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SOTA News December 2016


#1

SOTA NEWS DECEMBER 2016 - Part 1 of 2

Editorial - by Mark G0VOF

Welcome to the December 2016 edition of SOTA News. My thanks go to the following contributors:- Barry GM4TOE, Skip K6DGW, Roy G4SSH, Kevin G0NUP, Rob and Audrey G4RQJ, Allen VK3ARH, Warren ZL2AJ, Toru JH0CJH, Geert PA7ZEE, Jürg HB9BIN, Ken G0FEX, Phil G4OBK, Colin M1BUU, Paulo CT2IWW.

Apologies for the slight delay in publication this month, I have been otherwise engaged in our annual stock take which means a few long days at the salt mine!

The second S2S QSO party took place on 19th November, this time aimed at NA<>EU and was very successful with activators from three continents taking part. We also have a report from a first time activator as well as all your regular reporters.

As this will be the final edition of SOTA News before Christmas may I take the opportunity to wish all activators, chasers & SWL’s a very Happy Christmas.

73, Mark G0VOF

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The November 2016 edition of SOTA News was viewed more than 1023 times.

SOTA AWARDS November 2016 from Barry GM4TOE - SOTA Awards Manager.

November is a “short” month for awards as I am preparing this report on 18 November prior to going on vacation. Any claims made after today will appear in my December report.

Congratulations to Mountain Goats M0YDH, VK3BYD and Shack Sloth AB4WL. Victor GI4ONL has achieved several “Firsts” in GI and now he is the first to Chase 3000 Unique summits as well as gaining his Silver Summit to Summit award – and various others too! I will let the tables show what has been claimed this month.

Trophies Issued

Mountain Goat
M0YDH David Holman
VK3BYD Warren Brown

Shack Sloth
AB4WL Ken Moore

Certificates Issued

Activator
M0YDH David Holman 1000 points
VK3BYD Warren Brown 1000 points

Chaser
AB4WL Ken Moore 1000 points
EA3HUX Jordi Remis 500 points
KR7RK Keith Schlottman 500 points
IS0LYN Mario Lumbau 250 points
WX7EMT Chris Caviezel 250 points
EA3HUX Jordi Remis 250 points
EA3HUX Jordi Remis 100 points
KF7AXB Andy Peltola 100 points

Activator Unique
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell 100 summits

Chaser Unique
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell 3000 summits
K6EL Elliott M Pisor 2500 summits
KD8DEU Allan J. Van Brocklin 250 summits

Summit to Summit
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell Silver

SOTA Complete
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell 100 summits

Mountain Explorer
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell Silver
M0YDH David Holman Bronze
WC0Y Edward Hall Bronze

Mountain Hunter
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell Platinum
M0YDH David Holman Gold
EC2AG Antonio Garcia Gold
VK1MBE Andrew Belton Gold
MI0RTY Martin Strawbridge Bronze
GI4ONL Victor Mitchell VHF Silver

I have been reviewing the merchandise that I stock and it is apparent that Polo Shirts have little attraction. Consequently I will run down the stock of these but they will not be replaced once all are sold. Stocks of T Shirts are back to a good level so these will remain available. We have a similar situation with insulated mugs; I have reduced their price and they are now on offer at almost cost price. These are excellent for keeping tea or coffee hot (and beer cold) when you are in the shack!

The trophies are individually engraved for every application, I just hold blanks with the SOTA logo and the Goat or Sloth image. Your callsign and year of award (and any other information) is engraved on demand. In the past I have infilled the engraving with a special red paint but it is possible to offer other colours so I will update the shopping pages so that other infill colours may be chosen when you purchase the trophy.

I hope to activate a summit or two while in CT3 but this is a holiday and that will take priority over amateur radio. Any activation will be announced on the SOTA alerts page.

Stay safe on the hills

73

Barry GM4TOE
SOTA Awards Manager

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NORTH AMERICAN REPORT from Skip K6DGW

Well, way down in all categories, however it’s the end of Nov, and that’s not at all surprising. With the decline in conditions, 20 and 40 meters rule, not unexpected either. A little surprising that 30 meters isn’t more popular among the CW folks, but then not all mountain top rigs hit 30.

STATISTICS: As of 0300 UTC 28 Nov 2016

Total Activations: 358 [588]
Nr Unique Activators: 130 [167]
Total Chaser QSOs: 3824 [6165]
Nr Unique Chasers: 230 [263]
Unique Summits: 435 [588]

2m: 47 (1%) [127]
6m: 1 (0%) [0]
10m: 1 (0%) [0]
12m: 2 (0%) [1]
15m: 80 (2%) [64]
17m: 224 (5%) [194]
20m: 2106 (55%) [3731]
30m: 285 (7%) [581]
40m: 1075 (28%) [1458]
60m: 2 (0%) [1]
80m: 0 (0%) [0]
160m: 0 (0%) [0]
Unk: 1

CW: 2225 (58%) [4378]
SSB: 1549 (40%) [1653]
FM: 47 (1%) [133]
AM: 0 (0%) [0]
Data: 1 (0%) [1]
Other: 0 (0%) [0]
Unk: 1

AWARDS AND ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

Charlie, NJ7V, has made it to Goatdom! He actually achieved it in mid-October, word just didn’t make it to theWwestern Frontier until now. Congratulations!!

Ryan, K7ODX, reports: “I don’t know what use half of a Goat is, but I am one now. Thanks to all the chasers who are always there, for helping me pass my 500 point mark today on my activation of W7U/ UT-019. It was a beautiful warm day, partly cloudy with a little breeze. Very fun activation with 42 contacts and 2 S2S. Contacts coast to coast from UT. 30 meters was good today. I’ll try to get the second 500 quicker than the first, but in reality, the fun isn’t in the destination, it’s in the journey! So here’s looking forward to the next 500.”

