today i went out for my first activation of a summit in the alps area. I took my usually HF-SOTA equipment (IC-7000, 11Ah battery, Palm Paddle, Tuner and wires…) with me up to the Jenner summit in the early morning. It was a little bit raining but the forecast was ok. On top, rainfall stopped and the sun started to break the clouds…
After setting up my station I realized that something was wrong with my cw key connection, I produced an continous output out of the radio, no chance to do a qso And as usual, I did not took my handmike with me.
Oh my god, standing up in the early morning for nothing? So I decided to try the activation with my VHF/UHF handheld transceiver. Ok, I called several times on the usual calling frequencies with little success. And no chance to do a self spotting. I checked the local repeaters and found at least four OMs I could copy directly and asked them to do QSY on a simplex frequency in order to get the necessary QSOs to match the SOTA terms. Special thanks to DO3MSM/m who changed his own plans and went with his car to a spot, from where a direct QSO was possible. That is ham spirit!
What a pitty, nobody was familiar with the SOTA program and could not sent a spot for me. Till today I never announced my planned activations, because on 40m CW you get a big pile up everytime after more or less the first cq call.
Now I can belief that doing SOTA only on the FM VHF band segments is a challanging job, especially without a change of a spot in SOTAWatch! Maybe other activators have a different opinion, but please let me know your experience.
See you on the next summit es 73