SOTA Activation of Craig y Llyn (GW/SW-010) 3

Craig y Llyn (GW/SW-010) was my second SOTA activation of the day and I arrived to find the whole area turned into some kind of building site. It transpires that they’re building a wind farm here and are in the process of clearing trees.

Summit Factfile

GW/SW-010 – Craig y Llyn – 600m, 4 points
Latitude: 51 43 0 N, 3 35 0 W
Grid Reference: SN 907032, QTH Locator: IO81FR
Parking: Park in the forest entrance on the E side of the main road at SN923027 (CF44 9UF, N51:42:45, W3:34:15).
Walk: 338ft of ascent in 1.33 miles. Easy summit – well defined track.
Trig: TP2534 – Craig-Y-Llyn
WAB: SN90
VHF: Good VHF takeoff (not the best near the trigpoint due to surrounding trees)

The Walk

I parked at the car park some 600m down the road from the forest entrance and retraced my steps back. In hindsight I could have parked nearer the entrance on the other side of the road, where there was space for a couple of cars.

I assumed (incorrectly) that the main site entrance was off limits to walkers and started a diversion around the right hand side perimeter of the forest. This added quite a distance to my walk and in the mid-day heat I was starting to feel it. After about 30 minutes I arrived at the quite well hidden trig point.

I’d followed the Garmin GPS to the trig and didn’t see it until I was almost on top of it:

Hidden Trig on Cefn yr Ystrad

Hidden Trig on Cefn yr Ystrad

The Activation

On arriving at the trig point I wasn’t too hopeful for a good VHF takeoff, it’s surrounded by thick forest and not clear in any direction. Other activators tend not to activate the summit from here, instead preferring the areas cleared of the thick trees and I would have done this had I not wanted to also activate this trig point for the Worked All Britain Trig Point award in addition to SOTA.

I setup the Yaesu FT-270 handheld and the vertical dipole, once again mounted in the centre of the trig point:

Using the Trig to support the 2m vertical

Using the Trig to support the 2m vertical

Upon turning the handheld on and scanning around I heard Vicki MW6BWA/p up on GW/SW-037 so quickly called her for another summit to summit contact.

After this I put out a call on the calling frequency and had another QSO with Phil GW0IRT, who had made the log earlier when I was up on Cefyn Yr Ystrad (GW/SW-008).

After this no one else came back despite many CQ’s on 145.500MHz. Eventually I decided to spot myself on the SOTA website and I soon had Rod MW0JLA/p find me for another summit to summit contact from GW/SW-025.

Straight after I had Don G0RQL come back to me, Don is based down in Devon and I always seem to get him in the log when I’m in the Brecon beacons on 2m FM. Soon after this I also got Phil GW7MMG in the log for the second time in the day.

17 minutes and I’d managed 5 contacts, not too bad for what I had initially pegged as a bad VHF spot! After this I decided to pack up as I had lunch to eat and still had another 2 substantial summits to activate before the day was out.

I followed the main construction track to the forest exit, it turns out that you can still use this, you just need to watch out for site traffic (trucks) coming both ways. This is a much shorter walk than the previous detour I had taken!

Sign outlining the wind farm plans

Sign outlining the wind farm plans

Sign outlining the wind farm plans

Work won’t be complete until 2017!

Construction road I followed back to the car

Construction road I followed back to the car

Trees cleared for Wind Farm

Trees cleared for Wind Farm

Trees cleared for Wind Farm

Trees cleared for Wind Farm

Conclusion

This isn’t my favourite summit in the Brecon Beacons, it’s in a nice forest but when I visited it was being significantly changed to make way for the wind farm. It also lacks any sort of view which is a shame considering its elevated position.

The site traffic destroys any notion of you being away from it all. That said I still had an enjoyable activation and bagged another 2 Summits to summits, I can also think of worse summits!

I drove to towards Fan Nedd (GW/SW-007) for my third SOTA activation of the day.

Time Call Band Mode Notes
13:15z MW6BWA/P 144MHz FM Vicki – S2S – GW/SW-037
13:16z GW0IRT 144MHz FM Phil
13:25z MW0JLA/P 144MHz FM Rod – S2S – GW/SW-025
13:27z G0RQL 144MHz FM Don, Devon
13:32z GW7MMG 144MHz FM Phil, Swansea
Enjoying some lunch after a successful activation

Enjoying some lunch after a successful activation

3 thoughts on “SOTA Activation of Craig y Llyn (GW/SW-010)

  1. Reply Robert - DL3RR Jan 19,2016 10:20

    Another inspiring activation – even if the views weren’t all that great this time.

    I really must activate some of my local summits once the weather starts to improve. It is just a shame that we are going to be loosing so many of our summits here in Germany as of next month.

    • Reply James Stevens Jan 20,2016 13:14

      Thanks Robert. The P150 rule being enforced in Germany will cause a lot of summits to be delisted from SOTA. It’s a shame, I feel the pain of the activators.

      Soon Spring will be here and you can get out in relative comfort. Me and a friend are planning a February activation of 5 summits on the Welsh Borders, here’s hoping for some good weather 🙂

  2. Reply Steven Freedman Jan 20,2016 01:24

    Great stories about your Sota activations.

Leave a Reply