Flights 69-77 , going down under

Flights 69-77 , going down under  

24 members have voted

  1. 1. Have you reached Australia?

    • Hell no, because [insert lame excuse here].
    • Throw another shrimp on the barby!

Recommended Posts

YBAS, Alice Springs to YAYE, Ayers Rock-Connellan

According to Sir Elton, "All the young girls love Alice"... however, I'm not so keen so I'm moving on to Ayers Rock


This is the most interesting thing I saw until the big rock appeared on the horizon!


There it is, the big red rock.


I'm going for a closer look at that en route to my next set of destinations.


See ya!


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Still lagging far behind, but hopeful.


2016-08-25 [75.alt.12]: Nadi Intl, Niti Levu, Fiji [NFFN] - Auckland [NZAA]


Still experiencing some tropical weather in Fiji at the time of departure.  Soon to find, . . . well not winter snow, but certainly some cooler temperatures.


Taxied out through the general aviation area, and saw a varied collection of old birds there.  This was about the most interesting thing at the entire airport.


Well, it was also nice that one of the parking spots was arranged to allow the larger craft (an A330 in this case) to park partly sheltered by a hanger (that is not a static display, it is AI).
(NFFN, Nadi International by NXGN.  Another marginal effort.  Building models are okay, but the texture work is lacking.  And the photo-terrain was not at all blended -- where is the airport?  Oh, right there in that faded spot.  Good for a cheap add-on.)


The flight itself was not worthy of much note.  A little cross-wind on landing, but the Cat II approach eliminated any difficulty.






2016-08-25 [75.alt.13]: Auckland [NZAA] - Queenstown [NZQU]


Returning to the cockpit, looked out the window and saw this:
(I was reassured that I have never heard any reports of cannibalism in the Airbus family, because that thing looked like it could eat two of these 319's and still leave the table hungry.  And there were three of them at this airport[!?].)


An obligatory image of an airport identifying feature.
(Auckland/NZAA part of OrbX New Zealand North Island)


We also passed by the one and only airplane of Tasman Cargo Airlines, but I won't show a picture, because once you have see one 757 wearing DHL colors, you have seen them all.


Then, there was the first little drama of the day, as we experienced an unusually-long delay at the runway hold from a sequence of movements:
1.  Air New Zealand A320 landing
2.  Jetstar Airways stopped at runway hold point next to ours
3.  Mount Cook (Air New Zealand Link) ATR landing
4.  Air Nelson (Air New Zealand Link) Dash 8 Q300 landing
5.  "Jetstar 741, taxi into position and hold." [!]


This led to a little conversation:


"Tower, GNZ1883.  Still waiting on hold for two-three left."
"1883, I am aware of that."
"Tower, GNZ1883.  But,... I think we were here before that Jetstar bird."
"1883,  You were.  And, that is what happens when you go to hold point A1A instead of A1 as directed."
"Jetstar 741.  Winds three-zero-two at two eight.  When airborne contact departure on one twenty four decimal zero.  Runway two three left, clear for takeoff."
"(background laughter) Departure on one twenty four.  Cleared for takeoff, Jetstar 741."
. . .

. . .
"GNZ1883, Lineup runway two three left."
"Lineup two three left, GNZ1883."




The planned cruise altitude was 30000 feet.  However, we encountered severe turbulence.  Apparently that 100+ knot crosswind was not something to trifle with.  It was necessary to descend to 26000 in order to find some calm air.
(I continue to be impressed by the new level of realism which ASN2016 gives.  The airspeed and altitude readings bouncing up and down, along with the nose of the aircraft also bouncing around.  It really gives the impression of turbulence.  I may be repeating, but thunderstorms were previously a nuisance, now I am on the lookout to avoid them due to actual concern for the aircraft structure.)


Only occasional views of the New Zealand terrain, largely clouds.


And then, during the approach, came the second span of drama during the day.


I do not know if the reader is familiar, but there are restrictions about who is allowed to operate and aircraft into or out of Queenstown.  Briefings on the topography, local weather effects on flying.  Simulator training and at least two familiarization flights.  To operate at night, the requirement is at least one full year of daytime flight operations at the airport.


The airport is surrounded by mountains.  It is much lower than Cusco, for example, but the mountains closer in and are more of a threat.  The approach to runway 05 requires holding at a higher altitude for a long time, then a steep (2000 ft/min) descent to follow a curved lake valley, head straight for a mountain, then turn at the last moment to align with the runway.


To give an idea (and because it is a nice view), this is lake which must be followed during the descent and approach.  The airport was behind and we are almost ready to begin the left turn.


I actually had no charts available (only the airport operations instruction).  And was not aware of the lack of WAAS (no FMS/autopilot descent control) until too late.  So, on my first attempt, I was too high, as will be clear in this image:


Even with the spoilers left out, it was not possible to get down, aligned, and slow enough to stop on the runway.  Got it down okay, but not enough room to stop, so TOGA and called it a missed approach.


I guess the controller was not happy that I did not call "missed" earlier, because we were sent to hold and left there for twenty minutes.  Which, ultimately, was a good thing, because my lack of familiarity with the FMC (again failing to properly enter the hold), I ended up unintentionally wiping the flight plan again and had to re-enter and check the approach.  The controller [ProATC] wanted us to fly directly to the FAF, but that was not going to work because that would have us flying directly opposite the necessary direction and the Airbus cannot turn that fast.  So, I made sure all the expected waypoints were in the plan and we got the nice turns,... along with complaints from the controller.


Second time, I handled the descent, still not knowing if I should be using the HDG TRK - V/S IPA button.  The indicators just appeared on the flight displays and I followed them.  The PAPI seems to have been telling me I was too low, but the FMC is saying too high.  The AOIs informs us the PAPI is not accurate unless aligned with the runway.  But, I was more attending to that hillside directly ahead.


