The pnwSOTA website was created to facilitate communication between SOTA operators in the Pacific Northwest region, as well as show off some of the activities of the top-notch folks we have in the area. On this site you will find information about getting started in SOTA as well as details about summits and activations contributed by people that are operating here.
On a family vacation to the Lake Tahoe Basin in Nevada and California, I was fortunate enough to Activate 4 peaks in 3 days. This is a description of the Mount Watson Activation, number 2 in the series. On this Activation I had the pleasure of meeting up with a "local" Activator from Reno, Nevada, K1LB - "Woody" Brown, so that we could do a joint Activation of Watson.
On a family vacation to the Lake Tahoe Basin in Nevada and California, I was fortunate enough to Activate 4 peaks in 3 days. This is a description of the Monument Peak Activation. Monument Peak is a 10,067 foot / 3,068 meter high, 8 Point SOTA Summit, which is the apex of Heavenly Ski Resort. It has been activated in winter, via ski lifts and skis, and in summer via trails. This was my second time ascending the peak, the first being in 2009, well before I got into SOTA." src="file:///C:/Users/Mark/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image001.gif">
Second Time Was A Charm! Almost exactly 2 years since my last ski trip / Activation attempt of Lone Mountain, Montana, I returned and was successful this time ...barely. Winter Activations at this altitude (11,166 feet, 3,403 Meters), are certainly not trivial matters, even if Ski Tram access is available. Lone Mountain is the apex of Big Sky Ski Resort, in Big Sky Montana. See: http://bigskyresort.com/ for general information, and http://bigskyresort.com/Documents/The%20Mountain/W1617/Map_2016_TrailMap_v2.pdf for trail maps during ski season.
Peak 4620 is a backcountry snowshoe activation that can be done in the winter if you don't mind using a GPS and are comfortable with off-trail navigation.
A first activation of Eureka Peak on snowshoes turned out to be quite a workout. The basic climb description is about 2.5 miles one way and 1200 feet of gain, but the real work is off the trail with the last half mile being particularly steep. Since there is no trail to the top this would be difficult to do without snow cover.
This pleasant summit requires a nice, moderate hike through a forested area, coming out onto a wildflower filled hillside meadow. The summit is at the top of the meadow. There are interpretive signs and a bench that provide a good operating position.
This summit lies on the south side of Florence. The trail rises 350 to 400’ over about one mile. The summit is covered with RF equipment which did not seem to cause much interference to my HF station.
Maury Island was recently added to the SOTA database so I was super excited to do this activation with my wife, even though it was only a one pointer. The island is accessible from Vashon Island, which is a ferry boat ride from West Seattle or Tacoma. One could easily get on the ferry boat with their bicycle and bike to this summit.