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Private challenges

I have noticed that many SOTA colleagues have private challenges related to SOTA. (I have not heard of a battle for points against others).

I also have such a thing…

My private challenges so far have been:
Mountain goat within one year … (achieved by a very narrow margin)
(Last year there was no plan because of Covid.)
…and this year it was to activate 50 new uniques.
(easily achieved due to my F/MC and EA2 trip).

My new goal until the end of next year:

I want to reach 100 completes by the end of next year at the latest. So far I’ve only managed 62. ( I’ll only be able to do that if I activate summits with which I had a qso as a chaser.)

I would also like to have activated a total of 200 uniques.

Do you also have such goals that you set for yourselves? What are yours?

73 Armin


Indeed Armin:
Activate the rest of G/NP & G/LD (1 and 3 respectively)
Achieve Mountain Goat (probably not in a year :wink: - well done to you though!)
Spend more time doing SOTA


Using CW for activating. I am currently learning Morse code and waiting for the HF rig I want to be back in stock. Then I’ll be practising my CW and setting up everything by chasing from my garden, before venturing out into the hills. That’s the plan any way.


Hello Armin

Good thread subject OM.

My personal challenge goals:

1000 SOTA Activator Uniques (By late spring 2022 possibly)
1000 SOTA Completes (Later in 2022 before I am 70 years old)
200,000 SOTA Chaser Points (Probably in 2023)

I started this game in 2005 in Scotland and got hooked…

73 Phil G4OBK


Being visually impaired, I don’t drive. Leather to leather wallet limits travel to other associations and I only work 2M 70cm.
When I did travel to another association, I managed to chase one operator – one summit. I’ll be back!
I do want my Mountain hunter.
Another goal is to make contact with operators on the first ten summits 001-010 in each region in my area (ten). I know that is very unlikely. I look at one unactivated summit and wonder if anyone will attempt it. It demands a First-Class Mountaineer but there are multiple routes up. Just need someone to carry a radio!
Edit: Only to discover the summit was activated 30 days ago. I don’t recall an ALERT, and no reason for me to miss that one. I grant, conditions at the summit of strato-volcanoes are not friendly so short activations are normal. Congrats to KJ7AAF. May many more follow you to glacier Peak!


Mine are remarkably similar to G8PKZ All of NP (4 to go) and LD lots to go. I’d also like 50 completes!


My focus is twofold; things new and changing habits.

Things new are accumulating uniques in deference to points. Accumulating uniques isn’t easy and I had tried to hit 250 recently but failed miserably. New also extends to new modes and my biggest focus is translating my CW Academy participation into either a chaser or better still a CW activator. New also includes accumulating associations and while I’ll never rival Paul (@HB9DST) going to new associations especially aways away from your home association can be really satisfying, different fauna, different trails, different landscapes etc.

Changing habits is trying to break the focus on points. While SOTA isn’t a contest, I think many in the Western US look at their overall points standing and either try to maintain their ranking or improve it. Maybe this is a manifestation of becoming a Mountain Goat which goes quicker if you activate 8 and 10 pointers with a degree of regularity. I swore I wouldn’t fixate on points after becoming an MG but I still persisted albeit slower on my journey to 2 x MG (coincidently Jamie @N6JFD and I became 2 x MG on the same day you did @DL6GCA).



Nice topic Armin!

Mine is simple. I usually work 5am to 2pm once a week and I’ve been activating summits in my local area after work. I’d like to keep this going. I’ve managed 8’s, 6’s and now I’m on to the 4’s. I may have to drop down to 2’s and 1’s during the short winter days, but my aim is to keep going (December excluded due to workload) with one a week. It’s actually something I really look forward to.

Oh, and I want to activate and qualify three 10 point summits in a day. I have a few options in mind for that one. :slightly_smiling_face:

73, Fraser


My immediate goal is nothing fancy: Mountain Goat. I am quite close to it and it’s going to be thanks to a mix of FM, SSB and CW.

I already know my next goal will be Mountain Goat with CW Only !
It would also be nice to increase my mountain explorer ranking, but it’s more challenging!


Nice topic, indeed!
I have quite a number of them but I don’t set them with a due date or a specific number to be reached, rather a direction towards I will try to go to.

  1. Taking my rotator down from the tower, getting it repaired and back to the tower with a system to be able to control it remotely. For chasing in better conditions.
    The rotator was taken down from the tower a few days ago and it’s now working again with the EA4TX ARS-USB system to control it remotely conneted and successfully tested at home yesterday. I’ll now have to connect and set up a Raspberry Pi for me to talk and see what the rotator does through the internet. Then get it back up to the tower.

