Thank you all for the great advice and tips.
I am happy to receive so many positive replies.
I wont quote everyone but I will respond to each point:
The CQ replies were exactly what I wanted to know. I will feel more confident when calling now. Also, I understand now you dont have to give the summit reference every over as those listening will already have it down. Every few overs is what I will do from now on.
It seems the band/mode is a cross between preference and conditions. Here in VK, I think 40m is going to be important, with the higher bands for DX if they are open. I am working on a fan dipole with 40 / 20 / 15 / 10 for inverted V operation with a 7 metre squid pole for the mast. I also plan to try an end fed long wire with an L match.
SSB is the obvious operating mode, but I will also try CW as there will be more chance of DX contacts at 5 watts (FT817). My CW is only about 12wpm, so if you ever do hear me, give me a break
The number of contacts got some interest. The only reason I asked that is that I noticed some activators did 2 or 3 or even 4 activations in one day. Here in VK3 a number of summits are close to each other so I was wondering if I should be just getting 4 contacts and then packing up and moving to another close by summit. Personally, as it is rare to be the centre of a pile up here in VK, I would welcome one and LOVE it, and would not consider closing down until the activity subsided, or the battery expired. Current problem here is that there are not many summit chasers in VK yet, so I think a pile up will only result if the bands open to the northern hemisphere. Hopefully as more people learn about SOTA here in VK the situation will improve. I think if VK2 can get approved summits then that will help a lot.
Anyway, I hope there are plenty of northern hemisphere chasers interested in VK summits as I will be calling over (our) summer. I like trekking and camping (ex-army signals) and plan to actually camp at some summits and try to operate as long as possible.
Thanks for the clarification of the 25M vertical distance of the summit. I have a Garmin 12XL gps which shows HASL. As was mentioned, I can use this to find a good operating position, not in the way of tourists, etc, around the summit, as well as to check when there are access issues. Quite a lot of summits here are on private property and the laws here dont allow automatic access like in Europe. You have to get the landholders permission. I am making up a access permission form that I can take with me to get signed by the landholder if they do give access to a summit on thier land.
Thanks Everyone for your interest and advice, and I look forward to hearing you on air (maybe even s2s, wow).