Activation Bonus based on Elevation and/or Region


I’ve spent a good deal of time reading/searching the msg archives for any relevant discussion but to no avail. As we know, Activation bonuses are assigned to a Region based on general geography and the average weather (summer or winter) for that Region. So a generally hot desert area (like southern California) gets a “summer bonus” because of heat. Likewise is true for mountainous areas that get a “winter bonus”.

My question: has there been consideration/discussion for these seasonal activation bonuses including a rule for elevation?

There are a number of Associations with significantly varied topography. California is my best example and to be more specific, W6/CD-001 White Peak (4342 m/14246 ft). A summer activation bonus is awarded, ostensibly because of heat, but I can assure you at 4,342 m it is not “hot”. Likewise, no winter bonus is assigned because it is in a “summer bonus” Region only.

For the sake of discussion, by adding a rule for the Region that encompasses two scenarios:

  1. A summer activation bonus for the Region is only valid for Peaks less than 7,500 ft. (6 point band and less). No summer activation bonus for Peaks greater than 7,500 ft (8 and 10 point bands), for example.
    a) Summer heat would not be a factor warranting the summer bonus above 7,500 ft.

  2. A winter activation bonus for the same Region only valid for Peaks greater than 5,500 ft (4 pt band and greater), for example.
    a) Winter cold would be a factor warranting the winter bonus above 5,500 ft.

In a number of the western states, there is enough geographic differences (example with W6/CD-001) that a two-tiered set of bonus rules (Region and elevation) could represent the seasonal reality of the Region.

I’m sure this topic has been discussed. I just wasn’t able to find it.

Thanks in advance, Guy/N7UN

In reply to N7UN:
A summit that is not hot on top might still be really hot at the car park before the huge climb. Also, in hot areas, the radiant heat from the sun at altitude can still be a major factor, even if the temperature is not that hot.

While the bonus may have been originally designed around snow bound summits in winter being more difficult because they are higher, it is difficult to imagine a better bonus system that is currently in use.

73 de Wayne VK3WAM

In reply to N7UN:

I would agree that higher altitudes are cooler, Guy, a consequence of the atmospheric property known loosely as the lapse rate, but higher altitudes are accessed from lower altitudes. So, given that the SOTA software currently could not handle a bonus that only applies to lower altitudes, and that a climb to a higher altitude would in general start at a lower altitude with higher temperatures, the matter has been allowed to rest at least for the moment. Not ideal but with the current workload if we had waited until the software was re-written you might have had to wait extra months for these Associations!


Brian G8ADD