Is it not the other way round - in terms of how “tough” a mode is?
Out of these three, I mastered using SSB first, and very easily. After a learning process of about a year, I got to grips with CW. I am still trying to puzzle out the FT8 business.
I’m interested to know how you have come to your own view as to the relative difficulties Mike, as to the best of my knowledge, you have never operated CW or FT8 for SOTA. So how do you know?
Regardless of that, the only requirement for a SOTA contact to be valid (in terms of bands and modes) is that it must be on a band and mode that your licence permits you to use. There is no distinction between the “worth” of a QSO according to the mode used.
It’s perfectly simply - if you want to boost your score and climb higher through the honour rolls, you need to activate a greater number of different summits, and some with higher points values wouldn’t go amiss either. I can highly recommend getting into NE Wales this winter, and picking up 5 points a time for the likes of GW/NW-042, GW/NW-043, GW/NW-044 and GW/NW-051. Others that are reasonably accessible and fairly easy walks are GW/NW-039 and GW/NW-040 - 7 points each from these in the bonus period.
And best of all? Use whatever band and mode you like - they’re all considered equal in SOTA!