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Finland joins SOTA


#1

It is with great pleasure that we can announce that Finland is the latest country to join the SOTA family.

The new Association will go “live” on 1st April 2008, the intervening time being used to publicise our activities to the amateurs in Finland. Although it is a fairly small Association, with just 127 summits throughout its four regions, Finland is of great significance for several reasons. It is the first Scandinavian country to become a SOTA member, and is also the most northerly of our Associations, with many of its summits located within the Arctic Circle.

Whereas most countries justify their Seasonal Bonus by citing the increased likelihood of inclement weather, Finland changes the emphasis. Its extreme northerly position allows the rationale for its Seasonal Bonus to be the short hours of daylight (often none!!) during the winter months. Of course, the converse is true, and the continuous twenty-four hours of daylight available in mid-summer could be the catalyst for some “night-time” SOTA activity.

It is unlikely that we will see a major burst of activity in the first few days of SOTA-Finland, as the summits are all located well away from the major centres of population, and there is no ready-made pool of keen activators waiting to cross the border. That all means that contacts with activators on Finnish summits will be more prized for their rarity value. Of particular interest to our VHF chasers is the increased possibility of auroral-mode propagation, and that may well increase the amount of SOTA activity on 50 MHz particularly.

Our thanks to the Association Manager for Finland, Jaakko OH7BF, who is already a keen SOTA participant with his alternative callsign of F5VGL. Good luck to everybody involved with SOTA-Finland.

73 de Les, G3VQO
obo SOTA Management Team


#2

In reply to G3VQO:
Great news Les, I cant wait for even more “Nordic” participation.

By coincidence I will be in OH and SM this week. Shame we have to wait otherwise I would have packed my gear hi… :slight_smile:

It would be interesting to check out a draft ARM to get an idea of summit location… but I’ll gladly wait.

73 Marc G0AZS, SM7ZAU


#3

In reply to G0AZS:

Hi Marc,

The summits are mostly north of the Arctic Circle or Rovaniemi. A Google map gives you a good idea already, since there are not so many qualifying mountains in OH-land. For LA and SM the situation will probably be different (but I let the MT to coordinate that).

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#4

Good new, hope Finland is just the first one of a long new list…
Chris F8DZY.


#5

In reply to F5VGL:

The summits are mostly north of the Arctic Circle or Rovaniemi.
Aha… I foresee many activations from guy in a red suit when he is less busy after December each year :slight_smile:

Anyway, thank you for your work Jaakko. I really am excited thinking of doing an expedition now!

73 Marc G0AZS


#6

In reply to F5VGL:

Hi Jaakko,

It is very welcome news indeed that OH is to join the SOTA flock. However I feel it is a pity that there are so few qualifying summits relative to the size of the country and that they are remote from the centres of habitation. I assume that the 150 metre prominence parameter was used to determine the qualifying summits in line with the General Rules. If this is the case, has an assessment been made using 100 metres as the parameter? I just wonder whether this would have a beneficial improvement in the number of summits, create a better spread and improve the proximity to the centres of habitation.

73, Gerald


#7

In reply to G4OIG:

Hi Gerald,

I have not been taking part in the recent discussions on the SOTA summit criteria. When I started to make the list of the potential SOTA summits before last Christmas, I tried to follow the 150 m rule with the map information I had available. 100 m criteria would probably add some more summits, but would not move the mountains anywhere. In Finland the mountains are in north while the lakes are in south.

Of course everything depends on the accuracy of the map information available and also on the man power used to study these maps. I am not aware of any ready ‘Marilyn’ programme for Finland.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#8

In reply to F5VGL:

Hi Jaakko,

Thank you for explaining the situation in Finland. From what you say, anyone interested in taking up SOTA in Finland will have to travel some distance to carry out activations. Maybe for that reason we will see occasional activations rather than a continuous run as in the UK and other countries.

Let us hope the SOTA bug bites!

73, Gerald


#9

In reply to G4OIG :

Hi Gerald,

anyone interested in taking up SOTA in Finland will have to travel
some distance to carry out activations. Maybe for that reason we will

The distance and cost is still less than for some exotic islands, South Pole or even LA/Spitsberg. For me the discovery of new regions has been an important motivation in the SOTA activations. But I understand that there are people who prefer to stay close their homes. A OH2 ham living in Helsinki can become OH9 ham by flying to Kittila for one week or two. There are also native OH9 hams, though not so numerous.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#10

In reply to F5VGL:

Hi Jaakko,

The distance and cost is still less than for some exotic islands,
South Pole or even LA/Spitsberg.

