SOTA Activation of Hoyt Mnt. – W6/CT-146, March 8, 2014

The Hoyt Mnt. hike starts right next to the parking lot at mile marker 32.82 on the Los Angeles Crest Highway 2. It’s not along hike but an extremely steep one. The elevation gain is substantial right from the start and until you reach the first stone cairn you had an extreme good workout.  Hoyt is the one behind this marked summit and has its own cairn.

hoyt_routeRoute to Hoyt Mountain

IMG_1852Highway 2 parking lot

IMG_1853Landmark plaque at parking lot and trail head

IMG_1854First summit before Hoyt

IMG_1857First cairn

IMG_1858Hoyt Mountain from first cairn

IMG_1855View to Los Angeles

IMG_1871Summit Hoyt Mountain

IMG_1866Operating site

IMG_1868Antenna setup

Until the second cairn on Hoyt there is some kind of faint trail to the summit plateau you have to bushwhack. On the summit were extremely windy conditions and I lost my notes during setup “gone with the wind”. So I started the activation without knowing the exact summit designation (who can keep these cryptic designators in mind – I don’t). The band conditions were very good and the problem with the designator was solved with my second contact KB6CIO (Bob) mobile on the highways of Orange County. He gave me the designator and spotted me thanks a lot Bob.

Hoyt Mountain is a very nice summit really worth the hike – even its a very challenging hike to the top, not to mention the descent.

Thanks to the following contacts from Hoyt Mountain:

Date:08/Mar/2014  Summit:W6/CT-146 (Hoyt Mtn.)

Time Call Band Mode Notes
16:51z IK2QPR 24MHz SSB 24,950 MHz – DX Italy
16:57z KB6CIO 14MHz SSB 14,347 MHz
17:09z K6TUY 14MHz SSB
17:10z K5WI 14MHz SSB
17:11z K8TE 14MHz SSB
17:11z NS7P 14MHz SSB
17:11z AJ5C 14MHz SSB
17:14z KA5PVB 14MHz SSB
17:15z K7NEW 14MHz SSB
17:15z W7CNL 14MHz SSB
17:16z AI0Q 14MHz SSB
17:19z AD1C 14MHz SSB
17:20z AE4FZ 14MHz SSB
17:21z WA2USA 14MHz SSB
17:24z N3JXB 24MHz SSB 24,960 MHz
17:25z EA2LU 24MHz SSB DX Spain
17:26z N1EU 24MHz SSB
17:31z KB6CIO 24MHz SSB 24,975 MHz
17:32z N7UN 24MHz SSB
17:32z AA1VX 24MHz SSB
17:33z VE7AM 24MHz SSB
17:33z AE4FZ 24MHz SSB

IMG_1874Los Angeles from the summit

IMG_1877Descent from the Hoyt cairn



SOTA Activation of Cerro Negro Benchmark – W6/CT-226, March 7, 2014

The summit was chosen due to the easy access and the short hike in order to do some antenna testing. During the recent activations technical problems with the antenna tuner and the general weight and size of the antenna were not satisfactory or have been proven to be impractical on long hikes. So a new light and flexible SOTA antenna was built, tested and compared with the equipment used so far.

After this activation and the testing conducted I will stick to the new lightweight antenna design for my SOTA activities.

Cerro Negro Benchmark is located in La Cañada Flintridge close to Los Angeles. Parking is possible at the intersection of Flintridge Dr. and Camino San Rafael. From here just follow the fire road up to the summit.


Route to summit


Park around here


Fire road to summit


Summit marker




New antenna a simple dipole


Deployed antenna on fishing pole


View from the summit


City and helicopter


KB6CIO (Bob) at the operating site


WN6E (Martin) working the 12m band

Propagation was good this morning and we made quite a few contacts especially on the 12m band which allowed contacts with Germany, Spain and England. Its always nice to work a DX station from a summit but four  in a row that’s a first one for me.

WN6E activation contacts:

Date:07/Mar/2014  Summit:W6/CT-226 (Cerro Negro Benchmark)

Time Call Band Mode Notes
16:39z N6JZT 144MHz FM Summit to summit W6/CT-034
17:02z N6MKW 144MHz FM Summit to summit W6/CT-170
17:16z AA7DK 14MHz SSB 14,347 MHz
17:23z K7NEW 14MHz SSB
17:24z NS7P 14MHz SSB
17:25z NA6MG 14MHz SSB
17:25z KF7JQV 14MHz SSB
17:26z K6TUY 14MHz SSB
17:26z WA2USA 14MHz SSB
17:28z W0MNA 14MHz SSB
17:28z W0ERI 14MHz SSB
17:28z W7CNL 14MHz SSB
17:30z K8TE 14MHz SSB
17:31z AJ5C 14MHz SSB
17:44z VE7KBN 14MHz SSB
17:59z N4EX 24MHz SSB 24,960 MHz
18:00z K6CMG 24MHz SSB
18:01z DL1BWU 24MHz SSB DX Germany
18:02z EA2LU 24MHz SSB DX Spain
18:02z WI2W 24MHz SSB
18:04z AE4FZ 24MHz SSB
18:06z G6TUH 24MHz SSB DX England
18:12z DJ5AV 24MHz SSB DX Germany
18:14z KG3W 24MHz SSB

Thanks to all the contacts

73, WN6E (Martin)