Dawn Hike to Verdugo Peak (W6 CT-269) 3140 ft, 4 November 2016

Again, the forecast was for a hot day so I wanted to get an early start, and also a mountain that was not a long freeway drive. Because of the heat, I planned a short VHF-only activation. Decided on Verdugo Peak by the Whiting Woods Road, a new way up the mountain for me. It is a well graded dirt road, but really too steep for me to take the bike so it would be a good hike. Verdugo used to be CT-034, but since the “official” SOTA lat/long shifted “more” than allowed during the latest ARM update, it got a new reference: CT-269.

My previous bike ride and activation of Verdugo via the Hostetter Road


Reached the trail head in only 50 minutes of driving from my house. I wish all the trails were as close! Set off by headlamp and starlight at 0600. I seemed to be walking towards the constellation Orion much of the time. After awhile, switched off the headlamp, and by sunrise at 0717 was pretty far up the mountain


From here, the view up to a false summit. Just below this radio gear, take the road as it continues right, do not take the road that goes down to the left.


After going to the right, the real summit is not far


Total time to the summit was 1 hour 40 minutes, 1750 feet (530m)  elevation gain in about 3 miles (5 km)

Set up the j-pole. I found that the RFI environment was such that with the rubber duck antenna on the HT the noise level increase was small, but with the j-pole there was much more noise so I switched ON the 10 dB attenuator. But I prefer this because the other operators receive my signal much more strongly when I use the j-pole.


This is a good 2m FM  mountain if you watch out for the RFI! Good coverage in all directions.


Hughes Aircraft Repeater (W6HA): N6HEG and AB6UI

Nice view of downtown LA


At the end of the activation I heard Steve WB6POJ come on frequency, I have worked him quite a few times, one of which he was doing some work on the repeaters on Mt Disappointment. He told me that he was heading up Whiting Woods Road and was just opening the gate. So I said I would see him as I hiked down.

Nice views of Mt Lukens, on the hike down


Steve, WB6POJ. We had a nice chat. He was heading up to fix one of the LA County Sheriff Department’s repeaters which was intermittent.


As I continued the hike down, two cyclists passed me riding up. I was somewhat in awe of them because they were riding up steep sections that I would have to push my bike!

Mt Lukens again


Nice shaded area where you can park your car at the start of the hike. There were three other cars parked on the other side of the street by the time I returned. I had been the only one there at 0600. The sign says no parking from 10PM to 5AM. I would suggest this Whiting Woods route rather than the Hofstetter route for a hike; the latter has way more people on it so is more crowded. The Whiting Woods is nice and quiet. By the way there are bright street lights here so it was easy to park before sunrise.


73! Hal N6JZT


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