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Bobsk8

Back to GA , again

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Years ago when I was flying FS9 and then FSX, I quickly started flying tube liners at FL 28+. I did it all for thousands of hours, and despite the fact that my PPL was SEL, I quickly became addicted to flying aircraft like the 767, 737, etc. I purchased photo real scenery at the time, but other than landing and taking off ( with crumby frame rates)_ I found it pretty useless at altitude. I finally got fed up with the instability of MSFS. CTD,s etc, and uninstalled everything FS related and didn't think about it for years. About a year and a half ago, I saw a video on youtube of an A2A C 172, and since I had a couple of hundred hours flying the real aircraft in my logbook, I decided to buy a sim and get back into it. P3D seemed like a good bet, and when I saw how stable it was compared to what I had been used to, I was delighted with my new sim. I bought the C 172 and the Cherokee from A2A and they both flew really well. The next thing I did was buy a couple of airliners, starting with the Airbus 320 series, then the Q400, and finally the 737 NGX. 

 

Now I was back to flying at high altitudes, with very little to look at and long flights with the AP engaged. I had learned this time that taking multi hour flights, as I had done years ago, was kind of silly, so I confined my flying to VA flights of around 2 hours max, but again boredom started setting in. A couple of weeks ago, after about 800 hours flying for the VA,  I got the Cherokee out of the hanger and started flying in the Alaska area, which I had done in real life, and realized that even with the default scenery, things were much more interesting at 2,000 AGL, then at FL320. I was much busier in the cockpit , as I would have to be in real life, looking at sectionals from Skyvector, for terrain clearance, as I was flying from one small airport to another. Next thing I did was buy a couple of float planes, since I had also flown in one in real life when in Alaska, and loved landing at these small seaplane airports and lakes which are scattered all over the area in Alaska. Quickly  a AS Beaver, and then the Kodiak Quest were added to my hangar. I also purchased a Grumman Widgeon, but decided I wouldn't be flying it very often, because of the no water rudder in that aircraft which meant taxing to a dock after landing was not something I enjoyed. The Beaver, and Kodiak, both have water rudders, and I can easily park right next to a dock after landing. 

 

The next issue was the default scenery in Alaska, which isn't that bad, would look better with maybe some payware scenery. Buying airports, in an area like Alaska, doesn't make sense, since nobody is going to create the hundreds and hundreds of small fields ( and it would cost a king's ransom) , so I needed some kind of scenery that would spruce up these small fields. I discovered Orbx SE Alaska, and purchased and installed it. It was a simple one click install, and when I started flying around areas that I had in real life like Anchorage, and Stewart, it looked just as I remembered it, including the rivers, glaciers, lakes, bush fields, etc. Now I am having a blast flying from one small airport to another, and looking for these small floatplane airports, many of which are included in this Orbx scenery. Since this worked out so well, I then purchased Orbx NA Pacific Fjords, Pacific Northwest, and finally Northern California. Now I can fly with great looking scenery, good looking airports, all the way from San Francisco to Anchorage Alaska.  If I spent the rest of my life going from airport to airport, I seriously doubt I would ever be able to land at all of the airports in this Orbx scenery, and next month I will probably add Southern California.  

 

In my flying lately, I notice that my chart reading, and flying skills, have improved dramatically, because i find I am constantly looking at terrain clearances,  RNavs or ILS or VOR approaches, and I also find that Pro ATC is working very well with the aircraft I am flying now, so I have good ATC too. The only problem is that the really small airports and seaplane bases, are not in the Airac data for either PATC or my GTN 650, so what I do is plan a flight to the nearest airport that is listed, and then just navigate to the small airport or seaplane base from there using dead reckoning. Now I get up every day, and can't wait to see what new airport I can discover while flying my GA aircraft. Doesn't get any better than that.   :smile:

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Now I get up every day, and can't wait to see what new airport I can discover while flying my GA aircraft. Doesn't get any better than that.

 

That's a great reason to get up in the morning.  Completely get your enthusiasm. Great post. :smile:

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Nice write up Bob... I need to do what you are doing. I remember doing dead reckoning in the sim and enjoying it so much...when I started simming in FS9 with Megascenery for so cal.. The experience (mentally) was real.

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Great post!

