Summits on the air (SOTA) is a favourite of mine. Walking to the top of a local fell with a radio and ‘activating’ it is one of my favourite parts of amateur radio. The basic idea is climb to a summit, call CQ and get 4 contacts to qualify as an activation. Simple right?
Well, I live in the Lake District and not all summits are easy to get to without a bit of a sweat on. Having said that they are easy to get to compared to some in GM.
On occasion I stay overnight but the vast majority of activations are during the day and usually are multiple summits in one trip. My favourite area (at the moment) is Wasdale. Seatallan, Pillar, Kirk Fell (well not really Kirk Fell…it’s just a slog), Great Gable, Scafell Pike and Illgill Head.Not much else needed.
Kit wise I have used a Yaesu VX8-G 2m/70cm for years. very trusty. If I’m aiming for 2m SSB or HF SSB then its a Yaesu FT817ND and if it’s lightweight CW then its a LNR Precision MTR5B. I do take with me a 13cm transverter but more on that on another page.
I’ve had a little play with Open Street Maps and umap A few of my regular G/LD summits. The maps has various layers that I’m mucking about with. The tracks on it at the moment are ones off SOTAMaps to try but ultimately when I get my head round the way it works I’ll use this instead of a commercial & non Open Source mapping system…..
- SOTA – Summit waypoints
- Tracks – Routes that can be used in gpx format – these are in Red
- Cycle routes. these are a few of the routes that I like – these are in Indigo