It was time to start tidying up the remaining summits in South Wales GW/SW, I had one 4 pointer and two 2 pointers left to complete along with a handful of one pointers. The primary target for today was Cefn Yr Ystrad GW/SW-008 (4 points) starting the walk from Pontsticill. The weather forecast looked very good for today so an early start was made to get on the hill nice and early. Leaving home at 0430 and headed off down the M4 for South Wales.
FT-817 5 Watts, 4.2Ah LiFePO4, 60m/40m/20m linked dipole, 7m sotapole and a palm paddle, VX-8 plus RSS 2M dipole.
Cefn Yr Ystrad GW/SW-008
I arrived at a layby just across the road from the Water Works (SO 05992 11411) at 0730L and after kitting up set off for the bridle way at 0740L. The track goes under through the tunnel under the Brecon Mountain Railway and gradually gains height until breaking on to access land at SO 065 119. From this point the landscape changes to one of limestone moorland. The track goes straight uphill until it intercepts an obvious wide track used by off roaders. For the next mile or so the walking is very easy as you make steady progress towards the disused quarries. Start the ascent of the steep escarpment following the line of the quarry boundary fence until a large track is intercepted. Follow this onto the higher ground until the summit trig point becomes visible to the NE. At this point follow the best route towards the trig avoiding the shakes holes and rocky crags. Distance 2.6 miles, Ascent 1132 feet, Time Taken 1hour 50 minutes.
Self spotting on 145-fm I was immediately answered by Martin G4ENZ but then despite several calls no further contacts were made on 2m. Using the hole in the top of the trig I set-up the HF and self spotted on 7-ssb. After a couple of calls HB9MKV entered the log but then there was a long wait of over 9 minutes before the self spot went live, then 7 further stations entered the log in quick order. All of these were European stations with the exception of a very weak Don G0RQL who passed me a 33 report, I am happy I received a ‘Roger’ to my 44 reply but there was some QRM from other stations calling me!! – if not I am sure he will tell me so I can delete the contact. SSB soon dried up so a self spot on 7-cw resulted in 2 further QSO’s before silence again. Though I did notice however, that RBNHole was reporting my signal on 7.033 and I was on 7.032MHz. Not the best radio conditions with reports of rapid and deep QSB but better than the conditions have been recently and at least the summit was easily qualified.
For the return route I took the more direct line back down to the main track and found it very easy going with a good track feeding between the shake holes. Next time I do this hill this is the route I will take up as well.
Overall a very pleasant day out with a good walk and average radio. I had hoped to have activated Coity Mountain GW/SW-012 afterwards and even drove to the Big Pit Car Park. But when I put my left boot on I got a sharp pain in my foot. This is a pain I have been getting on and off for the past couple of weeks and whilst it didn’t bother me this morning it suddenly flared up. So it was off home for an early bath and medals.
73 Glyn G(W)4CFS