 

I also quite often fly to small airports that have no VOR or anything and I love to fly to them using VOR triangulation. There are various sites on the internet that show all nearby VOR's (and more) including the radials and distances and this makes it absolutely great and (sort of) easy to find your destination! In fact, the last few weeks (in which I didn't have much time to fly) I ONLY fly using triangulation and preferably to airports that have no VOR (otherwise you could simply fly straight towards the VOR which is boring :wink: ). Big fun. I obviously removed the GPS entirely from my A2A Cherokee and I have to say flying this way is a lot more entertaining than flying the Airbus using the MCDU. And it also keeps you quite busy all the time because you constantly have to check where you are using VORs, making sure you are still on track. 

 

This is what makes flightsimming so great: the 'endless' possibilities in which you can fly! 

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This is what makes flightsimming so great: the 'endless' possibilities in which you can fly! 

 

yup

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Agree on not doing the magenta line thing.

 

I find it often very difficult if not impossible to find small water airport locations in AK . There usually isn't much to go by. There is so much water.

Do you just go by what the map looks like "Oh, there is a bend in this lake, must be this one." ?

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Agree on not doing the magenta line thing.

 

I find it often very difficult if not impossible to find small water airport locations in AK . There usually isn't much to go by. There is so much water.

Do you just go by what the map looks like "Oh, there is a bend in this lake, must be this one." ?

 

I just look at the map, and if it is on Skyvector, and they usually have a  Google Earth view that I can look at to see what it looks like in real life. 

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I just look at the map, and if it is on Skyvector, and they usually have a  Google Earth view that I can look at to see what it looks like in real life. 

 

Is this what real pilots do? I'm just trying to recreate what would normally be done is all.

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Is this what real pilots do? I'm just trying to recreate what would normally be done is all.

 

That's what i would do. Another trick for the water airports in the flight sim, is to go there before the flight and see what is there. Many of them will have a dock and a bit of scenery near the dock, so you can see what you are looking for before taking off. Others are just a section of water out in the middle of a river or stream, with nothing around it, so there is nothing you can really aim for. 

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Is this what real pilots do? I'm just trying to recreate what would normally be done is all.

 We call it Pilotage, which along with dead reckoning are the primary means of VFR navigation. It least it was 50 years ago.

 

Greg 

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 I discovered Orbx SE Alaska, and purchased and installed it. It was a simple one click install, and when I started flying around areas that I had in real life like Anchorage, and Stewart, it looked just as I remembered it, including the rivers, glaciers, lakes, bush fields, etc. Now I am having a blast flying from one small airport to another, and looking for these small floatplane airports, many of which are included in this Orbx scenery. Since this worked out so well, I then purchased Orbx NA Pacific Fjords, Pacific Northwest, and finally Northern California. Now I can fly with great looking scenery, good looking airports, all the way from San Francisco to Anchorage Alaska.  If I spent the rest of my life going from airport to airport, I seriously doubt I would ever be able to land at all of the airports in this Orbx scenery, and next month I will probably add Southern California.  

 

 

you might want to consider the tongass fjords addon as well, it fills in the area between pacific fjords and south alaska. i think it's some of the same guys who work on the orbx regions, it looks and feels just the same. i am not certain about p3d compatibility but a search on their forums may be illuminating in that regard

 

cheers

-andy crosby

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I would recommend reading the following FAA(Federal Aviation Administration) publications to give you the insight your are looking for when comes to what real pilots do.

 

Pilots Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge

Instrument Procedures Handbook

 

These are two solid publications I refer to after many years of real flying from time to time. I don't know the (JAA)European version of the these documents, but I am sure someone here will respond with that answer.

 

Happy Flying.

 


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you might want to consider the tongass fjords addon as well, it fills in the area between pacific fjords and south alaska. i think it's some of the same guys who work on the orbx regions, it looks and feels just the same. i am not certain about p3d compatibility but a search on their forums may be illuminating in that regard

 

cheers

-andy crosby

 

I had looked at that since I flew the Misty moorings scenery in FS9 for over a year, but I don't like using the Migration tool, and the instructions to install it in P3D  look like a nightmare to me.  I will wait for Orbx to release a P3D version, if they ever do. 

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Really appreciate this post! Bush piloting is much more satisfying than flying buses. Although I'm glad I learned the FMC...Sids and Stars etc.!

There is much more satisfaction navigating through the diverse scenery of Pacific North America with the sceneries you mentioned and the challenges abound..PC challenges abound too!

An oldie but a goody, is the Carenado c185 Bush w/the Amphib...float...and tundra models.