  2. Activating all the EA2/NV summits.

  3. Getting Completes in as many associations as I can for which I would have to travel in the hope of meeting several good SOTA friends out there.

  4. Activating summits in other neighbouring associations, where I still haven’t.

  5. Keep chasing at least one SOTA every or most of the days.

  6. Keep activating as much as I can.




Paul, you told me years ago that you would never try CW. I’m very, very excited that you may try, second only to the recent news that KE7 Benny Goodman’s Music is working on practice exams for the general class license. Which one of you will get there first? Imagine Kay on 20m SSB and you on 30m



So I base my annual self challenges on other lists like the Tahoe OGUL, or Sierra Club DPS list as well as carving out soecific areas with little to no activity. I think my annual map starts wiith a 100+ peak wish list, but I maybe end up doing a 1/3 of those wish list peaks and get squirrelled into a mess of others.


Hello Armin @DL6GCA,

Nice topic. When I started with SOTA, I didn’t have a goal. It’s exciting to be outside with the technology. Then near the 1000, of course that had to be the goal.

Currently my goals in SOTA are to make at least 1 CW QSO at an activation :slight_smile: and to experience SOTA in harmony with the family or just to be outside and make connections around the world to SOTA friends.

Otherwise my way is the goal… and sometimes a look into the statistics :wink:

73 Marcel DM3FAM


Hi Armin

I become aware of such topics most of the time only when looking back and recognizing a pattern only then. To be honest I want to be free of challenging myself too much in this spare time activity. From time to time there are exceptions. Remembering operations for HB15SOTA in 2020/2021, I had only late the idea to operate the special callsign in favor of the community from all possible 24 Swiss cantons. That required more planning for the remaining weekends than enjoyable, so I was happy from that perspective when it was over.

Another challenge where I had success so far was choosing nice regions for hiking (and SOTA) holidays. I enjoy having a headquarter for a week or so and activating the summits around. I’m mostly the “pigeon type” of an activator by picking up then all possible summits around the headquarter as far as the days permit. It is not that much easy since you know only after the holidays if the region and the summits had been a good choice. So I avoid the challenge to find them, but I have developed good antennas regarding deciding well on a holiday programme that is convenient for my partner an me.

So I’m looking forward to an unplanned future to see then that there had been more structure in it than imagined previously, hi!

Vy 73 de Markus, HB9DIZ


In my view, the real challenge is the one against oneself. That’s all…
73’s Jean


SOTA has a fantastic capacity for individuals to set their own goals and challenges, and indeed such a sentiment has been enshrined in the SOTA General Rules from the very beginning.

A few examples of some I have set myself:

  • Activate a whole region within a calendar year
  • Activate a whole association in a single day
  • Activate the highest summit in each of the UK (& C.D.)’s seven associations
  • Activate my three local summits from home without transport
  • Conduct 500 activations in a year

…and many more. All quirky, all personal, and all completely irrelevant to anyone else!


Great topic!

My personal goals are simple, once I get them, sure I will set next :slight_smile:

  • Mountain Goat, I think this is given
  • 10000 S2S points, as I love QRP operation and making two way QRP operation is a skill and test for the equipment and operator.
  • Activate all summits within my local SP/BZ region. I still have number of them to visit for the first time.
  • Do more activations in the year that previous year. 2022 will be good challenge.

I like Marcel’s DM3FAM point of making at least one CW QSO per activation, so I take this on board and make my own too. My CW is rusty so please forgive me if it happens to be one of you on the other end.

73 Marek


At the beginning of my SOTA game, the priority was points.
I wanted to be a Mountain Goat.
Subjectively, I stated that this is a dead end, because what will happen when I achieve my goal? Void ?? Obligation to invent a new goal?
When, during activation and chasing, I noticed that my interlocutors were using my name right after my callsign, and the call signs kept repeating, I realized … oh, gosh, a nice community is forming.
For me, SOTA is nature, mountains and people, and above all, friendly relations of people who share the same hobbies.
Currently, I enjoy it, although it is not a goal in itself:

  • activating as many unique summits as possible, in many places I would never be there if it wasn’t for SOTA,
  • SOTA complete (it’s not that simple),
  • activating new associations,

It’s great that SOTA gives everyone so many opportunities to find themselves and their way. You can complain about the SOTA regulations, but … it depends on us how much fun we will have. And there is room for “players” and there is room for others. And every path is subjective - mine too. I value freedom of choice and lack of challenges, just like Markus, HB9DIZ. And this is not the only “right” way.


Getting my pedantry in first…

The UK has only 4 SOTA associations. :wink:


Plus GD, GJ and GU for 7 in total.

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