Pedro, CT1DBS
The fields ravaged by summer fires
Wind generators all across the mountain
Nice views despite Wx
CAT/BA-012 trig in the top
The remains of the trig
A few minutes ago all the wind generator could be seen