August 2024 Berner Oberland

Looking for some relatively easy opportunities to activate 2m summits that are somewhat easy to get to. Will be staying 3 nights in Grindelwald and will have a small car. Wife is afraid of heights so cable cars are out. Any cog railway summits, or hikes of 2-3 km of reasonable access nearby? We are sea level folks, so we will have some challenge, but can schlep our way up. Will scout on SOTLAS, but was curious for any local knowledge - thx.

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Although not really my field of expertise, here are some ideas:

• Brienzer Rothorn HB/OW-010 (steam train), also relatively short hike to Arnihaaggen HB/OW-027
• Niesen HB/BE-087 (funicular)

If you don’t mind driving on sometimes narrow/one-lane roads, there are more options, for example:

• Cheibehore HB/BE-148, Stockhorn HB/BE-103 and Laseberg HB/BE-141 – can drive up to about 1600 m
• Augstmatthorn HB/BE-107 – can drive up to Lombachalp 1560 m or take the bus
• Ochse (HB/BE-114), Bürgle (HB/BE-120) or Gantrisch (HB/BE-115) – can drive to 1600 m
• Turne HB/BE-117 and Abendberg HB/BE-150 – can drive up to about 1800 m

These roads require payment of a parking/access fee (ticket machine).

All these summits have good views of the Swiss Plateau where millions of people live, which means that you will have a good chance of qualifying the summits on 2m, even on weekdays.

If you are planning on driving to other regions of Switzerland, there will be more options. Try filtering the map on https://sotl.as for summits activated 30+ times to get an idea. Take into account that the further you move away from the urban areas, the more difficult it will be to get the 4 QSOs on 2m.

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You can get some inspirations also from Swiss cable car summits.

If you want to cast your net a little wider, you might want to consider either HB/SO-001 Hasenmatt or HB/SO-003 Röti.
HB/SO-001: you can drive up a narrow but easy unpaved road up to 47.24228, 7.45944. From there it is a 45 min walk.
HB/SO-003: you can take the cable car or drive up to the restaurant / hotel (parking fee). From there it is also 30-45 min walk (longer, but easier than on 001).

The advantage is that you’ll get to know another type of mountain: Jura mountains are different from alpine / pre-alpine mountains.
Another advantage is that you’ll get a nice view over the Swiss Plateau. And the city of Solothurn at the bottom of the mountains is a nice city, itself worth a visit.

73 de Martin / HB9GVW

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From what I am reading, 2m in that area may not get much response. Looking now around the Zurich area for the last 3 days of our trip. Being a huge city, would there be people responding on 2m? Either HB/ZH-015 or HB/AG-004 look pretty easy.

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Hi David
Any summits in HB/AG and HB/ZH are easy to reach. An excellent source for any type of information on SOTA summits is defenitely SOTL.AS. For detailed information on any location in Switzerland I can recommend our magnificent official online map: https://map.geo.admin.ch/
I’m not a 2m guy myself but my experience is, as Manuel mentioned, the closer you are to populated areas the easier it is to complete an activation on 2m only. And weekends are better than weekdays.
Hope this helps! Enjoy your stay in our country!
73, Fritz

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David, they are talking about completing the activation, i.e. four contacts. A single contact puts you on record as activating the peak, and we are talking about one-pointers. Worry not about giving up one point.

Elliott, K6EL

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Of course you are right, Elliot. I was just trying to help. We all know the rules! And yes, in HB/ZH and HB/AG there are only 1 and 2 Pointers.

Much appreciated, Fritz! I have never been to Switzerland, but my family roots (father’s side) come from the Bern area and I am very excited to see a little of the country. I’m sure I will be back and thank you for the info. 73, David

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I’m sure you’ll enjoy your stay in Switzerland, David.
Maybe another info could also help. I’m sure you know that the band plans here are different than in the US. On 2m the calling frequeny is 145.500 MHz. This channel should not be used for lengthy QSOs. The simplex frequencies most popular with SOTA activators and chasers are typically 145.525, 145.550, 145.575, but also 145.475, 145.450, 145.425.
Between Sept 4 and Sept 7 I will be staying in Palm Springs with my XYL, hoping to be able to complete at least 1 or maybe 2 activations nearby.
73, Fritz

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Appreciate the local frequency info. Enjoy toasty Palm Springs - San Jacinto may be the only cooler hike/activation at that time. Great views but it goes to 10K - take lots of water.

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