Although prepared to divert to Invercargill if the second approach was missed, I made it to the ground easily the second time.
(NZQN, Queenstown by OrbX.  I cannot highly-enough recommend this add-on.  The approach was one of the most exhilarating I've experienced.  Keeping in mind that most of the earlier "difficult" ones were made in the Twin Otter, with so much time to adjust.)




2016-08-27 [75.alt.14]: Queenstown [NZQU] - Cambridge, Tasmania, Hobart Intl [YMHB]


A few days later, we were ready to leave New Zealand and finally return to Australia.

A daytime view of the terminal area.


To give another view of the difficulty of this airport, here is a view of the peaks that rise to 7000+ feet, starting just off the airport grounds.


I had filed for SID IPNO1D, which would have us leaving back down that lake with room to climb out (and expecting nice views), but clearance absolutely would not hear of it.  So, we got the 1C and departed to the East.

The view down runway 05.  Not much problem expected with that 5000 foot range of mountains directly ahead.  But that mountain which seems almost to touch the runway, is the base of the range that grows above 7000 feet. . . . And the departure expects a rapid right turn to head to the south -- into, or through, those mountains.


So, this situation made it impossible to immediately use the FMC/flightplan or disaster would result.  I choose to fly straight ahead, climbing at the standard rate, until clearly above the mountains ahead, then make a left turn over those lower mountains to return and join the flightplan while overhead the airport.  The controller did not like much of it, but all turned out well.


A view of the airport from the turn, showing it within its environs.


And, finally, looking down at that 7800(?) foot peak near the airport.




The remainder of this flight was standard.  A nice view on approach.  Directly ahead, on the tip of the peninsula, the Lime Bay State Reserve (Slope Island just beyond).  Hobart Intl is to the right of the window pillar.  Past the darker area, over Tiger Head Bay and Seven Mile Beach.


Which brings the flight up-to-date.



With a large portion of the Australian airline AI already completed, it is hoped that things may speed up for me.  But I still need/want to repaint a couple of AI and one user airplane.  Planning on a short trip out of Melbourne, to "visit" (virtually) a friend who lives in the area, and the closest field will only handle GA planes.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, after about a month of absence I'm going to report about a couple of flights I'd completed before the break, but unfortunately not reported. I'm still hanging around Australia and reached meanwhile Canberra, the last station before jumping over to NZ. However, one after the other...


Leg #77.5 YBBN-YCFS, Coffs Harbour, 184.7 nm, 0:31 hrs, C750, UUGO5 HUUGO W760 GAMBL W214 CFS


A quite short leg and I'm asking myself what my passenger (charterer) has to do in such cities like Coffs Harbour which is situated at a shore known as "Banana Coast" (probably for reasons) and rather known for its blueberries and fishing. However, she was already seated after I finished my outside checks and looked a bit like being in a hurry when I boarded in order to ask for taxiing.



Brisbane had been busy this morning, but we fortunately got a slot after only 12 minutes and a compensation flight plan correction allowing us to shortcut our turn. Pushing back, engines already spooled up:



Meanwhile it rained and the forecast left us with the probability of a complete closed cloud cover, While descending we got nonetheless a gap in the clouds and I used it for diving through it before ATC took over to guide us.



Approaching "Banana Coast" after leaving the woody hills and the area known as Ulidarra National Park. At the right the hills of Never Never are visible, being part of the Dorrigo National Park. Here we are preparing the finals while following the base leg.



After the landing we'd been guided to the main terminal where no other plane shared the apron with us. However in the background I saw quite a lot of small GA props and busy traffic. I looked very much like in the US.



My passenger left the plane and asked me to be prepared to take off again within the next three hours. She said something about a meeting at the airport.


After she left I asked our agent about a nice restaurant and he told me about a place not far away from the GA hangars. Even better, the guy offered to give me a lift while after grumbling about the short usual times between service duties. However, he appeared to be hungry and his recommendation turned out to be a sort of canteen having an excellent cook, though.


Not too long after we'd returned my cell phone rang asking me to prepare the next flight to Sidney.


Leg #77.6 YCFS-YSSY, Sidney/Kingsford Smith, 259 nm, 0:46 hrs, C750, CFS W214 MAKOR W551 YAKKA W180 MEPIL MEPIL1


Meanwhile I asked for the weather for our next flight and ordered some extra fuel due to the proposed headwinds with increasing strength (actually, the traffic situation didn't look too promising as well as we had to meet a tight slot). However, we'd just finished the preparation when our guest appeared and we where able taking off after another 10 minutes or so. While we got some heavy showers shortly after leaving Coffs Harbour we even where able spotting the shore line after braking through the clouds. The flip side was it became (and remained) quite bumpy.



Here our approach to Sidney. We arrived just in time, but where directed to a hold in order to prevent a flock of big irons in front of us, weaving their wake turbulences behind them. After half an hour circling we got the clearance to continue our approach. Nice weather, isn't it? The airport is still covered even if we had been cleared for a visual to Rw16R.



Kingsford Smith Intl is huge and we had to taxi a while. Here we are on our way to the GA terminal before the controller revised his first instructions due to a technical problem of a plane still occupying our parking spot.



Surprisingly we had to turn in order to park close to the freight terminal in the west, giving us the feeling of being a dwarf between giants a couple of minutes later.



While watching a limousine approaching picking up our passenger we prepared  our plane to sit here for the next week or so, sufficient time visiting Sidney. Unfortunately we missed to be here during the summer or at least early autumn. It had been windy an quite chilly. Here we are, just before shutting down the engines.



Okay guys, that's for now. Just again the remark that every place had been pimped by freeware - specifically Sidney. See you.... (well, somewhere in the far future).


(PAUSE +++ HOLIDAYS +++ ...)

Unfortunately it had not been the right weather for the beach. Very rough winds the the related waves prevented my from swimming, except in my hotel's indoor pool, and even sailing wasn't possible at all. However, Sidney has a lot of attractions and Clubs...


