Monday, March 23, 2009

4 Hours to Go!

4 hours till im meant to take off too Murray Downs. It always seems like a short flight, but its the same distance of Ayers Rock to Alice Springs, about 180 miles. In a 210 thats around 75 minutes. Im not looking forward to todays flight for a few reason. Its in a plane with a new engine so im probably going to have to sit in the bumps and heat. And most likely i will get the plane ready and be at work for a few hours for a no show passenger. But such is life.
Anyway, i thought i would post some photos of last friday. I had to do a flight with one of the blokes i live with. He was flying the passenger Cheiftan and i was in the freight 210. Was a good day. We both operate efficiently and managed to get home a few minutes early. In doing so we managed to get a few photos of each other landing. I had some good opportunities to get him taking off, however my battery died as i was about to snap. Again, such is life.

Some of our photos to people who dont fly much would think they are a tad dodgy, but it was an extremely windy day and i thought we both handled it well. Its good when you fly with a mate, just makes the day go by a lot quicker. And you can have some fun!

This is the windsock at Mount Davies. I cant pronounce the Aboriginal name, although it sounds a bit like "pip-il-jarra."

An action shot of me landing at Mount Davies. As you can see by the windsock photo above, i needed some crosswind technique.

Ever wandered how much dust is blown over from a departing aircraft at all these unpaved strips we land at? Well this is an action shot Phil took of me taking off from Mount Lindsay or "Wattaru." This also demonstrates why we have to clean our aircraft so often!

I believe this shot is of yours truely taxiing out at Amata. Its the only paved community strip we goto on this run, apart from Ayers Rock and Alice Springs Airport.

An inflight shot of me in the 210 taken from the Chieftan. We were inbound to a place called Nyapari. Anyway, hope you enjoyed the stories! feel free to comment.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, March 16, 2009


So i lost my handheld camera.. somehow. Im not sure how it happened, but it did. So i have been forced to learn how to use my SLR. Not a bad thing, but also not that convenient to carry.

However, back to the title of the post. This is the rego of a Westwind aircraft, operated by Pel-Air, that crashed on approach into Alice Springs back in 1995. This is the ATSB report for the crash for anyone interested.
I wont go into much detail with it, but it was definately something, although a tad morbid, i enjoyed researching and seeing the wreckage. They were doing a NDB/Locator approach, which used 3 different navaids, which was at the time unique to Alice Springs airport. There were a whole list of things that went wrong, however the crux of the crash was that the FO set the minimums of the approach to 2,300 feet, rather than the 3,100 required for CAT C aeroplanes. However, the captain agreed with the minimums that the FO set. They also had excessive decent rates after the final approach fix. And finally decended to the circling minima before being within the circling area, and being well below the MDA. When you see the crash site, its sad to know that if they had been around 20ft higher, they would not have collided.

This is a photo of the rock where they first collided. You can see aluminium scratch marks on the rock and then the trail of destruction begins. This is on the Northern Side of the Ilparpa range.

Some wreckage which you can follow along the trail. I have taken various shots of aircraft pieces. We found everything from the DME, to some of the cargo that was on board. Apparently when it crashed it was carrying a fair bit of money and it was said to have scattered money all over the ranges.

This photo shows you the southern side of the Ilparpa range. You can see a tiger A320 coming into land on rwy 12. The Ilparpa is on the Southern side to the Macdonnell ranges.

This is part of the main wheel and wing assembly. This is located in a small valley down the southern side of the range.

This is a piece of the fuselage. Hard to tell if its part of the cockpit section or the side, but you can see how devastating the impact was. We found one of the cockpit seats and it was almost unrecognisable as a seat.