Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Updated PAFF Google Maps file

At PAFF we use a Google Maps file to help you find out what the perimeters of the various nature reserves are. We have received a lot of positive comments about this feature. Travelling abroad I have found that finding the exact perimeters can take a lot of time if the local program does not specify them - and you do not want to run the risk of a having your activity declared invalid after putting in the effort.

Imperfect source
The source for our data is ProtectedPlanet (a UN organisation). There is a downside to the data they provide: due to a conversion error their perimeters are about 100m off when plotted on a Google Map. For most areas this is error can be spotted easily as roads or rivers form the perimeter. When the area is more dispersed however, finding out what is part of the reserve and what is not, can become tricky.

A good friend
With the help of a friend (thanks a million!) who specializes in geoinformatics we were able to update the file with perimeter information that fits the real world perfectly. This should prevent any misunderstanding about the location you need be in when you want to activate a PAFF reserve.

Below you can see a picture of an area where the error is easily spotted except for the complex perimeter to the west.

Original and corrected layer of PAFF-058

Some closing notes on validity
For an activity to be valid you must make sure you and all your gear are inside the reserve. For some reserves this means you have to go on foot or on a bicycle. Some reserves are more challenging to activate than others - this is all part of the game. Also, in some reserves a car park or a picknick area might be part of the reserve, but in other cases they might not be. So, do check the maps (we have put in the effort) and make sure you document your location (GPS, picture of your set-up and surroundings).

Sunday, September 7, 2014

PAFF activities in August

In August we have seen activities at PAFF from several OMs, some new to the WWFF program. Four of the recently added nature reserves have been activated this month.

  • Joe DF8KY activated PAFF-043
  • Peter ON2WAB activated PAFF-030
  • Tonnie PA9CW activated PAFF-012 and PAFF-074 (new)
  • Theo PA9RX activated PAFF-075 (new)
  • Peter PD1RP activated PAFF-052 
  • Marcel PG8M activated PAFF-063 and PAFF-086 (new)
  • Lars PH0NO activated PAFF-085 (new)

While a slightly enlarged ON team (ON6QO, ON4LAN, ON5JT, ON5TC, ON5TQ , ON2KMJ and ON8VP) came back to PAFF-015.

Below you can find some pictures and youtube links shared by the activators.

PA9CW working CW from PAFF-074 
PD1RP working phone from PAFF-052
PA9RX's set-up at PAFF-075
PG8M working from PAFF-086
PG8M working from PAFF-063
Using my new slingshot at PAFF-085
There are also Youtube clips from two operations: PA9CW from PAFF-074 and the ON team from PAFF-015.