Answering CQ SOTA Twice

I have begun to hear a number of chasers sending their calls twice both from NA and EU. This is not necessary for several reasons. 1. It creates unnecessary QRM for the activator who is nearly always inundated with calls in a pileup. Often, I’ll answer a call only to still hear someone else still throwing their call out when its time to listen to the one I answered. 2. If you can be heard by the activator, you WILL be be answered eventually but please be patient. Listen first and take your turn. If at the end of the pileup and you still haven’t been answered, then throw your call out more than once but you won’t be causing QRM at that point. 3. It’s impolite. SOTA enjoys a cordial, amiable and ethical community of hams which distinguishes it from other amateur radio groups. Lets keep our operating practices in line with the reasons we enjoy SOTA so much.

Another thing too…Quit tuning up on the spotted frequency.

Dean ~ K2JB


This is worth referring to:

It is posted in many, many other places as well.

Simply substitute “SOTA Activator” for “DX Station” and “SOTAWatch for DX Cluster”.

73 Ed.


Good points, Dean. I, for one, will answer every call that I hear, even if I have to sit there for an hour. So, there is no need to create unnecessary QRM as it only slows things down.:hiking_boot:

Ron, KI4TN


Yes, apparently I had started to pick up on this bad habit. An email from Bill K8TE was a good reminder that this is poor form. Thanks for the reminder and my apologies to anyone I may have QRM’ed sending my call more than once.

Hi Ron
Same here, i answere to everyone I hear.
I just think everyone deserves the chaser points and I require them to get my activator points.
I will never Ignore a specific call sign. After the pile up I call CQ SOTA 1-2 x and wait a few min. Then I go QRT if no one else is calling in.
If a chaser was not able to make contact, there is always a new activation coming. hopefully then it will all work out.
73 Sabrina HB3XTZ

Good topic = important matter !

Dear Chaser !
There is really no need to repeat the call because even if you have weak copy of my CQ, it does not mean that I also have weak copy of your chasing.
Your call reapiting wastes time and other chasers have to wait longer time for their QSO.
Call once and wait when I answer neither you nor anyone else and there is silence on the frequency then try calling twice.

Thank you Dear Chaser.

Please try to hear how Lars SA4BLM is calling and take him as good example of chaser work.

73, Jarek


I’ve noticed, though, that it is the late callers who tend to get worked first. If everybody just calls once they QRM each other, so some people delay a beat, call twice or send slowly and part of their call gets heard clear of the mass of superimposed signals and they get called in on a partial. Call it bad operating if you like, but it works!

As a chaser I sometimes send callsign once, sometimes twice. My decision whether to send my call once or twice as a chaser is dependent on the strength of the activators signal and my perception of the activators ability to read a callsign sent once based on how I hear him handling the pile up.

73 Phil


Lets add something to the DX Code of Conduct for SOTA Activators… If you upload to LOTW use the State, County and Grid Square you are actually in on the summit not your home location where the contact was not made. The practice of using ones home location for all contacts uploaded to LOTW regardless where they were made is corrupting LOTW. Do the right thing create new locations.

Jeff K6QCB


Hi Jeff,

SOTA activators and chasers need to upload to the SOTA database. Some may optionally use other on-line logging systems as well but that’s not relevant to SOTA (IMHO).

73 Ed.

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Interesting subject.
I must highlight one important point that all those expressing an argument against calling twice seem to have missed: the length of the own callsign.
In morse code it is much longer time consuming sending MM0FMF, or GX0OOO than EA2IF or S58R, for instance.
Longer-time-sending callsigns are easier copied and picked up in a pile up, especially when the activator is not highly skilled and the chasers signal stregths are pretty similar.
I have several times experienced that many operators never pick up my full call sign in one go and it’s much more time consuming if they pick up just half of it and send EA? for me to repeat than if I send my callsign twice, thus allowing the activator to pick it up and write it down on the log completely without needing to ask me to complete my call in a second go.
If we were all highly experienced CW operators, like many of the top contesters are, and disciplined chasers, this wouldn’t be a problem and it would never require a repeat, even if the activator copied just part of the chaser callsign, because an experience activator picking up just part of my callsign would send me: EA2? 599 BK, then I would come back sending EA2IF ur 599 BK and he would finally confirm reception of my full callsign by sending EA2IF 73 TU.
But SOTA QSOs don’t usually have contest style exchanges and some of the operators are still too newbies to deal that efficiently with a pile-up.
This is why I have learnt that sending my callsign twice in a SOTA pile up is far more successfull for me to be picked up without needing further repeats and therefore is time saving for the rest of the chasers in the pile-up as well as for the activator.



I think it is. If I have confirmed contacts with 49 states and only need State X for WAS, then a SOTA Activator from State X is on vacation in State Y and activates a summit in State Y. I make a contact with him/her in State Y but they use there home location when uploading to LOTW. Now I can apply for WAS while only working 49 States. Is this acceptable practice to the SOTA community? The MT should put out a statement to all SOTA Activators to use the location parameters for the Summit location activated, not their home location, if they are going to upload to LOTW. I have many erroneous LOTW confirmations all from SOTA Activators. We need to do better. Amateur Radio deserves better.

Jeff K6QCB

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That’s why I got MS0TA, quicker to send and quite apt for what I use it for!

I don’t mind people sending their call twice in CW. I’m bad enough to need a couple of shots to get the calls. It’s the people who call across ongoing contacts or aggressive tail-enders that annoy me.

In CW some people’s calls stand out in the pileup, G4SSH (sorely missed on air), HB9AGH G4OBK are a few that always stand out. N4EX is another even when 419 and stamped on by louder stations.


The MT only carries any authority about the operation of SOTA. How activators utilise other on-line facilities is up to them and the people running the facilities, we can only require that they log accurately in the SOTA database. What you are asking for is very sensible but outside our authority.



I like your suggestion that callers should be patient. The pileup itself is often a waste of time for me. Often my ear can not reliably pick out a call from the pileup. I might catch something at the end and go from there. I am not a very good cw op, so if you hear me on an activation, please be patient. I will answer all callers that I can hear.

I REALLY LIKE your suggestion that people QUIT tuning up on the spotted frequency!! It’s an impolite and unnecessary practice.


I admire your restraint! I would say that it was selfish, arrogant and stupid


It wouldn’t be a requirement, it would be an advisement by someone with a broad voice to the group that is the worst offenders. A lone voice in the wilderness does little good, but an broad authoritative voice could. I would think advising SOTA participants of proper Amateur Radio Practices related to their SOTA contacts would be proper and well advised. To see a problem and turn a blind eye because it is someone else’s problem is not good practice. See something say something. It is time to educate those who don’t understand what they are doing. We are all in this together.

Jeff K6QCB

The MT doesn’t have authority over Logbook of the World usage, but it would be helpful to recommend good practices.

I see plenty of advice on dealing with property access permissions in the UK and the MT doesn’t have authority over those, either.


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I have considered uploading my activation logs to LOTW, but never have for this very reason. I log to the SOTA DB exclusively. If there were some easy / mostly automated way to take my log from the SOTA DB and import it to LOTW with the correct location data then I’d probably do it.

Same goes for my chaser log, since a lot of those are S2S or made while /P or /M. Too much work to go back thru all those logs and try to sort it all out.

When I hear people tuning on freq. I always assume they are non-SOTA people. As we all know, SOTA operators are the best and wouldn’t do something like that :+1:



Hear, Hear. Amateur Radio is self policing so lets all self police. If a SOTA operator was interfering with a repeater on a summit would something be said about that, this is no different in my opinion.

Jeff K6QCB