Still a bit reluctant I prepared the final leg of this batch of flights bringing us to Canberra, Australia's Capital, the compromise between Melbourne and Sidney. Compared to both cities it's rather small even if people living there are proud about the fact that it is indeed the country's biggest inland city, about 100 km away from the beach and separated by a crest.


Leg #77.7  YSSY-YSCB, Canberra, 138 nm, 0:30 hrs, C750, CLIFF4 WOL H65 RAZZI RAZZ3P


Even if it had been only a hop with about half an hour flight time, it took us nearly an hour after starting the engines before we took off. As I took sufficient fuel on board we didn't ran short while waiting (actually, I switched off one engine for more than half an hour while queuing). Airborne, hurray!!



Even if the wind had been still strong, we got a smooth ride. Here we are already approaching our STAR, only a few minutes before landing.2016_09_01_YSSY_YSCB_03_AB.jpg


While touching down we had some very uncertain moments as we saw an other plane sharing with us the runway in the opposite direction. ATC didn't react at all and we decided to brake as fast as possible and to escape to the grass if necessary. Fortunately nothing serious happened. The ATR's crew had misunderstood an instruction to pass the runway after missing their taxiway and had turned too early after landing at Rw12. Of course they had stopped immediately after recognising the situation and waited for us to leave, being aware about the paper trail to follow.



Here we are heading for our stand, the trouble causing plane following us.



However, we'd sucked in some dirt into our #2 engine and had another three weeks to wait until we got a replacement. A repair didn't make it and we had to order a complete engine unfortunately. That's it. I hired a car and explored the national parks around Canberra. BTW, our charter contract was finished anyway as the Capital had been the final destination of our business lady. Finally I decided choosing a different ride for the next part of the tour and asked for another pilot to continue.


See you somewhere...

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, FlyingAxx said:

Well, after about a month of absence I'm going to report about a couple of flights I'd completed

Good to hear from you Axel, nice report.


And it is time for me too, so Greeting! my fellow [sim] Pilots,


I have not been idle in my flying.  Part of my time was spent preparing to [virtually] visit some friends who live in Melbourne.  That took quite some time.  Also, there are several small airlines on the Australia East Coast (one of them started operations only in July) -- these all needed schedules and several repaints and one FS9 model conversion.  After all the time of sitting in Tasmania (and then later Melbourne), I felt rushed to catch up.  Flying instead of reporting.


To begin with the overall picture for the last two weeks:



Before leaving Tasmania, I wanted to mention a nice freeware available for Hobart Airport.

YMHB - Hobart Intl, v2.1, Sean & Matthew Devenish; AVSIM:

2016-09-03 [75.alt.15]: Tasmania, Hobart Intl [YMHB] - Melbourne [YMML]






As I mentioned, I was on the ground for a very long time at Hobart.  When (in the simulator) I am going to "visit" friends, or duplicate a flight they made, I try to find a real-world airplane which is available and fits an FSX user plane.


After searching and long thought, I finally picked this one, for sale at Moorabbin [YMMB] in southeast Melbourne area.


And, I bought a version of the Cirrus GS-22 for FSX, and started the repaint.  That took a week of work, because I discovered the paint-kit had tremendous errors.  I also discovered an error in the mapping of the 3-dimensional model to the graphics texture.


Still, after arriving in Melbourne, I rode a taxicab over to the Moorabbin area and found the sales dealership
(surprised to find this in the simulator [OrbX, of course]).

They took me out to the flight line to inspect, familiarize and prepare for the short flight over to Ballerat [YBLT] to visit 2016-9-3_22-16-21-526.jpg
(the paint turned out okay, I feel)

We hopped in to the cockpit, the sales guy started taking me through the systems -- a little advanced for a small GA plane.  I was all excited to take off, and then he tried to start it.  And ... the starter would spin the propeller, but the engine would not start.  We tried everything, but this bird wasn't going anywhere.


In summary, I made the mistake of buying an airplane from a well-reputed company that I have has some trouble with before.  The paint kit is a mess.  The mapping from model to the graphics file has an error (only changing the model can correct it).  Unless FSX started in a basic plane like the Cessna, then changed to the Cirrus, FSX would crash to the desktop (needing a compete machine restart).  And, in the end, the engine won't even start (yes I followed the manual).  I tried to work with their support, but they would not even approve me to enter the support forums.

So, I wasted close to a week painting and then trying to get this plane to work.  And ended up deciding to just take advantage of the 30-day return policy.  No names will be mentioned, but never again.


Instead, I accepted the sales guy's offer to take the simple white Caravan instead and flew the next day.  (After making a very quick repaint.  If you were to check the Ian Ballie website, you would actually find that Cirrus and the Caravan, both for sale.)

2016-09-04 [75.spur.1] Morabbin [YMMB] - Ballerat [YBLT]






2016-09-06 [75.spur.2] Morabbin [YMMB] - Ballerat [YBLT]


A couple days visiting the friends (meaning: finishing up the Melbourne and East Coast AI), and flew back on almost the exact reverse course.  When arriving at the initial fix (VOR: AV), I requested a direct to the STAR entry point and saved 20-30 minutes of flying.



2016-09-06 [75.alt.16]: Melbourne [YMML] - Canberra [YSCB]


Quickly as was possible [getting the controllers back assigned to the Airbus] and it was off to Canberra.  I must say Melbourne was very busy, with both runways in use.  Other than the waits there were no problems.  Even though I was cleared to takeoff while another was taxiing back down the cross runway, the controller seemed to time everything well and there was plenty of separation on the ground.




Canberra, final.

(I have the City of Canberra add-on, and made the mistake of leaving the scenery detail on ultra-high.  VAS blow-up while taxiing to the gate.  But, it was the best Airbus landing I have yet made -- right on the centerline.)