Phil, NS7P, checked in with: “With a lot of discussion of DX S2S contacts recently, I figured that there were would be some newsletter reporting. I thought that I should mention an event of a couple of months ago that didn’t get much discussion at the time. On Sept 10, 2016 at 2347z, I had an S2S contact with JF1NDT/0. He was on JA/NN-081 and I was on W7O/WV-014. The 15 meter QSO was 339 on both ends. This was the first NA to JA S2S contact. SOTAdata lists the distance as 7968 km. It was a thrill at the time.”

Thanks Phil, assuming 5 watts, that’s 1,594 km/watt. Nice going! And on the same subject, Paul, W6PNG on W6/SC-369 reports an S2S with Andrew, VK1/AC-307 near Canberra. Paul’s post is at w6png.wordpress.com [“Magic Happens…Australia calling”], and the view from Andrew’s end is on the SOTA Reflector [“Seeking NA Chasers - 26 Nov 16”].

NEWS:

Guy, N7UN [SOTA MT Summits Team], reported: “I’m pleased to announce that Ryan/K7ODX will assume the Association Manager responsibilities for W7U-Utah on 1 Dec 2016. Ryan has been one of our more engaged Activators in Utah over the past 3 years. Recently he has achieved ½-Mountain Goat which is an indication of his dedication to the SOTA experience. He is an active promoter of SOTA at local hamfests. Please welcome Ryan as the new Association Manager in Utah. The W7U Association Reference Manual and the SOTA UK database will be updated with this information. In the meantime, congrats Ryan!”

Guy also reports: “I’m pleased to announce that Walt, NE4TN, will assume the Association Manager responsibilities for W4T-Tennessee on 1 Dec 2016. Walt will replace Todd/N4SR who was the first AM for W4T. Thanks Todd for your contributions. Likewise please welcome Dave, AE9Q, as the new Association Manager for W4A-Alabama. And our thanks to Joel/W4JBB for his contributions. Both AE9Q and NE4TN are familiar calls as both Activators and Chasers. The respective Association Reference Manual and the SOTA UK database will be updated with this information. In the meantime, congrats Walt and Dave!”

From Charlie, NJ7V: “The Arizona Association W7A had a meet-up on Saturday 12 Nov at our favorite watering hole, Duke’s Sports Bar in Scottsdale, AZ. We usually get together once or twice a year, commonly to celebrate somebody getting an award. For this meet-up we celebrated me achieving Mountain Goat, which I accomplished on Goat Hill W7A/MS-065 on October 15th with 100% unique activations.”

In the group picture going clockwise from the bottom-left:
Ken, K6HPX; Katherine, KE7BGM; Sandy, YL (NJ7V); Tom, N7AMA; Chris, K7TAB; Jim, K7JFD; Pete, WA7JTM; Brian, W7JET; Dave, N7QNG (behind Pete and Brian); Attila, W7AMR; Dennis, AA7DK. Charlie, NJ7V took the photograph. W7A’s four Mountain Goats, who were all in attendance are pictured from left to right, Charlie, NJ7V; Brian, W7JET; Pete, WA7JTM; and Ken, K6HPX.

Steve, WG0AT, has edited a great video of the KU6J Memorial Activation and placement of the medallion on W6/NS-204 in Eric’s memory. It is on YouTube at https://youtu.be/jxAYZGc0gno

John K1JD & Justin VK7TW

John, K1JD, continues his travels in VK-land: “Was pleased to meet Justin, VK7TW, Tasmania’s SOTA AM, at the Hamfest. Held every 2 years, it happily coincided with our visit. Will attempt to upload a photo.”

EVENTS: Mark this as a ‘Potential Event’ from Rob, AE7AP: “Barb-AE7AQ and myself are going to be in Colorado for Christmas this year. We are thinking that Dec. 27 would be a good day for a morning SOTA outing before we head back north early on the 28th. We are considering activating Green Mountain (W0C/FR-107) that morning, perhaps leaving the trailhead about 7:30. I would most particularly enjoy meeting some Front Range SOTA people. Let me know if you are interested in accompanying us, or perhaps meeting us for coffee afterwards.”

TRIVIA/FACTOIDS:

If I read the SOTA Database correctly [questionable], we have 41 Mountain Goats in North America. W5N leads the Herd with 9 followed by W0C with 5, W4C and W7A with 4 each, W1 and W6 with 3 each, W5T with 2, and VE2, W4G, W4T, W4V, W5A, W7I, W7O, W7W, and W9 each with 1.

I got curious about the number of regions and summits currently cataloged for North America, and Bill, KC4ATU, kindly obliged me with 335 Regions and 30,270 summits, spread across 34 Associations. Elliott, K6EL, commented to me that over 60% of the summits are in Alaska, and AK isn’t complete yet. Could be a long time before we run out of virgin summits.

REPORT OF THE MONTH:

We’ll go to W0C and catch up with Curtis, KC5CW, who has just moved from W5T: “Yes, I’m still around but have been very busy getting all the rat killin’ done since moving to Colorado. New house, new job, new SOTA summits! Last weekend I went out and tried to activate Flat Top Mountain and/or Evergreen Mountain but was stopped by private roads with gates/no trespassing signs. There might be a way to get to them but I couldn’t find an easy way … Sooooo, yesterday I went to a sure thing. My first SOTA since moving to W0C. Special thanks to K6EL for getting a text through my spotty cell reception and getting me spotted on 20m and to Phil NS7P for my 40m spot (I asked him to hold on while I looked on 40m for a clear freq.) which was the hot band for me that I almost didn’t do because I was getting cold but am REALLY glad I did.”

Curtis’ report is at kc5cw.tumblr.com as Devil’s Head Hike.

That’s it from the New World for November. It may be summer in Tasmania but it’s winter in North America, snow again last night … more tomorrow morning. Activate Safely.

73,

Skip K6DGW
North American SOTA Reporter Dude
Sparks, NV

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Summit to Summit super activation November 19th 2016 – Ed DD5LP

The Summits on the Air “Summit to Summit” event between Europe and North America on Saturday the 19th of November was a great success. Despite cold and rainy weather across several parts of Europe, band conditions being average and interference from contestants in the LZ-DX contest, all activators who were out reported a successful and enjoyable day.

