Summit : W6/CC-035 – Summit: Mt. Konocti, Kelseyville, Ca. Elev. 4,299ft.

     Today my fiancé Alie and I decided to tackle the Mt. Konocti summit. It was a 4 point summit and seemed like it would be a good hike on top of getting to play radio. Luckily the summer weather gave us a break and didn’t get above 85 degrees.

     About 1/4 into the hike you’ll reach your first resting point at which you can sit and enjoy the views of Clearlake. Alie and Rosie did just that.

     View of the summit from roughly less than a mile left in the hike.  

      When less than a few hundred feet from the top you pass a piece airplane wreckage from the Enzler airplane crash that occurred on a stormy day in 1970. 

     Once Alie and I were at the summit there were 2 gentlemen who were volunteers with Forrest Fire Lookout Association manning the lookout tower for the area. They saw us down on the ground and were nice enough to invite us to the top to get an even better view of the area. How extremely nice of them! And, of course, the views were actually that much better from up there.  

     Views of Clearlake from the Mt. Konocti CalFire lookout tower. So nice of the lookouts to let us up into their space and to explain how to us how they do their job. This is also where I made my first S2S contact with W6PZA. Great experience!

     Sent out APRS from the summit and tracked myself on  

     After what felt like a never ending uphill hike of 4 miles Alie, myself and our dog Rosie finally made it to the summit. The views were an amazing 360 degrees of surrounding Lake County including Clear Lake. I called CQ on 146.520 and though I could make out a few people talking I think my 5w wasn’t enough to reach them. I moved over to a local repeater which was actually housed not even 100 feet behind where I was standing. I was able to make contact right away with KK6TMN who was nice enough to spot for me on other local repeaters. I moved back to 146.520 and with the help of TMN I had a few people waiting to make contact with me. The list grew to a few more and after only a few minutes I was able to get more than the 4 needed contacts. I also was able to make my first S2S contact for 10 points with W6PZA who was activating St. John Mtn. W6/NC-004. This summit was one of the more challenging hikes but had the best reward so far. Alie and I both thought it was totally worth it! Thanks to KK6TMN, KI6NAT, WA7OEF, KA6OSX, KK6TNH, W6PZA and KK6TDG for the contacts. 


07/05/2016. Summit : W6/NC-317 – Summit: Wiedemann Hill, San Ramon, Ca. Elev. 1,854ft. (2nd Attempt)

     Success! I made it into the gated community. Several of the houses within the community are still under construction. And, wouldn’t you know it? I’m totally in the market for a 2.9 million dollar track home……or at least the guard at the entry checkpoint believed I was when I said so. I made sure to have a webpage for the development handy on my phone so I could show them the ones I intended to drive past and look at. To be fair I did at least drive by. I can honestly say that after looking I wasn’t interested in purchasing one of these houses today. Heh 

     After driving to the very top end of the gated community I hit the gate that lead to the summit. It was locked with a “no trespassing” sign though it had several locks acting like a chain which suggested many different people were able to access it. “Why not me?” I figured….

     On my way up to the top with Rosie the rescue pitbull. If you’re in the Bay Area and are considering pet adoption I can’t stress enough how great Tony LaRussa’s animal shelter (TL-ARF) was with my families adoption of Rosie. They made it very easy to adopt her and even gave me 90 days to make sure she was the right fit. If she wasn’t I was given the choice to bring her back for a full refund of my adoption fees. It’s wayyyyy passed the 90 days at this point.  😎🐶 /adoptionpitchover

     Views looking east into San Ramon while at the top of the summit.

     I was able to find the summit marker once at the top. This is where I decided to try the activation from despite how windy it was. Improvising, I put my radio inside my partially unzipped jacket to shield the wind which seemed to make a huge difference.

     Views looking west at the bay while standing at the summit.

     Sent out an APRS beacon at the summit and then screencaptured while looking on

     There was a ton of wind once I made it to the top. However, considering how much effort I’ve put into figuring out this summit I didn’t mind too much. Within 5-10 minutes I had several contacts from all over the Bay Area using 5W and a 12″ whip antenna. Thanks to KM6BZL, N6HRO, N6NXI, KG6NUB, KC6SVW, AG6Q and W6OG for taking the time to allow me to be able to log them as contacts!


Summit : W6/NC-317 – Wiedemann Hill, San Ramon, Ca. Elev. 1,854ft. (Failed Activation)

     I decided today to try and tackle the Wiedemann Hill summit after looking at it several times on the SOTA goat app. I noticed the clear way in was through a gated community but that the guard shack would prove a worthy obstacle. I figured I’d try to take the advice of K6ILM’s (K6EL) write up and instead approach the summit from the backside and head northeast to hopefully hit it. His suggested route took me into a different un-gated community that bordered the Dublin Hills Regional Park. The suggested route led to a gravel road inbetween two houses at the end of a cul de sac. Since his write up the road has been gated with no trespassing signs. Since the trail is visible not even 100 feet behind the gate I ignored the signs and hopped the fence with no problem. How you choose it is up to you. 

     Once you jump the fence you find yourself here with a small pond on your right. The trail marker will lead you north on the Calaveras Ridge Regional Trail. After looking at google earth and trying to reverse track from the summit backwards to my starting point this seemed the most logical choice.

     Rosie and I on our way to see if we can make it to the summit.  

     Mile 2 of the hike I came across a few wild pig traps. I also noticed tons of what appeared to be boar scat all along the trail. If only CA allowed silencers…

     Continuing up the Calaveras Ridge Regional Trail with my sidekick Rosie hoping to find a clear path to the summit. 

     Here is the fence line where the property ends at Dublin Hills Regional park ends. From here I think you’d need to continue across the fence line and head another 1-2 miles northeast in order to hit the tower that sits on the summit point. By chance I was able to talk to K6EL (the station that wrote the guide I referenced for this hike) while listening in simplex. I sent out an APRS beacon which he found online and said he would try to find a workaround on the map from his home computer. After some time he came back and said it appeared my only route was to hop the fence and follow a ranch truck trail for a bit before hitting another fence boundary. From there he said there was another road that met up to the summit road. We both thought it wasn’t the best approach ethically and since I wasn’t feeling too tresspassy on this particular day I called it and hiked the 2-3 miles back to the car. Oh well… There’s always next time.