Matt’s Round Up


Hi all and thanks for reading this – twas Dad’s suggestion to do a write up. Having done DF’ing for over 20 years now (I know, 20 Years and I’m considered a ‘Youngun’!!) this has been something that I have strived for but with seasoned competitors I didn’t think it might be possible – however, I thought if I do it long enough you never know.

A big thankyou to Tim and the gang for putting on what I believe was a good, well balanced final.

Anyway,  Dad has kindly provided ordnance survey images with my bearings on so here they are with a recap of how my afternoon unfolded...

3 Clear bearings at the start: B strongest, then A, then C (although double checking at the end of transmission I thought A and B may be about the same...)

See below the start bearings


Transmitter start Bearings


Dad has put both my AM and morse signals for A on the above image – with stronger signals I tend to be more confident with my AM bearing (generally sharper null) and as I’m sure others may find with very weak signals the morse bearing can be more helpful – as it turned out my morse signal was ‘cock on’ for A but I favoured the AM signal due to the good strength and sharp null...

With this in mind we headed to the edge of the map, listening to Dick’s guidance that we should be as close as was sensible – I was hoping this position would provide a good cross bearing with my 12.50 AM bearing...

As you can see below it did cross with my AM bearing but the power reading from the set indicated a greater distance - more likely at Great Monk’s Wood (crossing with my morse bearing for A)  

Going for Station A first.  1:30 bearings


At 1.30 I also managed to get bearings on both C and B which gave indication of where to aim for later if not an exact location.

Homing in on Station A

The signal came on just as we were arriving at Great Monk’s Wood – He's not here! As you can see we plotted a couple of bearings and also took another power reading – he should be in the nature reserve...


As mentioned at the tea – having parked at the ‘P’ with Peter and still not 100% convinced we were fortunate that the signal came on relatively soon and pointed into the reserve with a suitably strong meter reading.

Trying to follow the windy path and null I forgot to set a bearing on my compass and when we arrived in the area we thought he should be I saw Roy. I thought to myself “well he’s been here longer than me and he thinks it’s to the left which I think was what my set was telling me as I was coming around the bend of the footpath so I'll keep close to him. His powers of distraction proved inadequate as I clocked a ‘clocking in’ and closely followed (sorry Roy)

So back to the car and try and find Dad on the way – he had gone a bit rogue and I was worried he may be out of ear shot but managed to get him back with us fairly promptly and headed back to the car.


Transmitter C next.  Bearing 1 on the way


Right, so as station A was further north than suspected we now changed tact and went for station C. As shown below I said to the others “It would be nice if the signal were to come up before we get onto the A road as there could be wires etc. In the towns and where we were would still provide another good cross – This was provided just as I said it as can be seen below (thankyou Tim)

We now had a triangulation of bearings...


Bearing 2 on the way to C:

We carried on the A1124 towards what we hoped was the area of Tim’s site and the signal came on again at Rose Green. We weren’t sure where he might be in our triangle or he might be on the river above. We soon realised “He wasn't in either of those places.”


Bearing 3 on the way to C

So judging by the previous bearing and power reading we suspected he was in the wood in which it turned out Tim was but not being truly sure we headed in its direction and got a bearing as you can see below from Fordham actually suggesting more to the South – Hmmm?!...


Bearing 4 on the way to C

“Right” I said - “We’re going to go around and wait in a sensible spot to confirm the wood – the signal came up and by also taking a power reading confirmed you were in the wood! 🙂



We ran in – saw Bill who told us he’d been there a long while. It was a challenging site as wasn’t easy to get a sense (when you’re under the wire we eventually found) but it was telling me he was on the lower part of the gradient which I went to myself whilst others thrashed the top whereupon I discovered the aerial. I found what looked like a bivouac shelter but alas no Tim – the signal was at its strongest now and I was joined by Peter and co. And with his departure from Tim was able to assist my clocking in (thanks Peter) 🙂

Right, back to the car and what could have proved crutial I thought to myself “Well I’m ahead of Dad and Dick as I’ve got the spare key I’ll turn the car around ready”

We set off

Transmitter B

Ignoring a transmission on the way we continued down to the area of B guesstimating he would come on again when we were close – With our crosses meeting in the wood with the remains of a Church (that would have been a fun site) I wanted to get a bearing indicating if he was in the north or south part of that wood (if at all) so was aiming to take a bearing on the bridge over the water running in the middle of the wood. Having spotted Peter parked up, we drove a little further and the signal came on and I lept out.

I managed to get a bearing but only a rough power reading as I was focusing on avoiding being close to the local power cables.

Having reconvened with Dad and Dick and see Peter drive pass we were in agreement that he was further along on that bearing.

As we drove along we saw Peter again parked up and running in along the footpath by the 38 altitude marker. As we’d driven pass and were wondering what best to do the signal came on, I took a bearing, it was plotted and dad revealed as he was over to the East more we should drive round to the village and go in from there.

The maps below show this.


Running into the wood we checked the course of the footpath and also wanted to make sure we veered to the left but as it happened a fence defined our path until we got close to the river. Having kept an eye on the power meter and fixed a bearing on the compass we were able to determine that when we had doubled our reading we had halved the distance and so upon arriving by the river knew he should be close by.

The signal came on and being about 50 meters or so from the transmitter it wasn’t obvious again which way in regards to the sense...

We spotted a trodden path to our left by the river and followed it and keeping an eye on the meter it went up and up to with which crescendo I heard a more pressing “Matt, come Here!” from Dick.

Rushing in and fighting my way through the bracken I found Richard, literally just able to hand my card in “politely” only just ahead of Peter without any clambering!... 🙂

Anyway thanks if you’ve made it this far to the end of my tale and thanks to Peter for keeping me on my toes right up to the last second. I hope to make it to as many DF’s as I can next year.

All the best to all, and thankyou for your kind words at the tea.

Matt  F1RST