Whew! That trail was not was we were expecting. Tougher and steeper than anticipated, so took a good deal longer to make the ascent. Rocks and roots aplenty. Arrived in a state of dishabille but grabbed a snack and set up the linked dipole to see what we could see. 20 meter SSB contest was mostly what was seen! Took a while to find an empty place on the band, and to get a cell signal to self-spot. Worked a few stations in quick succession. (apologies to KD0YOB - the QSB was dreadful and I couldn’t get the required info - thanks for trying for so long). The queue dried up and the contesters started encroaching, so took a look at the CW area on 20 meters. Wall to wall contest there too. Went to 40 meters but it was slim pickings there, despite a lot of calling. K9RS saved there day there.
Hike down was interesting, being on the ski trail (wish we’d known to do that on the way up!), but even so, a 2 mile trek in hot and humid conditions. It pointed up the need for better conditioning for both XYL and myself. Maybe it’s a good excuse for more activations
The new Elecraft KX2 performed well and weighs a lot less than the 857D, even though my back was claiming that it was absorbing cosmic rays and getting heavier by the moment (my back is well known for hyperbole,I try to ignore it). It did give me an overheat warning after a series of full power calls, but I blame that on the sunshine which had shifted and was beating down on the black case. My antenna pole was nearly as hot from the sun. Lesson learned - keep in the shade. Lesson #2 - keep trimming the pack weight down.
Thanks to all the chasers for their help. Better conditions next time, eh?
Bruce - WB8OGK