Helping a new SOTA recruit, and I got Questions

I had an 18 QSO Activation last week, and one of the contacts put out a confirmation request through QRZ - even though he had NOT logged our contact in the SOTA Database.

I did enter the contact in QRZ (only because he requested it), but I also then mentioned that he might want to create a SOTA Account and start earning Chaser Points. He was interested, so great.

The first thing he comes back with is that he can’t find anywhere to select Kansas (as his Home Association). Well, sure enough - I guess Kansas doesn’t have any Summits. But them neither does Delaware, but in W3 we don’t slice and dice everything, Why can’t we have a ZERO SUMMIT Kansas Association, so they can choose that as a Home Association?

Well, I told him to just pick something nearby. I have no clue what he actually picked (I looked everywhere that I thought made sense). He logged the WRONG Summit for our contact (correct Summit number but in the wrong region). I figure he might have mangled the Home Association selection as well. So why can’t I just look up his call and see what his Home Association is? Or am I just missing something simple?

I don’t recall these questions being asked before, but point me to the conversation if it is out there somewhere.


That’s one correct answer Glenn, but there’s also the “XXX no association yet” option. I used that when living in Australia (VK2) before VK2 became an association and you can chase and receive points just the same. (or even activate in a neighbouring association - or in fact any).

I now live in Germany between two associations DL and DM but I am not in either of them. I chose “DL” as that is where I do most of my activating, but “DM” would have been valid as well.

Some activators chose the association where they holiday the most, as that is when they activate - this is often a different country.

In short while nice for statistics, the association you select for your profile is not critical.

Setting up an association without any summits would not be a good idea and may not even be technically possible.

73 Ed.

Gary, W0MNA and Martha, W0ERI log under W0C, Colorado.


If there is no association for your part of the world you pick “XXX - No Associaton Yet”.

People in some countries get a choice. As Ed says, he can pick DM or DL as a German. People in France can pick FL or F. There’s probably more I’ve forgotten about.

I got a PM, and zero land Leonard has been found in five land Oklahoma. I had even “looked” there in desperation, but the only explanation is that I had forgotten to then click SHOW, and wasn’t actually looking at what I thought I was at the time. Crisis averted. It seems I am the only dummy to ever forget to do that.

And after an email to Leonard, the Summit logging error has been corrected. He has even entered three previous SOTA contacts he must have kept a record of. So all is sorted out now.

I actually had found him initially by grouping ALL Associations together, and wading through that really big list. Fun, fun, fun. But of course, that did not tell me what Association he had actually picked.


[quote=“DD5LP, post:2, topic:16802”]Setting up an association without any summits would not be a good idea and may not even be technically possible.

73 Ed

OK, this part of your reply still confounds me Ed. Say that theoretically there was a Kansas Association created that when investigated would indicate to any interested party that there is NOT any topography in the state of Kansas (or for any other similarly featureless area) that meet the SOTA definition of a Summit. It would only be there for the SOTA participant residents of Kansas to select as a Home Association. It could even be limited to the account creation / account editing section of the site. What catastrophe (my interpretation of “would not be a good idea”) would suddenly befall the SOTA program? I understand that there has been zero support for the proposal. So unnecessary I do understand. But not a good idea? There has to be a reason to consider something not good.

And “not be technically possible”? Seriously?

I have been a chaser for a while and enjoying it. I recently got myself setup with good batteries and portable antennas for my KX3 and did some outdoor operating with the Scouts. Now, I would like to tackle some summits.

I am assuming I need to make an account on: and that its different than the login for SotaWatch?

I did recently add a field to my log for SOTA summit information and will have to go back and populate it for a bunch of contacts as a chaser - I was putting the info in the Notes field.

73 de Keith KB3ILS

Yes, go there, and under the Log On tab, drop down to Register. My callsign will never change, so I used that, and then the same password for all my SOTA accounts.

I think the goal is to combine them some day, but we are not there yet. SOTA is a great way to play radio. I usually have successful outings, but nothing is ever guaranteed. I do have a few failure reports in my resume’, but they do teach you valuable lessons.

My radio model used has evolved. My antennas and support structures have evolved. My battery choice has evolved. Just about everything has evolved except me. Enjoy your own journey. It will be unique.


Hi Glenn,
I’ll leave the MT to answer this if they wish to. I’m not in the MT but from the outside, I would see that creating entries in the database for areas where there are no summits may be an issue as I would expect the database would have the summit reference as a mandatory key in its records.

Please don’t forget that the Computer systems suporting SOTA are not just one program, they’re not even all on the same server computer, in fact different sites are hosted by different ISPs. That means that there are interfaces between the main SOTA systems and to other systems such as the SOTA mapping project and private databases used by some Smartphone Apps.

What will these interfaces do if they see a new association with no summits?

Perhaps I am over-thinking this. Perhaps it would be possible and pehaps it wouldn’t cause any systems to fail but while there is already the option XXX - No association yet, for just the reason you are discussing, why create the extra work?