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Wide Bay Airshow


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Well 5 days and 1800nm later we've finished our adventure to the Wide Bay Airshow at Bundaberg...which started in Merimbula and finished at home in Canberra.


I've also found a very cool way of transferring GPS track from OziExplorer into Google Earth...so GPS tracks now look even cooler!


It all started last Wednesday afternoon with a drive from Canberra to Merimbula to pick up the CT4. We stayed overnight in Merimbula and were up bright and early on Thursday to start a long day of driving and flying. First task was to get the car back to Canberra so Kaz had the honours of driving back from Merimbula, about an hour after she left I headed home via the same route - Merimbula-Cooma-Canberra. So far we'd driven almost 6 hours and flown 1 hour...just to get back home again :confused: ...I'm sure only aviation enthusiasts would see that this all makes perfect sense!


Next task was to prepare for our flight to our first stop which would be Coffs Harbour. We loaded the CT4 up with fuel, camping gear, clothes, cameras and anything else we thought would be useful for our first ever flying camping trip.


We depart Canberra at about 13:30 in clear blue skies and 25+kt winds for the coast, planned route is Canberra-Victor One then coastal to Coffs Harbour. The 25+kt tailwind made a quick trip to Sydney, ground speed averaged about 170kts for this first leg! Approaching Sydney we drop down through the steps from 5500' to 500' for the Victor One transit.


Popping out the other end at Manly we climb back up to 3500' for the next leg up to Newcastle and the now vacant beach at Nobby's Head...bit strange not seeing the ship on the beach. Our tailwind at this point had become a crosswind with about 10kts on the nose...which would be with us all the way to Bundaberg...and the outside temperature had risen from about 8 in Canberra to 25 along the coast, very nice ;)


Obtained clearance from Willy to transit Willy airspace via the coastal VFR route at 500'. Passing Point Stephens lighthouse we're clear of airspace restrictions and climb back up to 3500' and continue our track overflying Camden Haven and Port Macquarie and on to Coffs. It was a bit eerie up that way on Thursday, there was a lot of burning off happening but due to an inversion layer the smoke didn't make it much above 500'.


Approaching Coffs we contact the (very quiet) tower and obtain clearance to track straight in for a landing on runway 03. Flight time Canberra-Coffs Harbour 3.2 hours.


After taxiing down to the GA parking area we shut down and are greeted by another CT4 owner called Geoff Partridge. Geoff owns number 48 and is a Coffs local. He's also one of those in the aviation community that go out of their way to help you out if he can...for all our trip planning we actually forgot to think about accomodation and getting around while we were in Coffs. Geoff just happens to be involved with a local car yard and was kind enough to offer us the use of one of their used vehicles while we were in town - a BIG THANKS to Geoff for all of his help and hospitality while we were up there...we'll be back there one day! ;)


After a relaxing night at a very nice resort just out of Coffs we head out to the airfield to prepare for our next leg which will take us up the coast to Bundaberg. Departing Coffs we confirm the Evans Head restricted areas are all deactive which will make our trip a bit easier. Heading up the coast we pass by Evans Head - it's a shame to see such a great airfield being overrun by housing. On to Ballina and overhead we contact Brisbane centre to arrange a clearance through Gold Coast, Brisbane and Maroochydore airspace. Expecting to have to scoot past all of this at 500' over water, it was a nice surprise to get a clearance to track overhead Gold Coast to Moreton Island then over Maroochydore at 4500' - couldn't get direct over Brissy due to traffic.


Approaching Maroochydore we had a strange experience with a Virgin 737 conducting an approach underneath us...bit odd to look down on top of a 737 passing 1000' underneath you!


With Maroochydore behind us we track direct to Bundaberg for what we expect to be a fairly busy approach...and we weren't disappointed. Calling inbound from about 20 miles out we were advised by the controller that we were about number 9 to land with about 15 aircraft inbound and due in circuit about the same time. As we approach the airfield a Mustang is about to begin a practice display and we're all directed to hold wherever we are until the display is complete...at this stage we were over the town so we did a few laps of the main street (big exhaust but no doof doof though :)) then followed the Mustang into circuit for landing.


Airmanship Note #1: We noted quite a few ultralights attempting to conduct straight in approaches from 5 miles out while there were high speed GA, warbirds, jets etc. in the circuit. While straight in approaches are legal, I'm not sure they were appropriate in this environment for anything less than high performance aircraft.


We spent the afternoon and evening setting up camp and meeting fellow aviators from near and far. On Saturday we were up bright and early to be out at the GA park to get the CT4 refueled for our early departure on Sunday. Spend the day walking around looking at the many exhibits, watching the flying displays and talking to a heap of pilots from Air Force, Angel Flight, Army, Warbirds and more that I can't remember...except for two other CT4 owners that we met, Phil from Ballina (number 37) and Alan from Maroochydore (number 38). There was supposed to be a night display which turned out to be a bit of a fizzer - didn't start till 3 hours after the day display had ended and even for us very keen aviation types, that's a long time to wait.