Some stations racked up multiple S2S (Summit to Summit) contacts across the three continents involved – as well as Europe and North America – there was one activator on holiday in the Canary Islands, which counts geographically as Africa. The event was also an opportunity for others to try out new rigs and other equipment, especially antennas. Several activators had their first-ever inter-continental summit-to-summit contact and were really happy about that. Others went in small teams and enjoyed working together. Some had tents to protect them from the weather. Others were really lucky with the weather, while others got soaked.

Three bands were used for inter-continental contacts – 21, 18 and 14MHz. Most contacts were made on 20 metres; however those with multiple band capability moved away from the contest traffic on 20 metres to the more peaceful 17 and 15 metres. The consensus seems to be that from a propagation point of view, 17 metres was the best; however inter-continental QSOs were made on all three bands.

We even have some reports of chasers from VK catching some of the EU activators via short path in the very early hours of the Australian Sunday morning!

Sixty-six summits had been announced, but 77 were actually activated, an increase on the 51 summits alerted and 73 stations taking part in the VK-EU event a month earlier. It’ll be interesting to see what the numbers are for the North America-VK event. This may only now take place in 2017 when the weather in the Northern Hemisphere improves.
The general feeling around the SOTA community is that having these S2S events is both enjoyable and useful and many are looking forward to more of them.

Ed DD5LP

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2nd HB9SOTA group snowshoe excursion, 2017 edition, on the Chasseral – Jürg HB9BIN

The second HB9SOTA winter snowshoe excursion, being held on Saturday January 14, 2017, takes us to Chasseral (HB/BE-104) at 1607 meters ASL. The backup dates are January 21 and 28, 2017.
In the hope that in 2017 more participants will join us for the group snowshoe excursion than in 2016, I have intentionally selected a simple summit that does not require an overnight stay.

For this event, everybody will make their way to the summit by themselves or in self-organized groups. We will meet in the Hotel Chasseral for a group lunch at approximately noon. The dining room of the self-service restaurant is large and can be quite busy when the weather is good. I will attempt to make sure we have a place to gather by placing a SOTA pennant on a table. Every participant decides for themselves if they would like to make their way to the highest point near the transmitter tower before or after the group meal.

From the town of Nods there are three snowshoe trails you can choose from: First, you can hike along the mountain pass road, which is closed to traffic at this time of year; this option is the longest but is the least steep. Second, you can hike past the ski lift to the summit. For the third option, you start at the parking lot (N47 07.242 E7 05.069) and instead of taking the left turn you start ascending directly through the forest. Along the ridge from the transmitter tower to the Hotel Chasseral there is a series of tall trail markers so you can’t get lost even in a blizzard with low visibility. Depending on the option you choose, the distance is between 8.4 and 13.2 km, and the ascent is 832 meters. Because of the gentle slope and the forest there is absolutely no danger of avalanches.

If traveling to Nods by public transport, you get off the train at La Neuville. There you pick up Bus 132 at 08:00 or 09:00 and arrive in Nods roughly half an hour later.

If going by car, coming from Zurich, Lucerne or Bern, you get to Biel going across the first chain of Jura mountains, leave the motorway at the Frinviller exit and continue along through the towns of Orvin, Disse and Lamboin to get to Nods. Once there you make a left turn towards Chasseral. The transmission tower that can be seen from afar serves as a point of reference.

I hope to meet many of you there!

73 de HB9BIN, Jürg Regli

Association Manager Switzerland

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SOTA Portugal Lisbon meet up – Paulo CT2IWW

SOTA Portugal activators and chasers met informally at the country´s largest amateur radio fair, in Lisbon, on Sunday, November 27th. Although no stand was installed, most of Summits on the Air ops made their presence obvious by their “swag” and managed to make several impromptu meetings at vendors stands (at least two were active SOTA activators), namely where QRP gear was to be found.
Gear and activation/chasing techniques dominated most of the talks and some early plans for next year´s SOTA annual meet were discussed. As it stands, the city of Viana do Castelo, in Portugal´s summit rich upper northwest, will host the fourth edition of the event.
In the name of all Portuguese activators and chasers, I´d like to take the opportunity to wish all amateur radio operators and their families Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year 2017!

Paulo Teixeira, CT2IWW

Image legend (left to right):
CT1BHG, João Cardoso; CT2JLS, Sérgio Domingos; CT2IWW, Paulo Teixeira; CT1DBS/CU3HF, Pedro Carvalho; CT7ABG, José Gomes; CT2GSN, João Cunha. Not in the picture but also at the meet were: CT7AGR, Paulus Schulink; CT1GZB, José Luís; CT1END, Carlos Nora; CT1DYH Carlos Ferreira and CT1BWU João Coelho.

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SOTA NEWS FROM JAPAN by Toru JH0CJH

Hi Mark and all

Please find the following SOTA News from Japan.

Merry Christmas and happy holiday seasons to all SOTA lovers.
Times flies so fast, its last month of 2016. In November, the weather in Japan was stable and cooled down then so many SOTA activation have been carried out.

It could be a cold winter in this year. In Tokyo, snow fell on 24 November and it is a 54 year record of November snow fall and first record of snow accumulation in November, but it has not discouraged SOTA activations. This months had the greatest number of QSO’s since the launching of SOTA JA association!

SOTA operation in November 2016 in Japan as of 30 Nov 2016.

Activation

Total 131 Activations with 1499 QSO have been made and reported.

JA: 125 expeditions with 1417 QSO from Summits
JA5: 5 expeditions with 61 QSO from Summits
JA6: 1 expedition with 21 QSO from Summits
JA8: 0

Chasing

Total 207 Chasing QSO have been made and reported.

JA: 188 chasing QSO
JA5: 4 chasing QSO
JA6: 15 chasing QSO
JA8: 0

S2S

Total 134 S2S QSO have been made and reported.

