Monday, February 17, 2014

Cone Peak (W6/CC-023) SOTA Activation

On 15 Feb. I woke up early after camping out on the coast ridge road. We got a little bit of rain during the night but nothing to worry about. Del and Charlie decided to sleep in and take a break from Junipero Serra yesterday. They both did amazing and pushed themselves hard. They had a much deserved break. During the stay at the truck Del was able to see a Bald Eagle and a Grey Fox that walked right by the truck. The fox did not even know that she was there so it presented a good up close view. This was the second fox we saw up there as we saw one the night before on the drive up. We had parked about 1/2 mile up hill from the trailhead so I walked down the road. When I got to the TH I ran into the guy that I had saw on Junipero Serra the day prior. He had made it the 40 miles and two peaks in 24 hours! He told me that he had gotton to the point early in the morning where he could not drink any water anymore. I offered to give him a ride down to his car on the coast. He said that he may take me up on it but he was gone when I returned to the TH. I assume he made the 11 mile hike down. Cone peak was a great time. I spent a couple hours up there and had great sunny weather and some amazing coastal views.

Route: 
From Mountain View, CA take 101S to Jolon Road, just north of King City. Follow Jolon road for about 20 miles and turn right towards Fort Hunter Ligget. Follow map and everytrail from here. Cone Peak road is accessible by any vehicle with a little bit of clearance. I would call the ranger district in advance to make sure that the gate is opened. In the past I have been through the area and the gate has been closed and locked. If you have to start from the gate it adds an extra 12 miles to the round trip hike.

Cell Signal: 
Only analog signal for text at the top. I had to rely on SMS for spotting. It worked great!

Radio working conditions: 
No issues. Nice and quiet on the bands

Trail Condition: 
Very nice trail all the way to the top. Some switchbacks closer to the top.

Weather: 
Great day at about 55 degrees. A nice breeze!

Fees: 
None 

EveryTrail Route: 
http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=2669737


Setup: 
PFR3 with internal AA batteries - http://www.qrpkits.com/pfr3.html
Note: the AA batteries lasted me on all three activations without a charge. I was impressed.

Lambda Antenna - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXo0XucRpt0&list=FLuy-J6QwwXmIdgM0-I2ue7w&index=1

AME Porta Paddle II - http://www.americanmorse.com/portapaddle.htm

Contacts:
21 Contacst on 20m, 30m, and 40m. I stayed for about 1 hour. I hope that I did not leave any chasers hanging. I am sure that my wire antenna is not the best but it is light and seems to work fairly well for me. 

This was the sunrise from the truck when I woke up.





This is a view of Pt. 3761 (W6/SC-107). This looks like a tough climb with no trail to the top.  Maybe someday.


The trail was good and well defined all the way to the summit.






I read in a different blog that there is a pine tree on Cone peak that is only found native in this area. This is the only pine tree that I saw so I figure it must be the one.


Looking across at Junipero Serra.

The tower at the top. There was two different groups that camped on the summit. Del and I have a plan to backpack up from the coast and stay the night here one day.

A view looking south down the pacific coast.
Panoramic view from North East down to the South.


Panoramic view from the West to the North East
Thanks again to all the chasers! It is amazing how much fun this hobby is.


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