Saturday, April 1, 2017

Mount Rosa and Squaw Mountain

What a difference a few days make. Lynn and I trotted up Mount Rosa a few weekends ago and although there was deep snow on the trail as long as you stayed on the trail it was packed down pretty good.

We had a grand time and even saw a group of runners heading down to Saint Mary's Falls. Their run was around 15 miles roundtrip with 5,000 feet of vertical gain! Wow. Steve, wG0AT , and I did that hike and it about wasted me, I can not imagine running it! Unfortunately, they went by me just as I got to the saddle and I did not have time to snap a pic.

Here are the pictures from that hike.
Lynn, KC0YQF, on the Trail 

KC0YQF and K0JQZ on Top of Mount Rosa

Pikes Peak from Rosa

Looking South

Lynn on the trail

Looking East

Lynn working the SSB pileup

Lynn hamming it up!

During Spring Break we like to go to Santa Fe NM but the weather did not look that great so we stayed in town. We decided that if we wanted to get another summit in before the bonus season ends that Thursday was our day.

We got a very late start but headed to Squaw Mountain. It is a long drive but well worth it.

Here are the pics.

GPS Track

Hike Profile

We had clouds all day

Great views

Lynn, KC0YQF, almost there!

View of the antenna farm from the Fire Tower

Snow Man on the Trail

Lynn making her way through the snow

Notice the Chevy Blazer stuck in the background

Here they are again
We passed a Ranger on his way down. We parked next to his Jeep and he mentioned that just about everyday someone gets stuck on that road. We decided to just hike the extra 1/2 mile although I think Lynn's Subaru could have made it past this area.

The Fire Tower was unoccupied but we passed the renters on our way down. They were better equipped than we were and they all had snow shoes to deal with the snow.

I made a bonehead mistake when I grabbed the wrong boots. I did not have my waterproofed boots on so by the time we got to the summit I was painfully aware that my feet were wet. We both activated on 20 Meter SSB. Thanks to the chasers that worked Lynn then stuck around to work me. I had to get moving quick in order to get my blood flowing again so it was s short activation.

As we got back to the car there was another ham going up to do an activation, N0EMU. I did not see any spots for him so perhaps he decided the weather looked like it was going unleash at any moment. It did start to rain while we were driving off the Mountain.

As I type this it is snowing today and it rained all day yesterday. It is a good day to listen to radio and get caught up on the blog. As I was checking my morning cameras in NC I thought this view of Atlantic Beach was a good contrast to the weather we are having in Colorado today.

Screen Shoot of Atlantic Beach, North Carolina, 1 April 2017


Sunday, March 26, 2017

and the giveaway goes to.....

This is just a quick note to say thanks to all that sent their QSL cards in. Everyone should had received a return QSL by now. The winner of the radio was Walt NE4TN.

This was an important milestone for Lynn and N.A. SOTA. Lynn is well on her way to 2,000 activator points!!!!


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Please join us for Lynn's, KC0YQF, Mountain Goat Celebration !!! (FREE GIVEAWAY)

As Lynn, KC0YQF, nears in on becoming the FIRST North American female to achieve the Summits On The Air (S.O.T.A.) Mountain Goat status, Lynn and I want to extend our celebration to our chaser friends.

One person, who talks to Lynn during her next two activations (most likely the last weekend in Feb and the first weekend in Mar) and sends her a QSL, will have the chance to win a new, unbuilt Mountain Topper Version 2.

Here is what you need to do:
1. Work Lynn SSB on any band and during her next two activations


2. Send her a QSL card to confirm the QSO


Wait, you don't have a QSL card?

No problem, mail a post card (her school kids like the postcards that have colorful pictures from different places) or a piece of paper with the details of the QSO and that will work just as well.

We will wait approxiamtley 10 days after the Mountain Goat activation and pick the winner. The winner will be notified via email and on my blog here. That is it. I know there will be a lot of chasers wanting to work Lynn anyway but we wanted to have some fun and do something special for her SOTA chasers.