2016-09-08 [75.alt.17]: Canberra [YSCB] - Brisbane [YBBN]




This flight was insane.  I am certain I selected the correct flight altitude for the direction, but there were at least five cases of proximity violations from others, flying in the opposite direction on the airway or crossing over.  A couple resulted not only "Traffic! Traffic!," but "Descend Now!"  After the second of those, I requested a different flight level.  I think the closest was less than ¼ NM.  It happened so fast I could not even get a picture of the airplane.


I guess this one would have been even closer, but by this time I had already descended from 35K to 34K, and we had that 1000 foot separation.

2016-09-08 [75.alt.18]: Brisbane [YBBN] - Cairns [YBSC]


And, finally, returning to the starting point from the diplomatic adventures, ahem, I mean "Airbus A319 evaluation flights for Qantas."  Little did I expect, at the beginning, that we'd be taken across most of the South Pacific as well as the Australia East Coast.




This long excursion did succeed at the main goal of getting adequately familiar with the Airbus.  In fact I an now a little sorry to leave that beautiful airplane behind and return to the Twin Otter.  (Especially with the flight into Paro in the near future.)
I just continue to feel a certain attachment to the paint scheme on the DHC-6 -- how could that map be left incomplete?
On the other hand, the real-world DHC-6 [N564D] has been sold, re-registered and is now making a living over in Europe.  So, maybe in the next few days (sitting presently at Darwin/YPDN), I can convince myself to make the switch permanent (I mean, find tour sponsors who will pay to support a jet instead of a prop).  Perhaps there will be a repaint for the Around-the-World A319 in the future.



2016-09-10 [75.alt.19]: Cairns [YBSC] - Mount Isa [YBMA]


After collecting my former travel companions (who had been spending weeks in recreation to recover from the earlier Papua New Guinea experiences), we set out to return to the scheduled flight route (at least for a day or two).




Little to say about these flights except, "Desert.  Vast, dry, empty desert."  Okay, to be honest, it was green and only slowly blending to red during this flight.  We didn't actually experience the deep desert until after Mount Isa.

2016-09-10 [76.alt.1] Mount Isa [YBMA] - Alice Springs [YBAS]

Of course, in the smaller airplane, I had to stop at Alice.




Although there have been several smaller airlines to bring to life in FSX, the longest part of my delay has been the [Australian] Royal Flying Doctor Service (putting aside the GC-22 debacle).  Besides the FS9 airplane model conversion, getting their flight schedules working required almost 75 airports be added to UT2.  Those doctors are flying into all sorts of little dirt, gravel and "is there anything there?" strips.  A little more sophisticated at Alice Springs, where they seem to have a larger base:


2016-09-11 [76.alt.2]: Alice Springs [YBAS] - Yulara, Ayers Rock [YAYE]




The assigned approach to runway 31, took the flight route very close to the Uluru, but I will skip the almost obligatory photo from above and instead show one from the ground.  After walking the entire length of the building, from the GA parking to arrivals, at least we had this view:

I actually had a large amount of ground texture problems during the approach with this scenery.  My guess is a conflict between the Aerosoft Ayer's Rock and the older OrbX Australia SP4 -- problems like square water patches showing up and then disappearing.  I would expect there is a fix somewhere easy to find in the support forums, but I have been so fixated on flying that I've not looked yet.


Anyway, I have now "officially" completed this set of legs.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Congratulations, Dale, I'm still far away, and even in an opposite direction...


Here is my report about my ride from Canberra to Auckland.


Leg #77.8 YSCB-NZAA, Auckland, 1308 nm, 2:41 hrs, B77F, CULIN9 CULIN Y59 SY L521 LUNBI ARAD2E


As I mentioned before, I had to wait for a replacement engine for the Citation X and decided to take the freighter transporting it as it was scheduled to fly via Auckland to Singapore. As the weather became worse in Austalia's south-east, rainy and even a bit chilly for my taste, I wasn't angry about rushing a bit till reaching the next stage final. Only roughly an hour after the landing, the freighter was prepared to go again.


Here the B772F is sitting, prepared for taxiing out.



The route lead me back over Sidney, but now already on FL370. We'd been lucky to get a short glance on the bay again as the clouds had been quite dense along the route so far with a lot of scattered thunderstorms.



While flying east the transient from twilight to darkness didn't take long.



Just half an hour later it had been dark around us. Just some high rising clouds got a shiny appearance.



However, from Sidney on we got a really strong tail wind, helping us to shorten the time till we can get some sleep. 583 kn ground speed is not that bad. Well, still an hour to go...



Of course we had to fly into Auckland Intl from the east. Here we are crossing the city downwind.



Via SelCall I got the information that my Private Air had already arrived waiting for me in order to bring me farther south during the next days.


As usual a word about the scenery: NZAA had closed one of its parallel runways (05L) which now serves as the main taxiway. Ray Smith's AFCAD reflects this state besides many other improvements. Just look for at


To be continued, it's still a long way....


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leaving Auckland without having the opportunity to have a closer look is quite a shame. Its climate is friendly, a bit humite but usually often sunny an warm - something between oceanic and sub-tropical. Furthermore the city grew along railway and tram lines from its beginning and that's the reason why public transport is an option till today for moving around in the city. There is a rich cultural scene and off course the population coming from different places all over the world and complementing the native people are giving a rich choice of different cuisines. Furthermore the urban area reaches from coast to coast and about a third of New Zealand's inhabitants is living here around.


However, the wide gap between those of you guys riding on schedule (or even ahead) made me increasing the speed a bit without cutting short my original plans. No sailing, no museum, but getting up early in order to continue the trip.


Leg #77.9 NZAA-NZWN, Wellington, 288 nm, 0:49 hrs, B738, PAGL2Q LIMES H384 KARRL Y506 TPAPA TPAP3B


I found the plane docked quite close to the tower (it had been a long walk from Ops to get there). I'd rather expected finding it somewhere in the wild, but our agent told me that there had been no possibility in the usual zone reserved for large GA like ours - well....

Fortunately everything was well prepared, including fuelling and all required papers.



As the wind didn't change over night and we had only 5 PAX, our exclusive interior, and 9 t of fuel on board we climbed extremely fast.



