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Update on Odell Butte, W7O/CE-032

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Odell Butte Update, W7O/CE-032


I activated Odell Butte on August 5, 2016.  I have activated from this summit before and had an enjoyable time.  The summit has a fire lookout tower, an outhouse and a picnic table, in addition to a large RF installation.  You park at a gate and hike up a bit less than a mile on a gravel road to the summit.


I have never had issues on the summit.  This time, as I was starting to set up to operate from the picnic table, the lookout staffer came down and told us that we could not operate from the summit due to concerns about interfering with the RF installation (microwave relays, etc.).  We tried to explain the benign nature of our activity.  He already had heard of SOTA (he mentioned it first).  He said that we could use an HT, but not an extended wire antenna.  I could not raise anyone on 2 meter FM.


We talked about it and he said it would be OK if we walked back down the road until the earth provided a barrier between our antenna and the RF facility.  I had an altimeter, so we walked down about 60’ from the summit.  He asked how high our antenna would be.  I was using a 20 meter EFHW, so I said 25 to 30’. He gave us an OK for that, and we setup and activated from there.  It put me on the ground along the side of the road, but that worked ok.



He indicated that this was an AT&T requirement.  Other lookout staffers have been very hospitable.  I did not get his name or schedule.  Good luck with this location.  Hopefully we can continue to activate from there.