Sorry to hear about your antennas, i did that exact same thing many years ago, NEVER again!
There was definitely some tropo about as .750 was very busy all day.
Malcolm UHY, i heard you very well up to S7 for some time while you were working Dave.
There were were lots of other stations quite weak/readable but i couldn't raise any of them, nice to hear lots of activity, great!
Looking forward to the next one.
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I went portable about 20 miles West of Salisbury and managed to work Malcolm G0UHY at at 119 km, David M0YDH/P at 154 km and Dave G4FRE/P at 118 km, all on 70 cm. Closer in I also worked Mike G8LES at 87 km having seen his pictures before even hearing him on talkback. Some work to do on the 5.6 GHz kit which I took along to test but seems to be very insensitive on receive.
Please don't forget to submit your entries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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1kW ERP on 5.6GHz FM didn't make it to Dave but it all seemed to be working. My new full-wave dipole for talk-back on 2m worked well, being heard on the Yorkshire moors and down in Taunton (suspect some tropo help).
Did work G8LES one way for a first and only contact.
Some observations as a relative newcomer....144.750 is too busy for effective calling - do we need to agree a QSY off once a new station is found?
When posting activity, could people include the name/location enough for Google to find it rather than just the locator. At the moment I'm looking at the distance and direction using Google maps. Maybe there's a better way (I think some contest software shows distance and bearings based on locators entered, maybe there's a better way - please share!)
SIte was nice and private (by paid for arrangement) and offers good takeoff to the north, via West round to South. For the future I may be able to move a bit to clear the trees where it is at least clear (but flat) round to the south.