26 April 2013

Norfolk Island Flight Deck Video

A few updates ago, I mentioned that I'd narrowly missed scoring myself a free ride over to Brisbane via Norfolk Island. I was due to travel on the Vincent Aviation BAe 146 on a positioning flight with a mate, who still managed to fly on the jet when it crossed the Tasman a day later than scheduled. Below are some flight deck video snippets from the trip which features the departure from Wellington, approach into Auckland, and both the landing and takeoff at YSNF. He's also included some clips from domestic RHS action from a Wanganui based King Air C90 and Piper PA31P Mojave.

08 April 2013

Summer Season: Complete!

After three and a bit months of being based at Whangarei airport as a full time parachute drop pilot, the summer season has come to an end, and I've moved myself back down to Auckland.

I think I've done fairly well for myself, with my total logbook time now less than five hours shy of the nice round 600 mark. Compared with last summer, the company wasn't as busy apparently, and with three pilots rather than the original two needed to cover the required Part 115 duty hour based roster system, we each averaged around 30 hours of flight time per month.

The weather was exceptionally favourable however- it was really really dry, with NIWA statistics I've seen indicating the rainfall over the Northland region as the lowest it has been in the last 10 years, if not a lot longer. The wind generally seemed to be light and from the east, with large anticyclones anchored in the centre of the country sending the air in a gentle anti clockwise motion around the wide spread isobars up at the top of the country. Lovely clear blue skies greeted us most days at the dropzone, which made it both enjoyable for me flying, as it did for the skydivers and their tandem passengers who were leaping out of the door.

I tried to take my GoPro on most of the loads I flew, with the camera mounted in a variety of positions on the aircraft. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then this 'Summer Season Showreel' video I've crudely edited together in movie maker must be worth a few million! I actually finished with a total of 38.5 gigabytes of raw video by the time I moved back home- however, as I don't have a wifi remote for my Hero2, much of this were 25 minute blocks of the entire flight recorded from a position that I couldn't readily switch on and off from the pilots seat, even if it was just for jumpers away shot that took up 2 or 3 seconds on the SD card.

Anyway, here it is: the last 100 hours of my life as a drop pilot condensed down to seven and a half minutes. Enjoy!

05 April 2013

Three New Videos

This post is for three interesting flying videos that have been sent to me over the last week from different friends, that I reckon are worth sharing again.

The first is one is a flightdeck GoPro movie from ZK-ECO, Vincent Aviation's BAe 146-200 jet. On this particular occasion, it shows the start up procedures and takeoff from Wellington International over the Easter weekend on a short charter hop to Blenhiem.

ECO has now been positioned to Brisbane, Australia on a contact job. I was on the passenger list for a free ride on it's ferry flight from Wellington, via Auckland and Norfolk Island this Thursday, however a defective microswitch delayed the departure from the capital by a day. The plan was to go for a scenic flight around the Gold Coast area in a separate aircraft with another friend once we arrived, then catch a staff travel standby flight back to NZ ready for work this weekend, but the technical delay meant we ran out of time.

The author of this video was still onboard however, so check his youtube channel in the near future for some footage from the trip. Apparently the airport fire and rescue staff at Norfolk grade each landing at the island out of 10... I wonder what the Whisperjet crew were awarded?

The second clip below is from Geoff Horsburgh, and features a cockpit view from the Southern DC-3 (ZK-AMY) on a very short hop between Omaka and Woodbourne. The reason for both of the videoed aircraft's attendance in the Marlborough region was due to the Classic Fighters airshow that is held at NZOM every two years. I was there this time in 2011, and have a collection of photos from the event saved on the blog here.

The third and final link is a Weekly Snippets video from Skydive Ballistic Blondes and features plenty of wide angled recordings from cameras mounted at various places on the parachute drop aircraft I fly up in Whangarei.