Ten Meters Mountain Goat...This Time For Real

I love everything about SOTA, but my favorite thing to do is to make 10 meter QSO’s while I’m activating. Last year, I noticed that the Activator Roll of Honour on the SOTA Database could be filtered by Band, so I began watching my results for 10 meters. I was pretty excited last December, when I saw my points total reach 1,000, and my friend Ken @K6HPX posted a Reflector notice that I had reached 10 meter Mountain Goat status.

What I did not realize was that in order to truly “earn” Mountain Goat status for 10 meters, I could only count points from activations where I had made at least 4 QSO’s on 10 meters (regardless of number of QSO’s on other bands). The SOTA Database does not make this distinction, rather it credits points if you make at least one QSO on 10 meters and at least four overall. Once this was pointed out, I realized that I had some more work to do. So in 2019, I made an extra effort to try to log a minimum of 4 Ten meter QSO’s on every activation. I cannot express my gratitude enough for the many Chasers who made the effort to listen for my signal on Ten! Sometimes, I was able to get 4 or more contacts from Chasers located within a hundred miles or so (ground wave works fairly well on 10 meters from a mountaintop). Other times, I was thrilled to hear Chasers from other US States, and even a few times from DX in the Pacific. ZL1BYZ comes to mind as someone who routinely tries to work me as high as possible in the bands. I also was able to log a few DXpeditions on 10 meters.

In 2019, I made 114 activations total, and was able to qualify 70 of those with at least four 10 meter QSO’s. On 18 others, I made between 1 and 3 Ten meter contacts. Of the 26 with no 10 meter contacts, most of them were due to not trying at all, for example when using a QRP rig with limited band options (but there were a few busts). And yes, those 88 activations with 10 meter contacts in my log occurred during a year with something like 280+ spotless days on the sun. Anybody who says 10 meters is dead is flat out wrong.

I finally crossed the 1,000 points from qualified summits level last week, on December 26, 2019, while activating during a Christmas vacation visit to North Carolina. I was on Mt Mitchell, the highest point in the US East of the Mississippi, and my log included QSO’s with hams in North Carolina and South Carolina, including summit-to-summits with K2JB and KW4JM. Later that same day, I activated two more summits and added QSO’s to Connecticut, MIchigan, and Tennessee to my log. Starting in September, 2016, It took me over 3 years and 149 activations with at least 4 QSO’s to reach the Ten Meter Mountain Goat level.

I’ve checked the Database and there are some other very skilled Activators who have made many 10 meter contacts, but if my analysis is correct, it does not appear that anyone else has ever qualified 1,000 points worth of 10 meter activations.

Which means, of course, that SOTA ops are clearly not taking advantage of one of ham radio’s most wonderful bands! Ten meters is “magical” - sometimes it’s a good challenge, others it opens up and surprises you. The antenna requirements are far more modest than 40 meters or even 20. In the USA, it’s open to all license classes. There are numerous daily nets (check out ten-ten.org for info). I think many activators would be pleasantly surprised to learn how 10 meters compares to other bands that are commonly used with NVIS for local communications, i.e. 40, 60, and 80m.

And when Cycle 25 heats up, watch out! Sunspots can make 10 meters go wild, as any seasoned ham knows!

I’ve met my main goal but I’ll continue to try to make 10 meter QSO’s, and hope you do too. Maybe I’ll see you on 28.062 or 28.400?

Oh, and p.s., don’t be surprised if you see more spots for me on 12m and 15m now. I’ve got more work to do :slightly_smiling_face:

Keith KR7RK



Congrats on attaining 10m Goat. There are always a game within a game and that keeps things interesting. Who will be the first 5 band Goat:-)

HNY and 73,

Mike AD5A

Congratulations, Keith, that’s dedication! I’ve had only a few 10 meter contacts, mainly to you in Arizona. One ssb from Minnesota, I think with someone you were activating with. The other from a summit in Wyoming to you. You’ve inspired me to make it a more regular part of my activations.
Peter KD0YOB

Congratulations, Keith! You really worked hard on getting those 10m QSO’s!

73, Dave, AE9Q

Keith, I heard only a few weeks ago about your 10 meter MtnGoat goal and thought what a worthy distinction that would be. And you actually did it! Makes me want to try something innovative too. Hmmmm. Well done my friend,
73 Scott kw4jm

Congratulations keith on achieving Mountain Goat on 10m.

Jimmy M0HGY

Congrats Keith! And Thanks.
You’ve been a big factor in keeping activity and interest in Ten Meters going during this low-sunspot time.
Best, Ken

Congratulations Keith!

I’ve often wondered why you were so interested in 10 meters…now I know there was a method to your madness!! :wink:

I have you in my log 115 times and I know some of those were on 10 meters. Persistence pays off!

Hope to catch you on your next summit.

73, Walt

Congrats Keith,
MG on 10 metres is really dedicated.


Ahhhh, yes! For those of us on the air in 1955-56, 10 meters was magic! A wet noodle out the window, and you could work the world. Let’s hope for just a bit of that.

Best, Ken

Congratulations on 10 Meter MG. It took a lot of time and dedication. I have only worked you once or twice on 10 but I always listen for you when I see your spot. I knew you had a reason for being persistent with 10 Meters.

Jeff K6QCB

I’ve tried many times to work your 10 m station from Seattle with no luck. Someday it will happen!

Congrats and keep up the strong work on 10!

Congratulation Keith,

Mostly during solar minimum. Very impressive!

Lee –N7LP

1 Like

Well done Keith, congrats on this achievement.

Well CQ’d my friend. Well CQ’d. I try to work you on ten when you are activating but only manage to get you on other bands. But come to W4C country and I get you S2S on 10! So…come on back to W4 country and we will fill your log book on ten. :slight_smile:
Best 73’'s
Dean ~ K2JB

Excellent work Keith. I always look for you on 10m when I see you there. I too love 10m and usually try to make a few contacts there while on the summit…even when the band is “closed”.
73’s and keep on Truckin’
Tim - K5DEZ

What more can I add that hasn’t been said other than to wish you more of the same. I am glad to have added you to my log on 10m. You are an inspiration to us all.
Tom NQ7R

Nicely done Keith! Great accomplishment during the sunspot bottom my friend . Keep up the great work.

73, Brad

Congrats, Keith!! I’m glad that I could provide some of your needed QSO’s.


Quinton NU7Y

Hi Keith,

Congratulations on achieving 10m Mountain Goat #1–WOW! You have kept 10m in the collective SOTA consciousness and demonstrated to many—including me—what a magical band it is! My log shows 13 contacts with you on 10m, and you were the activator in 10 of the 13 contacts. As the new solar cycle builds, I can’t wait for my first trans-Atlantic 10m QSO with you!


Paul CT7/K9PM