WA7JNJ's blog

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North Chuckanut Mountain, WA | February 2020

Summit: 
W7W/WH-195

North Chuckanut is a heavily treed summit with very limited views, but is a nice well-marked hike.  On a cloudy and rainy Saturday, the trail was well used.  To access the summit, use the Pine & Cedar Lakes trailhead which is easily accessed off I-5 near Bellingham, WA.  There is good parking and no pass required.

 Directions:

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Skagit Gadget, WA | February 2020

Summit: 
W7W/SK-172

Skagit Gadget is a 1-point summit, located within ~20 minutes of I-5 in Skagit County.  Some of the area has been logged, and it is a 4 mile road hike with ~700 ft of gain.  Both times I've actived as a second summit for the day, and was thankful to squeeze in enough vhf contacts before a new UTC day rollover.  Trees are starting to grow near the summit activation area, but there are some views at summit...and more views hiking up.  

Directions:

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Badger Mountain, WA | September 2019

Summit: 
W7W/WE-061

While in the Tri-Cities area for a family event, was able to activate Badger mountain later in the afternoon.  The trail is very open, and would be very hot during the middle of summer days.  In the evening, there were many people using the trail.  Since the trail is so open, I enjoyed the views for miles around and seeing the Tri-Cities from a different perspective.  

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Guemes Island, WA | May 2019

Summit: 
W7W/SK-177

For Mother's Day 2019, was able to blend a family hike and very quick SOTA activation.  Activating Guemes Island includes a short ferry ride from Anacortes, and shorter hike (2.2m round-trip) with minor elevation gain (~587 ft).  The summit area has great views, and has both a great open space along with areas of trees for antenna's and/or holding a mast.  No pass is required at the trailhead, but there is limited parking for ~4 cars.

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Camano Island, WA | Nov 2019

Summit: 
W7W/RS-088

Camano Island is a 1-point summit accessed via a short and nearly flat elevation gain hike, or drive-up due to larger activation area.  Thank you Josh WU7H for blog comment about drive-up option, and difficulty trying to chase this summit.  Stopping on side of N Cross Island Rd just North of the summit appears to be one drive-up option (see picture below).

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Ebey Hill, WA | Nov 2018

Summit: 
W7W/SN-169

No access... (or no easy access?)

When I started learning about SOTA in late 2018, it sounded fun to activate a new summit.  I tried for Ebey Hill in Snohomish County.

From Highway 530, I turned right onto Jim Creek Rd and was hoping to drive up Ebey Mountain Road.  Very clear "Do Not Enter - Private Road" sign posted.  Also drove further up Jim Creek Rd, and tried to access from Riley Lake area on East side.  

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Tulalip Hill, WA | Feb 2019

Summit: 
W7W/SN-185

Tulalip Hill is an easy 1-point drive-up summit located in Snohomish County, WA.  While the summit is located on private property, there is a public boat launch on the northeast corner of the lake which is within the activation zone.  Thanks to Jason KV7DX (previously KE7UIU) for providing this information to myself and other activators!

There is no permit, or fee required.

Link to Snohomish County website with information regarding Lake Loma:https://www.snohomishcountywa.gov/5377/Loma

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Lummi Peak, WA | November 2019

Summit: 
W7W/WH-197

Lummi Peak is a 2 point summit located in Whatcom County, WA.  A short ferry ride will take you to Lummi Island, which was $13 for vehicle with driver (as of Nov 2019).  After deciding to take a Friday vacation day, Jason KV7DX (previously KE7UIU) suggested Lummi Peak.  He had activated the summit twice (Aug 17 and Dec 18), and it sounded like the perfect option for a cold and sunny November day.  I was also excited to try out a portable setup for FT8.

Directions:  

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Park Butte, WA | July 2019

Summit: 
W7W/WH-162

Park Butte was one of my favorite hikes this year, and is a 6 point summit located near Mount Baker in Whatcom County, WA.  Thank you to Todd W7TAO for his YouTube SOTA videos, which sparked my interest activating.  Definitely enjoyed hiking near Mt Baker, the views, and activating near the lookout.  Since it is a heavily trafficked trail, this was mid-week activation.

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2018 Discovery View Hill, WA | July 2019

Summit: 
W7W/NO-192

2018 Discovery View Hill is a drive-up 2 point summit SW of Sequim.  While visiting family in the area, I was looking for a quick activation option in 2018.  Since 2018, more of the summit has been logged and the views were amazing from the south side.  You are able to see buildings from downtown Seattle, and have great radio line-of-sight to the Puget Sound and Canada.