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TOPIC: GAAR 2011

GAAR 2011 4 years 7 months ago #31620

  • LeifH
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Just as an explanation some of us from the Virtual Airline here at the Pond (Venture Hawaii)
are flying in the Great Australian Air Race again this year

To that end I had to ferry a Dove from Stanthorpe to Coolingatta

Ummm Its raining down there

Since I posted this Peter Watkins kindly repainted the Venture Hawaii Dove in "racing" colours

so, here is VH-VOA one of the Venture Australia Doves as its being raced in G

Attachment vh-voa.jpg not found


AAR2011



I had forgotten how much fun Dereks Dive is to fly -- it really is a Jewel in Fs9 or FSX


Leif
<<In the early morning rain, with a dollar in my hand>>
Last Edit: 4 years 7 months ago by LeifH.
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Re: GAAR 2011 4 years 7 months ago #32125

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Hopefully Chris will post a shot of his Biffo

But, in the meantime - here is the third Venture VA entry



Thanks to Keith Paine and Peter Watkins

Leif
<<In the early morning rain, with a dollar in my hand>>
Last Edit: 4 years 7 months ago by LeifH.
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Re: GAAR 2011 4 years 7 months ago #32127

(Repost of my GAAR forum entry)

Venture Hawaii is returning again this year with at least a couple of aircraft so far. This year I'm flying VH-API, the Bristol 170 Mk.32 SuperFreighter assigned to our Australian Division. As such, it was pretty easy to get to Cooly, it was already just down the coast at Williamtown. Thankfully, our dispatchers in Australia also work minor miracles on a daily basis, so not only did they make sure I got onto the base with only a short stop at the gate for visitor passes that had already been prepared, but they got us a paying charter to Coolangatta.

I arrived at the post with my copilot, Billy (he's from Texas like me) around 0700 local to prep the plane for the flight. By 0715, we were on the ramp. VH-API, named "Matilda" by our CEO when we got her on lease from British United Airlines a few months ago used to be G-ANWM, so there are still a few spots where our guys in the UK didn't remove the identifying marks. Additionally, we rented a bunch of our support equipment from BUA, so we didn't feel right painting over them.



Exterior preflight complete, we opened up the nose and put the ramps in place to ready the plane for loading.



After that, things got a bit busy, so I didn't get any pictures enroute or when we arrived, but I did receive this picture today from our mechanics who flew up to Cooly to prep the plane for the Race. Between you and me, I think they took a joy ride up to Cairns in the plane because I don't remember seeing those hills at Cooly.



I'd like to take this opprotunity to thank our sponsors - General Motors Holden, AMPOL, and CalTex Oil. Dunno why competing oil companies here in Australia chose to both sponsor us, but they did, and apparently CalTex gave us a bit more money than AMPOL did. :)
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Re: GAAR 2011 4 years 7 months ago #32173

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A quick shot to thank Keith and Peter

The new panel works and looks great

Just took it out for a romp around Cooly before Tag gets home.!!!!


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Re: GAAR 2011 4 years 7 months ago #32179

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Now isn't that typical of fathers.......they always have to try things out first!!!
( My father & uncle burnt out the train set before I got chance to try it - many, many years ago......)
Keith
Upside Down In Cloud.....
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Re: GAAR 2011 4 years 6 months ago #32390

Well, here we go for my first leg.

The chase plane took a bit to catch up after takeoff, so we didn't get anything on initial departure, but once in cruise, he settled in and got a couple of good pics.



Once on the ground, I got e-mailed a couple of pics from spotters along the route (I knew that putting our race number would come in handy :) ). According to the spotter, this was taken a bit south of Toowoomba.


From the cockpit, I saw the Toowoomba airfield off our left wing and took a quick picture. I landed at this field using this very airplane almost 2 years ago when we first setup shop in Australia.


A bit further down the road, our chase plane took a pic of us with the Oakey base in the distance.


Here's a pic from the chase plane of us approaching our last waypoint.


A resident of Dalby got a pic of us just after our chase plane's pic.


Due to clouds near Chinchilla, I switched to IFR (I Follow Roads and Railroads) and started our descent to get under the patchy cloud layer.


Here we are on downwind as viewed by the chase plane.


...and as I saw in the cockpit.