JA: 124 S2S QSO
JA5: 6 S2S QSO
JA6: 4 S2S QSO
JA8: 0

In JA region, approx 1200 new summits candidates have been named in JA
region and waiting SOTA MT approval. Once they have been approved

Attached my favorite photo in this month.

The veiw of Mt Fujiyama from the summit of Mt Konarayama JA/YN-037

Toru Kawauchi
toru@kawauchi.homeip.mydns.jp

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THE VIEW FROM THE NORTH - 107 By Rob and Audrey G4RQJ

Off we go on this month’s effort, which really isn’t much of one due to a lack of activations on our part. This was due to heavy colds for both of us, one after the other that took care of two Sundays; the third was Armistice Day and our annual visit to the Cenotaph. The fourth Sunday of the month and the forecast was dire so we decided not to go out as did other walkers we know. In the event the local weather was excellent here although the south of the country did get a real battering.

We thoroughly enjoyed seeing David M0YDH make Mountain Goat and the crowd of folks we meet so many times both on the air and at Rallies there to cheer him on, wish we had that level of support in the Lake District but the bordering countryside is very sparsely populated. David is a frequent voice on our local fells and John his dad seems to like an upcoming weather report from the far west. (Lake District weather comes mainly from the west and we are about as far west as you can go so a quick look out to sea from the shack window generally gives us two hours or so advanced warning).

On the subject of summits with access for the less mobile amongst us the Lake District really has none to offer, we have thought a lot about this, as you get older this becomes more relevant but we cannot come up with even one. We often wish we had Gun or something similar close to hand for quick trips out on nice evenings. Where we stay in the Isle of Man is quite close to Mull Hill and we often spend time on extra little trips there. Incidentally you can drive up to the summit but the track although concrete and tarmac is a little rough in places and good ground clearance is needed. We only drove up it once!

This week we have had plumbers fitting new boiler and piping, all doors open, next week it’s replacement windows all round so a few more gales to put up with yet but in the middle, this weekend we are hoping to get out on something local if only for a quick activation so hope the month is not a total loss SOTA wise, meanwhile Christmas is on the horizon and by the time of the next News will be a memory so time for us to wish every one .

A Very Happy Christmas from both of us.

Take care out there,
73

Rob and Audrey

G4RQJ

PS Sorry no activation, too busy preparing for window men!

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*********** SOTA NEWS PART 2 FOLLOWS BELOW ********


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SOTA NEWS DECEMBER 2016 - Part 2

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VK News – Allen VK3ARH

VK gained another Mountain Goat this month.
This time CW Goat - Warren VK3BYD

Warren started activating November 2012. Warren was bitten by the hiking and portable radio bug years earlier had already obtained hiking radios (ATS4 by KD1JV) and experienced with deploying with KRMNPA park activations.

This was early days for SOTA in VK. In 2012 CW chasers were not as plentiful as SSB. The decision to activate CW only was a brave one. First activations took 2 hours to gain the required 4 contacts.

Now that Warren has blazed the path, you can generally get the four with one spot on SOTA Watch and average about 7 stations per activation. Persistence has paid dividends, after 4 years of activations in the Alpine and other remote sites Warren has;

• 143 activations
• 96 Unique Summits all qualified with CW
• 53 Unique call signs
• 66 winter bonus points
• 2 broken 2 squid poles

to achieve Mountain goat status 12/Nov/2016

Congratulations to Warren on achieving Mountain Goat. CW is not as popular here in VK as it is in rest of the SOTA world adding to the achievement.

VK4 Activation News October from Rob VK4FFAB;

So when I sat down to pen this months review of VK4 activations, I was thinking that I would be
reporting a slow month of activations as I have personally been out of the loop with work and
commitments. However, as I started to tally up whom did what, I was pleasantly surprised to see
that we managed 14 WWFF references and 4 SOTA references.

The better than I expected result was due all to the actions of Neil VK4HNS and Grant VK2GEL
who were out quite a lot this month. Lawrie VK4SQ took the next step and had his first activation
with VK4FFAB tagging along for moral support only. Lawrie is slowly building confidence being
on the mic and is loving getting out portable and has even started hunting park references from his
home station.

With summer just about upon us and it going to be a hot one this year, we are already into 35 degree
plus days, late afternoon is going to be the best time to get out portable in VK4, to take advantage of
both the cooler time of the day and propagation down into vk3 and 5. So start to expect VK4
activations to be early evening.

With Christmas just around the corner I would like to extend seasons greeting from all the VK4
activators and chasers. Stay safe if you are on the roads over the holidays and we will catch you all
from a park in the new year. A big thanks to everyone who has gone out and activated this month
for both WWFF and SOTA.

Rob VK4FFAB

WWFF
VK4HNS: Ravensbourne NP, Hampton NP, Crows Nest NP, White Rock CP, Main Range NP,
Moogerah Peaks NP, Flinders Peak CP.
VK2GEL: Nerang CP, Rosins Lookout CP, Lamington NP, Springbrook NP.
VK4FFAB Beachmere CP, Lockyer (Recovery) NP.
VK4SQ Clear Mountain CP.

SOTA
VK4JAZ The Knobby, Kluvers Lookout, Spring Mtn Sth Pk.
VK2GEL Springbrook Mtn.

Allen
VK3ARH

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SOTA NEW ZEALAND REPORT from Warren ZL2AJ

Note from Editor:-
Warren complies a bi-monthly report for the New Zealand national magazine after the end of the month, to allow him to collect all the statistics. This is forwarded along to me during the first few days of a new month but misses our publication deadline on the last day of the month.
News from New Zealand will be inserted here upon arrival – Mark

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Every activation day is special but some days are very special - by Geert PA7ZEE

Awaiting a dry day and studying weather forecasts and weather maps, it looked that Frank PC7C and I would have a SOTA day on a Monday in Belgium. We left home at 05.30 and till the border with Belgium it was dark. The temperature was 2 C and there was overcast but no precipitation. There was some snow on the highest part of Belgium on the Botrange.

Our targets were three summits in the Dinant area with now snow at all.

