High Rock, TN
High Rock Summit (W4T/SU-24) is a relatively high summit (4,900′) on the Appalachian trail and borders the state line of NC and TN. It is a relatively short hike up and offers plenty of places to set up an antenna.
Summit Name: High Top, (W4T/SU-024)
Location: Erwin, TN
Date: January 15th, 2021
Points: 10 + 3 (Winter Bonus)
County: Warren County
Weather: Sunny, 24 degrees
On a Scale of 1 to 5
As part of my master SOTA plan of activating a SOTA summit in every state that has one, this was the first SOTA summit on a 8 day road trip through the south and part of the midwest.
I had activated High Rock summit back in November 2020 on my way home from a trip to Asheville, NC.
This time I activated it on my way back to Asheville. It is a good summit to stop for on a long road trip giving you some time to stretch your legs and rack up some SOTA points. The summit is at 4500 feet and does have a winter bonus. There is plenty of parking at the trailhead and it is a short walk underneath the overpass to the start of the trail. The trail itself meanders thru the woods and up the hills. The hike itself is fairly short with a little elevation gain. Once you reach the top there is a sign indicating the summit which makes for an excellent antenna mast holder. Considering the sun was quickly setting (we got a late start on the trip), I quickly got my antenna up. Using the exact same branch as a few months before really helped me in saving time. My wife dutifully held the antenna mast as I secured it to the sign post. Made several contacts on 40m and tried 20m with little success. At this point, my fingers were numb and I had lost pretty much all manual dexterity. I quickly threw everything in the pack and we headed down the mountain.
While I enjoy 2m VHF simplex contacts, in cold environments where time counts, VHF isn’t always as productive as HF. I usually have 30 minutes to 45 minutes tops before I need start hiking again and get my internal heat going again. Anything else is pure misery.
On the Air:
20 & 40 meters
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