A bit confused

This week I have discussed with Finnish Hammate who is local WWFF coordinator. WWFF areas and working rules I understand well (44 qsos instead of 4). Working Lighthouses and Castles (COTA) is also clear for me but GMA (Global Mountain Activity) makes me a bit confused.

Reading fast its rules I think it is quite same hobby as SOTA. Only difference seems to be how to define the height of summit. GMA has also own GMAwatch which is corresponding with SOTAWatch.

Could somebody tell me about the history and progress of these two associations (perhaps there is more)? Why is several corresponding associations for the same hobby? Which one has been founded first?

73, Saku OH2NOS

This goes back to 2003. The first DM Association summit list, compiled in that year to form the DM Association, contained many summits which later for one reason or another were found to be invalid. There was significant opposition in Germany to the revision of this summit list as many favourite summits were lost. GMA was formed as a means of retaining those favourite summit lists in an award scheme.


1 Like

To my mind the idea of GMA came up in 2008 when many of the existing German SOTA references had to be deleted due to lacking prominence. German participants were fine with SOTA but they disliked the prominence criterion for selecting valid summits. As this controversy was never solved in SOTA, GMA was invented. The initial idea was simply to have SOTA with all the deleted references.
In 2012 GMA was relaunched and focus was broadened. Now GMA is not only SOTA without prominence but a comprehensive outdoor program. It includes WWFF, COTA/WCA, IOTA and light houses.

GMA is fully compatible with SOTA, i.e. all SOTA references are valid for GMA. Additionally GMA has a large number of dedicated GMA references.

73 de Michael, DB7MM


Hi all,
just a small correction to Brian´s answer.
The DM summits were not invalid, but the rules have changed.

Vy73 de DL4FDM, HB9CSA

1 Like

Not so. The rules were set in 2002, there have only been minor corrections and clarifications since then.


1 Like

Obviously the DM summits were not invalid when they were valid!

The reason why they were valid when they did not meet the prominence requirements was because of an old exception in the General Rules that allowed non-prominent summits to be included on the discretion of the Association Manager.

The arrangement was removed due to two main reasons:

  1. It was not fair or consistent, especially when we were insisting that new associations strictly observed the prominence requirements.

  2. There were some examples of some summits with only a few metres of prominence being listed - including some instances where it was possible to stand in one place and be in the activation zone of two different summits at the same time!

Everything is now fair, consistent, and in accordance with the same General Rules. There are probably still examples where things need cleaning up, but we are gradually working our way through these issues.