From my home QTH near Amsterdam it was a long drive. Because we had to drive this day around 800 km, we had planned relative short activations. We parked near Wéris and hiked to ON/ON-018 A la Plate. Frank insisted on a ‘Shack in Nature’ away from trees because of better antenna radiation. I tossed my W3EDP into a tree and was within 10 minutes QRV. Within no time I had 19 stations on 40 m in my log; very rare compared with earlier activations when I needed much more time. Frank had 10 stations and we went to the car to move to the next summit. The next summit was ON/ON-019 Bois de Javinque. The Alléé des Moineaux leads to the path that brought us to the summit. At the beginning of this road there was a sign with a warning in the French language, not understandable for me, but a picture of a man with a hat and a rifle raised an alarm by Frank.

Further reading the sign showed that there was no hunt today, so we moved on. The road became very muddy; going back was no option as was turning, so I drove until we had a dry spot to park the car. From there we hiked further till the GPS told us that we were on the exact summit location. Frank was happy with an open space and installed his inverted vee. A few hundred meters away from him I tossed my wire in a tree and we were both QRV.

After working a few stations, it was suddenly complete silence. Checking my wires I saw that the antenna wire was out of the KX1. When I looked around I saw some horses with ladies on, have passed me and have taken my wire out. I was concentrating and did not notice that that they were passing me. Reconnecting the antenna brought a lot of stations in my log. Frank was very busy and had 39 (!) stations in the log when he went QRT.

We hiked back to the car and went to the next and last summit for today, ON/ON-021 Plantis de Mesnil. This is an almost drive on summit, but Frank was not happy with his ‘Shack in Nature’ under trees. He does not expect anything and tried 20 m first. After his first call there was N1GB; the first time for Frank that he works the USA from a summit with his FT817 with 5 W. After this QSO he found out that his doublet antenna is not tuned for 20 m (!). Correcting this he works many European stations and also W1OW. All together 37 QSO’s. My W3EDP together with the KX1 in 40 minutes brings 34 stations in the log. Coming home the Internet showed that I was not spotted at all by RBN, which brings me to the conclusion that the conditions were not good. We came to the conclusion that the laws of antennas and propagation are not valid for SOTA summits.

Looking back this was a very special activation day with, for us, a record number of QSO’s.

73, Geert PA7ZEE

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My SOTA Addiction is cured - by Phil G4OBK

It is now five weeks since I had my last SOTA Chaser contact with Dani EA5FV/P who was on EA5/MU-017. My last SOTA Activator QSO was from Kinder Scout G/SP-001 seven weeks ago, when I was leading a walk for our local walking group in Derbyshire.

After many years I gave up SOTA - however this situation was forced upon me as my XYL and I moved house four weeks ago. We remain in the middle of the five summit G/TW area though, where I remain as the SOTA Area Manager… I had 106000 chaser points and 2384 activator points before I threw the big switch last month…

Thinking back to last month when I switched off it felt like my SOTA addiction took around 10 days of cold turkey to heal itself. Then, after 10 days packing up ready to move house I have had many distractions resettling and have felt no desire to return to the usual frequencies of 7032/7118/10118/14062 and 14285 KHz. I closed down my home station on 24/10/2016, but last week I did make one mobile QSO with G4SSH on 2m FM as I was passing close to Roy’s QTH…

As we near the start of the winter bonus season though my craving for SOTA is returning and I have a desire to erect an antenna as soon as I can, albeit this will only be a temporary HF installation.

So what does the future hold for me in SOTA? I will probably become a “little pistol” (A term DXers use for someone with limited equipment and antenna resources), rather than a “big gun” with unlimited resources (Two towers, three rotators and eight antennas - as I had before).

Now, I have a much smaller garden and I live in a residential neighbourhood, rather than in the countryside with no near neighbours. I have yet to erect and plug an aerial into my transceiver to determine what the noise level will be from neighbouring properties. Until I do that I do not know how difficult life will be for me as a radio amateur in suburbia… as we know this is the limiting factor for many amateurs. A linear amplifier is not advisable in a residential development with near neighbours - fortunately this is not needed for SOTA operation anyway. A good antenna to my mind is however essential, and being by the radio at the right time. Any old transceiver will do the job - and the rest is down to the operator.

Before, my shack was located in an outbuilding - now I am in the house, in a smaller room around 6 feet square between the kitchen and lounge. It’s very cosy and comfortable. There is no room or planning permission for the big Versatower and two Optibeam antennae, permission would never be granted here, - so these items were sold. I am hopeful though that I may be able erect a 12m high Tennamast with some sort of HF beam on the top next year. I am favouring either a log periodic or a Hexbeam, lets see what 2017 will bring. In the meantime I intend running out dipoles for 20m and 40m and I have a 7 element cross yagi for 2m which I will fix with a small rotator to the house roof.

Another positive is that my new QTH should be an improvement on VHF - although living only 1 mile from my previous QTH, I am 100 feet more above sea level. The final “con” is that it is unlikely that I will push out much of a signal on 160m from now on, although I will do my best to shoehorn an inverted L into the plot somehow.

To end this story on a good note then the final “pro” is that with a smaller garden to manage and a newer property to maintain (once ship shape and “Bristol Fashion” - it hasn’t been lived in for a year) I should have more free time for embarking on SOTA activations in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Europe in general.

Activators then - please listen out for me any time soon, I haven’t gone away completely, I will be back!

73 Phil G4OBK

=========================================================

My First Sota Activation G/CE-004 Bardon Hill 8th November 2016 - G0FEX Ken

I decided it was about time to try to repay the many points obtained from Sota chasing, so on the 08/11/2016, I took the plunge and visited Bardon Hill, it is my local summit, it was a frosty morning when I set off, but the sun came out and made it quite a pleasant walk to the summit, once at the summit I set up the gear etc.
Using my FT 817, 5 watts, 7 metre sotapole, and a Bandspringer midi endfed from Sotabeams.
I fixed the pole to the trig pillar, once all set up I gave Don G0RQL a call, (many thanks for spotting me Don)

G/CE-004 Trig Point

As many will know the trig is the highest point, and there is a very large quarry behind the trig.
14 contacts were made on two bands, sadly nothing heard on 20 metres , but the bands were not in good shape on the day, I spent a couple of hours at the summit and as the sun went behind the clouds it started turning cold.
So I decided to call it a day, I did enjoy the activation and will be planning a few more for next year, the only downside was that I was on my own…

Cheers Ken G0FEX

=============================================================

SOTA ON TOP BAND - Mark G0VOF

Hello everyone & welcome to this month’s edition of SOTA on Top Band.

