KK7DS's blog

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Tumalo Mountain, OR

Summit: 
W7O/CM-011

Taylor and I returned to Tumalo Mountain this weekend to score a rare 6 pointer in winter, with a justified bonus. Tumalo Mountain is a strenuous, yet technically easy ascent. The trail up to the summit leaves from the Dutchman Flats Sno-Park, just north of the entrance to the Mt Bachelor ski area on Cascade Lakes Highway. Because this is a popular winter recreation area, the parking area is packed with people looking to snow-machine, ski, and snowshoe to the top.

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Narrowly Escaping Disaster on East Peak

Summit: 
W7O/NE-011

While in town for the Hells Canyon Relay race, Taylor and I planned to hit two 10-point summits in the Joseph, OR area, our highest elevation and point value yet. What started off as a well-planned day trip unraveled into a messy situation. This is a long report, but worth the read!

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High Rock, WA

Summit: 
W7W/PL-029

On September 1st, Taylor and I returned to the site of our first "real" SOTA activation almost a year later. Before climbing High Rock in late September 2011, my SOTA activities had been confined to one and two point locations where one had to make an effort to travel far enough from the vehicle to satisfy the spirit of the game. Until this fourth summit came along, I was able to carry way too much stuff the short distance from the vehicle to the operating location.

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Black Butte, OR

Summit: 
W7O/CM-033

Black Butte is one of those mountains that is very recognizable and easy to spot on the horizon. Not because it has any disctinctive features, but rather because it has none. It looms darkly over the desert of central oregon as a perfect cone, easily distinguished from its sharp and craggy neighbors like Mt. JeffersonMt.

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Lookout Mountain, OR

Summit: 
W7O/CN-008

When a more complex plan failed to come to fruition Friday night, we decided late that we would head to Lookout Mountain in Oregon for Saturday's activation. We had been there before, and it is one of our all-time favorite SOTA summits. Just before we were heading out the door Saturday morning, I realized I had forgotten to alert us because the decision had been so late. I was shocked to see that K7ATN was scheduled for the same summit that day!

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Waldo Mountain

Summit: 
W7O/CM-034

This past weekend, Taylor K7TAY and I successfully executed our first overnight SOTA activation. We went to Waldo Mountain in Central Oregon, a 6-point peak with a three-mile (each way) trail ending at a spectacular view and one of the few remaining lookout structures in Oregon.

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Trout Creek Hill, WA

Summit: 
W7W/LC-120

On our way into the Gifford Pinchot National Forest heading to Lookout Mountain that morning, we noticed that we passed Trout Creek Hill on the right, with what seemed like open roads heading in the general direction. Taylor made note of the route we'd need to take on the topo maps, assuming all the roads were actually open. We figured that we might at least drive up towards this one after we finished at Lookout Mountain, even if only to survey the potential. As it turned out, this became our third and final summit of our whirlwind ten-point day.

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Lookout Mountain, WA

Summit: 
W7W/LC-066

For Taylor's first post-surgery activation, we were looking for a summit we could nearly drive to in order to minimize the required walking. The morning of the trip was the first time she had donned her boots since the procedure, so we weren't sure how much walking she'd be up for. We had originally planned a 2-point summit in the coast range because we knew we could get within a few hundred feet in the Jeep. However, a late tip from N7AAM on Friday had us rolling towards Lookout Mountain on the Washington side of the gorge.

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Goat Mountain (no, the other one)

Summit: 
W7W/LC-021

A six-point SOTA on a Wednesday? You bet! The July 4th holiday made for a nice mid-week excursion to the hills to one of Washington's fourteen Goat Mountains. This one was twelve miles north of Mt. St. Helens.

After getting stopped at a closed forest road in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, we rerouted and arrived at the trailhead for Goat Mountain Trail #217 a little late. As soon as we stepped out of the Jeep, we knew that we were in for a bloody battle against the "skeeters." I think I was a pint low before I even started climbing.

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Double Header Part 2: Bandwidth Mountain

Summit: 
W7W/LC-112

As we headed back from Lakeview Peak earlier in the day, Taylor and I took a detour to go by Bandwidth Mountain. This two-point summit is not significant enough to have an official name, but like many in the Washington SOTA database, it has been assigned a cute amateur-radio name to avoid a simple numbering system. Our outdated topo map software showed a road leading in the direction of the summit, but stopping a couple miles short. However, some satellite reconnaissance ahead of time showed that the road actually went much farther, to just below the base of the summit.