Monthly Archives: September 2013

Activation Alert: Pemigewasset Loop

I’ll be backpacking the Pemi Loop in New Hampshire this weekend, and plan to activate 4 summits.  Times listed below are approximate depending on hiking speeds and conditions.  I will be running 10 watts SSB with my KX3 and LNR 10/20/40 EFHW trail friendly antenna.


Saturday 9/21/2013

19:00 W1/HA-092 Owl’s Head Mountain (10 pts)

Monday 9/23/2013

13:00 W1/HA-022 South Twin Mountain (10 pts)

15:30 W1/HA-095 Mt Garfield (10 pts)

19:00 W1/HA-022 Mt Lafayette (10 pts)


If I’m feeling really ambitious, I may detour on Sunday the 22nd and pick up W1/HA-228, Pt 3051 (4 pts).  I will probably get on the air Sunday night from my campsite.


Hope to hear lots of stations on the air!


Bryan N0BCB

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Alternative Buddistick Vertical

I started my HF career with a Buddistck kit, and learned to tune it pretty well with the factory options. It was my primary SOTA antenna until I switched to a 24′ carbon crappie pole and EFHW for lighter weight and faster deployment. I’ve been looking for a way to use the Buddistick as a camping and travel antenna. My goal was to keep the component lengths to 13″ for suitcase packing.
I decided to add an 8′ Buddipole shock cord mast so that I don’t need to rely on a place to mount the clamp. I also upgraded to a Versatee and the rotating arm kit RAK so that I could deploy the antenna without a wire radial.

Tonight I tested the setup on 20m and was able to contact K4Y with 10w from my Elecraft KX3, first try!

The whole kit weighs a few pounds and takes up very little space when packed.


I made my own guying kit from MSR aluminum tent stakes and paraline. I am planning to print a 3D guy ring so that
I can still rotate in horizontal mode.


Soon I will add a couple more 13″ arm sections to make tuning easier.

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W6/NC-030 Mount St Helena

For the 2013 NASOTA weekend, I decided to try an unactivated summit near wine country, since we were already vacationing here for the in-laws 70th birthday.  Mt St Helena is accessible by trail or fire road.  There was a mountain bike in the garage of our rental house so I decided to also do my first bicycle SOTA!  The bike was too small for me and needed some minor maintenance, but it did get me to the summit and back safely.

The first mile and a half is on a small trail, and is a difficult ride.  It’s possible to start directly onto the dirt access road, but you’ll have more elevation gain and distance.  I was able to ride most of the trail through here, with a few lifts over large rock areas.
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Once you pop out onto the dirt road, it’s just plain climbing.  The corners have some loose volcanic dust/sand, so be careful on those.

As I neared the summit, I got to witness a very cool dirt devil

The summit, and 2 nearby, are covered with antenna farms. I set up directly next to a microwave repeater, and my 2m radio was popping every 30s or so. I decided 2m was way to obnoxious to listen to, so I shut that radio off and never tried the band from there. I was able to make a couple of 20m contacts, but I had S9 noise on my KX3 and gave up pretty quickly. I was following other activators on SOTAgoat, and couldn’t hear anybody on 20m. 40m had much lower noise, and I managed a couple of contacts there. I had my first every 17m contact with KJ6NHF on W7N/WC-001.

Map/track here:

And elevation profile showing over 2000′ of gain in 5 miles:

And finally, the summit log:

The rest of the photos can be seen at:

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