Although the topic title is meant in jest, there is a serious side. What would be the effect of a man-made hill on the other summits in the area. Although the tallest of these is currently 22m, does it push the summit height above the required minimum or even move the summit location from one summit to the next.
Although it could be said that it is man-made now, could it ever be classed as a permanent feature and therefore needing to be taken into consideration.
An interesting question with immediate impact on SOTA: think of the china clay tips in Cornwall, which are higher than the neighbouring SOTA summit!
On the one hand we could say “we built 'em, we could take them away” (but we could remove a natural hill as easily) but on the other hand we could say they may be unnatural but it would be impractical to move them and vegetation will colonise them and make them look natural, so why not count them?
I would say count them once they are vegetated, what do others think?
Berlin’s 80m Teufelsberg was built from the rubble after the war - and very impressive it is (or was when I was last there). If you like gazing at antennas, this will send you into seventh heaven. Apparently it’s higher than the nearest natural “summit”, even without the antennas.
In reply to G8ADD:
Also, further to my earlier post. There is a welsh borders summit that is built on a golf course (I forget which one). Golf courses are constantly being redeveloped and lanscaped. How do you distinguish the natural from the man-made.
If you stuck to the pure natural you could in theory end up in a situation where it was impossible to get into the activation zone due to the summit being lowered by more than 25 metres (like I said theoretical, but in these days not impossible or even improbable).
It seems that even the RHB are inconsistent on this matter. On one hand, they choose to ignore the man-made china-clay spoil-heaps towering above Hensbarrow Beacon, whilst on the other, they move the official summit from Chanctonbury Hill to Chanctonbury Ring because of a small height difference due to the man-made earthworks thereon. Odd!
RHB still gives us the most suitable and stable hill list around. They do not run SOTA, but certainly make it a lot easier for us to do so. It is external to SOTA, and independent. It is very convenient for us to maintain our lists in sync with theirs.
I see the point about whether hills are man-made or not (or for how long they have been man-made!), but I presume that RHB has defined criteria for these issues. In any case, the RHB lists are subject to constant peer review, and are updated annually.
I suppose that is covered by General Rule 3.5 which states “Each Association is required to determine a strategy for defining a list of Summits …” Here in the UK, our founders decided that the stategy was to use the RHB list.
However, on a slightly different topic, the Wikipedia reference states “The highest points of Sophienhöhe are Höller Horn (280m AMSL), Jülicher Kopf (280m AMSL) and the Roman Tower (290m AMSL)” On that basis, using names alone without local knowledge, it sounds like the summit should be listed as 280m as the extra 10m is a tower rather than the hill itself. However, that would be quibbling, as the 10m concerned is neither responsible for the summit qualifying, nor for putting it into a different scoring-band.
In reply to MM0FMF:
Fine Andy, that defines a principle. If the construction of the earthwork is not recorded in contemporary written records and meets the criteria then it counts. If a contemporary record of its construction exists then it doesn’t count.
Personally I would prefer to count the earthwork if it has become vegetated and is stable, irrespective of its age, but as long as a test exists that is OK with me. As long as that test isn’t some authority figure saying “because I say so!”
Yes I thought it would happily qualify under those rules.
In any case the only reason I knew it straight away is because I looked it up as it’s close to Düsseldorf where I will be QRL for a couple of weeks later this month/early in June (anyone nearby fancy an altbier?).
I was hoping to activate it on an evening off but my schedule might be too full.
In reply to G7ADF:There has been discussions for many years about people diving up Pendle hill and adding enough soil and rubble to make it a mountain for years, but its never happened I would hope that if something is there for more than 2 years, and there are no council plans to move it it would be classed as a perm. feature.
Many summits also exhibit Celtic earthworks, which adds to there height do we disallow them? This also leaves the question although I doubt it will happen in the UK to quickly what about earthquakes where land suddenly drops in height, look at death valley for example, where once it was a plateau and now its down a hole. Similarly but even more unlikely volcanic activity, even though I can’t see this turning into Volcano’s on the Air
Just for fun I calculated how much material it would take to make a basic Marilyn, assuming 150 metres high, in the form of a cone, with a nice steady 30 degree ascent and made out of quartz. Assuming I haven’t had finger trouble pounding the calculator it comes out at a modest 28,139,488 tonnes.