Sunday, June 5, 2011

Pigeon Mountain for SOTA (W2/GA-244)

For Summits On The Air I activated Fulton Counties highest point, Pigeon Mountain (2780+ ft).

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Access to Pigeon Mountain is for the most part an easy walk. Although there is not an actual trail to the summit. There is a trail to the col in-between Pigeon and Panther Mountains.
The Trail Head is at the end of Pinnacle Road.


View Trail Head for Pigeon, Pinnacle and Panther mountains in a larger map


View pigeon_mtn in a larger map

Take the trail to the left.
You will pass a few small ponds with Beaver activity, and some old foundations of buildings next to the creek.
When you come to 'Y's in the trail always opt for the left.
You will eventually come to a newly cleared and marked section of trail. This is the first place you will see a Blue NYS trail marker.

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These markers are for the start of the trail to County Line Lake. It skirts the edge of Pigeon Mountain. You can, at this point, opt to start bushwacking up hill or follow the trail to County Line Pond and then climb.
I opted to walk to the Pond and was greeted with beautifully tranquil pond that has a fantastic beaver dam.

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If you do follow the trail to County Line Lake, pay attention to the trail markers. I found it very hard to follow at points. This trail is infrequently traveled so there are no 'herd paths' to follow.

To ascend Pigeon Mountain from County Line Lake head back down the trail about fifty foot and find a clearing in the brush to head towards the top.
The summit is marked with a large boulder in a very small clearing. There are no views to be found at the top, only heavy vegetation.

Pigeon Mountain Summit

I had trouble setting up the Buddipole VersaTee vertical in the small clearing due to all the branches overhead.

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Once on 20M I qualified the summit in around 10 minutes ! I had planned on using psk31 as well but I was having so much fun on ssb that I never got around to changing to psk.
After around 1 hour the horse flies were really beginning to get the better of me and I'd had enough. I packed up and headed back down the hill a different way.

I took a bearing on where I'd seen the first NYS ENCON trail marker and headed towards that.
Once back on the trail I headed back to the truck. At one of the ponds I noticed a number of butterflies.
I'm not sure if they were sunning themselves or what.



By now, I managed to outrun most of the horse flies and was happily greeted by swarms of mosquitos. You have to love the Adirondacks this time of year.

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