A little background!
Hello! I am Erik (KE8OKM) Last year I earned my ham license(s) after many years dreaming about attaining it. Through good fortune I was also living and working in Colorado, hiking the mountains every chance I had. In my readings about all things ham I stumbled upon the SOTA (Summits On The Air) website.
SOTA is a amateur radio program that weaves (if you so choose) athleticism with ham radio. But, you do not have to be athletic to participate! Many SOTA points can be driven up, allowing those with physical disability a chance to participate. For me I now had a purpose-a way to log my mountain hikes! I have also learned it is a great way to promote amateur radio interest.
To date I have completed 134 SOTA activation’s. I have had some of the most memorable moments and experiences this past year. Hiking past big snow drifts in South Dakota that STOOD up! Lol Those piles turned out to be Buffalo! Calling for hours from Spruce Knob WV on a hot summer evening to get that 4th QSO (4 simplex QSOs are required for summit points) Looking out across the Rockies while calling CQ into the Denver metroplex…Calling CQ over the Pacific from Oregon’s Coastal Range!
Earlier this week my daughters ran a regional track meet close to Ohio’s highest geographic point-Campbell Hill! Of course I had to take advantage of those stars aligning. Since I am strictly a VHF/UHF activator I have learned to throw out as many lines as possible in order to alert my presence. I have come up empty handed several times! This activation I sent an email to SK “Bob King” W8FTV repeater (CLARC) I was humbled when hams mentioned they were on the lookout for me during the QSOs!
After a short walk from the parking lot. I setup my trusty FT818 (5w), 2m Rollup-Jpole, 6m endfed and Arrow Yagi, I also noticed A LOT of antennas around me. To be expected the QRM was very high. My Rollup Jpole was all but unusable, But! I had 2 weapons at my disposal a 2m bandpass filter and the Yagi. The band pass filter works but Campbell Hill’s QRM was too much for it!
On to plan B.
I have learned through trial and error a Yagi is a potent QRM fighter on 2m and that proved to be the case on Campbell. I was able to use about 60 degrees of azimuthal horizon. It was enough to make 6-2m QSOs. I experienced no QRM on 70cm or 6m.
Anyway, I finally got my Buckeye State high-point/SOTA summit AND the first ever recorded VHF SOTA activation from Campbell Hill!
Many Thanks to NM8B (Greg) for posting my presence, the (CLARC) hams and SK “Bob King” W8FTV for helping me in this endeavor!