After a gap of several months I am pleased to report that a Top Band activation took place during November, a successful one at that!

This took place on Sunday 13th November when Colin M1BUU activated G/NP-009 Buckden Pike. Colin decided to concentrate on the low bands & started on 1832KHz CW at 0839z where he was picked up by the RBNHole & spotted on SOTAwatch. This brought a surprising contact for daylight hours with Marko OH9XX, although Marko was using a 700m Beverage for receive. Very nice if you have the space! Colin continued on 160m working GM0UDL, Roy G4SSH & GM4KGK before moving to 80m where he had a further 8 QSO’s, again using CW. I had been up very early that morning & noted Colin’s original alert time of 0930z so went back to bed for a couple of hours. Typically, Colin was an hour ahead of schedule so I missed his spell on Top Band, although I did catch him on 80m CW a short time later.

For 160m Colin uses a pair of G4YSS Slug Tuned Coils fitted at the 40m break points of his 80m/40m linked dipole. For those who have not seen this ingenious design of adjustable coil Colin kindly sent me some photos of his antenna & coils on Buckden Pike.

G4YSS Slug Tuned Coil

M1BUU/P Antenna on Buckden Pike

Colin has also posted an excellet activation report which can be found here:
G/NP-009 Remembrance Sunday

Congratulations & well done Colin for qualifying Buckden Pike on 160m!

At the time of writing, this was the only Top band activation during November that I am aware of, if I have missed any others please let me know.

On 13 November, Colin M1BUU/P Activated G/NP-009 Buckden Pike & made 4 QSO’s (4 CW / 0 SSB)

As always, If you do have any suggestions on things that you think should be included, or if you wish to contribute tips, ideas or anything else that you think may help others on the band please email them to me at mark@brownhill.demon.co.uk

Until next month,

Best 73,

Mark G0VOF

========================================================

CW REPORT FOR NOVEMBER 2016 - Roy G4SSH

Welcome to Winter bonus !

A mixture of winter weather and the anticipation of Winter Bonus on the 1st December ensured that EU SOTA activity remained at a low level during the month of November (apart from weekends).

During the first week Matt OE/HB9VFV crossed the border to be active in Austria, Feri was operating as DL/HA7UL from Germany, Bernard CT9/DL5RDP was in Madeira, Bob HB9/F5HTR in Switzerland, Ferri YOI/HA8LLH in Romania and YO/HA8PQ was also in Romania.

Andy DK7MG was activating in Czechia as OK/DK7MH and Robert DK2RO was running a pile up of chasers, listening 1 up, on 7.018 KHZ. Jürg continued a run of German 10 pointers as DL/HB9BIN , Feri was operating as DL/HA7UL from Germany and special call S500SF was active at weekends. Geert was activating summits in Belgium as ON/PA7ZEE and Heinz was active from Germany as DL/OE5EEP.

Conditions remained poor but by the middle of the month it was a bonus to hear Andy EA8/M0FMF, who was operating from Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands, Feri was again active as YO/HA8LLA, from Romania and Carlos IK2YRA was spotted active on 3.5 MHz with his 2.5w QRP signal on the 20th.

Hans was active from Czechia as OK/PB2T on the 21st and made a surprising contact with chaser K1ZZ on 7.033 MHz at 0945z. Rude operated firstly with his own call as OK1QA, then he jumped over the border fence to activate as OM/OK1QA from Slovakia. Sake commenced an expedition to Belgium as ON/PA0SKP.

On the 22nd there was activity from Austria by OE/HB9VFV and OE/HB9DQM, Hans was active as DL/HB9AGO And Tom was activating from Austria as OE/HB9DPR.

On the 28th, Mike G0HIO commenced a three day expedition to activate nine Southern England Hills, including two on the Isle of Wight.

Finally, Matt was activating from Liechtenstein as HB0/HB9FVF.

Jürg HB9BIN was active most days in the month from various summits in Germany as DL/HB9BIN and Kurt was activating in France on the 29th, using F/HB9AFI.

I will take this opportunity to wish all activators, chasers, SWL’s and their families, a very Happy Christmas 2016.

