SOTA – Summits On The Air

SOTA LogoIf you like the outdoor life and getting out into the fresh air, then there’s lots of radio fun to be had with SOTA – Summits on the Air.

The concept is a simple one – get together some portable equipment, hike to the top of a summit (you don’t have to be a mountaineer!), and make some radio contacts – there’s a competitive element to it too. If you’re up a summit, you’re “Activating” it, and if you’re at home making contact with activators, then you’re known as a “Chaser”

What’s a Summit?

Strolling to the top of a small local hill it’s going to cut it – SOTA sites have to be meaningful in terms of height – the official definition is that a site has to have a “prominence of 150 metres”.

Obviously, some parts of the country are more suited to SOTA than others. I live in East Anglia, and there’s not a single SOTA site in the whole region, whereas there are 55 in the Lake District (North East England), including England’s highest, Scafell Pike, with a prominence of 978 metres.

Here’s a breakdown of the SOTA sites:

  • Scotland: 1216
  • England: 174
  • Wales: 159
  • Northern Ireland: 65
  • Isle Of Man: 5
  • Guernsey: 2
  • Jersey: 1

There’s a list of all of the UK summits here: UK SOTA sites

SOTA sites - data from sotl.as and map from openstreetmap.org

SOTA sites – data from sotl.as and map from openstreetmap.org

SOTA Video

A SOTA activation featured in an episode of TX Factor – see below:

SOTA Websites

This short article is just to give you the basics – if you want to dive into SOTA, here are some handy links:

  • Introduction to Activating a Summit – A guide on how to get started, what’s involved and what to take
  • SOTAWatch – A real-time monitor of who’s been spotted, and where – the essential tool for SOAT chasers
  • SOTA Discussion Reflector – Essentially a forum to discuss all things SOTA, and announce upcoming activations
  • SOTLAS – Another excellent tool, including map and spots database – well worth a look
  • SOTA Beams – Online store to buy all the kit you’ll need to get /P up a summit

Got something to say about SOTA, or a link we’ve missed? Let us know as a comment below…

Spread the word. Share this post!

Leave Comment

Your email address will not be published.

By using the HamHub UK website, you agree to the use of cookies. View Privacy Policy

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close