Watch out for that Moose.

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Really appreciate this post! Bush piloting is much more satisfying than flying buses. Although I'm glad I learned the FMC...Sids and Stars etc.!

There is much more satisfaction navigating through the diverse scenery of Pacific North America with the sceneries you mentioned and the challenges abound..PC challenges abound too!

An oldie but a goody, is the Carenado c185 Bush w/the Amphib...float...and tundra models.

Watch out for that Moose.

 

Nice challenge is to take off from the Anchorage area,either Merrill, or PANC or Hood Lake,  and fly up the Turnagain Arm  to Whittier and land on that rather short runway  You can only approach the runway from over the water, due to the mountain on the other end.  

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Nice challenge is to take off from the Anchorage area,either Merrill, or PANC or Hood Lake,  and fly up the Turnagain Arm  to Whittier and land on that rather short runway  You can only approach the runway from over the water, due to the mountain on the other end.  

 

Thank you Bob. I'll give her a go. Just east southeast of Skagway (PAGY) The White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad provide some interesting scenery if you follow. As I write, my second daughter of four, for some odd reason decided to move from San Francisco to Kenai AK to become an aircraft mechanic :-| so I guess I'll be spending a great deal of simming to that area. 

Another couple of fun aircraft are the Fairchild 24 and the Aeronca Champ.

Safe skies...

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The only problem is that the really small airports and seaplane bases, are not in the Airac data for either PATC or my GTN 650, so what I do is plan a flight to the nearest airport that is listed, and then just navigate to the small airport or seaplane base from there using dead reckoning.

 

And while Ded-Reckoning is fun, In IMC it's a MAYBE that you safely arrive at your destination...you could do as I did in the SAK vid I showed you and;

1. Once you've arrived at your ded-reckoned remote unlisted destination, and safely parked, or;

A. Still n the air, pause your sim and;

2. create and name a User waypoint for posterity, resume flying, and take your time finding your approach knowing you will never lose your way your destination or;

 

2. Pre-flight;

A. Look up the NAV offset or Lat/Long from the charts and;

B. Create your own user NAV waypoints by entering the approach and/or landing data , as I did creating my lil' ADE home-made airstrip K69 https://youtu.be/CI_TF_wto6c and the NGX approach into PAPG https://youtu.be/4F4vwKWuGVE .

 

....never to be forgotten by your wonderful GTN, or translated into approach data, your NGX's FMC.

 

Chas

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Nice challenge is to take off from the Anchorage area,either Merrill, or PANC or Hood Lake,  and fly up the Turnagain Arm  to Whittier and land on that rather short runway  You can only approach the runway from over the water, due to the mountain on the other end.  

 

 

Hi Bob. Took your advice and flew into PAWR Whittier...Thank you. In this post I have included a YT video of my landing @ PAWR after taking off from PAMR. I've had this scenery for quite awhile and never new PAWR was here. Plan G shows PAWR but not the topography. It uses Mapquest so it's limited. Again appreciate this thread!!

 

A one minute video of my first landing at PAWR Whittier Alaska...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwbbt3jZFEY

 

Chas hope your HOTAS is fixed after that sour disater! Part of historic BUSH flying is the thrill of aviation, so my next landing will include a 24 knott cross wind in a snow storm as I caculate the cost of a replacement bulb for my left landing light that just went out dew to overuse!

 

Safe skies!

 

Greg

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Hi Bob. Took your advice and flew into PAWR Whittier...Thank you. In this post I have included a YT video of my landing @ PAWR after taking off from PAMR. I've had this scenery for quite awhile and never new PAWR was here. Plan G shows PAWR but not the topography. It uses Mapquest so it's limited. Again appreciate this thread!!

 

A one minute video of my first landing at PAWR Whittier Alaska...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwbbt3jZFEY

 

Chas hope your HOTAS is fixed after that sour disater! Part of historic BUSH flying is the thrill of aviation, so my next landing will include a 24 knott cross wind in a snow storm as I caculate the cost of a replacement bulb for my left landing light that just went out dew to overuse!

 

Safe skies!

 

Greg

 

 

As you are approaching Whittier, about 8 miles before it on the right, is a glacier, which I flew over in real life in a C 172 when I was in Anchorage for a week. Here is a photo of it.   

 

FlyingupGlacier.jpg

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I think my grandson would say 'sick'!

Several glaciers in the sim, but reality is so...right!

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