Unfortunately the weather became worse and while following the approach procedures we didn't get even a short glance over the bay and Wellington.



While already crossing the bay we got a view over the city, being the capital of New Zealand for about 150 years now. As it is situated at the southern peak of North Island the idea had been not to choose the centre of the countries population, but rather the geographic one.



A minute later or so we almost touched down while an Air New Zealand waited for us to line up.



Again, we got a gate. Probably our passengers, a Secretary of State and her staff had been the reason (I think the same as in Auckland before).



After our guest and the entourage had left, we boarded a crew of geologists and their equipment (should I better call it freight?). It took a while sorting out all the stuff the right way and we all decided enjoying having a lunch before continuing.


The scenery is developed by Robin Corn, Godzone Virtual Flight, and available at ( It's nicely done even if formerly created as payware, but now available for free. BTW, it's not compatible with ORBX NZNI - a new version might be out.


To be continued...

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Satisfied by an excellent lunch brake (we'd followed a recommendation and found a fish restaurant half the way between the airport and Wellington's harbour). Even if the whole crew wasn't really keen continuing working, we hastened a bit back to the airport. The local agent carried us directly to the plane and after the usual outside check our new guests boarded. Those had been an a bit aged guy (he looked like being in his seventies), his wife a flock of young people, looking and behaving like students (well, I might be wrong).


Leg #77.10  NZWN-NZCH, Christchurch, 173 nm, 0:33 hrs, B738, PEGSA3 PEGSA DCT KARSA H159 MESIX MESI6B


Here we are pushing back. BTW, the label at the building's front says: "Wild at Heart". I don't know why I was thinking about Rugby and "The Blacks" when reading it first...^_^



The flight along the coastline of South Island was short. The land didn't show too many features, at least nothing had been visible from the distance.



The whole flight had taken less than an hour block time. Our guest wanted to pick up some more members of their party. In any case, they had to leave the plane while we had to refuel and we expected them to be back. within an hour.



The usual word about the scenery. The AFCAD is freeware, produced by Kai P. Kamjunke ( and available via ( :blink: I think!).


To be continued.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay guys, this is my report about the last leg before leaving NZ towards Australia again. Fortunately the time we had to spent at Christchurch didn't take too long as I'd planned an arrival procedure being dependent on daylight. After a phone call with NZQN Tower (there where no TAF transmitted) I got the information that it was recommended using RW23. Even it is always a challenge, I decided to fly the RNAV Y approach to RW23, allowing a direct in without circling around the narrow valley. The flip side would be  the need to fly ARCs during the whole approach in order to pass the narrow valleys.


Leg #77.11  NZCH-NZQN, Queenstown,  189 nm, 0.44 hrs, B738,  NILE2R GUPUT Y266 ELRUV ATKIL.RNAVY.RW23


After our PAX had boarded we soon pushed back and taxied out to RW20. It had been a bit hazy, however the visibility was okay. Fortunately we had no cuing as we avoided the afternoon rush hour.



En route, the fog we saw before had been left behind. At our starboard side we can see here Lake Pukai, forming more or less the border to the high rising mountains, and far away in the background  the ice cap of Mount Cook.



While descending via ELRUV to ATKIL (IAF), we double checked all entries, specifically the entered altitudes in order to avoid more stress than necessary. The visibility remained fully sufficient and so we started our descent bringing us down to the valleys. First a left turn leading us over some peaks reaching more than 6000 ft higher than our destination while we had to descent to ATVUP before right turning to the real valley trip. Everything went as gently and as planned. Before turning left again for the finals, we had the gear out and our flaps almost set to full. Here we are, less than 3 nm before touching down. However, we left our airspeed relatively high in order to remain as manoeuvrable as possible, and now we had to apply a bit the airbrakes.



Just a bit later we touched down and reached our stand at the main terminal. We had been lucky with the weather conditions, but I'm taking my hat of to those jockeys flying this or the other approaches every day. The runway is not accessible without turning in to it. Even the VASI doesn't really help (e.g. from RW 05 it's even turned by 5° in order to give a better guidance). NZQN is quite high within the Top 10 of the most dangerous airports.



A necessary word regarding the used scenery. The only satisfying pictures I saw had been a commercial one, made for FTX/ORBX. As I still avoid this stuff, I had to improve the airport myself. As usual I restricted myself to objects I found on my disk, the buildings are default, but arranged to fit at least half the way what can be seen at Google. The yellow taxi lines are default, all other markings are custom made, by using ADE.  I also added some landclass and roads in order to represent the area better than default and fixed some holes in the mesh files. It's not perfect, but I'd been too lazy to customise all markings, specifically the concrete fixed tarmac at the stands. Any form of Apha-blending in order to let the dirt shine through would have been too much extra work. It took me a day, anyway.


The next leg will bring me northwards again. See ya!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, as it seems I'm the last in the row flying this Australian rallye. Meawhile I've reached Ayers Rock, but there are another five legs to report... Let's start:


Leg #77.12   NZQN-YMHB, Hobart, 1020 nm, 2:47 hrs, B738, IPNO1B (RNAV RNP) LIBLA P880 MADOK RNAV-Z.RWY30


The next morning (it had been rather brunch-time) we pushed back, surrounded by airliners that already arrived.


Even if it's been still a bit chilly and sometimes quite wet because of some storms building up from time to time, the lake and the impressive landscape is obviously a magnet for lots of tourists not being dependent on beach and sun. We got ourselves a group of wealthy Australians on board who wanted a lift to Tasmania. As we took some freight additionally and lots of fuel as we expected not only heavy head winds but a lack of adequate alternative airports (except just two islands fields where we would need favourable weather conditions to land). So I rather planned even to go to Melbourne if required.


Shortly later we left the soil of New Zeeland, following the RNAV course (with tight RPN requirements) leading us after a left turn over the Lake Wakatipu to its southern tip before heading to AMANA.



