SOTA Tour
6 July - 16 July 2011
SM6EQO
In my attempt to eventually do all the summits in Dalarna County I focused on the northern part this year. The radio gear was basically the same as last year, that is an EFHW antenna with Hendricks SLT+ tuner and an ATS-4 (rev a.). New was a Porta-Paddle II from American Morse Equipment. It was much better than the Begali I had before. It´s smaller and it´s lighter and feels more sturdy and suitable for work in the field in wet and adverse conditions. In particular I like that you can repair it in the field with simple tools if anything goes wrong. As power source I had ten Sanyo Eneloop AA batteries at 2500 mAh. These ten batteries kept me going during the whole tour. If that was because the batteries are very good or the ATS-4 does not need much battery capacity you have to figure out yourself...
The big investment for the year was an one man tent from Big Agnes; Emerald Mountain SL-1. Highly recommended!

DA-018
I stared out from Mölndal Wednesday morning for the 600 km ride up north. On the forestroad up to DA-018 I saw one elk beside the road and a bear on the road. That was the first I have seen a bear “live” in nature. Quite an experience! Slept in the car at the end of a newly built forest road close to the summit.

Went up to DA-018 early in the morning the next day. It is not very far from the road and not very difficult to walk. Could not find any markings of any kind on the top,  Put up the antenna on the southern side just below the summit. Nice view!
DA-009
After having eaten a pizza and added some supplies in the small town of Idre, I continued north and drove the small road up to Siljanskojan. The last 2,5 km of road is just terrible! If your car has poor ground clearance you better walk that bit and park your car at the parking place at Ängesillre where there is also a bridge over the river.
That afternoon I started my walk due north from Siljanskojan up to Hågåvålen (not a SOTA) and to the small lake just north of it. The weather was steaming hot and myself a bit unused to walk with a backpack. Stopped and put up the tent when it started to rain. The rain continued throug the night.
Siljanskojan
DA-009 seen from Hågåvålen
My camp the first night
When the rain had ended I broke camp and continued north. Arrived at DA-009 just after noon time, but then the rain started again and the wind had picked up. It had also become significantly colder. Put up the tent for shelter to wait out the rain.

When the rain stopped I put up the antenna. I could not put it up very high because of the wind, but there was a nice support for the mast at the top.
DA-009
DA-004
DA-004 seen from the top of DA-009
After having finished my business at DA-009 I stared heading towards DA-004. The weather improved a bit. Made camp for the night by a small stream about midway.
My camp the second night
Next day I had a very hard walk in really rough terrain. About half the distance was a “stone desert” with stone upon stone, one to two meters in diameter with almost no vegetation in between and few trees. The going was very slow; 500 meters per hour at times. More climbing than walking. It was exhausting and really took its toll on my feet.

Finally got to DA-004. Had great difficulties putting up the antenna because of the now very strong wind. It had also become even colder. Half an hour at the radio was just about what I could endure.
The view from the tent
DA-004 from the East
DA-004
View to the North-West from the top of DA-004
DA-001

The first two thirds of the way from DA-004 to the shore of Lake Hävlingen was rather easy to walk, but then the "stone desert" started again. When I arrived at the shelter I was totally exhausted. A broken man indeed! However, it´s amazing how much a camp fire can highten your spirits. Did not use my tent that night. Slept instead in the open shelter.
After leaving the shelter the next morning it was stony walking until you came above the tree-line. After that it was relatively normal walking along a marked path up to the top of DA-001. At the top it was again very windy and cold, and again difficult to put up a proper antenna. I don´t think I was heard very well.


A view toward the North and DA-004 from the northern slope of DA-001
DA-001
After the summit it was an easy walk down to the river and on to Siljanskojan and the waiting car, or so I thought! The bridge at Spångkojan was destroyed. Fortunately there is another bridge 4 km further down stream. The only thing to do was to make camp for the night in the tent and continue the next day.

So I did, and after some rough walking in wet terrain I finally came to the bridge and could do some proper walking on the road up to Siljanskojan and the car.
View from the tent the fouth night
The final bridge
Back to civilization I decided to rent a cottage in Gränjåsvallen on the upside of Idrefjäll. You can do this very cheaply out of season and away from Idre Centre. Often it´s less expensive than sleeping in Youth Hostels.

Had some lovely company of a heard of “Fjällkor”. It´s an old bread of cows that have existed in Sweden since the time of the Vikings. It smaller than ordinary cows and very hardy and very friendly to humans. In summer they roam free in the mountains.
I also had some other company
DA-014

You can drive all the way to the top of this summit. There is work going on with bulding another skilift and other facilities near the summit.
The weather was terrible; cold, windy and rainy.
DA-017

Next day the weather had improved. Started with DA-017 20 km North-West of Idre. There is a forestroad that takes you near the top. Then it´s a rather confusing 2 km  walk to the top. As you can see in the picture below I even found the official "marker" at the summit.
View of the Idre mountain range from DA-017
DA-015

It´s only a 1,5 km walk on a wide path from the road. At the summit there is a small open hut with a stove, an old military viewing tower and some open shelter for turists. They are building a road all the way to the top that probably is connected to development of this hill.
View of DA-014 from DA-015
DA-003

It´s an about two hours steap walk to the summit. It was a wonderful day so there was a lot of turists at the top.
View of DA-014 from DA-003
View of DA-002 from DA-003
View to the East. In the foreground DA-010, in the background DA-006, DA-007, DA-008 and JL-102
DA-002

There is a road very high up on the hillside. From the end of the road it´s a flat walk for 1,5 km. After that you leave the track to the left straight up the hill on a quite steap path and then another 1 km on to the summit. The plateau surrounding the summit is just stone upon stone and very tiresome to walk. The weather was okay, even if a bit windy and the rain was coming so I did´t spend to much time on the summit.
The part of the track you take of to the left and go up the hill
DA-003 in the background
The summit
DA-010

At the top of the mountain there are two summits, one where the skilift ends and another, which is the actual summit, a bit father to the East. Climbing/walking along the skilift is very steap and I felt it actually more strenuous to walk down the mountain than up. My knes and feet was really hurting. Beautiful view from the top!
Where the skilift ends
The summit with DA-002 in the background
DA-003 in the background
DA-006 and JL-102
DA-007
The heard
The SOTA inspector
Inspection!
Before the trip I had planned to do a few more summits during this trip. That was not to be. Those I did was just about what I was mentally and physically capable of doing. Do do more I would have needed more time to rest and recuperate.

Anyway I have no problems in figuring out what to do next summer! There are still some SOTA:s in Dalarna County that I have not done yet!