To follow the thread on “Motivation for SOTA Activating” lets start one for Chasing.
Yes, I am still motivated to chase SOTA when I can, whether from home, portable or on a summit.
I’m not as motivated as some are though:
Average Chaser Points per month in 2022:
F4WBN Chris 8400
EA2DT Manuel 6700
SA4BLM Lars 4700
G4OBK Phil 1800
73 Phil G4OBK
I do not have a shack at home. The TRX is on the dining table and can be quickly moved aside.
My antenna possibilities are quite limited… there is in 7m height a wire adapted with tuner approx. 21m long from the balcony into the bushes. The wire is surrounded by houses, which are much higher and ends at the foot of a slope, which rises 20m steeply. The counterweight is the balcony railing.
Nevertheless, I try to chase activators:
… to stay in contact (I am happy about every qso with you!)
… to reach completes
My QSOs from home are 99% SOTA QSOs
FB Armin, you do what you can, and my log proves your end fed wire does the business. I’m sure other more active activators than me have you logged many more times than I! Anyway, you are also very busy activating yourself very regularly also.
Good topic to start @G4OBK Phil! As I’m in the process of moving house, I’ve had to change my station address and create a remote station to chase when I can. I’m currently using the Yaesu FT-991A which is operated by using a raspberry pi. My antenna system is a homemade doublet, 150ft in total length at 35ft AGL fed with 300ohm ladder line into a 4:1 balun, external tuner then into transceiver - see below images!
I chase as much as I can when I have time.
73, GW4BML. Ben
For me, not being the most loquacious of individuals, SOTA chasing was just a good way to make contacts without being drawn into too many awkward rag-chews…
Like Armin my QSOs from home are over 90% with SOTA activators. It is just to be always in contact with other OM who like mountain and radio. And, like M0LEP, I’m not loquacious so my QSOs are mostly in CW. But, as many of you, I’m also an activator, so I enjoy two times.
Chasing for me is the beginning of my SOTA adventure. This was a great way to understand the operating methods of activators and chasers. At first randomly, then methodically I started filling my log with QSOs with SOTA activators. for a couple of years I managed to hoist myself in third place in the annual ranking, but staying on those levels costs me too much time and effort, even for my working conditions a bit at the limit, with an antenna that is a piece of wire of 12 meters. Now I try to connect the new ones (Next milestone 10000 uniques) or the “easy” QSOs without hard pile-up. Obviously when I am in activation, S2S are my goal and I try not to lose even one.
I do activating and chasing and enjoy both, always working QRP. No chasers, no activations. No activators, nothing to chase. It’s a mutual win-win and I’m happy to help activators with contacts on the days when I’m not able to get on the hills myself. Plus chasing does wonders for one’s geographical knowledge and for making new friends.
I chase as many ops as possible from home. My first job when I hit the shack in the morning is check SW3 for Alerts and see who is already on a summit.
I like the direct log upload feature on SW3 and enter as I work them into my chaser log it makes it easier to keep the log up to date. I also make a note of the qso on my shack note pad and check the points score for the summit. Today I noticed a Spot for KR7RK txing on 15m cw and sure enough I was able to hear him and give him a score, my first U.S. activator in a while. Having the old 6el log periodic back in the air helps of course but good to see some DX SOTA coming through again. I tried to listen for K6STR but his signal was not quite strong enough to pull out of the noise. Most weekends I can chase the JA ops on 15/17m who usually go out on summits.
I notice from activating as well the amount of SOTA chasers has dropped off a bit but we are competing with POTA WWFF and a few other “on the air” activity’s to do with portable operating. I am very grateful to the chasers who have always given me a score when out on a summit, so I think it only fair to chase in my spare time as well.
Keep up the good work.
Ian vk5cz …
I activate and chase, and I like both.
When I chase, I tend to think how the activator will be, out in the nature. My qso is then something like a thank gesture for the effort the operator is doing.
Chasing from home, with decent antennas is easier.
But when I am using my Sota gear to chase during my holidays the feeling is a bit different and I feel more rewarded.
Just as an example, some days ago, here in my parent’s in law village, I woke up, saw a spot and jumped out of my bed to find with decent signals @VK5CZ calling CQ alone from Sota. To my surprise he got my call with 10w. What a surprise!
I was using a short wire in the attic of a two store house, not the best antenna but I am enjoying every single chase on this simple setup.
A few days ago I found @HB9DQM calling in 17m SSB, where I have high SWR. I reduced power to 2w and gave a brief call on CW. We did the qso Cross Mode!
What could I say? After more than 10 years chasing Sota, not intensively, I still enjoy and have big satisfaction.
It’s so great to have this regular contacts with frequent friends from all over the world!
SOTA, what else?
I chase SOTA because it makes me a better activator.
Watching and listening to how other activators manage their time and pileups on summits has been a great way to learn what to do, what to expect, and how to handle tough situations. Additionally, I chase with an FT-818 - one of the two radios that I activate with. That keeps me up to speed with settings, general usage, and troubleshooting skills that I can (and have!) used on summits.
Also, I work from home and it provides a quick break from the daily grind!!