Finally, here we are shutdown off in the grass because there's just not enough room on the ramp for us. We hauled a bit of cargo up here with us for some of the area farmers, so we decided just to use the ramp to unload. The hatch on top that is open is the emergency exit, but since there's no Air Conditioner and it was +25*C by the time we got in, we got it open as soon as we could so that we wouldn't totally bake.
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GAAR 027 Leg 2 4 years 6 months ago #32393

Well, the afternoon rolled around and we reboarded the bird for our flight to Bundaberg. We loaded up a spare Gypsy engine for our CEO's Dove and some melons (hope R. Lee doesn't know how many we got, he might want me to bring them back to him) and got ready to fire up the bird.


Approaching our first waypoint, we got the following shot


As the sun started to fully set behind us on the way to Gayndan, our chase plane photographer took a couple of shots of the setting sun reflecting off the plane.



As it got dark, photos got harder to take, but he managed this one of us as we passed Gayndan.


A local helicopter got the following pic of us as we completed our turn around on the runway at Bundaberg
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GAAR 027 Leg 3 4 years 6 months ago #32456

Finally get to start catching up with some of my legs. I got pictures, but life hasn't given me time to edit and post them. I'm on leg 7 now, so I'll have some catching up to do. Without further ado, here's leg 3:

After takeoff from Bundaberg, our chase aircraft caught up with us near Woodgate and got this shot with the Coral Sea in the background.


As we approached Hervey Bay, they took this picture of us over the Coral Sea looking at the city and Fraser Island.


As we rounded the south end of Fraser Island, they took a couple of pics of us with the "stranded Ferry" in the background.




After that, they split off to run ahead to Hamilton Island. However, we got lucky at Lady Elliot Island where a news helicopter was covering the race. They sent us these pictures of the big Bristol turning base and final.



They then captured this picture of us as we rolled to a stop on the short grass strip.


Once we got stopped, shutdown, and the ramps out to deliver some supplies and a generator to the island, we caught this picture of a DHC-6 on approach. They ended up landing long and going around for another try.
Last Edit: 4 years 6 months ago by CAPFlyer.
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GAAR 027 Leg 4 4 years 6 months ago #32457

Well, here's Leg 4 from Lady Elliot Island to Hamilton Island. What a difference, a small cozy island resort and a big flashy island resort. :)

As the day wore on, things got wet, and I mean really wet.


We taxied to the end of the runway and a brave soul took this picture while watching from the side of the runway



Once at the end of the runway, I snapped this shot real quick during the final power check.



The News helicopter was up again, and got this picture as we lifted off.



Once airborne, our chase plane tried to stay with us, but with the driving rain, he only got this pic before having to move off for safety.



As we approached the hills, we saw the Boyne Valley, but decided due to the weather that going over was the best bet.



Our chase plane managed to get a shot of us as we went over the hills.



As we approached YWIS, the chase plane got this shot.



And as we departed (what a zoom lens he has, we were probably 1/4 mile behind him on this shot)



The weather continued to slowly improve as we headed north towards Hamilton Island. As we went "feet wet", this shot presented itself-



He decided to get an "extreme" closeup of us too -



As we entered the downwind for Hamilton Island with the tower, our chase plane decided to get a few "artsy" shots (or at least that's what he called them).



And on final -



I put my camera up and got this haphazard picture while on final of the hotels.



More in a few.
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GAAR 027 Leg 5 4 years 6 months ago #32458

We didn't get many pics on Leg 5 because of some turbulent air, but here's what we got.

A pic of us climbing with Dent Island in the background -



Looking back at Hamilton Island



Uh oh, here comes more clouds....



Ohh, pretty....

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GAAR 027 Leg 6 4 years 6 months ago #32459

Well, here's the trip from Alpha to Winton.

The Chase Plane photographer got this pic while we were getting ready to start up.



Taking off -



More rain and low visibilities.



Break in the rain -



From the cockpit -



Uggh... does it not end?



We're supposed to see what in this race?



The airport is out there somewhere....



I think we found it.



I don't think we're quite lined up - go around.



This is a bit better...



Rolling out -



Shutdown. Hope the wheels don't sink too low.

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Re: GAAR 027 Leg 6 4 years 6 months ago #32460

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Great shots Chris...the weather really is crappy
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GAAR 027 Leg 7 4 years 6 months ago #32488

Dunno what happened to my original post, but here it is again - Leg 7.

