White water activation 2. R9U/SO-126

In early May, Alex R9WGK and Vlad RX9WT decided to activate the R9U/SO-126 summit. It turned out to be a small expedition with rafting on the Lemeza River.

Since Alex is not an experienced kayaker, we rented a more comfortable and safe boat for rafting.

There are rapids on the Lemeza River. In our case, the water level was very low and the difficulty of the obstacles decreased. But it took more slalom. Our first camp was in front of the threshold of the Black River.

On the second day, we crossed Lemeza to the opposite bank and went to the highest point of the Black Ridge.
This is the SO-126 summit. At first, we had to climb the steep slope of the river valley, right through the dense forest. Only on the ridge it became easier to walk. The old logging road saved a lot of time for us. The weather began to deteriorate as we approached the summit, as is usually. The fog began to approach. It started snowing and raining, when the antenna was installed and I turned on the transceiver.

There is no cellular net in this area. Even at the highest point of the ridge. Therefore, it remained only to hope for the alert, posted earlier on the SOTA website. The propagation was not very good. I decided to listen to 20 meters, about a frequency of 14060 kHz. What if I hear activators? Only 2 -3 completely weak signals were here. But there was no way to QSO, despite the negligible noise level and the PREAMP turned on. To check the transceiver, I decided to call a HAM from a Baltic country. His call sign was confidently received at a frequency slightly below 14060 kHz. I received his answer completely unworthy of a HAM-spirit. Even when I was transmitting «CQ SOTA» already on my own frequency, my colleague was not lazy and stubbornly transmitted the same text here…
I will not mention his call sign here. Also, I will not print his words, which may be the result of his serious mental illness. To my delight, the chasers heard my CQ SOTA and their loud signals brought us back to the miracle of radio. SOTA - a holiday free from politics and wars. Dear friends. Thank you very much for these 25 minutes, albeit in the rain and snow. My friend Alex managed to get wet and very cold, while I was hot QRV. Only by willpower R9WGK pick up a microphone. Only 2 SSB QSOs. But their value is no less from this. The first activation of the summit is completed! We quickly folded the antenna and equipment. We ran back.

Somewhere below, in a deep valley of a mountain river, there is our camping, tent and a fire is burning. Still further, where the river emerges from the mountains, is the finish of our journey. But we still have to row and row until the finish line.

Video about activation:



A nice report with some lovely photographs. The video was interesting - you had some close calls with boulders/rocks.

There are a couple SOTA summits in Scotland where you might find it a little easier to use a canoe for the approach - but non on rivers like yours…


Great adventure and thanks for the video!73-Chris-OE5CSP

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