Summits on the Air (SOTA)
SOTA is an award scheme for radio amateurs and shortwave listeners that encourages portable operation in mountainous areas. SOTA has been carefully designed to make participation possible for everyone – this is not just for mountaineers! There are awards for activators (those who ascend to the summits) and chasers (who either operate from home, a local hilltop or are even Activators on other summits). The summit is “activated” when the activator logs four contact
SOTA is now fully operational in many countries across the world. Each country has its own Association which defines the recognized SOTA summits within that Association. Each summit earns the activators and chasers a score which is related to the height of the summit. Certificates are available for various scores, leading to the prestigious “Mountain Goat” and “Shack Sloth” trophies. An Honor Roll for Activators and Chasers is maintained at the SOTA online database.
The purpose of SOTA is to encourage Amateur Radio based activity from the summits of hills and mountains in countries around the world and to provide an award system for Radio Amateurs in all DXCC Entities.
The program is intended to encourage activity from clearly defined peaks, including major mountains. To enable participation in the program to be as wide ranging as possible, lesser peaks may also be included. An incremental scoring system recognizes the higher peaks accordingly. The program does not accept operation from a motor vehicle.
The program is open to all radio amateurs, worldwide. There are no restrictions on who may activate Summits, although it is probable that most activators will live in the general area. Chasers and Short Wave Listeners may be in any country, even if there is no Association covering their area.
The SOTA web site is; http://www.sota.org.uk/ Their you will find more information about summits, rules, past activations, and photos. There is also a SOTA Watch page with information about peaks currently being activated and upcoming activations.
This summer I will be activating peaks in Vermont and New Hampshire. You can follow my tracks via aprs.fi on Google maps and know when I’m on a summit and what frequency to find me on. I usually operate on 20 meters and 2 meters FM & SSB. I would love to make contact with my ham friends in Sarasota. I will post activation info on the SOTA watch page and my QRZ page. You do not have to wait until this summer you can start “chasing” right now. Go to the SOTA Watch page and contact hams on peaks now.
If you like to hike summits, or share the adventure of hams who do, then SOTA is for you