Here’s the low-down on how to do it really light, and still make lots of contacts on many bands, on high peaks without trees, etc.,
A 16-foot pole is OK. I use a “7M” pole, sometimes fiberglass, sometimes carbon. Whatever you choose should not weigh more than 1 pound.
Use an inverted-L configuration. You sit near the bottom of the pole, and the fed end of the wire runs up the pole, but it’s spaced away from it by several feet, most of the way up to the tip. The wire’s tension bends the thin upper segments of your pole out sideways, so very little of the wire runs close to carbon fiber. Let the pole bend as it will. Forget the doubters - carbon is great, it’s light, and it’s elegant!
2A) Use thin wire - I use #24 AWG teflon stranded. Heavier wire overloads the pole and is a disaster!
Run the wire out horizontally, or even sloping down, to whatever you can tie to. On alpine summits high above treeline, this may be a pile of rocks, a rock outcrop, or a hiking pole.
Mostly I use 65 feet of wire (total). This is a half wave on 40M, full wave on 20M, 3/2 wave on 15M, etc. You can use a shorter wire as long as you can match it. Sometimes I use 52 feet with my tuner.
I use a homebrew tuner that can match my wire on all bands 60-40-30-20-17-15M. Using it is really easy, but building it was challenging. There is an old post on here about my tuners. Mostly I don’t use or need a counterpoise, but it’s helpful on 60M. I use 12 feet. With shorter wires, you may need a counterpoise.
The KEY POINT is that you can guy the pole much easier than you can carry any kind of tripod or other supports.
A) As you extend your telescoping pole, wrap a thick rubber band - or 2 - several times around the pole, so it will be 5 or 6 feet above the ground, once the pole is up. On my poles this is usually the top of the third segment. It must be snug, so it won’t slip down.
B) Lay out three strings or cords on the ground - I use braided dacron about 2mm diameter - each 15-20 feet long. Lay them roughly where they will be when the pole is up. Experience will guide you after a few times.
C) Tie at least two of the strings around the pole, above the rubber band(s), with the pole still on the ground.
D) Gather a few rocks to place around the base of the pole, so it won’t get pulled sideways once the pole is up and under tension.
E) Tie two of your guy lines to rocks located 12-15 feet or so away from the bottom of the pole.
F) Attach your wire to the tip of the pole. I use a fishing snap-swivel - it’s so easy.
G) NOW raise the pole, and adjust its position so it will put some tension of the two lines that are
already tied to rocks.
H) Now you have a choice - do one of the following:
I) With the pole standing, holding your antenna wire, quickly pull your wire out in the direction toward where it will be tied. If you are quick, the pole will stay under up and under control, and you can tie off the far end of the wire. This may be all you need, or perhaps you may need to adjust the rocks at the bottom of the pole, or adjust either of the two guy lines. This method is fast, but it works better if wind is light.
J) If the wind is stronger, tie a third guy line above the rubber band, before you raise the pole.
K) Raise the pole, and run the third line out to where you plan to tie it, and tie it off so the pole is standing OK.
L) Adjust the rocks at the pole base, so the pole base will stay put and not swing out under tension.
M) Take the string tied to the far end of the antenna, walk out to where you plan to tie it, and tie it off. I use 15-20 feet of small dacron line, sometimes much more, so I can choose from the available supports. These are often just rocks, or cairns. Don’t worry much about how high the end if the wire ends up!.
Make any adjustments needed, tune up your antenna, and get on the air!
All of this is easier said than done, but practice makes perfect. You can put up a guyed pole in strong winds that will make the wire sing, and the pole dance and moan! High winds mean more attention to detail is needed. In particular, choose a spot with less wind, hopefully not right on top of a windy peak. Set up downhill, in the lee, even in the rocks 50 vertical feet down! You want to stay on the air and be comfortable! On HF you will work many stations seemingly through the mountain!
The more you do this, the more you learn how to get by with less effort! Some guys slope the pole at a low angle, and just use rocks to hold it up, no guys. This works OK too, and it’s quick.
If it’s really rough, use only a few of your larger pole sections, and use 3 short guy lines. Try to get part of your wire up 10 feet. Only a part of the wire need be above the ground, or above the rocks. In really high winds like we have above tree line, around 3600M here, you may have to put rocks ON TOP OF YOUR WIRE to keep it under control. With a tuner you can still get a good match, use several bands, and get amazing reports, never mind that the antenna looks like a joke, with much of it hardly elevated at all!
After doing it a few times, you’ll wonder why anyone would do anything else. It only takes a few minutes, even on a pile of talus. Remember that at high altitude, for SOTA, less is more.
With an end-fed and a tuner, you don’t need more than 2 feet of small coax from the radio to your tuner - NEVER MORE!!
The bottom line is that all you need to guy your pole is a few small braided lines and a couple of thick rubber bands, and some rocks you find on your summit.