2,450′ – Bodle Peak

KG6MZS SUMMIT ACTIVATION

22 OCTOBER 2020 W6/SC-237

Westlake Reservoir from Bodle Peak

A little history about this summit – in 1930 a fire lookout tower was moved from Blue Ridge in the San Gabriel Mountains to this location. County forester Spence D. Turner said the move was intended to protect “…a highly hazardous mountain area where there are many summer homes and valuable properties” as was reported in The Forrest Worker in September 1932.

The lookout only lasted 4 years before it was dismantled and moved to Triunfo Peak a few miles west. The foundations for this lookout remain today. Those “summer homes” today are now mega-mansion, wineries, equestrian centers and gentleman farms. The Woolsey fire burned the area on November 8th, 2018.

The hike is pretty easy: only .8 miles and 675′ of elevation gain. The beginning is actually the very rough driveway of 32701 Mulholland Highway. As of this writing there were no “Private Property” or “No Trespassing” signs posted. The driveway ends at a level spot on the ridge where a trailer and a truck are parked. I skirted around them to the right before sunrise and saw no one around. A short way above the trailer the track joins the old Bodle Peak Motorway. This is the long disused access to the fire lookout. It is obviously very seldom traveled. I wore shorts, but anymore brush and I would’ve wanted long pants.

The summit is a nice mountain top with good cell phone coverage and great 2 meter range. I made 2 meter contacts in Yucaipa (Riverside County), San Marcos (San Diego County) and Temecula for a total of 16 contacts, all on 2 meters in the dawn hours. Perhaps the best QSO of all was the last one. I worked Gary, KN6LIY in Thousand Oaks. This was Gary’s first contact on amateur radio as he had just achieved his Technician license 9 days ago! As is would happen I also worked Brian, WA6JFK who was MY first amateur radio contact back in 2002! I just love the symmetry of that.

Not sure why my iPhone took such a weird shot, but it is my only selfie

While I was working the radio, an owl kept flying overhead, lower and lower until I finally had to shine my flashlight at her just to let her know I wasn’t a kangaroo mouse.

Home brew roll-up J-pole
Using an rock climber’s trick of looping protruding rock to save on hardware

The rock formations in the area are all composed of igneous rock – breccia mostly – or rock and gravel that has been cemented together by molten rock.

Saddle Rock in the distance

This was only the third activation of this summit. It is a very nice peak, I’m somewhat surprised. Perhaps people have been scared of by the private property post on the SOTA database.

More information about the Summits on the Air program.

Published by wringmaster

I'm a graphic artist in the movie business. When I was a kid I got interested in astronomy. When it would get too cloudy to observe the heavens, my buddy and I would sit at the VFO of his Hallicrafters S 38c like safe crackers trying to coax faraway signals out of that humble radio. My love of astronomy and radio survive to this day fifty+ years later.

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