Point taken. I suppose SOTA is a reasonably cost / carbon footprint efficient pastime compared to DX-peditions. Let us hope that the interest is forthcoming in OH - at least I have a reasonable take off in that direction on VHF if someone carries out an activation. More than can be said towards most of the summits in the UK!

73, Gerald


#11

In reply to F5VGL:

The distance and cost is still less than for some exotic islands,
South Pole or even LA/Spitsberg.

Absolutely Jaako. I see the OH summits as a very interesting DXpedition possibility. I have already had a look at flights… hi.

Anyway something for the summer perhaps (with plenty of DEET spray) :slight_smile:

73 Marc currently OH/G0AZS (near the Russian border!)


#12

… has an assessment been made
using 100 metres as the parameter? I just wonder whether this would
have a beneficial improvement in the number of summits, create a
better spread and improve the proximity to the centres of habitation.

73, Gerald

Hi all!
Joining of Finland is a really great news. Moreover, an additional good reason to ask MT to reconsider its recent decision concerning minimal prominence (General Rules 3.5.2). The strict 150-m-rule not only made ARM of three existing associations partially invalid, but unintentionally exiled SOTA in Finland behind the Polar Circle.
I agree, Jaakko, the changing of rule would not move the mountains, but could qualify number of summits in more accessible areas.
I made a terrain analysis of Finland. Using elevation data available on Internet, 198 summits were identified with relative height (prominence) more than 150 m. 172 of them are within the Polar Circle. Decreasing the limit of minimal prominence to 100 m gives 469 additional summits, 99 of them in the southern part of the country. Numbers, only are as correct as the input DEM data are, but the rate is worth thinking.
Decision up to MT and AM, of course.
73!
Janos, HA4FY


#13

In reply to HA4FY:
Hmm… very interesting analysis Janos.

What tools are you using and what data? e.g. STRM data for elevation?

I would be curious to know.

73 Marc G0AZS


#14

In reply to G0AZS:
Hi Marc!
Usually the high-resolution elevation data are not available on the Net. Initially I have tried to use SRTM, but it doesn’t cover the polar area. In addition it has inaccuracies, especially in mountainous areas, where the slopes are steep. (For Hungary a used the “official” DTED Level2 data - 1 arcsec resolution - borrowed from MOD mapping agency). For Finland I found quit usable data at http://www.viewfinderpanoramas.org site. For analysis I use a software, freely downloadable from http://www.landserf.org. It is small, but has lot of features e.g. identifying summits with given height and prominence. It runs a bit slow on my old PIII computer, but splitting the area into smaller pieces usually helps.
Download and try it, I’m sure you will find interesting.
73!
Janos,HA4FY


#15

In reply to HA4FY:

Hi Janos,

I made a terrain analysis of Finland. Using elevation data available
on Internet, 198 summits were identified with relative height
(prominence) more than 150 m. 172 of them are within the Polar
Circle. Decreasing the limit of minimal prominence to 100 m gives 469
additional summits, 99 of them in the southern part of the country.
Numbers, only are as correct as the input DEM data are, but the rate
is worth thinking.

Interesting to see that we get about the same number of summits with two different data sources and methods. Of course we can add (or delete) summits later if the rules change or more detailed information becomes available. However I did not feel that I should try to change the rules while I am preparing the first version of the ARM. As you say let us see what the MT will decide. For me the additional summits mean also more work, so I can not promise to add 200 summits very soon if the rules change.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#16

In reply to G3VQO:
Great news !

Thanks to Jaakko and you Les

Like France last year, Finland choose fool day for starting !
It seems that it is a lucky day !

Best 73
Alain F6ENO


#17

I think Belgium joined on fools day as well, Alain, hihi. Very appropriate date for SOTA.

You have to be a bit crazy to get involved in all this … :o)

Peter


#18

In reply to ON3WAB:

You have to be a bit crazy to get involved in all this … :o)

More than a bit…

73 Peter
Alain


#19

In reply to F6ENO:
GOOD NEWS!!!
welcome to friends of finland
congratulation Jaako and Les and make "heat the keys"
73’s
f5nep Lionel


#20

Moi to everyone,

I look forward to at least trying to activate something in Finland, although from reading the above posts, it looks like everything is “up way to high” for me as I normally travel to Helsinki and Espoo.

Anyway, maybe I can chase from there.

kiitos to all who have worked on getting Finland into SOTA.
bernard

ei8fdb.org