But it's not galactic chatter - it's an emergency distress beacon. It stretches credibility further when you consider how long Kirk's been on the planet when he arrives at the outpost.
A planetwide evacuation signal. And Scotty was on *another* planet. And asleep.
And how long was Kirk there for? A matter of hours. 6? 8?
Sorry, I meant the distress signal from the life pod. Although it is arguable that he should have picked up the Vulcan distress call too, I'd let that one slide, since he would not think there would be much that he can do and seismic activity may not register as a major emergency from his perspective.
I think it would take maybe 8 hours to cross rough terrain in deep snow to reach the outpost (possibly a longer if you compare mileage with sleds for arctic expeditions) but he and Spock also seem to spend the night in the cave so it's probably much longer. And lets not forget, if you use a lifepod you're probably in trouble. Scotty was essentially the ambulance for Kirk's 911 call - 8 hours is plenty of time for a wounded man to bleed to death.