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Activator QSO Points "Dry Pile" Award

I know there has previously been some related discussion along these lines…

On Monday I activated W2/GC-021 (Schunnemunk Mountain) which is a modest 1 pointer, thus not eligible for winter bonus points. The hike in/up was 3.2 miles and took me about 2.5 hours going each way with temperature about 32°F. I expected that once on-the-air, I would be able to earn some s2s points to compensate for the effort.

However, on that particular day, I was the sole SOTA North American cw activator during that daytime slot !!! I stayed at the summit for almost 3 hours and gladly made 56 HF cw contacts. Unlike someone who hikes in, makes 6 QSO’s and hikes out, I wonder if there could be a reward for the activators who work multiple HF bands, work the pile until it is dry and log more than 25 contacts per summit. Since the database records the number of QSOs on each of my activations, I would guess it can calculate my total number of contacts per year, my average contacts per peak, etc.

Just a thought…Be assured that I fully expect to continue to activate summits just for the fun of it, as long as I can make it up the hill. Always looking for s2s and DX chasers!
Stay well & 73!
Mike, WB2FUV

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There is a My Statistics page on the database that lists most chased summit, most activated summits, activated regions etc. There is a more detailed breakdown of activator stats on Sotl.as which shows more breakdowns about bands, modes, QSO counts.

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Like most of the SOTA experience, the principal award I get is the personal satisfaction, a secondary award is the health spinoffs. Certificates just go into my PDF folder, maybe some will be printed one day. I apply for some, just to provide financial support to SOTA.

I just like operating radios from hills. I’ve done it all my life. It makes the antennas bendy, but it keeps me on the air.

(Swerving away from another word rhyming with “life”)

(With apologies to (probably) Ogden Nash).

73 Andrew VK1DA/VK2UH

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Hi Mike,
Well the Rules are simple right now. Not all peaks are created equal nor do the number of points equate to effort. Trying to allow for effort is a minefield. I’m not saying its impossible but I’m not going to volunteer to try to figure out the basics of that.

There is another solution. Don’t activate the easy ones, or if you do you don’t have to claim the points.

My last activation was a 10 pointer in which I got my pack out of the vehicle and walked across the road to my operating site. Too easy? Yes, I now think so and I’ve not claimed it. No health benefits there. But the chasers got points.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

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I figure the “too easy ten pointers” and the “too hard one pointers” probably pretty much balance out in the end. Has anyone claimed MG by only activating one-pointers? There’d be a challenge…

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You’d need a summit activation count >= 1000 for that and only 24 activators have 1000 or more summits in their logs and as the scores for these people is above 3000pts the answer is no, this challenge is still available.

I guess it’s still possible there’s an activator out there who’s got the points from a thousand one-pointers (which isn’t quite the same, but probably quite a challenge even so)…

Agreed. There is a one pointer near Atlanta ( W4G/HC-043) that is 700+ ft of elevation gain over one mile. Further north there is an 8+3 pointer (W4G/NG-035) that is a drive up with a 100 yard walk up a paved hill.

In fact, a drive-up summit can always be hiked, probably through several different routes. It’s just up to anyone taking the easy one or some other.
73,

Guru

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Hi Guru,
That’s probably true in VK but I have read that in EU if there is a gondola to the top you are prohibited from walking. I’ve probably got that wrong.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

Hi,
A quick look at my log shows no hard 1 pointers but plenty of easy 10 pointers.
There is one 2 pointer that I gave up on two thirds of the way there. Unlike Mallory I wasn’t going to summit and die.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

Hi,
I always work everyone I can copy before closing unless in danger from a thunderstorm or the like. It’s not often that I work 20 or more in an activation.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

Hi Ron,
I can only speak about my experience and all the drive-on summits around me can be hiked. In fact, I have done both, hike and drive to at least 4 or 5 of them. It all depends on the mood, the available time, the type of activation…
There may be some driveable summit prohibitted for hikers but they must be a very rare case.
73,

Guru

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Rick,
There are less than 60 one pointers within 400 km of here. Some are in private property with no entry allowed. Maybe 40 could be activated so 25 years to goat level? There’s a challenge for the 60 plus brigade.

There are less than 70 10 pointers in the same range. Most have a jeep track to the AZ.

Can’t figure why the keen activators buy a 4wd.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

Hi to all!

My philosophy about SOTA has changed too much at the period of time. At start point, it was the points I was running for. After the first “mountain goat”,I changed my mind to have new summits, then beautiful summits and now good company, new equipment (minimize transceivers, better antennas, other modes ect) and of course stay on a summit as long as possible!!! I do not forget that day by day I become older and wiser…
I do like SOTA rules as they are, because there is plenty of room to have your own style. Special trophies can be held just for limited periods.

73 Christos.

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Hi Christos,

A couple of years back I decided that getting 100 unique peaks was my goal which I’ve just met. I’ve gone a bit cold on Mountain Goat. So for now it’s about new peaks, preferably attractive ones. I might get back to what drew me to mountains in the first place, VHF operation. I’ve been through a lot of antennas and many rigs. That’s done. So maybe back to where it started.

SOTA is a house with many rooms.

73
Ron
VK3AFW

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Hi Ron!

That’s right, it’s a circle!
My top wish, not possible for now, is S2S or/and chasing DX SOTA activators all over the world. Will it be ? Just wait for better conditions…

73 Christos.

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Hi Christos,
I like your philosophy, i am e new activator (i started 8 month ago). I love climbing. I like to have new summits, new activation summits, and just making happy all the chasers.

73’
Alain

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Hi Mike,
Just in case you and others had not seen this one, let me bring it up here:
Given points - Online Resources / Database - SOTA Reflector

Cheers,

Guru

Hello Guru,
Thank you for sharing that link. Yes, my point was simply that Activators who are handing out a lot of points should be able to earn some kind of recognition for “working the pile dry”, in the spirit of providing many chasers the opportunity to log that summit. It might also encourage people to activate the difficult 1 point summits rather than always focus on the 10 pointers. I would guess that if chasers are tracking unique summits (like POTA) they would welcome these activations. Given the response, however, I am happy to put the idea to bed.

I have enjoyed hiking and climbing the outdoors all my life. I will never earn the MG award. My thrill in SOTA is making QRP contacts with other states, provinces, DX and s2s stations. Like many others, I stay at the summit as long as possible and try to work as many stations as I can hear. One of my dreams is to make an s2s or p2p contact with EA2IF/P someday! (after COVID and with better sun spots, perhaps).

Stay well my friend & 73!
Mike, WB2FUV

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