Two hams, VE6EY Calgary and V51WW Namibia. We both live next to big parks. I get to see deer and coyotes. He gets elephants and zebras. Hmmmm.
Today, I had a very nice conversation with ham radio operator V51WW in Namibia. Our radio signals traveled 14 thousand kilometers during this contact. More, actually, if you add in the bouncing off the ionosphere. We spoke on 14.210 MHz in the twenty meter ham band. He has a pretty good antenna and put a great signal into western Canada. I also have a pretty good path to southern Africa, the benefit of being on a hill that slopes down to the northeast.
Wynand Wolmarans – that’s his name – lives on a farm near the city of Tsumeb in northern Namibia. The Republic of Namibia became an independent country in 1990. Hams there adopted the distinctive “V51” call letter prefix at that time. The best time to talk to southern Africa is during the afternoon at my end, late evening at his.
V51WW Namibia – A Tale of Two Very Different Parks
What’s interesting is we both live next to large parks. In my case, I live next to Fish Creek Provincial Park in Alberta. It is one of those rare parks that still survive in a major urban center. Our visitors always enjoy seeing the deer that wander up from the park into our back yard. We get occasional visits from coyotes, and once a bear that wandered in from the mountains. Lots of different bird species, as well.
V51WW lives next to a park, too. In his case, the Etosha National Park in Namibia. But his park features more exciting animals wandering by. These include elephants, rhinoceros, zebras, lions. Exciting. If you are stuck in the winter, here is a warm video visit to Etosha. Ham radio helps bring us closer together.