Thank you dear Guru for your very kind words, and all of you for your warm celebration on my 1x MG.
When I started activating for SOTA back in 2011, and after evaluating my chances to go up to the mountains, I roughly estimated it could take me about 10 years at this pace to reach MG.
Nevertheless, you all know SOTA is very addictive and it just took me a bit more than 8, hi.
No matter how much it takes to reach your first thousand points, there are other points much more importants here.
When I first activated a SOTA I was astonished to see how many people chased me that very first day with that tiny rig, a silly wire strung on a pole and a very basic homebrew paddle.
Along this years, I identified many points that are the reason why I found this SOTA program so interesting and positive for my life. Some of them are:
Activating portable had the challlenge to create a lot of homebrew stuff and optimize all the gear to progressively decrease the rucksack overall weight (weight, always the weight!) and increase performance.
I learnt a lot more of antennas than staying in the comfort of my shack.
My CW operating practice got a huge improvement troughout the activations.
All the information interchange and public contribution facilitated by the reflector, mails or on air, in an open and nonprofit style, is very rich and motivating.
I have found lots of new friends, local or international, having the chance to meet some of them in joint activations.
Doing some challenge, events, and special projects together with other hams was very amusing and exciting.
Although there are points and ranking, it’s friendship and personal milestones the key point of this program.
In the past 8 years we have faced some difficulties and health issues here at home. SOTA was always a way to relax, keep positive, enjoy life, and encourage to get on.
I wasn’t a mountaineer back in my youth, but nowadays I am in love with plants, mountains and the beatiful scenery that nature bring us. We now have to contribute to keep it for future generations!
Let me share a final anecdote: I spent some days this Christmas to visit New York. I couldn’t carry my little QRP MTR (a pity!) there but we visited the Natural history museum and, looking at these imppressive dioramas, I got the feeling I soon would become a Mountain goat…
Thanks again everybody for the celebration and I will soon publish an article and video of the activation.
73 and looking for many more summits.