Some of you who have been following my life knew that I was hoping for some cash for Christmas to be able to procure a new Flight Simulator and a Joystick. That became a reality on the morning of 25DEC when my father and my mother were able to give me the funds neccescary to do that. So on 26DEC2010 before the big blizzard, I trekked out to a Best Buy in North Haven, CT. I bought the standard version of FSX and a Logitech 3D Pro twistable joystick. I also took the time to get a headset for the computer so that one day I might be able to pick up Skyping again. After all that and a new iPod touch headset, I spent $101.75 and came home after a breakfast stop at a nearby Dunkin Donuts. I was pleased to see the DC3 back in FSX and itd brought back memories from a few years ago. back around 2004 ish i belonged to two virtual airlines. DC3 Airways and Bluegrass Airlines where I’d fly DC3 routes all the time.
So the thought came to me that I should fly around the world in a DC3. Well heres an update so far. I started at an airfield about 15NM North of my homefield which is Tweed New Haven Regional Airport in New Haven, CT. I started at Meriden markham Municipal Airfield in Meriden, CT. From there I flew a short hop over to TF Green Airport in Providence, RI. The next morning I flew from Providence to Halifax International Airport in Nova Scotia. From there I wondered how to get across the Atlantic without spending 8 hours lulled in front of a computer. I had to cheat of sorts and take jets from there for my next two legs. I went from Nova Scotia to Greenland and Iceland.
Im sure you all remember the shilacking of snow the Eastern seaboard got on 26-27DEC. That weather seemed to follow me all the way to the Faroe Islands. From the airport I used in Iceland to the Faroe Islands, I hopped back in the DC3. And this morning I just finished up flying into Glasgow International Airport in Scotland. Now that the Atlantic Crossing is done, flying through Europe should be easy until around Turkey ish. There are plenty of NAVAIDS and airports to choose from.
I was happy this morning flying to Scotland to be blessed with clear skies and no buffeting winds. You think I wouldnt fly any legs at night or with fake weather? Hell no. Thats not part of my challenge. I always use real world time and real world weather because you never know what mother nature may throw in front of you. Before I leave Scotland, I must do some planning as to where I want to go from here. Going over Russia could be boring, but If I go southeast enough, I could end up over the Himalayan mountains. For a DC3 that could be challenging. I dont want to fly over water much anymore so I plan on entering the USA again in a few weeks via Russia.
I am doing this on my own time and at a nice slow pace. Sure i could just fire up a 747-400 and be around the world in like 5 legs, but wheres the fun in that? My flying tweeps on twitter may understand where im coming from. The DC3 has very primitive Navigational equipment dating back to pre WW2. Thats also part of the challenge is to stay away from the flightsim GPS as much as possible. Theres no real autopilot on a DC3 that can track a GPS course automatically. The autopilot on the DC3 is only a heading hold and a pitch hold. I tried it over the Atlantic crossing when the weather was real crappy but I didnt like it too much. So from here on forward, I will try to handly the DC3 as much as possible. I can hold altitude in calm weather much better than using pitch hold.
Well thats all for now. During my trek I will be posting pictures randomly to facebook and twitter of my challenge. I have no idea how long this trek will take. if anyone has any city pairings they want me to fly, give me a shout. Id like to keep my flights to between 400 and 600NM so I dont rot out the computer chair.