Mt Baldy VE7/CV-030

I have never done a VHF Sota Activation. I am not even sure I have ever had a VHF QSO at all so I thought I’d try something new. I picked up an Arrow Yagi in the summer but haven’t used it yet so thought I’d give it a try.

The only VHF radio I have is a Baofeng I bought back in 2013 or so. I also have a Signal Stick antenna for it so figured I’d try both.

Since I was not expecting any luck I didn’t want to do a summit that was too long of a hike. Mt Baldy is probably the best candidate in the area since it is roughly a 30 minute hike up from the gate.

I brought a non-ham friend along and his dog. We got to the summit at just after 4-ish.

First attempt was on 2m with the Yagi. I got two contacts almost immediately that came through loud and clear. But then nothing but silence for a while.

My first contact mentioned he had UHF at home and would be home in a few minutes to try. So I quickly went over to UHF and tried but nothing.

At this point I thought I’d try my luck with the signal stick and see if it made any difference.

Luckily I had let a friend know that I’d be up doing an activation and he came through as the 3rd QSO. He did me a favour and went on some of the local repeaters to let them know there was someone looking for a SOTA contact. Had I programmed the repeaters into my Baofeng I would have done the same.

Shortly after I got a 4th QSO which was fairly faint but was able to complete the QSO.

The same friend came back a few minutes later and said there was someone south of us trying to reach us. I could just barely hear them but nothing.

At this point we had been there nearly an hour and I didn’t want to bore my non-ham friend too much so we headed down.

Since then I purchased a FT5DR. I’m really interested and curious about APRS and figured it would be a good companion for SOTA. Hoping to take it out soon, maybe Wednesday if the weather improves and do VE7/CV-028 Maple Mountain after work.

My non-ham friend is a bit interested in radio as well and I think this was pretty interesting to him. I told him about APRS and that also piqued his interest. Could see him possibly getting his licence at one point.


Beautiful photos, I’ll bet it’s better in person.


If you’re ever in need of someone to do a summit with let me know. I’m in Penticton so I’m not far


Sounds great. I haven’t been over to the mainland in a long time but if I ever do come over I want to do a summit so will be in touch. If you’re ever on the island feel free to reach out.

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