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S2S - Distance records


Hi there. What are some of the distance records achieved summit to summit? Is there a current record? Something that could perhaps be added to the database? S2S distances records per band / mode etc?



Well Long Path into the UK S2S is common from VK East coast. I’ve just checked and VK6NU has worked into Austria S2S about a year ago on long path. Looks like a good yardstick.

Maybe also needs a km/W factor as well?



Yes and that for both ends. e.g. 50watt CW from both activators on 20m long path is relatively easy, while 5W SSB both ends is far more difficult. Often we have 30w to 5w S2S SSB between VK nd EU.

73 Ed.

P.S. currently off the air due to storm damage on the HF antenna - hope to fix today or tomorrow.


Hi Ed and all

I have worked Andrew VK1MBE on Mt.Ainsle VK1/AC-040 QF44NR when I was on holiday in Ireland EI/IE-054 Mohercrom IO63NV last year. This was long path Vocap Online says 22825 KM or 14.183 Miles. I don’t know what Andrew was using but I was using FT-817 barefoot 5 watts or so. My other contacts to Europe from VK would have been using about 40 watts.

Be nice if it was a 5 watts qso both ways, Not sure what gear Andrew uses when he is portable. Maybe someone knows.

There may be a better Grid locator distance calculator than Vocap but it was the first that came to mind.

73 John VK6NU


The database reports the short path distance for all S2S contacts, the value is shown in km on the S2S log for each user.


That gives me an idea then Andy. [Dons tin hat and body armour before committing the heinous crime of one MT suggesting extra work to another MT…].

There are some nice pages on the Database, like the 50 Most Activated summits, 50 most recently activated summits etc. Another nice page might be “50 Best DX S2S QSOs”, ranked by the short path distance, with each line showing both activators, both summit names and both summit references.

I imagine the tricky bit might be getting the DB to recognise where it has pulled the same QSO from two activators’ S2S logs, and compressing that into a single entry for the table. Also, the same S2S combination will probably appear in some logs, but you would want only the first instance to appear in the table.

Meanwhile, here’s my personal “Top 25”;

Still probably my favourite ever activator contact was working VK2DAG on PSK31 - so I would love to add a datamode S2S to VK or ZL sometime. I was surprised to see that although I have made 396 PSK31 / PSK63 activator QSOs from summits, only 4 of these were S2S. Then again, if ever there was anything that could be described as “niche”…



my personal s2s-record was set in october 2014:

OE/OO-316 <-> VK1/AC-040 16084km 20m SSB 10W DIPOLE

73 Martin


My personal s2s-record I believe which will be long path is with from EA6/MA-057 with VK1MBE:

I was using QRP with my FT-817 (KX3 not required!) - not sure about the VK1MBE station. I would imagine the greatest optimum distance using QRP could be achieved on the 10m or 12m band using CW if the timing for the propagation was right.

73 Phil


My personal s2s ODX is my only (so far) VK S2S qso, with VK3HRA/P on April 25 2015, long path 20 m cw. YU/CS-043 to VK3/VC-024, 24.749 km according to VOACAP.

I was using MTR v2, 5 W. Allen was also qrp (according to his blog), I do not know what rig though.
Allen has an MTR v2 also, but I guess he was using his FT817 this time.

73 Fric YU1WC


Sorry folks but I thought the idea of SOTA was:-

An award scheme for radio amateurs that encourages portable operation in mountainous areas.

Not to see who could get the farthest on the lest number of watts



Well, give them some time to reflect on their past achievements at least. In the next year or so this will become increasingly more difficult to achieve.

I have done it VK <=> GW s2s, it was marginal splattered in QRM. Exchanged reports…gone !
All I remember was getting very cold that morning and increasingly more irritated with 20m.

Much prefer to relax on 15/17m in the evening talking to the Americans and learn something about their way of life in the hobby - each to their own I suppose.



It is Peter. And one of the obvious things anyone will check on when running a “man-carried” portable station is does it work well or not? The easiest way to check if your portable station is any good is to see if you can work similar portable stations the other side of the world.

Some people will be happy with an S2S GM - VK S2S. (These are typically the longest S2S paths workable from GM, insert your own antipode). Some people will want that on CW or Data or QRP or homebrew. Some will want the longest and they will need to find a pair of summits with the greatest separation, arrange to climb their summit and get someone to climb the other summit, do that at a suitable time and see if they can have a QSO. It’s taking portable operation towards a limit and as Jonathan points out, this will get harder and harder as we drop down the solar cycle.

Or you can do what Jacques did yesterday… his first overseas activation with a 2m handy on FM. Just as much fun.


Wouldn’t a GM - ZL contact be further? Still waiting for my first ZL SOTA contact.

73 Ed.


although I enjoy with every single S2S contact no matter where the activator is, it is true S2S with VK-ZL are especially rewarding.

I have just done it twice in my activation history.
Thanks a proposal of 9H4RH, a special EU to VK event was organized last April 25th 2015. That day I grabbed 5 S2S with VK being the longest distance these two:

  • 14 MHz Mode CW, VK3JBL/P on VK3/VC-016, 22844 km = 14195 mi
  • 14 MHz Mode SSB, VI6ANZAC on VK6/SW-039 25519 km = 15857 mi

My rig FT-817 @ 5 watts and End Fed vertical half wave antenna.

VK3JBL/P used FT-817 @ 5 watts and a GP vertical ant.
VI6ANZAC (VK6NU op.): FT-857 @ 40 watts and a Half square ant.

Look forward for further chances of such an event, a good way to test new antennas and check band condition.
VY 73 de Ignacio

Ps: info on that event here:



SOTA is what it is, no matter how we get the fun out of it.
If my fun is reaching far with 5 watts, I am not operating against SOTA rules, am I?

The fun in SOTA activations is a personal thing of each activator, as long as it does not conflict with SOTA rules and SOTA spirit. Be it reaching far with minimal power, having a chat after a long hike, collecting activator points, being heard at all with homebrew equipment, squeezing the most of a PF3 battery, working S2S with an fellow activator, being on the other side of the pile-up, or simply joining two passions: radio and mountains.

For me, the greatest thrill is not the DX contact, but the fact that with my litttle rig, tuner and antenna, all homebrew, I am being heard at all, anywhere, no matter how far.

73 Fric YU1WC


Not sure Ed. I though the true UK antipode was in between VK and ZL ( is that the Tasman Sea??) So both ZL and VK contacts are asymptotic and so similar distances. I maybe mistaken.


There’s where it is for G/SP-015!



Hi Ignacio

I just looked at my info for the activation. The Callsign was VI6ANZAC not VK6ANZAC and I was using a FT-857 and power was 40 Watts and a half square antenna on 20 metres.


John VK6NU



Wouldn’t a GM - ZL contact be further? Still waiting for my first ZL SOTA contact.

73 Ed


You would have though so Ed.

If we’re talking short path, I suspect Rob G7LAS and myself, may have a reasonable claim for the longest SOTA contact achieved, working Bryan ZL3XDJ, a distance of 11795 miles (18982Km) from G/CE-004 Bardon Hill last year.

73 Mike


Thanks for the point John, right, call and data updated in my post.
Thanks! 73