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First SOTA Activation: Fourth Of July Mountain, Chelan County, Washington - September 10, 2016

K7MAS's picture
Cellular Provider: 

First SOTA Activation of Fourth Of July Mountain, a 4 point SOTA summit above the town of Manson, Washington, was accomplished on Saturday, September 10, 2016.  On a weekend trip to visit with our friends who have a vacation home in Manson, we took some time to Activate this peak.  The overall terrain is quite dry and arid, especially this late in summer.  The trail itself is non-descript, and the redeeming aspect of the activation are the great views from the upper slopes and summit of the mountain.  The weather was quite warm, and we were happy to have gotten a relatively early start.

Access to Fourth Of July Mountain is from the small town of Manson, which lies on Lake Chelan, about 5.5 miles WNW of the town of Chelan.  From Manson, the mountain is approached from Upper Joe Creek Road and then Grade Creek Road, AKA Wenatchee National Forest Road 8200.  Drive towards Antilon Lake, a reservoir maintained by the local water authority.  Park right above the earthen dike forming Antilon Lake.  Drop down to the dike, approximately 15 feet, and cross it towards the mountain.  On the far side of the dike, find a trail starting up to the right (northwest).  The trail, rough and indistinct in spots, more or less goes to the top of the mountain, switchbacking first up the east face of the mountain towards the SE shoulder, then ascending the SE "rib" of the mountain.  The trail does not show on any maps that I researched, but is definitely the best and easiest way to the summit. See map & photos.  Our route was approximately 2 miles each way, gaining approximately 1,200 feet.  I would suggest the best time of year to do this activation is Fall or Spring.  I would also suggest an early morning start, as the trail is mostly in open east and south exposed slopes, and would be hot as Hell in the summer.

I worked primarily 40 meters, with one 2M FM contact.  I worked: W6IO, N7DCS; KD7RTE; W7RDB; N7DCS (2nd contact); AF7JM; W7KFO; AF7XJ; W7TYQ; KF7WKR (2M FM); KF7WKR (40M SSB).  Thank you to all of the contacts and to my "Chasers".  I appreciate each and every SOTA contact I make.