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First Activation (Finally!)

Well it took four, yes four, failed attempts in three different states before this one, but I finally activated a peak. I went to Stone Mountain this morning, hiked up, and pretty much decided I was not coming down until it was activated. Fired up the KX2, put up a 40m dipole, and went to town.

The weather was bad.
The band conditions were worse.

But after 2 hours of calling CQ, I had 5 contacts! Not exactly a “pileup” but I’ll take it.

Well then, only 998 points to go for Mountain Goat. Here I come. :smiley:



Good show, Steve!

The journey of a thousand points begins with one activation.
(With apologies to Lao-tzu)


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Well done Steve, way to stick with it! The pileups will come. Putting in links for a 20m dipole in your antenna will help.


Well done Steve,
Actually if you managed even just one contact on any of the earlier summit attempts, you did activate the summit and your call sign should be listed (as long as you put the log in) against the summit. The 4 contacts only decides that you get the points for the summit added to your activator’s total.

73 Ed DD5LP.

Thanks all! The thing that I didn’t explicitly say in my OP was that is was a bunch of fun. I rode home feeling like the king of the world. Good times. Oh and I talked to this family the whole hike down that had an 11-yo son that was super interested in ham radio. So I got to do the ham radio ambassador thing too.

Ed: Good point. I went back and entered in the one lonely contact I got in Idaho when I was out there.

Kevin: I might make a linked dipole. That would have helped today. I have a 20m dipole cut that I put on the connector at the same time just oriented 90 degrees from the 40. Stone mountain is just one large solid piece of granite (literally), so I already had to bring plastic bags to gather what little dirt I could find to make deadmen to hold the ends of the antenna. I didint want to make more. Plus there are a LOT of people up there all the time. I was having to keep people from tripping on two strings/wires, much less four.

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That sounds like an exceptionally successful activation!

Congratulations, and watch out: activating is addictive.

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Congrats on the first activation! Activations can be a bit daunting at first but they do get easier. Did you happen to post an alert for your activation? I don’t see any spots either and both will definitely have an impact on your logbook. Self-spotting is perfectly fine and standard operating procedure for SOTA activations.

73, pat - KI4SVM

Very good. Stone Mountain has its own set of challenges. But at least you can order a pizza, pick up a souvenir, and sit at a real table while eating that pizza and talk on the radio! When I did it, only activated with my HT to keep things simple.
One thing to keep in mind, if you are close enough to a population center, you will get a lot of responses on VHF. I made about a dozen in my hour up there.

Nice job, and I thought I was persistent! I have had a few failed SOTA activations and I found that I always learn something new, whether it is a skill or technique that I might not have learned otherwise.
Regardless, beats sitting at home inside.