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First Activation - June 15

KX7L's picture
Voice Cellular Coverage: 
Good, very usable
Data Cellular Coverage: 
Don't know
Cellular Provider: 
APRS Coverage: 
Don't know

This was really a spur-of-the-moment thing.  I saw the weather was going to be great on Friday, cleared a day off with the boss, and checked over my "portable station": My NorCal NC-20, EFHW tuner and 34' of wire.  Cobbled up a Li-ion battery, and looked over some summit possiblities.  I settled on West Tiger as not being too far away, or too ambitious for a first attempt. (But I wanted to do more than a 1-pointer!)  So I put an alert on SOTAwatch, and set 11:00am local as a start time. As I started my way up the trail Friday morning, I began to have some second thoughts.  "Yeah, it's 'only' a 2900' hill, but the trail head is at 700', am I gonna make it?"  "And what about those antennas up there?"  Well it did take a lot longer for my old legs to get me to the top than I had planned, so I didn't get on the air until 1:00, but much to my surprise, all that radiation up there didn't seem to bother my NC-20, except maybe for some gremlins in the keyer.  I was a bit disheartened to hear how quiet 20m was though: I didn't hear any CW activity at all. If it hadn't been for the PSK at '070, I would have thought my antenna was dead.  Fortunately after just a few CQ's I got my first answer.  Thanks to all the ops that pulled my 5W out of the QSB, and especailly to K7SO and K6ILM for the encouragment and the spot.  The exposed summit is pretty much fully occupied by all the transmitters up there, and fenced off.  But I was able to find a spot in the woods just a bit below the summit on the E side, just above the "Poo Top  Trail" (N 47 30.224, W 122 58.492) I'm gonna have to do this again, but maybe not such a long hike next time!