Here’s my favorite low-cost alternative to the Buddipole:
On Colorado summits I mostly use inverted-L made from 52 feet of #24 teflon wire. I have two links (jumpers) for 20M and 30/15M. This antenna works well on 5 bands:
40M: 52 feet, plus 12 foot counterpoise, half wave, medium Z
30M: link at 46 feet, half wave, no counterpoise, highZ
20M: link at 33 feet, half wave, no counterpoise, high Z
17M: 52 feet, full wave, no counterpoise, high Z
15M: 46 feet, full wave, no counterpoise, high Z
No feed-line to the antenna is used on any band. I use tiny homebrew tuners; all the tunings are easy and quick. The antenna and counterpoise weigh a few ounces. I have a 6M fiberglass pole for a support - it weighs a pound. Sometimes I leave it at home and use trees - trees are great, especially for the inverted-L.
Here on high, rocky, windy summits in Colorado, the priorities are getting up and down the mountain, getting the antenna up in difficult terrain, and keeping it up in high winds. Dipoles work well, but erecting them is often too complex - they are more than double the hassles of an inverted L. Dipoles weigh more, with two wires plus a feedline, so they require a heavier pole for support. The two wires and feedline tend to get tangled, caught on rocks, and stuck in the bushes. Changing bands is a hassle with a dipole. All I do is tilt the pole to lower the single wire, change the link, and put the pole back. To change from 40M to 17M, or from 30M to 15M, I don’t even have to change the links!
The end-fed resonant high-Z wires work incredibly well. A tuner designed for high-Z is essential. Using is believing - I was very skeptical at first. Light weight, quick set-ups, multi-band activations with the same wire, and amazing results are convincing. Look at my logs…in particular, the S2S logs.
I see the ads for the Buddipoles, and I just groan! Remember that SOTA is supposed to be fun, and yes, it really is! SOTA is not an ordeal, and you don’t get any points for pounds!
Lightweight gear and lithium batteries have changed the game.