“Be Prepared” for Baden Powell

Summit: W6/CT-004

Activation Date: November 18, 2015

ATT Data Coverage: Spotty trending hopeless

ATT Voice coverage: Spotty trending hopeless

APRS Coverage: Not sure

Access: Park/trail head at 34.373371, -117.752046

Hike stats:  8.3 miles roundtrip and 3,200′ of ascent up to 9,400′, walk on forested trail to exposed summit.

It wasn’t very deep, probably 4-6 inches but it covered the trail and much of the immediate area. The unknown previous hiker had a longer stride than me and each effort to step into his footprints seemed a little unnatural but probably the smartest way for me to navigate the snow.

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Almost 8.3 miles of snowy trail

The repetitive APRS crackle was oddly comforting and it gave me a sense of others as I zigzagged alone up this mountain. On my right were occasional views north across the desert and the contrast of dry sunbaked land and this slippery trail wasn’t lost on me.

The distance between the switchbacks became shorter as the trail guides me up the north ridge of Baden Powell taking me further up and through one small flat meadow of dense pine trees. It pushes me more toward westerly facing turns buffeted by an abrupt cold wind that disturbs the tranquility of this place. The trail seemed harder to follow over its last thousand feet of ascent. The snow was deeper and it seemed my unknown predecessor was getting impatient and taking shortcuts. The trail narrows and follows a ridge with views in all directions including what is clearly my destination.

BP summit on left and trail up on right. Looking north-west.
Looking east-ish from a narrow ridge toward BP summit (right side). Same location as picture above.


I’m not sure why someone has hauled a monument to the founder of the Boy Scout movement up this mountain but I’m sure BP would be impressed that he is memorialized six thousand miles from his homeland in a place he knew little about.

“Be prepared and do your best”, monuments to BP

My momentary reflections of happy English scouting days were rudely interrupted by distant shouts getting closer. Maybe two or three persons at first arrived on the peak but it soon expanded to twenty or more all dressed quite similarly and I wondered what club or group this was. As I busied myself hoisting my end fed, one of them came over who looked like Chris Kyle. He apologized for his colleagues boisterous nature and I said no big deal. He explained they were from a really large local federal prison and somehow “mates” and “inmates” was mixed up and for a moment I thought I had found myself amongst a group of hardened criminals all on a nature outing. How unfortunate but fortunately not, as it turned out they were the prison SWAT team.

“Mates”, not “inmates” from the local federal prison

ATT and Apple conspired to frustrate my activation. SOTAGoat did its thing and announced my intentions on 40m but after that all attempts around similar intentions on 20m, 10m or even 2m were thwarted. I know the SWAT team guys were curious what I was doing on a peak with a fishing rod stuck in manzanita while I sat under a bush babbling to myself and now they probably chuckled even more as I walked this way to random points, held the phone  in contorted positions and unbeknownst to them turned it off and on but all to no avail. In the end I owe a big thanks to Rob Kliman (KB6CIO) as he was on hand to spot from his home once I asked via 2m.

I still seem to fumble with my 2m activations but I did have rather a gratifying all transplanted Brit moment in the form of a QSO from Baden Powell summit to the Queen Mary liner radio club (W6RO) in Long Beach. Bill (K6MET) W6RO operator commented tongue in cheek that I sounded from Alabama which I took as a compliment!!

Looking north

Screen Shot 2015-11-17 at 8.46.03 AM - 2015-11-17 at 08-46-13

Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 9.17.13 AM - 2015-11-19 at 09-17-19

This was my largest haul of chasers; 26 in all. Thanks all round!!


Time Call Band Mode Notes
18:13z W7RV 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 57 RX
18:14z WA6KYR 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 55 RX
18:15z WA9STI 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 59 RX
18:16z AA7DK 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 56 RX
18:16z N7AMA 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 59 RX
18:17z K6WFV 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 59 RX
18:18z NG6R 7MHz SSB 59 TX and 59 RX
18:18z W6JMP 7MHz SSB 57 TX and 33 RX
18:35z KB6CIO 144MHz FM 59 TX and 57 RX
18:44z N4EX 14MHz SSB 34 TX and 45 RX
18:46z W0ERI 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 45 RX
18:46z W0MNA 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 45 RX
18:46z W4DOW 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 33 RX
18:47z ND0C 14MHz SSB 33 TX and 55 RX
18:48z K4MF 14MHz SSB 35 TX and 33 RX
18:49z KC9TTR 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 55 RX
18:49z AE5B 14MHz SSB 55 TX and 55 RX
18:50z KX0R 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 33 RX
18:51z K8TE 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 53 RX
18:53z W7CNL 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 57 RX
18:54z N4MJ 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 45 RX
18:54z NE4TN 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 33 RX
18:55z K0LAF 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 22 RX
18:56z N6JZT 14MHz SSB 45 TX and 57 RX
18:56z KG3W 14MHz SSB 44 TX and 22 RX
19:26z W6RO 144MHz SSB 59 TX and 59 RX




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