Snowman Multi-Tx DF 06/02/11

Start Eight Ash Green 13:30
Operator Philip G0NXH
Location  Wormingford
10 Transmitters: Maxi, 5 Minis and 4 Micros


New for this year is an idea from Tim - the JOKER!

Two joker tokens for each of TXs A, H, I, J, K, & L were placed in a bag and then drawn by competitors with no lack of ceremony.  All were sworn to secrecy!
The less experienced were allowed to opt for a 'Wild Joker', to be applied to their  best score.  The rest of the detail can be seen here.

Initial bearings were taken on the Maxi A (see map on the left below). By the time I had reached Fordham village I could hear my Joker station  Mini K.  After driving  towards it the strength seemed to fall causing me to turn around - big mistake! Eventually after far too much indecision I got a cross by Wormingford Church and the on foot marathon began. (The Jokers did seem to spread competitors around the various access points).

K was quite well hidden! After one transmission Mr. Y appeared. Another transmission convinced me the triffid was in a thicket surrounding a fallen tree but could I find it?  A third transmission and still no luck. Then Colin appears (later I learned he had already bagged his Joker); he sees me in the bush, joins in and finds it in 30 secs! Oh B........ 
Now steaming I tune around for Micros; I hear Y but not Z which is on the same frequency but radiating very little power from a ditch less than 100m away. As you will see from all the red lines below I had to come back for it later! I will leave the rest of the report to those who had a brain engaged for the duration but as editor I feel it is my duty to remove any comments in other reports that may reveal the fact that I lent Rosie my old DF set  ......    and then she beat me.
The elusive Micro Z,  Graham was first to track it down.
After success at K and Z Graham tried to head for his Joker i but the straight line route led him to a maze of private land and barbed wire, eventually he went back to the Church and down the road.
Over to Philip, our host for the afternoon:

The Joker wins by a smile.

Yes the Merry Batman and Robin de La Larbalestier, were out in the Batmobile on Sunday but despite all the gadgets, capes and disguises, both were roundly defeated by the ‘Joker’ who laughed his way round ten stations in a couple of hours. To rub salt into the wounds of our two caped crusaders, it appears the Joker was not even fully match fit on the day.

They did not see him coming or going, leaving the rest of the teams to struggled onto the final gun at four O’clock, by which time he was well on his way back to terrorize Gotham City.

During the course of the afternoon the Merry Batman tried several disguises, including a fetching Gnome look, all to no avail. He had even stolen the Rosie set, leaving her to beg for a radio off a passing stranger in exchange for various road side favours.
A hat with a man can be seen beyond the cow s...droppings
Rosie modelling the latest in spread spectrum DF sets
Tim finds the way to avoid much barbed wire,  80 points - he must be joking!
Larby's twin brother at K
Gary is up to speed ....
 ...... others were stuck in first gear.
Mr Y with tickets ready for posting

Both the Joker and the Merry Batman had three max scores and bagged full marks on their Jokers.  One mystery is why the Merry Batman called at the A station several times in the afternoon, but failed to take a Maxi ticket.

Eventually the Rosie Batwoman decided to tell Dellboy the error of his ways, but by then it was too late, the points had gone.
ian rich
What of our other super-heros I hear you say?  Ten in all braved the cold, the winds and the hills of the Essex border lands to search for the illusive triffids. None found less than 7 stations, with 7 teams finding all ten and two tracking down nine, a lot of DF for one afternoon.

The Micro Z on 1843 khz gave people the most problems. Whilst the Micro Y on the same frequency was some distance away and the other side of two decent hills, it tended to swamp Z to some degree. The discerning set of Graham Phillips had no problems in picking Z up, bagging him top 40 points, whilst most other teams ran past, several having to be sent back to the area to find it late in the afternoon. Strangely Mr Y bagged second place points at Z, clearly not being by distracted by Y – (confused?  - be grateful Mr X didn’t show up!)

The young, upcoming Gary started well, beating the other teams in the race up the hill to get maximum points at the A station, before getting blown away.
  Your Joker station is counted twice.  Wild Jokers (green) apply to your best score - as before refer here for more detail.
Robin de La Larbalestier also found some maximum points at J on the run into the site, with Ian taking the other 40 at W, still up for grabs late into the afternoon.

The Rosie Batwoman failed to find any maximum points, but then she was using Roy’s second set, though his main set did him no better. Perhaps less time spent building TX and more time working on his receivers would be a good new year’s resolution for Roy!

Despite the open countryside and the decent 360 degree view from the Maxi station at the top of the hill, Richard Whitney remained elusive all afternoon and only popped up briefly to post his tickets.

After a brief rest and a quick tour of the local Archaeology, it was back to the Cricketers for dinner, results and prize giving. Fortunately Robin de La Larbalestier had hidden the Snowman cup, keeping it safe from the Joker for another year, whilst giving him more time to save up for the engraving.

