Friday, January 29, 2010

Croker Island

I have been to Croker Island twice in the past three days. Its 120nm from Darwin, which about 80nm is over water! Pretty fun/scary... etc in a single engine plane. I did it in a C206 and a C210. I definately prefer to fly the C210 no question. There are very strong winds at the moment due to TC Olga in the area, and the groundspeed in the C206 on the way back was down to 88kts, and in the C210 it got down to about 110kts.

A view of Melville Island about 40nm north-east of Darwin. This was taken on the C206 at 5500.

On the left hand side you can see a company C206 heading to Croker as well. I cant remember what height he was at!

Croker as per the GPS in the plane. There is lots of military airspace around Darwin (as you can see in the GPS) so its important to check the notams every flight.

Finally Croker Island strip! This is the strip, which i have found out 2 days in a row always has a howling cross wind. The settlement is around 6nm further north-east. An advantage of flying in the top-end is that most of the strips a sealed. This one is an exception to the rule, however they are very well maintained and take a lot of rain.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Lake Evella Charter

I think thats how you spell it. Today was some good wet season flying, but i didnt get to snap to much of the storms as i was too busy dodging terrain and remaining visual to snap photos! Either way i got some of Lake Evella and the flight there in the morning. Enjoy.

Main street in Lake Evella. The 'top end' communities seem a lot nicer than the central Australian ones. It's definately smoother flying, with sealed runways and VHF coverage most of the way.

210 i was in today, parked at Lake Evella.

Mission Aviation Fellowship airvan, doing a mailrun i think, similar to my job back in Alice Springs. Can't say i miss flying the airvan. 300 hours on type is more than enough!

Some build up in the morning over the Alligator river. We provide life vests in these planes as its a legal requirement and we do tend to fly over large areas of water often. But the crocs in that river would render them useless.

Smooth air at 7500ft. Awesome.

Looking at one of the most northern areas of Australian coastline. Next stop would be Indonesia or East Timor.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Some might remember the old photo i had as my blog header! I guess the ones who actually read it may have some idea which photo i mean!

This blog is a tribute to a friend who became a good mate through a friend of a friend. It is always hard to goto a new place, new city and not know anyone to help you out or where to go etc. But without even meeting me, Dave was able hook up some pizza, accomodation if i needed and answered everything a young fresh commerical pilot needs to ask!

The man himself!! His advice and support has helped me through all my work in GA. I definately owe him a lager or 6.

The instruments and throttles of a C404. I dare say in a year this is all i will post photos of as i progress forward! i hope so anyway.

The plane being loaded by one of the agencies that organises the bookings for these flights.

And finally the original photo from the header of the blog. It all comes back to where it kinda started! This is taken across the ramp back towards the company i work for.

I was a fresh, green and inexperienced pilot back then and didnt know the world of GA like i do. But his one bit of advice was to get into same company he worked. And with a bit of luck and lots of hard work! (a successful interview helped) im now there. Funny how this picture takes me back to the time when i was longing for that good GA job, with no experience in aviation except a few pieces of paper that allowed me to fly aeroplanes with people inside for commerical operations.
Anyway its late night, and its my food for thought! Thanks Dave, your words of advice were acted upon!

Monday, January 18, 2010

206 Charter

So the new company i work for has a pretty diverse fleet. From the C206 all the way to the metroliner, and soon to a 32 seat Embraer Brasilia. Also operate a fleet of cessna 404 titans, 402's, Barons and conquests! So there is definately great opportunity to fly great aircraft.

This particular C206 is decked out with a Garmin 530, Autopilot and some sort of weather radar thing. I don't know how well it works yet, although i'm sure i will out soon enough being the wet season.

We departed runway 18 at Darwin and then a left turn to 220 to track south-west. I managed to get a good shot of the city.

At the moment im checked to line flying the C206 and C210 for something different! C206 is a fun plane to fly, although its a lot slower than what im used to. But at the moment im enjoying to scenery and smoother air to complain :) It's also nice to be in a radar environment with a clearance delivery, ground, tower approach and departure frequencies to deal with.

Darwin is still pretty small compared to most cities, but its definately bigger and feels better than Alice Springs to live in. Although i do miss the friends i made in Alice a lot. So enough chit chat, i'll show you some pictures of my flight to Channel Point. Its only 60nm from Darwin, and is basically a row of nice houses in the middle of nowhere! However they had all the bells and whistles, including cable tv and comfy leather couches haha.

Here is a view from the shore at Channel Point. The water is full of saltwater crocs and stingers to no swimming. Most people here go for the barramundi fishing.

Outside view of the house we stayed in.

Not a bad way to spend the day and get paid!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

New Job

So i have started a new job, up in the tropics of Darwin. Its the wet season here and we have had lots of monsoonal rain. So its a nice change from the desert, although it's making me sweat due the humidity!

The new company is really good, lots of progession and nice planes to fly, so im pretty happy about the move. I will take some photos soon and post them.

Till then all the best, hope you had a great new year.