Here we are passing the spectacular western coast with its high rising mountains. At the left side, just above the patch of clouds, you might see the famous Milfort Sound.



Having the Sound now under our right wing tip its time now to say goodbye.



Almost 1000 nm later we prepared our landing at Hobarth, at the southern coast of Tasmania. Separated by some mountains and the mouth of the River Derwent from the city, the airport lays on a peninsula  nearly closing the Tiger Head Bay. The weather is quite nice - just a bit hazy.



The airport itself looks interesting. I seldom saw such kind of "art-for architecture" - nice!



The scenery is freeware by Sean and Matthew Devenish (AVSIM, YMHB - Hobart

The night was <err> interesting. We had a really nice hotel not too far from the airport at the eastern foot of Mount Rumney. However, at bout 2 a.m. I heard a terrible screaming, as it seemed close to my window, and it took about 1.5 hrs or so until it disappeared. When asking the clerk next morning I got the answer that it very likely have been a couple of young Tasmanian Devils living about a kilometre (!) away at the Meehan Range Nature Recreation Area, fighting for some food. Well it rather seemed to come from a place just behind the area being lit by the hotel's lights.


Back at the airport I filed the flight plan for our next leg, just keeping the freight from Queenstown that had passed the customs the day before, but no passengers at all.


Leg #77.13   YMHB-YMML, Melbourne, 344 nm, 1:03 hrs, B738, LTA4 LT H215 ONAGI WEND3Z


Compare to the last day, it happened to be a rather short flight. Here we left the airport and the bunch of crazy Devils living in the woods at our left side.



As we didn't make it to Hobarth's city we took a first and last view upon it...



...before we crossed the border of clouds covering the sky for almost the whole flight.


While landing at Melbourne the plane got really wet and we'd been happy that we got a gate with a jetway (expecting again some PAX the nex day and after the loaders dad emptied the holds).



Scenery: from AVSIM (sorry, forgot to note the author).


Our next leg should bring us to Adelaide, the other big city at the southern coast.


To be continued.


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The next day we got a short impression of sunshine while our passengers boarded and a bit of catering for the short flight was loaded. Surprisingly I was asked from OPS whether I wanted to take an other plane. Virgin was urgently searching a T7 jockey. I did the necessary arrangements for the next legs due for Private Air and left it to the agent bringing me to the waiting bird. A grumbling (a first impression, actually a nice guy with a strong Irish accent) FO waited for me. The usual pre-flight briefings with the rest of the crew had been already done by him and so we just rushed through the parts being important for both of us.


Leg #77.14   YMML-YPAD, Adelaide, 337 nm, 1:02p hrs, B772, NEVIS5 NEVIS H345 DUKES DRINA7A


Everything else was well prepared and a bit later we taxied out for RWY 34.



Less than ten minutes later we already had passed the Transition Alt.



The last thing hopefully a high flying Cape Barren Goose will never see... (we saw some of those big birds not too far from the airport).



Here we are passing first Lake Albert and second Lake Alexandrina. We are already descending.



Here we are already head of the cue moving forward to RWY 23. At our left fountains in midst the Torrens River behind the Adelaide Oval, a stadium and the Convention Centre at the other shore.


A nice and beautiful city, indeed. Even from above it looks quite tidy. Adelaide's history as a city being not founded for prisoners (like Hobart and even Sidney) , but by independent and liberal thinking settlers seems to be somehow effective till today.


After landing we didn't even had the time for regretting that we would not be able to stay at least a day. We only had a slot of less than 50 minutes before our next flight was scheduled.

Here we just reached the gate.



Remark: Scenery by Ray Smith, well done as usual and available at AVSIM (


Soon later, our next leg. My grumpy FO and I prepared the next leg. The rest of the crew had changed and so we had to do a full briefing again. Actually, the guy on my right side appeared to be quite charming while I left him again the necessary talks while I checked the flight documents and giving a few comments from time to time.


Even if we only had only one jetway the ground crew and our cabin staff managed it to board the plane within 20 minutes. Ready to go to Perth, the last station before our last leg to the heart of Australia:


Leg #77.15  YPAD-YPPH, Perth, 1160 nm, 3:20 hrs, B772, GILES3 GILES Q12 ESP Q158 KATHI DCT GRENE GREN2A (heavy head winds)


Here we are already taxiing.



Here we are passing the Spencer Gulf and Port Lincoln west of Adelaide. For the next hour we could try counting the waves only.


A long trip, nothing to see but water and a lot of time to listen to the Irish stories coming from the right seat, full of humour (and sometimes hard to understand), indeed. I don't know why I had to think about The Dubliners so often... :P


The flight was uneventful, but entertaining. Finally we docked and we worked ourselves through the usual paper trail.



While leaving the plane to maintenance we made an appointment with the rest of our crew in order to visit Durty Nelly's Irish Pub, a bar that had been build in Ireland, transported to Australia and assembled again. At least a beautiful story. Fortunately there was a reason not trying too much of alcoholic beverage. I decided to keep an eye on this.


Scenery: Ray Smith, again (AVSIM: There is another one at, being based on Ray's work (with his permission), but this one is a step back in my opinion.


See ya soon again - I'm catching up... :lazy_s:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is my report about the last leg of this batch of flights.


Leg #77.16  YPPH-YAYE, Ayers Rock, 975 nm, 1:48 hrs, AMANA2 AMANA Y31 KARAB Y69 ROOKS


We left Perth via RWY 03. Along the bay and the southern coastline we had a front of thunderstorms and even in front of us our WX-radar warned us about clouds with massive content. Fortunately our SID told us to turn left at AMANA, helping a lot to avoid the storms. The landscape beneath showed quite fresh green for quite a while, even during the spring not too common for this part of Australia where the desert begins usually about 150 nm upcountry. The biggest surprise had been Lake Barlee that usually fells dry for a decade or so. If no land-artist had painted the soil it contained real salty water which will disappear in a couple of months again. Well, I got a lot of rain while flying over Australia, not a real wonder from this point of view.