Well, weather's a lot nicer today, so on to Townsville we go and the Lavarack Army Strip on the south end of town. We were asked to fly a couple hundred extra pounds of equipment from Winton for a construction company who was working on a project at Lavarack as well. After calculating our fuel requirements and checking against all of our runway data, we reluctantly agreed thinking we'd be okay as long as we didn't spend too long making our touch-and-go at Charters Towers.

Once loaded up, some locals from Winton helped us out getting off the ground since our chase plane needed to take off first. One of them was nice enough to take some pics and send them in.

Here's us warming up the engines




Our chase plane got this great picture of us lifting off at the end of the runway.


And from the ground, the local photographer got this shot as we turned towards the north.


Once we got to our cruise altitude, the chase plane moved in and took a couple of photos.




At Richmond, we were sent this picture as we passed overhead of the airfield.


Shortly after, the chase plane got this picture.


A nice "atmospheric" shot.


Our intermediate stop, Charters Towers in sight.


Turning to join downwind.


The locals started taking pictures as our big lumbering aircraft turned final.


The Chase plane got us just before touchdown.


And from the ground.


After leaving Charters Towers, we began looking at our fuel situation and were realizing that between the extra few hundred pounds of stuff we had onboard that we hadn't planned on and the fairly stiff headwind we'd been flying almost directly into the whole way, we were going to be really close on fuel. Consulting the charts, we were looking at only have a few minutes of usable fuel onboard when we landed, so we knew we were going to have to take it easy the rest of the way. We spend the next 20 minutes closely watching fuel burn and making small adjustments to our cruise power settings to ensure we didn't run out.

Townsville in sight!


We got permission from Townsville Approach to go to the east of "Antenna Hill" so that we could use the last minute descent to save a little fuel and be more direct to the airfield.


Skirting past the hill


The Lavarack airstrip as we start our turn to final.


Rolling out on final approach


The last three are a sequence from our chase plane photographer that he got from the ground.




We shutdown with just a few minutes of fuel left onboard and a few pounds lighter from the sweat caused by our anxiety and the hot Australian day.
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Re: GAAR 027 Leg 7 4 years 6 months ago #32490

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gorgeous screenies Chris

As usual Im running late -- just done the Lady Elliot to Hamilton leg geez it was raining like a cow on a flat rock!!

Ill post some screenies of Tags legs in the Proctor -- its beautiful

Leif
<<In the early morning rain, with a dollar in my hand>>
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GAAR 027 Leg 8 4 years 6 months ago #32491

Here's the big picture post (30 shots!). Leg #8 is an interesting one as Lavarack is in very close proximity to the Townsville airport, a fairly large regional airport and a major RAAF Training Base. Add to that, our directions are to fly a lap of Magnetic Island which is located almost directly off the end of the runway at Townsville, and things get interesting. But let's get off the ground first. :)

Our chase crew decided to leave after us as they knew the departure would be interesting due to the short runway. They weren't wrong. First couple of shots are us taxiing to the end of the runway.





Once lined up, we set the brakes and brought the power all the way up to 50" Manifold Pressure, quickly checked that everything looked good and released the brakes.



It looks closer than it was (telephoto compression), but we didn't clear that tree by much more than about 10 feet.



As we climbed out (and they climbed into their plane) they got this nice shot.



They quickly caught up to us and got this picture of us backdropped by the airport.



And from the cockpit, we set out sights on the SW corner of Magnetic Island



Townsville Airport in the background.



A few shots of our lap





As we returned to the SW corner of the island, Townsville called us up and told us of a nearby aircraft. Turned out to be one of the RAAF's Hawks.



Turning out from the NW corner of the island hand heading towards Palm Island



From the cockpit



DHC-6 just turning off the runway at Palm Island



Closeup by the copilot as we make the turn over Palm Island.



As we rolled out on the next leg, we get another call about traffic. This time it's an Australian Army Blackhawk. Our chase crew got this pic



Coming up over Ingham.




Heading north from Ingham, we found the clouds going from nice fair weather cumulus into very forboding cumulogranite.



So, we turned a bit right and made sure we kept clear.



Then, we approached Innisfail before turning west and inland for Chillagoe.



Chillagoe is somewhere down here.



Oh, there it is.



On downwind.



After that I didn't get any pics and our chase crew decided to head to Cairns while we completed the rest of the rally.
Last Edit: 4 years 6 months ago by CAPFlyer.
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