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jt_williams

Orbix Rocky Mountain Tour - Leg 2 - Sun and Moon

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Rocky Mountains Leg 2 - Sun and Moon

 

This Leg of the Rocky Mountain tour will transport the group from Yellowstone to the mountain strips of Idaho. We see some sights along the way, most notably the Snake River Canyon, the Craters of the Moon (done nicely by Orbx) and Sun Valley. The leg will finish at Challis (KLLJ.)

 

RM2+jpg.jpg

 

Admiring the beauty of Jackson Hole, we take off from KJAC heading for the Snake River Basin and the mountain strips of Idaho.

 

We first pick up the Snake River, the 1,078 mile long river that drains much of the Central Rocky Mountains and empties into the Colombia just east of the Colombia River Gorge. The Snake originates in the hills of Yellowstone, passes through Jackson Lake, and now heads south to cut through the Teton Range forming the Snake River Canyon. We shall follow US Route 26 as it "snakes" through the canyon. Adventurous pilots may (off the record) descend to get a good view of the canyon. (The waypoints, R_SRC1-R_SRC3, provide informal directional guidance for low-flying sightseers.)

 

As the Snake empties into the Palisades Reservoir, we turn to land at Alpine (46U). Alpine is a small community in a beautiful location. It has plans to establish a recreational outdoor sports facility to compete with Jackson Hole. Good luck.

 

We head almost due west over the Caribou Range to land at Blackfoot (U02). The town was formed on the junction of the Blackfoot and Snake Rivers (the Snake has looped north and is now heading southwest) with the justified expectation of attracting the railroad. The town claims that it is the "Potato Capital of the World." It is home to the Idaho Potato Expo, in the old Union Pacific railroad depot, that displays and explains the history of Idaho's potato industry. The Expo sites the world's largest potato chip (crisp).

 

Just to our south is the Fort Hall Indian Reservation, formed in a peace treaty between the US Government and the Shoshone. (It will not surprise the reader to learn that the US Government took away much of the original land grant and distributed the proceeds to European American settlers.)

 

Turning northwest, we again pick up US 26 and start to see a number of the fascinating volcanic buttes that thrust up from the desert floor.

 

We reach Atomic City (U37) which, populated by 29 people, is now practically deserted. (We shall not land here as there is nothing to see. One store, one bar, and a rough stock car track.) Continuing northwestward, we take a look at the Idaho National Laboratory (R_INL) which, in its 1950s heyday, brought many people to the area and gave Atomic City its name. Originally established as a nuclear reactor testing site for the AEC, it has since developed a number of different engineering research programs. Employing over 4,000 people spread out over several complexes, the Laboratory conducts work on cybersecurity, nuclear nonproliferation, robotics, biofuels as well as advanced technologies in nuclear energy generation. Access is restricted, so our overflight might be cautious.

 

We turn sharply southward to land at Big Southern Butte (U46), the largest and youngest of the three lava domes that rise out of the Snake River Basin. Big Southern Butte rises some 2,500' above the surface with a base diameter of four miles. The 2600' dirt strip may challenge our higher-wing-loading aircraft. Due to the slope, land on 19 and depart on 01. (Rather than land, some pilots may wish to circle the Butte to see its impressive mass.)

 

Heading southwest, we cross the Craters of the Moon National Monument (R_MOON). The lava field (618 square miles) represents one of the best-preserved flood basalt areas in the United States. (It is similar to those on Hawaii's Big Island.) We can see notable examples of the field's 25 volcanic cones, some of which are of scientific interest. 

 

We land at Hollow Top (0U7), another dirt strip that will not appeal to everyone. Again, due to the slope you should plan on departing on Rwy 23. Landing is best on Rwy 5 but Rwy 23 is fine if you don't land too long. (Note the "false front" to Rwy 5.)

 

Next we turn to the Pioneer Mountains and the southern reaches of the Sawtooth Range and land at Hailey (KSUN). The airport serves the famed Sun Valley Resort and thus attracts a wide range of topflight aircraft. Don't let "Gulfstream-envy" bother you on the ramp.

 

Thirteen miles north along the valley (R_SUN) we pass over Ketchum (where Ernest Hemmingway lived and worked productively), the Sun Valley Resort, and the famed ski slopes of Bald Mountain.

 

RM2.jpg

 

 

Recommended Scenery: Orbx FTX Central Rocky Mountains (CRM) Regional Scenery

 

Recommended Aircraft: Lancair Legacy or favorite GA plane (~160 knts speed)

 

Time: Saturday Jul 5, 19:00 UTC

Where: AVSIM RTWR Teamspeak - Casual Flights Channel

Teamspeak Server Address: ts.teamavsim.com

Multiplayer FSX Multiplayer (IP will be provided on Teamspeak)

 

The digital flightplan (in FSX and PlanG formats is available from the DropBox location here.

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Thanks Jeff ! - Here is a SkyVector sectional of the plan so we can miss the TFRs, MOAs & such, LOL.  

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Folks,

 

FYI

 

I have a family commitment on July 5 and will be unable to join you. 

 

I plan to fly leg 2 on July 4 at 1900 and will be on teamspeak and the DTP multiplayer.

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I plan to fly leg 2 on July 4 at 1900 and will be on teamspeak and the DTP multiplayer.

 

Got my chores done and the family has abandoned me for the day... hope to be on then.

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I won't be able to make today's flight.  I'll have to try it later on my own.

 

Rob - I tried to send you a PM earlier, but you don't seem to be able to receive.  Are you in some sort of PM jail?  

 

Anyway, I wanted to get your opinion (or anyone else's) on a product called SimPlates Ultra X by Dauntless. PCAviator has it on sale for $19.95.  Worth it?  I seem to recall you using something similar a while back when we were planning FMC/S-controlled flights, and was thinking it would be a handy resource.

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Anyway, I wanted to get your opinion (or anyone else's) on a product called SimPlates Ultra X by Dauntless.

 

Haven't heard of this one Craig... I had (have) Navigraph, but haven't bought anything since they changed from the old credit system

 

If you have an ipad, I have seen some apps for that.  Probably what I would consider if I had one.  For the U.S. I use digital - Terminal Procedures Publication (d-TPP)

For everywhere else, I look for what I bought in Navigraph or try to find a pdf download.

 

Scarlet PM Regards...

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Thanks Rob. I appreciate the feedback, as always. I'll probably just stick to thethe pdfspdfs, for now at least.

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