Merriam has been on my SOTA (Summits On The Air) to do list since before NA6MG first activated it. It was discovered by K6KWI who recommended it to WN6E and myself over a year ago. I looked at different approaches and picked the trail head at 33.211231, -117.159022 equivalent N 33° 12.674 W 117° 09.541. This approach yielded a 0.8 mile walk with a total elevation gain of about 400 feet. There was evidence of extreme 4×4 vehicle traffic on the dirt and boulders.
The activation was filled with many wonderful events. I was able to find a full size Geocache which is only a few hundred feet from the Summit: 360 View & Boulders Too (aka – Leap Day Cache) GCHTH6. 2 meters was very quiet so I got on HF after only 2 contacts there. I even got chased by the famous mountain goat WG0AT.
My next contact was over 17 years in the making. It was with my brother Lee, KF7URE, who lives in Boise, ID. He went to a park 15 miles from his home to set up his KX3 to work me with 5 watts. I was using a KX3 on 5 watts which I purchased based on his recommendation.
Many new chasers were out there today. I had good T-Mobile cell coverage and was able to post SPOT’s. Some SPOT’s were posted for me by very nice chasers. I was able to use DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) to coordinate contacts with WD6FZA and N6GGS.
A long time friend, N7ESI, was able to contact me on HF for our fist contact here in about 10 years. He is a very good operator and dropped his power down to 5 watts for his final report.
There were reports of other chasers that were relayed to me. I listened for those and was only able to hear a few of them. I was pleased that I worked most bands 40-10 meters giving people in different parts of the country a better chance of getting me.
Date: 30/Mar/2015 Summit: W6/SC-323 Merriam Mountains HP Call Used: KB6CIO
|16:45z||W6APO||14MHz||SSB||14.282 200w FT2000 59/53 was calling CQ|
|17:02z||KF7URE||14MHz||SSB||33/53 My brother Lee in Boise ID. Took us 17 years to make this contact! WHOOHO YIPEE YAHOO YEAH !!! On his 5w KX3 portable|
|17:06z||NS7P||14MHz||SSB||Phil OR 44/55|
|17:15z||W7RV||7MHz||SSB||7.185 59/57 and he did a SPOT for me – THANKS!|
|17:18z||K6CMG||7MHz||SSB||Chris 53/55 on a break from work|
|17:25z||K6HPX||7MHz||SSB||Ken 59/58 Tuscon|
|17:26z||WD6FZA||144MHz||FM||146.52 Cecil while mobile in town handheld|
|17:47z||N7TTQ||18MHz||SSB||18.167 59/59 Jeff Oregon|
|17:54z||KY7S||18MHz||SSB||Doug Seattle 33/33|
|18:03z||WB7UZO||18MHz||SSB||59+20/59 Van NW Washington|
|18:07z||WD6FZA||7MHz||SSB||7.185 Cecil from his home|
|18:20z||KA6OCA||18MHz||SSB||18.165 59/59 Gary Escondido mon 146.595FM|
|18:28z||N7ESI||14MHz||SSB||14.285 59/55 Dave WA. Our first HF in about 10 years! Yipee! Then he went to 5w holding a 33 here.|
|18:51z||K8LJG||28MHz||SSB||28.385 59+20/55 John Michigan|