Sunday, July 9, 2017

Catching Up (Again): SOTA Activations

First of all, I would like to apologize to anyone who has been following this blog; I have not been keeping it up-to-date. I have been pretty active, especially in regards to Summits on the Air (SOTA) activity, but I have not been as motivated to maintain the blog as I should be.

I have activated 16 summits since my last activation report (Mt. Tamalpais, W6/CC-063) on December 17, 2016. So far, they have all been in Northern California:

  • 29 December 2016: W6/CC-051 (North Peak), 2 points -- Highlights: QSO with AC1Z in New Hampshire on 20 meters (14 MHz), plus three summit-to-summit (S2S) contacts and two National Parks on the Air (NPOTA) contacts. I was operating with 50 watts, single-sideband (SSB).
  • 15 January 2017: W6/CV-017 (968), 1 point -- Highlight: N4DA, near Atlanta, Georgia, on 20 meters SSB.
  • 31 January 2017: W6/NC-406 (Sulphur Springs Mountain), 0 points -- I only logged three contacts on 40 meters SSB, and did not qualify (a minimum of four is required). Conditions were tough on this day.
  • 14 March 2017: W6/CC-049 (Cold Spring Mountain), 2 points -- I logged my first contacts on 15 meters (21 MHz) SSB: K3TCU in Pennsylvania, and W9MRH and WA2USA in Indiana.
  • 30 March 2017: W6/NC-151 (Mount Vaca), 2 points -- My longest-distance QSO was with WA2USA in Indiana on 14 MHz SSB.
  • 2 April 2017: W6/NC-422 (990), 1 point -- I initially tried taking part in the AM Rally but was hampered in part by a solar flare. I was able to log some good QSOs on 20 meters SSB, including two each in Minnesota, Kansas, and Montana. Also, an S2S with W6CLB, who was doing his first SOTA activation nearby.
  • 22 April 2017: W6/NC-432 (Chabot 2 Benchmark), 1 point -- Conditions were badly deteriorated on this day, but I was able to log the minimum four contacts over a two-hour period. On a positive note, I was able to log two S2S contacts, with AC2KL in Utah and NS7P in Oregon on 40 meters (7 MHz) SSB.
  • 2 May 2017: W6/NC-298 (Vollmer Peak), 1 point -- Once again, difficult conditions but I was able to log the four QSOs needed to qualify. 
  • 2 May 2017: W6/CC-045 (Mount Diablo), 2 points -- Most contacts logged were on 2 meters (146.520 MHz FM), but I did log three contacts on 20 meters SSB with Arizona and New Mexico.
  • 11 May 2017: W6/NC-010 (Goat Mountain), 6 points -- Three of my five contacts were on 17 meters (18 MHz) SSB.
  • 23 May 2017: W6/NC-379 (Taylor Mountain), 0 points -- I was only able to eke out two contacts: W0MNA in Kansas, barely readable on 20 meters SSB, and K6EL, loud and clear from San Francisco on 15 meters SSB. I left my 2-meter handheld radio in the car; otherwise I might have been able to round out my contacts on 146.520 FM and have qualified.
  • 4 June 2017: W6/NC-417 (Abrott Benchmark), 1 point -- As has become common for me, I was just able to log the minimum four QSOs need to qualify: two each on 40 and 20 meters SSB.
  • 15 June 2017: W6/NS-290 (Big Hill), 6 points -- My first Sierra Nevada activation of the year, this summit features very easy access and spectacular views. I logged 8 contacts on 40, 20, and 17 meters (SSB) and 2 meters FM.
  • 27 June 2017: W6/NS-248 (7008), 6 points -- Hill 7008 is located at South Lake Tahoe, California, literally across the street from the airport. Four QSOs on 40 and 20 meters SSB with Oregon, Arizona, and Texas.
  • 28 June 2017: W6/NS-397 (Tahoe Mountain), 6 points -- Virtually a stone's-throw away from the previous summit; once again four contacts to qualify (20 meters SSB), plus one local on 146.520 FM with WA6EWV for good measure.
  • 1 July 2017: W6/SN-039 (Leviathan Peak), 8 points -- I stopped here on my way home from South Lake Tahoe. The spectacular views of the Sierra Nevada mountains and the state of Nevada made it totally worth the mere four contacts that I logged. A highlight was an S2S with AE7AP in Montana.

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