When seeing the rocks framing the National Highway 4 at both sides we almost had reached our given altitude to follow our RNAV approach to runway 13.


I'd been strolling through the cabin and chatting with a couple of passengers when seeing the quite characteristic rocks outside. Of course I returned to the flight deck immediately. The flight had been tremendous fast due to tailwinds of up to 140 knots.



We only saw two twin GA planes being parked and no other airliner. Our passengers where still exited about the view they had had on Ayers Rock during our approach and even while taxiing. Therefore nobody became inpatient because of the the following time they had to stay on board as we unfortunately had to wait another ten minutes for the guys being responsible for docking on the airstairs. We used the waiting time to discuss our own plans for the rest of the day while working through our part of the necessary paper trail.



A bit later we asked our local agent to organise a crew-bus that would bring us to the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park after carrying us first to our hotel. Surprisingly he succeeded even if the cities' coach capacities had been quite stressed in order to transport our passengers (the city is not that big). However, they guy had helped us spending a wonderful day around Ayers Rock (Uluru).


Final remark: The airport is default, but not too far from its appearance in Google. I think I can remember that I once added a file containing the Ayers Rock, but this is years ago and I can neither remember the author nor the source.


Done, I'm going to plan the next batch of legs this evening. See ya!


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi guys, I am a little bit behind schedule.  Has nothing to do with the flying, which I enjoy, but I am still busy  with some serious home improvement and that consumes a lot of time.



AI traffic and ATC ruined 3 times my approach.  It took a hour to land.



I started early to enjoy the sunrise.


Bad weather conditions,  not too long.


Ground fog


Approach RPMZ. I only have to center on the ILS.


Landed without any problems.

RPMZ-WAMM A dangerous flight!


I took off at the evening, I encountered some rain and lightning.




It was already dark and I the runway had only limited lighting. 



Crossing the water.


Again ground fog


I had a malfunction on the gear, no 3 greens.


But a the runway the gear just pulled out. Strange. I decided to leave the connie behind. 



The next day I had the change to take off in a c-47, which had also served in the Australian airforce during WWII.


Nice scenery on the way.


I took a small detour to see those lakes.


Again groundfog during approach.


But landed safely with "Swamp rat"


Off to AYPY


Weather seemed easy


But it seemed to me that there is always groundfog. Strange mountain passes at the border area.


Landing at AYPY.



Took off , visual conditions were not so great.


Worsening conditions. Instead of 8500 feet, I was crawling at 2000 feet or less.


But the weather situation changed quickly in my advantage at the YHID area.


Sunny Australia



I left YHID behind and set course to the mainland. 


Weather was not in my advantage during the first stage of the filght.


Mysterious rain was falling down, no clouds in sight.


Approach at Mount Isa


YBMA not much fun.



Australia is not everywhere dry according to FSX.


Landing at YAYE. Standard scenery.



Made it.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites


RCKH-RPLL leg completed.


I think this is where the numbers of the legs got a little mixed up. I made this leg 68 but at the start of this topic it is listed as 69 so to avoid confusion I will use the forum nomenclature....


So, leg 69 completed....


Lift off from a damp Taiwan....

68-69 lift off 09.jpg


Heading south, goodbye Taiwan.......

68-69 goodbye Taiwan.jpg


And further south, hello Philippines!!

68-69 hello Philippines.jpg


I decided to try and get to grips with the HUD (its been a while since I've used it). About to intercept the glideslope here..

68-69 hud1.jpg


On finals, it takes a little getting used to having the HUD in front of you but I'm not making a bad job of the approach.....

68-69 hud2.jpg


As evidenced by (almost) hitting the centreline!...

68-69 centreline.jpg


No doubting where we are.....

68-69 gate.jpg


I do have a go at fuel planning and use for wind predictions etc. I planned to arrive with 1200kg of fuel remaining so pretty happy with the final numbers....

68-69 fms.jpg


With the cold winter nights closing in (and the prospect of redundancy, oh dear!) I hope to play catch up over the coming weeks.....


Blue skies and tailwinds to all!


Dave W


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 4.12.2016 at 2:38 PM, Smegtastic said:

I think this is where the numbers of the legs got a little mixed up. I made this leg 68 but at the start of this topic it is listed as 69 so to avoid confusion I will use the forum nomenclature....


So, leg 69 completed....


Haha, after bringing my own flying in accordance with the decided flight planning, my table tells me that it should be #68 (you had been right!) and in my own documentation #160.


On 4.12.2016 at 2:38 PM, Smegtastic said:

Lift off from a damp Taiwan....


BTW, enjoy the sunshine and the damp. I just landed in the desert with +4°C only.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leg 70 completed..RPLL-RPMZ


Holding short of 06, I think we have separation issues on approach here again......

70 holding short.jpg


Moments after I took this picture the second and third aircraft were sent around and I was cleared for take off, result!

Lift off........

70 lift off 06.jpg


Circling the airport to head south.......

70 circling turn south.jpg


After a rather boring crossing of the Sulu Sea the Zamboanga Peninsula came into was at this point I realised not all was well with the sim.......

70 houston problem.jpg


I pressed on regardless as the weather worsened so I couldn't see the ground anyway. Looking at the weather radar this was going to be a typically wet approach for the Philippines!

70 typical weather.jpg


Well when the clouds parted it became clear there was a serious issue, either that or a tsunami had struck that nobody bothered to alert me to.....

70 flooded.jpg


On finals, it became clear this was not going to be pretty!

70 short final.jpg


Using my instruments and radar alt callouts I was able to flare and touchdown without issue and I must say after an hour and a half's flying I was not about to start this journey once again. A typical day in a flight simmer's life I would say..


As a side, I have finally got FTXCentralv3 working and am now updating a lot of my this space!


Blue skies and tailwinds (and dry runways!) to all!


