Wednesday, 1 May 2013

SOTA - Fan Fawr - GW/SW-005

Fan Fawr - 734m, 6 points

Association: Wales  Region: South Wales  
Latitude: 51 51 45 N, Longitude: 3 29 49 W
Grid Reference: SN 970193, QTH Locator: IO81GU

Path starts to contour near the top of the climb
After some lunch I set out to tackle Fan Fawr. I started form the carpark opposite the Storey Inn. There are three kissing gates and not one of them had any obvious path which headed upwards. I could make out a definite scar, which I took to be a path, on the steeper ground ahead, so I headed for that across the open moorland. Conditions were good underfoot and as expected as I got closer to the scar it was the result of many feet pounding this route. It was not a difficult climb and I was getting excited at how quickly I was getting to the summit. Of course this was a false summit and once we crested this the true summit could be seen majestically towering  above us off ahead in the distance. The ground flattened off here and once again it was hard to pick up any path on the ground which was now wet and boggy, but I headed towards what looked like a steep climb up towards the summit. The obvious path was now deeply eroded and some attempts at repairing it with stone had been made but there remained a deep, muddy, slippery gully which headed skyward. It was at this point that I met another walker on his descent as I scrambled up this steep section. Near the top the path branched off to contour around the hill. This again was in the form of another deep gully, but it was comforting as it gave some protection to the very steep drop off to the right! After that it was an easy stroll up to the summit where there is a small cairn. 
Summit Cairn

With acres of space and not a soul in sight I set up close to the edge of the ridge overlooking the valley below.
HF conditions had much improved since the morning. As I tuned up I was called by HB9BCB/P for the first contact and a S2S into the bargain! The chasers were out in force this time and I worked 32 stations in as many minutes on 14mhz before moving onto 30 and 40 metres which again netted 28 more callers.
A foray onto 21Mhz brought a eight chasers, two Stateside being N4EX and W4ZV. 18 Mhz was a bit dead and I struggled to get 3 contacts in the log.
I was surprised when a couple turned up making it a total of three humans that I encountered on this hill.
Looking across the valley you could see the little black dots of ants  heading for the summit of Pen Y Fan whilst here there was peace and solitude!
A good activation, a nice walk and a complete contrast to the mornings activities.
At 71 QSOs , 26 DXCC, 2 S2Ss and 14 activator points for the day, I packed up and called it quits.
Corn Du in the background

Wild ponies. Trig point in the distance is below summit at 715 m


  1. Hi Pete, thanks for S2S qso. I had a lot of qrm because some operators did not understand the "as" for wating a second ;)

    Here some pictures from my location DM/NW-075 in the Wiehen Hills.

    73, hpe cuagn,

    Mario dc7ccc

  2. Hi Pete,
    Thanks for all the GW/SW uniques you have given me lately, great pics too.
    catch you again soon.

    Steve.. MW0BBU.