SOTA

Mt. Caroline Livermore SOTA activation 2020/08/23

Mt. Caroline Livermore SOTA activation 2020/08/23

Hey-hey friends! If you read my previous post you know I’ve built a QCX+ kit from QRP Labs recently. Naturally I was eager to try the rig in the field but at the same time I didn’t feel like doing any serious hike plus I wanted to maximize the probability of a successful activation. Ideally the summit should be close to a ham brood, the hike should not be boring but still allow to bring some backup equipment just in case QCX+ fails me.

Meet Mount Caroline Livermore W6/CC-075 in the Angel Island State Park located (quite unsurprisingly) on Angel Island, the second largest in San Francisco bay.

Half Dome SOTA activation 2020/07/25

Half Dome SOTA activation 2020/07/25

Welcome back friends! Yet another activation report - this time our target is Half Dome in Yosemite national park or as SOTA people know it W6/SN-040.

This trip almost didn’t happen. I had completely different plans for the last weekend of July 2020 but for good or for bad these plans became obsolete mid week. The best Plan B I could come up with was to curl up under a blanket and marathon the extended cut of Lord of the Rings. But. I needed a new Plan A.

Mt. Shasta SOTA activation 2020/07/18

Mt. Shasta SOTA activation 2020/07/18

If you read my previous blog posts you know I spent some time in Lassen Volcanic national park trying to activate Brokeoff mountain (W6/CN-003) and successfully activated Lassen peak (W6/CN-002). So what’s next? Well, the elefant in the room is, you guessed it, W6/CN-001 also known as Mount Shasta.

This mountain is a very special place for me. It comes with glaciers, thin air and scorching sun. It has everything you’d expect from a “real” mountain and then some. I tried to climb it in 2017 first time and had to turn back from the bottom of Misery Hill.

This experience made a great impact on me. It changed the way I see nature and my own place in it.

Three days in Lassen - Part 2, Lassen Peak on Independence day 2020

Three days in Lassen - Part 2, Lassen Peak on Independence day 2020

Planned the hike and SOTA activation of Lassen Peak (W6/CN-002) for the second day in Lassen Volcanic.

The weather was fair and spirits were high. I slept well and was ready for the highest summit in the park.

Lassen volcanic is an extremely diverse place in the geological sense. All four types of volcanoes are represented: Cinder Cone is quite unsurprisingly a Cinder Cone volcano, Prospect Peak is a Shield volcano, Brokeoff mountain is what’s left of a very large Composite volcano and, finally, our star today - Lassen Peak is a Plug Dome.

Three days in Lassen - Part 1, Brokeoff mountain 2020/07/03

Three days in Lassen - Part 1, Brokeoff mountain 2020/07/03

Lassen volcanic is one of my favorite US national parks. Five hour drive from San Francisco in north-easterly direction is not something lot of out of state tourists do. Yosemite and Sequoia national parks usually receive more traffic and are a bit too crowded during the peak season to my taste. The crowds are so significant that during certain stages of 2020 Coronavirus epidemic Yosemite park was closed for all but winners of Half Dome / overnight permits to avoid virus spread.

My initial plan for Independence day weekend was indeed to try winning a day use Half Dome permit. I’ve been there couple of years ago and want to repeat the feat, with a radio rig in my backpack this time. I suspect I wasn’t the only person who had a similar plan though and the lottery didn’t work out for me.