Friday, August 2, 2019

2019-08-02 Antelope Mountain

Today’s expedition was to Antelope Mountain, aka W7A/AE-022.  I wanted to be setup by 1000 so that I could catch Adam, K6ARK while he was on a summit in California.  I’ve been up here before and knew not to try to get to the top of the mountain via the road.  Last time I almost got stuck up there by becoming high-centered on large rocks.  It was a pain because the only way down is to back down to a place that is wide enough to turn around.  Not a problem hiking up though.  It’s a bit steep but only a half mile from where I parked.  See Greens Peak SOTA chart.
[click on image for larger]
Last time I activated near some of the repeaters just below the peak.  This time I headed to the actual summit in search of some shade.  I found what I was looking for and was setup by 1000 just below the summit so I could sit under a very large pine for shade and then started chasing some CW stations with mixed results. 

Once spotted I had a huge pileup working with all of the usual suspects chasing my station.  After working down the pileup, I checked the spotting network and was just starting to tune a station in when I could hear thunder rumbling behind me and in front of me.  There was a cell about 2 miles behind me moving away with a good downpour working.  The one in front of me was about 5 miles away and moving toward me so I figured it was time to get off the mountain, quick. 

I pulled down my lightning rod and packed up as quick as I could, then headed out.  About 100 yds down the hill, I realized I didn’t have my phone.  I went back up and couldn’t find it.  I have an Apple Watch, which will ping the iPhone.  Using that feature, I found the phone in the dirt.  Darn good thing I had that combo, the phone blended in pretty well with the dirt.  I have tile on my keys that will do the same thing but it’s not as reliable.  When I got to the car, the lightning was about 2 miles from me.

A vehicle with decent clearance can make it up to where I started (see track) but if it’s been raining, you’ll want good tires, AWD or both.  I may still be up there it it weren’t for the AWD pulling me through some of the muddy areas. 

I netted 25 contacts which included a few summit to summit contacts.  When I arrived back at the villa, there was thunder in all directions.  We had few nice cells pass over with hail and lighting.  The total hike was about a mile with about 560 feet of elevation gain. 

No pictures this trip, but I did do some video. 


N1CLC02/Aug/201917:06W7A/AE-02210MHzCWN1ZF S2S 
N1CLC02/Aug/201917:20W7A/AE-02210MHzCWKX0R S2S
N1CLC02/Aug/201917:25W7A/AE-02214MHzSSBK6RIN S2S

Loadout for the multiple summits:
NOTE:  The links for these were broken, I've updated them on my equipment loadout page.
      Gregory Zulu 40 backpack
      First aid kit.  Make sure it’s a good one... like ability to patch up an impalement wound.        CHA MPAS with spike and additional MIL mast (and version 2 of the top section)
      Yaesu FT-891D HF Radio at 100 watts
   30’ of coax feed line
      Yaesu FT-2DR HT
      Slim Jim dual band antenna for my HT.
      3 L of water (8 lb)
      iPhone with All Trails, MotionX GPS and sota goat
      LDG Z-100 plus auto antenna tuner for the FT 891
      Trekking poles
      Jetboil MicroMo cooking system
   Extra LiFePO Battery
   AnyTone AT-868UV DMR radio for testing.
   Custom wiine bottle cork paddles for CW (crafted by K6ARK)
   American Morse Porta Paddle for CW
   Delorme Inreach satellite tracker and communicator.

Christian Claborne
(aka Chris Claborne)

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