Dave W

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leg 71 RPMZ-WAMM completed


Scenery all sorted out now, as you can see the airport is no longer flooded!

71 scenery ok.jpg


I launch from 27 and make a sweeping left turn to head south, this is the scene that should have greeted me on arrival the previous day!

71 departure.jpg


Heading south east as I climb to cruise altitude (FL240). Here we pass to the south of Basilan Island, we won't see land now till we cross the Celebes Sea and arrive over the Minahassa Peninsula..

71 basilan island.jpg


A late departure today, we are heading towards a night landing!

71 sunset.jpg


As we make landfall and commence descent I am pleased to see detailed scenery through a break in the clouds, looks like the scenery gremlin has taken a break....

71 landfall.jpg


It is clear that the weather will be marginal on arrival, not uncommon for this part of the world. Unfortunately I am making a visual approach at night, a lot will have to go right!


As I become visual it is clear I am way too high and fast, this is how accidents begin. The runway will be wet and if I attempt to continue at this point we are looking at an over run for sure. I wonder how many pilots in this situation have continued and paid the price in this area of the world?


Anyway, I choose to break off from the approach and perform a circling descent..

71 high approach.jpg


After the 360 turn I roll out at a better height and speed, the weather is still bad but I elect to continue..

I am nicely on the numbers on short final...

71 short final.jpg


Once on the ground and slowing the full force of the TS hit me with the cockpit lighting up like a Christmas tree every few seconds, this is possibly the worst weather I have experienced on this trip so far, and typical it is during a night visual approach!

71 weather.jpg


Safely parked up and hoping for better weather for the next leg, a jet bridge would've been nice.....

71 shutdown.jpg


OK, now I'd better go and say hello to the wife!


Everyone's reports from further ahead make great reading and I am determined to catch up!


Blue skies and tailwinds to all!


Dave W



Update: Just looked at the next leg - there is a NOTAM for VA (Volcanic Ash) in the area, never a dull moment on this trip!!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leg 72 WAMM - WASS Manado to Sorong completed


Lift off from 36....

72 lift off 36.jpg


Why does the wind always point in the same direction I want to travel in necessitating a climbing turn over the airport? Oh well, at least it means a tailwind enroute....

72 ott WAMM.jpg



Over the Molucca Sea passing Tifore and Mayu Islands - Tifore on the right of picture....

72  mayu Tifore.jpg



Passing Gebe Island to the east of the larger Halmahera Islands......

72 Gebe.jpg


At least I seemed to stay to the south of the NOTAM'd Volcanic Ash cloud


I was vectored toward Sorong Airport - can you see it yet??

72 visual.jpg


OK, now on approach, I'm glad I checked the length of the runway in my flight prepping, I opted for flap 35. Just as well by the looks of things, I swear the closer I get to the runway the smaller it seems!!

At least I configured the plane early and was ready and stable from a long way out...

72 finals.jpg


A really nice touchdown and slowed sufficiently to take the 2nd exit! Don't know why I was so anxious on approach!

72 2nd exit.jpg


Well, that's the lot for a few days, at least this last couple of flights were fault free, no freezes or loss of fidelity...


I will catch up, I promise!!




Dave W

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Smegtastic said:

there is a NOTAM for VA (Volcanic Ash) in the area, never a dull moment on this trip!!


You should kick out the cigar smoker out of your living space! :rolleyes:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, FlyingAxx said:


You should kick out the cigar smoker out of your living space! :rolleyes:


Haha! I never thought of that, still haven't found the ash tray in the cockpit! :focus_s:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leg 73 complete


WASS (jefman - the old airport) to WABP (Timika Airport)


Climbing away from the spec that is the old airport, relocated to the mainland in 2012 apparently...

lift off wass.jpg


Weather was bad on departure and in spite of the latitude, I ran straight into icing conditions....

73 icing.jpg


Followed closely by a very strong tailwind at my cruise altitude of FL240...

73 tailwind.jpg


On descent and approach to Timika I got a 6025 pure virtual whatever warning. The sim had already crashed once attempting this flight a few days prior. I knew that I could continue but the scenery would become progressively worse. Luckily as I was already on approach I decided to continue and try my luck, I really didn't want to start over yet again.....

73 descent.jpg


The ground was becoming increasingly blurry...

73 blurry.jpg


Luckily it would seem the airport had already loaded so I was able to continue....

73 finals.jpg


Safely parked up...

73 parked.jpg


So still going, slowly but surely!


Tailwinds to all..


Dave W

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Dave,

don't worry, keep on going (flying)! It looks like we have to insert a training session to better understand and exercise online ATC communication for the final legs towards Paderborn.:)

You'll have a pretty good chance to meet us still in Africa.:D


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leg 75 Complete AYPY-YUID Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea to Horn Island, Queensland


Leaving via 14R, first time I've used an unpaved runway on this trip..



Goodbye Papua New Guinea!



Mostly water crossing so nothing of interest till we approach the Australian coast, first we see Murray Island off the starboard wing....




As we descend toward Horn Island, we see Warraber Airport off our starboard wind, the airport pretty much cuts the island it is situated on in two!...



Trees on the approach is nothing new it seems, I'll need to stay a little high then dive-bomb the runway....



A good centreline arrival, even if the touchdown was a little long.....



Lonely here...As I am a little (understatement) way behind they appear to have cleared up the mess left by the previous world travellers....and the good news is the beer fridge has been restocked!:cheers_s:



So give it another year and I may actually finish this tour!


Oh well, onwards and upwards!


Blue skies and tailwinds to all.....


Dave W





Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 14.4.2017 at 4:32 PM, Smegtastic said:

So give it another year and I may actually finish this tour!

Hi Dave,


Even if I'm actually up-to-date, I could easily criss-cross over Europe while waiting for you before touching down at Paderborn. Up to now we didn't see Italy, France, Portugal and none of the countries around the Baltic Sea, not to speak about Norway having fantastic spots (beautiful and challenging). :P

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.