Rendezvous in South Korea

Canterbury has continued her ‘Port Hopping’ adventure around the Eastern and Southern coast of South Korea, visiting ports in some truly spectacular scenery.

Tonight, after a day-long cruise through the myriad of small Islands around the South coast, Canterbury was coming in to Port in Mokpo, so I decided to fly the 737 down tomeet her.

Canterbury arriving in Mokpo in the late afternoon

Departing at dusk from Osan, then a quick flight down the West coast had us arriving overhead Canterbury just after dark.

A night flight across South Korea

Mokpo airport closed in 2006, due to a number of reasons, but in my world, it was still operational 😉    One of the reasons the airport closed was the “frequent misty weather”…. which is what I encountered tonight!

After the flight, with Canterbury and the 737 bedded down for the evening, I fired up DCS:World, and had a quick test flight in the Macchi around Nellis.   I now have 3 versions of DCS installed on the PC, each with their own benefits……   The primary benefit of the ‘Steam’ edition is that it is the only one compatible with the version of the Nellis ‘NTTR’ terrain package.

Brent’s intro to VR

Brent, long time friend and complete sim-nutter visited the ‘cave again tonight with a specific mission:  To have a ‘go’ with VR, and DCS:World.

Blasting down a valley in the TF-51 Mustang

After screaming around in the Macchi, then the mustang (keeping it Kiwi!) and uttering oaths about how good VR was, I shifted him into FSX with “FlyInside”.   Brent stated that he wasn’t keen on helicopters in FS, and had never really gotten the ‘feel’ for them… so obviously I put him straight in the Bell 206 JetRanger, which he flew with no real problems!  VR is incredible for making you feel as if you really are flying.  More oaths, more smiles, then it was time to switch to the Skyhawk sim, and catch up on all the improvements that have happened since his last visit.

Ready to taxi as -3 in a formation of Skyhawks

The Skyhawk hop was just a quick blat out to the Raumai range, as ‘dash 3’ in a flight of Skyhawks, fly a couple of guns passes, chase the FAC Arrow around then return to Ohakea.  Gun camera footage to follow showing just how close he got to the Arrow 🙂

Then as a final flight of the evening we headed upstairs to have a first look at the 737 Classic.

Captain Smith at the controls of ‘SAC505’ out of RKTH

A quick blast-off from RKTH, then an orbit over the bay to spot HMNZS Canterbury, and back to the field for a visual approach and landing.

Looking for Canterbury somewhere out in the bay

A good, fun evening exploring lots of different aspects of our hobby!

Recon Up North

Tonight I decided that it was time to put together a very simple mission into North Korea.  Primary platform was the Skyhawk on a tactical recon of some smaller airfields around Wonsan.   The 737 was orbiting just South of the DMZ, and Canterbury was ‘hiding’ behind an Island off the coast of Wonsan.  The idea was to rendezvous with the 737 on the way North, then descend to low level for the tactical part of the mission.  After Wonsan, I would do a fly-by on Canterbury, before heading back down the coast, via the final airfield in the mission.

Even before the mission got going there was a setback with my plan;  The 737 lost *half* of the CDU display, making it basically useless.  So the plan for the 737 was changed, on the fly, and launched without a functioning FMS!

Rendezvous with the 737 went ok, then it was time to descend into the weeds and head North

The weather was pretty awful, with turbulence and rain at 15,000ft, but lower down it was far, far worse, with low cloud and bad visibility.

Bad vis’ keep me on my toes, AAA was only visible at the last moment, and occasionally cloud would obscure mountain sides creating a few ‘tense’ moments!
Recon of the first airfield, and a quick snapshot at a AAA site on the way past!

At the first ‘target’ airfield I encountered a concentration of AAA, and had a quick snap-shot at them as I passed….”honor the threat” as the  strike guys say 😉    Next up was a quick pass over Wonsan airfield for a couple of photo passes, then out to wave at the crew of Canterbury.

Canterbury ‘hiding’ behind an Island off Wonsan
Final blast down the coast, and yes, that is 614 KIAS showing on the HUD!

Finally back at Osan, waving to the neighbors on the way to my parking spot

It was a great mission, but a shame the 737 has failed it’s CDU…. that just moved to the top of my list to repair!  Next time I want to roll some FS-Recorder tracks into the mix, with maybe some FAC action in the Arrow…

Shut down at the ramp.

0.9 Hours in the log, a bunch of photos… now it’s time to build on the mission and bring more elements into play!

First sortie “Up North”

Tonight I spent a bit of time downloading, installing and configuring scenery and AI for an upcoming event (to be announced here soon!).  After everything was sorted I flew a quick test flight to make sure all the new elements were working together in the sim.

Preparing to get underway as a U-2 ‘Dragon Lady’ taxied past

The weather was not that nice for our departure from Osan

Approaching the DMZ, the locals seemed to be a little offended by our “sightseeing”

So after a quick scoot along the DMZ it was time to head back to base. This time at a much more civilized altitude!

Back at base and a little drive around to peek at the local “talent”; F-16C’s in their shelters

And John Young’s incredible A-10C’s These are AI models, yet the level of detail is as good as many “flyable” aircraft!

The paint on the A-10’s by ‘Mins’ is stunning, the realistic weathered look brings the models to life!

Map of the mission… North to the DMZ at low level, turn right and skim along the border, and finally South and back to base.

Cards, Boots, Camera and EFIS

It’s been a while since an update, and despite working long hours I have something to talk about!

I received a B737 passenger safety card in the mail, which will fill its place in the seat pocket..

Then, I bought a new phone, with a much nicer camera… So I had to try it out;

This was taken on the climb out of Trondheim, headed North and eventually to a small mining town in Russia.

During the climb I did some research on interfacing my new EFIS panel to Project Magenta. It appears that most of the functions I need should be easy to implement, and may only need some LUA scripting for the more complex tasks.

Initial machining on the EFIS panel is complete, now I just need to find some time to assemble and wire it! Once everything is fitted and tested I’ll remove the face plate, paint and engrave it.

The final bit of news is Huge… I got new boots today which means…

(drum roll please)

Susan the fighter pilot gets some boots at last!

Trondheim

For some reason I’ve always wanted to visit Trondheim in Norway.  Perhaps it was all the Alistair MacLean novels I read as a teenager, with the Russian Convoys as their theme…..

Engaging in a little low-level navigation on the way up from Oslo

Short finals to runway 27

Parked at the gate after a great flight

So far Norway has been a great adventure.  Next I hope to explore around a little more, then set sights on the UK to continue the exploration I started last year.

For links to the Norway scenery I am using go to Freewarescenery.com

The journey continues

From Kolkata we continued on our North-Western heading, landing in Tashkent, Uzbekistan before the final hop to Oslo in Norway…

Nice scenery, and not too bad weather in Tashkent

FL370 over Sweden, about to start the descent into Oslo

Tonight’s mission is the arrival and landing in Oslo.  The beauty of X-Pause means that the sim automatically paused 100 NM’s from it’s destination… waiting for me to come home and fly the arrival 🙂