73 Roy G4SSH

========================================================

SOTA ACTIVITY REPORT FOR NOVEMBER 2016 by Kevin G0NUP

Mode: CW on 1.8MHz: activity for November

M1BUU/P

Mode: CW on 3.5MHz: activity for November

HB9JOE/P, IK2YRA/1, M1BUU/P, VK3BYD/P

Mode: CW on 7MHz: activity for November

AC0PR, AE9Q, CT1DBS/P, CT7AGT/P, DJ2FR, DJ2MX/P, DJ5AV/P,
DK2RO/P, DK7MG/P, DL/HB9AGO/P, DL/HB9BIN/P, DL/PB2T/P, DL6FBK/P, DM1LE/P,
DM7N, EA1AER/P, EA2WX/P, EA5FV/P, F/HB9AFI/P, F5LKW/P, F5PLR/QRP/P,
F5RGY/P, F6ENO/P, F6HBI/P, F8FEO/P, G0EVV/P, G3TJE/P, G4CFS/P,
HA5CQZ/P, HB0/HB9FVF/P, HB9/F5HTR/P, HB9AFI/P, HB9AGO/P, HB9BAB/P, HB9BCB/P,
HB9BIN/P, HB9BQI/P, HB9CBR/P, HB9CGA/P, HB9DQM/P, HB9DST/P, HB9EWO/P,
HB9FVF/P, HB9JOE/P, JA1KHZ/1, JA4RQO/4, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JG1VCH/1,
JG5JXW/5, JM3HRC/2, JO3ALU/3, JP3DGT/3, JR0QWW/0, K2JB, K3JZD,
K6HPX, K6HPX/P, K7MK, K7ODX, K7WYV, K9PM/P, KB9ILT,
KE5AKL, KE7BGM, KK1W, KR7RK, KW4JM, KX0R, KX6A,
LZ1GJ/P, N0PCL, N0TA, N2GBR, N6JZT, N6KZ/P, N7CW,
N7LP, NA6MG, NJ7V, NM5S, NS7P, NU7Y, OE/DK7MG/P,
OE/HB9DQM/P, OE/HB9FVF/P, OE1MVA/P, OE5AUL/P, OE5EEP/P, OE5EIN/P, OK/PB2T/P,
OK1AYU/P, OK1DVM/P, OK1FLC/P, OK1HCD/P, OK1MLP/P, OK2BDF/P, OK2BTK/P,
OK2PDT/P, OK2QA/P, OK3EQ/P, OM/OK2QA/P, OM6AZ/P, ON/PA0SKP/P, ON/PA7ZEE/P,
PA0SKP/P, S5100SF, S52AU/P, S52CU/P, S52FT/P, S53OM/P, SP9AMH/P,
SP9MA/P, SQ8JMZ/P, SV1RHL/P, VK1DA, VK3BYD/P, VK4JAZ, VK5CZ,
W0CP, W1EJ, W2SE, W3CDW, W4PH, W6/DL6UHA/P, W6UB,
W7USA, WA6MM, WA7JTM, WB0USI, WC9G, WG0AT, WG3K,
WH6LE, WS0TA, YO/HA8BJ/P, YO/HA8LLH, YO/HA8PI, YO/HA8WX

Mode: CW on 10MHz: activity for November

AC0PR, CT1DBS/P, CT7AEZ/P, CT7AGT/P, DK7MG/P, DL/HB9AGO/P, DL/HB9CLT/P,
DL/OE5EEP, DL/ON6ZQ/P, DL6FBK/P, DM1LE/P, EA2WX/P, F5LKW/P, F5PLR/QRP/P,
F5RGY/P, F6HBI/P, F8FEO/P, G0EVV/P, HB9/F5HTR/P, HB9AFI/P, HB9AGO/P,
HB9AXL/P, HB9BAB/P, HB9BCB/P, HB9BHU/P, HB9BIN/P, HB9BQI/P, HB9CBR/P,
HB9CGA/P, HB9CPS/P, HB9DGV/P, HB9DPR/P, HB9DQM/P, HB9DST/P, HB9EWO/P,
HB9IIO/P, HB9JOE/P, IK2YRA/1, JA1KHZ/1, JA4RQO/4, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1,
JO4GMS/4, JP3DGT/3, K2JB, K6HPX/P, K7ATN, K7ODX, K7PX,
K7WYV, K9PM/P, KB1KXL, KB9ILT, KD7WPJ, KI4SVM, KK1W,
KR7RK, KT0A, KX0R, N0TA, N6KZ/P, N7CW, N7LP,
NA6MG, ND0C, NS7P, OE/DK7MG/P, OE/HB9DPR/P, OE/HB9FVF/P, OE5AUL/5,
OE5AUL/P, OE5EEP/P, OK/PB2T/P, OK1DVM/P, OK1MLP/P, OK2BDF/P, OM4WY/P,
S5100SF, S52CU, S52CU/P, S52FT/P, SP9AMH/P, SP9MA/P, SQ8JMZ/P,
SV1RHL/P, VK3BYD/P, W0CP, W1EJ, W6/DL6UHA/P, W6UB, WA7JTM,
WB0USI, WG0AT, WG3K, YO/HA8BJ/P, YO/HA8LLH, YO/HA8WX, YO/HG8PQ,
YO2BP/P

Mode: CW on 14MHz: activity for November

AC0PR, AC1Z, AC7MA, CT1DBS/P, CT7AEZ/P, CT7AGT/P, CT9/DL5RDP/P,
DJ2MX/P, DK2RO/P, DK7MG/P, DL/HB9AGO/P, DL/HB9BIN/P, DL/PB2T/P, DL4FO/P,
DL4ROB, DL6FBK/P, DM1LE/P, DM7N, EA1AER/P, EA2IF/P, EA2WX/P,
EA5FV/P, EA8/M0FMF/P, F5LKW/P, F5PLR/QRP/P, F5UKL/P, F6ENO/P, F6HBI/P,
F8FEO/P, G0MFR/P, G0POT/P, GW4AZS/P, GW4OIG/P, GW4TJC/P, HB9/F5HTR/P,
HB9AFI/P, HB9AXL/P, HB9BAB/P, HB9BCB/P, HB9BIN/P, HB9BQI/P, HB9CBR/P,
HB9CPS/P, HB9DGV/P, HB9DQM/P, HB9DST/P, HB9EWO/P, HB9FVF/P, HB9IIO/P,
HB9JOE/P, IK2YRA/1, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JG1GPY/1, JG5JXW/5, JH0CJH/1,
JP1QEC/1, JP3DGT/3, JS1UEH/1, JS6TMW/6, K0JQZ, K1LB, K2JB,
K3JZD, K6HPX/P, K7MK, K7ODX, K7PX, K7VK, K7WYV,
K9PM/P, KB1KXL, KB9ILT, KC1APK, KD7WPJ, KE5AKL, KK1W,
KR7RK, KT0A, KW4JM, KX0R, LZ1GJ/P, N0PCL, N0TA,
N1FJ, N6JZT, N6KZ/P, N7CW, N7LP, N7SRG, NA6MG,
ND0C, NJ7V, NM5S, NS0TA, NS1TA, NS7P, NU7Y,
OE/DK7MG/P, OE/HB9DQM/P, OE/HB9FVF/P, OE5EEP/P, OE5EIN/P, OH2NOS/P, OH3KRH/P,
OH9XX/P, OK/PB2T/P, OK1DVM/P, OK1MLP/P, OK1NF, OM4DW/P, OM6AZ/P,
ON/PA0SKP/P, PA0SKP/P, S5100SF, S52CU, S52CU/P, S52FT/P, S58R/P,
SP9AMH/P, SP9MA/P, SV1RHL/P, VA6FUN, VE2DDZ, VK3BYD/P, W0CP,
W4PH, W6/DL6UHA/P, W6STR, W6UB, W7USA, WA6KYR, WA6MM,
WA7JTM, WA7NCL, WB0USI, WG3K, WH6LE, WS0TA, WX4TW,
YO/HA8LLH, YO/HA8WX, YO/HG8PQ, YO8AZQ/P, YU1CA/P, Z35M/P, ZL1BYZ

