I was saving the higher elevation hikes for the summer with the idea it would be much cooler and enjoyable when the city below is being scorched by the sun. That’s not the case. It was hot, the route up was in full sun, and I wondered what it would take to loose some pack weight to make the trip up to the summit easier. Overall, it was enjoyable. Solar conditions were not so great, but I was able to make several QSOs on 20. 40M was dead, with only one QSO up to Washington State. Made a 2M CW contact, and a few 2M FM contacts right before heading down to the car.
May 10th. This is the second time I activated this summit; read about the first one HERE. 20M was working pretty well. S2S contacts with AG7GP on W7O/CS-073 (20M), and WC6J on W7N/TR-005 (40M). Being early May, the weather was cooler and the flora was green and blooming.
This was a pretty easy hike, I wouldn’t do it in the middle of summer as there is little shade on the fire road going up. The top is used as a hang glider port; there is a picnic table and a bench to setup radios on which is nice. Summit to summit QSO with KR7RK in Arizona on 40M.
Up until this summit I may have been logging my QSOs wrong. After 00:00 UTC, the activation starts over and chasers can claim additional points with another QSO.
Mount Lukens is the highest point in the city of Los Angeles. I started the bike ride up at Grizzly Flats trailhead off Hwy 2. At the fork in the fire road, stay left. (Going right brings you to Hoyt Mountain). The fire road narrows, eventually turning into a single track. This leads up to the main road up to the summit.
Deep snow made hiking up difficult. I took a different way down which was much easier. I now know what show shoes are for. Tracks below is round trip; I got a tip on what could be a better way up. Made my first SOTA contact on 6M. Met SOTA Hal in person at the end of my activation.
I hiked up to Strawberry Peak on a Saturday with some friends. Turns out that this is a very popular hike among Los Angeles denizens. I would do this again, on a weekday as the summit was crowded with noisy folks at one point. I made several contacts on 2M, including two summit to summit contacts. 20M seemed dead (spotted over APRS). I tried 40M, got nothing but later found out my spot didn’t make it out.
I almost dismissed this summit as another SOTA activator I spoke with said this hike wasn’t worth it, but after going the trail up the trail myself, I would respectfully disagree. Most of the hike is under shady trees, making it ideal for a summer getaway from the city. The summit offers several nice sitting rocks and great views. The trail is difficult to follow at times, so downloading the tracks below for your GPS may be helpful. 73!
This is probably the easiest SOTA activation I’ve done to date. Next time I activate this peak I may bring heavier equipment! There is a road all the way to a Nike missile site (LA-94), then a short walk up to the benchmark, which reads Camp 9. Be aware that you need to drive through the fire camp, which consists of buildings on both sides of the road leading to the top. When I activated this summit, there were several fire fighters training in the road, but nobody seemed to mind that I was there. I setup my station near the benchmark and made several contacts on 2M and 20M. 40M was very quiet. Thanks to all the chasers!