Easter short trip around Euskal Herria

Even the weather was not the best, and being with my son this week, we decided to make a 3-4 days trip around Euskal Herria.

Our goals: activate some SOTA summits valid for the Euskal Herriko Mendiak award, visit the Eureka Science Museum at Donostia-San Sebastian, and pay a short visit to my sister and nephews at Allo, Nafarroa.

That was the plan. So, on tuesday 22th,  we rented a small car (as I have just my motorbike, and my son is already too young to share it with) and started our trip towards Donostia.

Mr. Einstein preparing the SOTA log
As we planned, we spent all day at Eureka! Science Museum. This is mainly oriented for the young people to experiment with many phenomenae of the nature (weight, electricity, gravity, fluids, sensorial perceptions, and so.) and its aim is to be accesible to them. They can see, touch, smell, hear, anything. This focus generates a lot of questions too... but it well deserves a day-long visit.

Jaizkibel Mt.

I have expected that perhaps, after the visit, we would have some time to activate Jaizkibel EA2/SS-047 at Lezo, about 20 km. from Donostia, but at last, we have so many work at the museum, (plus a last hour visit to the planetarium) that it was imposible.  I was only able to have at sight from our hotel, an ancient forest house today turned onto a cheap and well managed hotel.

Next day, wednesday, we aimed to activate a long waited one, Larhun (La Rhune, Larrun) double referenced as F/PO-212 and EA2/NV-118, near Askain, between Lapurdi and Nafarroa. So, we followed our route through Gipuzkoa to Urruña, Askain, finally arriving to the "Col of Saint Ignace", where a small mountain train carries you to the very summit in a 30' trip across beautiful first Pyrenees, close to the Biscay Bay.

As there were a lot of tourists from France (on holidays onthese days) we had to wait more than one hour to take the train.
Down on the starting station, the sun was shining and the temperature nice, but as we started the climb, the weather was rapidly getting worse.
Once at the summit, we made out from the AZ while watching the amazing views around. Not during too much time, as a dense fog and some suspicious clouds were carried by a pretty strong wind from the west. So, while Oier was researching around the zone, I mounted quickly the rig, and started operating. First the F/PO reference, no more than 30 min. and the EA2/NV, this last only during 10 min. The rain had already started, and the temp was going low.

At the summit of Larhun, before starting activation
On the other hand, I had to "suffer" a lot of people looking at "that strange man, conected to some king of rig, aside a fishing pole, shouting no-sense words to a microphone, or even worse, padding ... God knows what!". I felt like a monkey at the zoo...

After the descent, now really cold, and eating some sandwiches, we headed to Nafarroa,not without a planned stop at the gardens of Bertiz (at Oieregi).
On the first 1900s a man who went to "the Americas"  to "make fortune" came back and spent most of the money earned on building a small palace and a garden, having specimens for a lot of countries from all the world. After his death, all was donated to the Nafarroa people for their enjoyment. Nowadays, it receives a lot of tourist, and it's very well set to that.

Monjardin Castle
After that, we arrived to Estella Lizarra, and spent the night. Thursday morning, we met my sister and her two sons, Ibon (10) and Peio (9), at Allo, where they live.
After the meet, we all went to Villamayor de Monjardin, at about 20km, to make the second activation, the Castle of Monjardin, EA2/NV-121. It was a 2 km path from the village to the summit, quite easy, but with the weather turning stormy again.
We reached the castle (unfortunately closed) in half an hour, and, while the children started remembering old fights, I set up quick all the equipment. Just it was time enough to make a dozen of QSOs when the rain started, and as the youngest couldn't play anymore, the activation was ended quite fast.

So back to my sister's home, where we spent two days more, and back to Bilbao. (2 h). I think that, despite of the bad weather we both have reached our targets.  Now, we'll just wait to the next holidays to calm the SOTA fever with the motors started...

 73 de Mikel EA2CW


A special sunday / Un domingo especial

Yesterday, sunday, was something special. At Gorbeia massif we met a good group of "soters", both activators and hunters. On Saturday, at the summit Gorbea EA2/VI-001 the 300 activations of Javi EB2FDT were celebrated, although they hadn't very good weather. Just watch the photos...


Later on sunday, Marcial EA2BDS, myself and our two kids, Carla and Oier, after spending some time with Jose Luis EB2JU at Pagomakurre and just glancing Antonio EA2AG and Javi, headed to Lekanda EA2/BI-003 where we arrived after some hard hike. Meanwhile, Javi , Soraya , Begoña and Antonio activated Murga EA2/BI-042.

The weather was splendid and the sun accompanied us all day . Being with the children, and as the summit was small and they could not run up and down, we made a short and 144 mhz only activation, leaving the HF and telegraphy for another day.

Anyway, we had still the pleasure of doing FM S2S QSOs with dear people like Iñaki EB2GKK activating Marinda EA2/VI-031 and Guru EA2IF in Gaztelu EA2/NV-099. Then, some eating at the summit and started the way down.

Again in Pagomakurre we joined the rest of the group, Javi , Antonio, Jose Luis , Soraya and Bego to have a nice talking about SOTA. Below is photo of the group
We also made the "papers" for Jose Luis' Euskal Herriko Mendiak award "Galtzagorri Haize", who had tons of QSOs made! This man is the Basque N4EX !

One more SOTA fine day!

73 de Mikel

Ayer domingo fue un dia especial. Coincidimos en el macizo del Gorbea un buen grupo de "soteros", activadores y cazadores.

El sabado, se celebraron, en la cumbre del Gorbeia (EA2/VI-001) las 300 activaciones de Javi EB2FDT, aunque no tuvieron muy buen tiempo. No hay mas que ver las fotos:

Ya el domingo Marcial EA2BDS , yo y nuestros dos crios, Carla y Oier, despues de estar un momento en Pagomakurre con Jose Luis EB2JU y ver de refilon a Antonio EA2AG y Javi, enfilamos hacia el Lekanda EA2/BI-003 a donde llegamos tras una buena caminata. Mientras tanto, Javi, Soraya, Begoña y Antonio activaron el Murga EA2/BI-042 (la activacion 301 para Javi!).

El tiempo estuvo esplendido y el sol nos acompaño toda la jornada. Como estabamos con los enanos, y la cumbre era pequeña y no podian campar a sus anchas, hicimos solamente 2 metros, dejando la HF y la telegrafia para otro dia.

Aun asi tuvimos el placer de hacer qso S2S en FM con gente tan querida como Iñaki EB2GKK activando el Marinda EA2/VI-031 y Guru EA2IF en el Gaztelu EA2/NV-099. Comimos en la cumbre y para abajo.

Nuevamente en Pagomakurre nos unimos ya a la charla con todo el resto del grupo Javi, Antonio, Jose Luis, Soraya y Bego, y nos hartamos a hablar de SOTA. Aqui teneis la foto del grupo:

Tambien hicimos los "papeles" para el diploma Galtzagorri Haize de Jose Luis, al que le sobraban QSOs a espuertas! Este hombre es el N4EX de Euskal Herria!
Un buen dia sotero mas!
73 de Mikel