Occidental Peak (5732 ft, W6/CT-098) and Mt. Wilson, 4 May 2013

I decided to take a look at Occidental Peak, the highest “bump” in the west to east ridge extending from Eaton Saddle (west) to Mt Wilson at the eastern end of the ridge. Until a few months ago, I hadn’t even known that there was such a thing as Occidental Peak! I have been to Mt Wilson many times to visit the observatories there. However, Mt Wilson is 5712 feet high, Occidental Peak just beats it at 5732 feet! Here is a picture of at the start of the hike, you follow the fence on the right past the broadcasting complex. Imagine more broadcasting facilities and observatories behind you running for another mile and a half, that’s where you are.

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After a 10 minute walk, I crossed a helipad, and got a view of Occidental Peak, the nearest summit. The more distant summits are Mt Lowe, Mt Markham, and San Gabriel Peak (left to right)

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A walk through an oak forest, a little slippery with acorns and leaves underfoot. Quite pretty.

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And views of rugged terrain.

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I reached the summit after a total hike of about 40 minutes. There is a Sierra Club register which goes back about a year, the last hiker had been there 10 days before. Saw that Dan (as WO6M) was in the book, he’s activated this summit twice so far. There were perhaps no more than 100 names in the note book, so this little peak doesn’t seem to get too many visitors. I’m sure most people just go to Mt Wilson. Here is a view looking back along the ridge towards Mt Wilson.

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And the antenna on its mast.

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Started on 30 meters and made 22 QSOs

10 MHz: AE7UT, AD5A, K0YO, NM5SW, NS7P, N7WM, W7CNL, K7SO

14 MHz: NA6MG (Dan on Santiago Peak W6/CT-023), W0MNA, KC3RT, W4ZV (Bill on W4C/WP-012 Anderson Mountain in North Carolina), N4EX, AA4AI, N4MJ, K0JQZ

21 MHz: NA6MG, AF6WU, K4PIC, K5DEZ, AD4J, WA2USA

It was nice to get as far as Georgia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania from my little station, here is a picture after I had finished and taken down the antenna, hence the yellow string all over the place.

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And a nice view of Mt Lowe and Mt Markham from a viewpoint a few feet from the summit of Occidental.

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Hiked back, then drove along to Mt Wilson and had a hot dog and coke at the Cosmic Cafe. Many hikers there, probably hiking up from the valley, a long climb!

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Followed by a walk to see the observatories, here is the 150 foot solar telescope.

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And the 100 inch telescope observatory through the trees.

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The 100 inch telescope itself. If you look closely to the upper left, you can see Edwin Hubble’s rickety observing chair on display. He discovered that the universe is expanding, and that there are galaxies outside our own one. I always like coming to this quiet place of science.

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Finally, here is a view back towards Occidental Peak as I drove down the Mt Wilson Road back to the Angeles Crest Highway.

73! Hal, N6JZT

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