Mode: CW on 18MHz: activity for November

CT1DBS/P, CT7AEZ/P, DL/HB9AGO/P, EA8/M0FMF/P, F5LKW/P, F5PLR/QRP/P, F5UKL/P,
F6HBI/P, G0MFR/P, GW4AZS/P, GW4OIG/P, HB9AFI/P, HB9BCB/P, HB9BIN/P,
HB9CBR/P, HB9DQM/P, IK2YRA/1, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JG1GPY/1, JH0CJH/1,
JO3ALU/3, JP1QEC/0, JP1QEC/1, JP3DGT/3, JS1BXH/1, JS1UEH/1, JS6TMW/6,
K0JQZ, K6HPX, K6HPX/P, K7ATN, KT0A, KX0R, M0OAT/P,
MW0IDX/P, N0TA, N1FJ, N6JZT, NS1TA, NS7P, OE/HB9DPR/P,
OE/HB9DQM/P, OE5EEP/P, OH2NOS/P, OH9XX/P, OK1MLP/P, S5100SF, S52CU,
S52CU/P, S52FT/P, VK7/K1JD, W0CP, WA7JTM, WB8OGK, WG0AT,
WX4TW, YO/HA8BJ/P, YO/HA8LLH, ZL1BYZ

Mode: CW on 21MHz: activity for November

AC0PR, CT1DBS/P, DL4ROB, EA8/M0FMF/P, F5LKW/P, F5PLR/QRP/P, F5UKL/P,
F6HBI/P, HB9BCB/P, HB9CBR/P, JA4RQO/4, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JG1VCH/1,
JG5JXW/5, JH0CJH/1, JO3ALU/3, JP1QEC/0, JP1QEC/1, JP3DGT/3, JS1BXH/1,
JS1UEH/1, JS6TMW/6, K2JB, K3JZD, K6HPX/P, KB9ILT, KE7BGM,
KK1W, KR7RK, N7CW, NS1TA, OE5EEP/P, OH2NOS/P, OH9XX/P,
OK1MLP/P, S52CU/P, VK7/K1JD, W0CP, WA7JTM, WB8OGK, WG0AT,
ZL1BYZ

Mode: CW on 24MHz: activity for November

JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JH0CJH/1

Mode: CW on 28MHz: activity for November

JA4RQO/4, JF1NDT/0, JF1NDT/1, JP3DGT/3, KR7RK

Mode: CW on 50MHz: activity for November

JA4RQO/4, JF1NDT/1, JH0CJH/1, NJ7V, WA7JTM

Mode: CW on 1240MHz: activity for November

Mode: FM on 28MHz: activity for November

Mode: FM on 50MHz: activity for November

W6SAE

Mode: FM on 1240MHz: activity for November

DG0JMB/P, G7HEM/P, JN3PDF/3, JP1QEC/0

Mode: SSB on 28MHz: activity for November

HB9DQM/P, JS6TQS, K2JB, KG7STN, KI4SVM, KJ6QDU, KR7RK,
S52CU/P, S56LXN/P, S57MS/P, VK1MA/2, VK3YY

Mode: SSB on 50MHz: activity for November

7K1BAE, I1WKN/1, JA1KHZ/1, JA4RQO/4, JG1GPY/1, JG1VCH/1, JH0CJH/1,
JH1EWV/1, JH1EWV/2, JI1IKC/1, JI1TLL/1, JJ0TRY/0, JK1NRL/1, JL1BWG/1,
JN1NCB, JP1SCQ/1, JR1NNL/1, KJ6QDU, S56LXN/P, S57MS/P, VK1DA,
VK3PI

Mode: SSB on 1240MHz: activity for November

Regards
Kevin J Prince G0NUP

========================================================

SOTA News is normally published on the last day of each month, but there will be occasions when the Editor is not available at this time, in which case it will be published as soon as possible afterwards. It can only be as interesting as the items submitted, so if you think your particular field of interest is not being covered then please submit an article by the 25th of the month.

Have you a favourite SOTA? favourite mode? favourite rig, antenna, or favourite band? How did you find your first day / month / year as an activator or chaser? Your comments and experiences will be read by enthusiasts all across Europe, the USA, Australia and beyond, in a total of 114 different SOTA associations worldwide. Your input will be most welcome.

We receive many e-mails during the month containing details of activations, milestones reached and general SOTA news. Unless advised otherwise we will use this information in the next edition of SOTA News. It is important therefore that you advise us if any information is not intended for publication.
For ease of processing, please submit your input by e-mail direct to the addresses below and not via the Reflector.

==================================================

Mark G0VOF
SOTA News Editor
mark@brownhill.demon.co.uk

U.S. and Canadian reports to:-
Fred K6DGW/7 [aka “Skip” on the radio]
Canada/US SOTA Reporter Dude
Sparks NV
k6dgw@foothill.net

Australian input to:-
Allen VK3ARH
VK Reporter
VK3ARH@wia.org.au (note the recent change)

New Zealand input to:-
Warren ZL2AJ
warren@zl2aj.com

Japanese reports to
Toru JH0CJH
jh0cjh@jarl.com

South African input to:-
Dennis ZS4BS
zs4bs@netactive.co.za


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