I have been meaning to get across to Wendover Woods for sometime but never seemed to manage it. So whilst nursing a foot injury that was keeping from the big hills I decided to take the opportunity and tick G/CE-005 off of the list and in the process complete the activations of CE Region. On the way home I decided to take a detour and reactivate Walbury Hill as well.
FT-817 5 Watts, 4.2Ah LiFePO4, 60m/40m/20m linked dipole, 7m sotapole and a palm paddle, VX-8 plus RSS 2M dipole.
Wendover Woods G/CE-005
Leaving home at 0830, it was not the most pleasant of drives. Up the M3, M25 then the A41 to Tring. I parked at the Aston Woods Car Park (SP892100) at 1030 and set off up the road and along the short footpath to the Trig Point. Distance 800 feet, Ascent 25 feet, Time Taken 5 minutes – this is technically a Drive-On summit as the car park is inside the AZ.
Setting up on the trig point itself I tuned around 7-cw and quickly opened the account with a summit to summit with DL/ON6ZQ/P on DM/BW-228. Moving frequency I tried to self spot but the phone wasn’t having it. So relying on the RBN I struggled to get a further 3 stations in the log despite receiving resonable reports. Changing to 5-ssb I called on 2 different frequencies with absolutely no takers. So back to 7-cw and this time was able to get a self spot up. Well I could not believe the change that 10 minutes had made. Ten stations in the log in 15 minutes followed by a further 6 stations on 7-ssb – then nothing!. Out of all the contacts today only 2 were from the UK, the rest were from all over Europe.
I had read that the field with the trig point was one of the quieter locations in Wendover Woods to operate from – Wrong! Throughout the 40 minutes I operated from there I had 4 largish school parties walk past and an older group of teenagers on a hike, all of whom wanted to know what I was doing so I just used the ‘I’m a spy’ approach which they all accepted without question and quickly moved on.
Walbury Hill G/SE-001
After a very pleasant drive across country I arrived at the car park for Walbury Hill (SU 370619) where I enjoyed my lunch and admired the excellant views. However, whilst I wasted away a relaxing 30 minutes looking north I hadn’t noticed the growing dark clouds gathering to the south and heading my way. Quickly kitting up I headed off up the track to the gate, then across the field to the trig point. Unfortunately the rain was starting and the wind had picked up so I retraced my steps to the slight shelter at the side of the field boundary. Distance 0.36 miles, Ascent 56 feet, time taken 10 minutes.
Self spotting I started on 7-cw and was quickly called by DL/HA5MA/P, on DL/EW-020, for my second summit to summit of the day. This was followed by a slow but steady run of 5 stations before the silence ensued. Self spotting for 7-ssb only managed to add Pedro EA2CKX to the list for this hill. The bands were dead and the rain was falling quite heavily now so it was back to the car and home.
All in all a pleasant day out with some reasonable radio and an activation complete for Central England. It also added 2 points to the tally whilst nursing a very painful foot. It was just a shame about the weather on Walbury Hill, especially after the beautiful sunny morning spent on Wendover Woods.
73 Glyn G4CFS/P