SOTA 5B/CY-028: Sinoas

I chose this site because I thought it would be a fairly easy approach by car and, lacking any trees, would be a good chance to try out my new Buddipole. All of that turned out to be true, and I would say that this is a great site for anyone who is visiting and wants to add a painless activation to their itinerary. Just one critical piece of advice: don’t entirely believe Google Maps.

The site is near Limassol, towards the southern coast and about in the middle of the island:

In general, there are a number of routes that lead there from the capital, and most of the driving is on highways. The problem was that Google wanted me to drive about 270 degrees around the site and then walk to the peak. I’m not adverse to walking, so I followed the directions.

The route it marked out does lead to the next peak over, where there are some commercial antennas, but it is not possible or desirable to walk from there. In fact, it is barely possible to drive there.

This was the first time I drove on a trail rough enough for me to have to put the car into 4WD mode.

I had planned to activate multiple bands, but I lost a lot of time because of the faulty directions and ended up activating only on 20m before the sun set. What I *should* have done was to turn off the main road at the grey marker above, following the signs for the Sinoas Fire Lookout. That road is perfectly fine and paved to the very top.

At the top, there is an open stonework structure with a roof, that would provide some shelter in inclement weather. Just to the side, there is a trig point. The land slopes off around the structure, but there was enough area to set up the buddipole and its guy ropes.

After setting up, my signal was picked up almost immediately by the reverse beacon network. Not bad: 24dB above the noise into Finland. In fact, 20m might have been a little long for working most of Europe, stations at high latitudes (UK, Scandinavia) came in the strongest.

I kept at it for about half an hour, essentially as long as people kept calling. In the end, I worked stations from Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, and the USA — not bad for a Monday afternoon.

Between getting to the site later than anticipated and inexperience setting up the buddipole in the field for the first time, by the time I finished operating on 20m, the sun was low on the horizon and I knew I had to pack it in to get home to feed the dogs on time, but I’m looking forward to coming back to this site on some future occasion to work the other HF bands.

Sunset to the south.

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