3 Band Version (Steve Weber designed and kitted) 

Ready to ship

Lynn has worked real hard to achieve this and we are both real excited about it. The chasers really make this SOTA stuff fun and we just want to show our appreciation to those that are out there chasing us every weekend.

From Wikipedia: The mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus), also known as the Rocky Mountain Goat, is a large hoofed mammal endemic to North America. A subalpine to alpine species, it is a sure-footed climber commonly seen on cliffs and ice.

I have not taken a lot of video lately but here are a few pictures from our last few activations:

Summit of 9036

K0JQZ on Knights Peak

K0JQZ on Threemile Mountain

View from Blue Mountain

KC0YQF playing in the watering hole

Mount Rosa from Knights Peak

KC0YQF on Threemile Mountain

SOTA Chariot

Lynn's top chasers so far:


Monday, January 16, 2017

9410 or W0C/FR-168

Lynn and I decided on a quick SOTA activation close to home. 9410 is one of our favorites. It is close and not a strenuous hike and it also qualifies for the 3 winter bonus points making it a 7 point summit vice a regular 4 pointer. 9410 is due South of Cheyenne Mountain. It is a treed summit with plenty of supports for antennas.

Our GPS Track
The APRS beacon from the summit

The temps were mild and we were stripping off layers soon after starting. Without any wind it was just down right warm. At least that is what 30 degrees and no wind feels like when you are hiking up hill... There where tracks all the way to the summit and it also looked like someone snowshoed up Grey Back Peak so it was an easy hike.

Looking West close to the TH

Our summit comes into view

Grey Back Peak in the distance

Lynn making her way up
View of Fort Carson from the summit

Mount Rosa in the distance

Lynn on 20 meter SSB

on 17 meter CW
This was a lot of fun and leaves Lynn with only 57 points left before Mountain Goat. We are getting excited as she moves in on this historic achievement that has been many years in the making.

The surprising contact was ZL1BYZ in New Zealand. He has a nice setup with a directional antenna and some power compared to my wire and 5 watts, What a thrill and it comes at a time when the bands are supposed to be dead!!!

Here is Lynn's Log from 9410:
20 Meter SSB

My Log:
40 Meters CW

17 Meters CW

It was a great time.

73 Frank

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Raspberry Mountain, finally!!!!

Al KH7AL, Lynn, KC0YQF, and I decided to get over to Raspberry Mountain to finally summit and get our traditional New Years Day hike out of the way. Albeit, a few days late.

It was much warmer at the TH this time. Almost 25 degrees warmer at 30 degrees. Since you are in a valley it really gets cold but as soon as you start moving you warm up. It is just that initial shock of low ambient temps that makes it so hard to get going.

None of us had been on this new trail and actually got off trail a bit. We notice several other people made the same mistake we made. Judging by the tracks in the snow, they went back and got on the trail and we just bushwhacked, confident that we would find the trail over a few ridges.

GPS Track
It was actually a very nice hike through the woods with no one else around. Al took off ahead of us and left us clues as to which way to go. Not that it was needed, as the snow was a foot or more deep so we just followed his tracks.

SOTA, this way
Not soon after we linked up again and ate lunch before heading to the summit.

This way to Raspberry

Lynn leading the way (photo by KH7AL)
Once on the summit Al setup his wire and broke out his KX3. After using the KX2 the KX3 looks so big!!! We all used Al's KX3, thanks Al.

We took turns on 2, 20, 30 and 40 meters and worked a lot of stations.

Al working 2 meters

Lynn on 20 meters SSB
Frank on 30 meters CW
Our shack for the day! (photo by KH7AL)
Pikes Peak
Looking towards Colorado Springs
Hike profile
The trail is a bit longer at almost 6 miles RT. Raspberry is a fun one and can be challenging in the winter if your not prepared.

It was a grand time with Al and Lynn.

73, Frank