In the absence of  the Snowman trophy and its winner, Caroline presented the Colchester League Trophy (Multi-tx) to Philip.
The Chelmsford League (Trad) went to one of the Larbalestiers
The Chelmsford League uses the  traditional format. One problem with this is that  late arrivals rarely get the chance to search on their own.

To overcome this a second Tx (Mini) is located some way from the main Tx. As soon as you locate the main Tx you are asked to 'Getaway' and search for that. Tickets are located with this Tx and the points gained during the year go towards the 'Getaway Trophy'.

Ian kindly 'volunteered' to provide the trophy.  Before Sunday only myself and he had seen it.  The unveiling drew gasps of wonderment. Well done Ian, brilliant!

Again one of the Larbalestiers won this, I thought it was Derek but apparently he has emigrated so I am not sure which one grabbed it a ran off on Sunday evening .......


Larby's brother/mother/second cousin twice removed writes:

Another multi-TX event. Can I win this one? The answer is in the report.
CLUE: The person who suggested the “Jokers” was the main beneficiary.
I was kept amused for 2 hours for absolutely no cost. Surely any man approaching 63 looks forward to running back and forth across Essex fields on a Sunday?
Some are even older than me though! (But not quoting our age next birthday ...  a sure sign of impending decrepitude - ed.)
A short drive from the start and the fun? began, running up one of those flat Essex hills.
I seemed to follow Timbo so I was only getting lower scoring tickets.
I found the micro “Z” when I believed it was the mini “K”, this involved going back, only after a scuffle with Ian and Rosie who tried to blind me with her sense aerial at mini “L”
A good day out on a very windy hill.
Thanks to Phil for his efforts. I was an “also ran” on the event but a winner at the finish when I was presented with the Chelmsford Trophy for 2010.
Then I was presented with what will become the most coveted trophy of all, yes the “Getaway Trophy”. Winning the trophy is secondary to having the trophy in one’s possession!
Thanks for the work you put into making it Ian. It is unique and truly an honour to be the first custodian.
Perhaps one day it may come your way…………………


Ian says:

Great DF event and certainly the wind up on the hill will have blown-away the winter cobwebs for us all.
I now have aching limbs, and likely will have tomorrow as well.
Have just taken a look at my own personal results from today, how VERY DEPRESSING!
Congratulations to Timbo for his winning performance, to everyone for theirs, and especially to Philip for his efforts in putting it all together for us to enjoy.

Off now for a Radox bath, maybe that will ease the pain----


PS.  Thinks, can anyone devise an effective method to terminate Timbo's winning excesses, legally or otherwise.

But where is our winner, how did he do it? Perhaps this overhead may bring him out of hiding:

Here we go then
"The secret is playing your joker at the right time............"

Nearly gave it a miss today, with a sore throat and headset only working on one side. Very strong signal at the start; bearing suggested Wormingford Hills as there was nothing else along the way. One-bearing strategy confirmed by others seen taking bearings roadside and pointing in the predicted direction.

Out of car about the same time as Gary, Rosie and a Larby. 

On reaching the wood a Tx came up very strong and several of us went straight in to J. Moving on swiftly, my Joker "I" seemed very distant so I listened for other minis and micros closeby. After three of us were convinced by a dummy radiating gorse bush, shot off for Y (40), then H. Now it was time to play the joker (again after yet another gorse bush gave a group of us a similar distraction.)  Surprisingly, Tx I was relatively out in the open. So 32 40 40 40 (and joker 40) so far.
Would have had 40 at W too but was put off by the barbed wire fence so only got 26 there.  Said hello to Phil at A, bagged 23 and shot off again. Mopped up the rest fairly quickly but had trouble with Z which was swamped by Y until about 20m away.

Thanks to the Chief Commissioner for a great event; sorry I couldn't stay for tea (had a rendezvous with catwoman ?)
Now have I got this straight ............
I am the Joker
Colin is batman and Rosie Batgirl
Larby the Riddler
Roy the Penguin
Phil is Commissioner Gordon
Gary is Robin (wonder if he needs his cape washing)
Ian..........Alfred ??
Richard..... take your pick
Keep listening for the batsignal !! Don't forget your costumes next time ! - triple points when you play your Joker ????

It's OK guys I have bolted his cage and covered with a dark blanket - with luck he won't escape until after the next Multi-Tx - which is Sunday March 20th.
This is the day when the entire Larbalestier family will be placing Txs in unimaginable places for our benefit.                
For details of all future events see Dates
Oh dear, just when you thought it was all over there is a PS:

It’s confession time.
There are no other Larbalestier twins/triplets/cousins or brothers.
I tried to suggest I was a novice in the hope that the nice DF people would help me into the stations so I could get that Trophy!
Even that sweet faced Rosie put barbed wire across a fence in front of me and tried to blind with the sense aerial.
Ian pushed me off the fallen tree at K and Tim tried to convince me of that non-existent TX so he could beat me into I
All that even though they believed I was a raw novice.
Alas, my lying did me no good and I must admit it was me all along!
Revenge is a dish best served cold, it will be served on 20th March !