After another restless and sleepless night in the tent (I'm soft - I like my comfy hotels!) we pack up camp and head out to the airfield for our big trip home. The plan is to be home that afternoon tracking Bundaberg-Toowoomba-Tamworth-Canberra, one of our friends owns a BD4 was heading back to Gouldburn so we kept him company on the way home.


Unlike the coastal trip, there's not a lot to look at or talk about on the inland track. The Bundy to Toowoomba leg took 1.4 hours and like our trip up, it looked like we'd have blue skies and a head wind all the way home...always the way! We landed to top up tanks and stretch the legs...didn't want to hang around too long as it was pretty windy and cold at Toowoomba...and we were in shorts & t-shirts...brrrrr.


Departed Toowoomba for a direct track to Tamworth, along the way the cloud started to build and on this leg we'd leave blue skies behind for a solid layer of cloud at about 5500' which was with us until Canberra. After 2.1 hours we were on the ground and refueling and stretching again...oh, and wandering around admiring the gaggle of CT4s they have at the BAe school there.


Departing Tamworth we left our friend in his BD4 who was heading direct to Goulburn and we headed to Bathurst then on to Canberra. After another 2.4 hours under cloud we were touching down in Canberra and wishing we'd put long pants and jackets on...it's funny how we never think about the destination clothing requirements when flying.


All up the trip starting in Merimbula and ending in Canberra took 13.4 hours flight time, about 540 litres in fuel and covered just over 1800nm. It was our biggest flying adventure so far and was a great experience. We met some great people, saw some great sights and reinforced my love for comfy hotels :).


Attached are some pics from the Google Earth GPS tracks, other pics are in the AUG 2007 photos section:


1. Picture of full track from Merimbula to Canberra via Bundaberg


2. Williamtown VFR Coastal Route


3. Victor One




Matt & Kaz.









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Great report Kaz & Matt sorry we arrived the day you departed this time I left the caravan home, I came by Beech Bonanza Vampire still at home, I did get a short G'Day with Rod Hall. I have been to every Bundy airshow and this time because we cain't camp under wing there was no-way near as many private aircraft in attendance, thats why my friends and I were only there on Sunday.All this sercurity is spoiling a great aviaition event.


That should get some comment?



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While the website said no camping under the wing, it actually was allowed in our parking area and attached are a few pics for those that didn't go.


Like Matt & Kaz, I had 20 knots on the nose both ways ..... so 9 hours each way, but that was better than mowing the lawn.


Hope the photos are useful to some of you. In particular see the last one. How good is that to see such a mix of aircraft in the one parking area.


Although it blew a good crosswind each day and was a tad chilly, note the crappy Qld skies in these shots. A great deal better than I experienced thru Wellington and Cowra on the way back yesterday.


Regards Geoff

















































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Sorry Geoff.


I'm having trouble getting the little buggers to upload to the site. Will keep trying. Perhaps have a cuppa and come back to see how I am going.


Regards The Other One



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A great report. Not too sure about the sniping at ultralights lack of air sense, it was the other way round for me. I was no 3 on downwind following 2 Cessna's when a Spitfire joined behind me. I was having to slow down to maintain clearance behind the Cessnas and on Base leg the spitfire called me up to advise he was overtaking me and was beneath me. A few moments later I had to ask him where he was and was advised at my 7 O'clock. I then saw him doing a curving approach, while I had to slow even more to keep clearance behind him.


Not impressed.


There were 3 spitfires there and I talked to 2 pilots but neither admitted their responsibility.



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G'day Brent


Grabbed a 160 for 5 days from Aust Sports Aviation in Tocumwal - that's it in the pics beside the tent (4716). Had a great time in it but am looking forward to the extra 20 knots or so from my 230.


Will drop you a PM about a few things of common interest that I learnt up there.


Also went to the "Back to the Nest" dinner on the Saturday night with Roger & Kevin from YNAR and a few hundred other happy customers.


Got a bit aroused about that G3 GTS Cirrus in the pics too and have shown the G3 brochure to the copilot + forced her to read each page out loud. Ah well, you can always dream (and commence the approval process), I guess.


Regards Geoff



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The Bundy Shuffle


We too made the trip to Bundy, from just down the road at Maryborough Qld.


For us it was a bit of a shuffle. We went up on Thusday. Hellen flew the Sportstar 24-4010 and I flew the new Skylark 24-5123. We dropped the Sportstar off and I flew us back to M'bro so Hellen could drive the car with all the gear for our display. I flew the Skylark back up again.


Have to say we heard some ordinary stuff on the radio on Saturday morning with one RAAus pilot stating he was going to land on runway 12 ( Bundy does not have a 12!!!!! ):;)1:049_sad.gif.af5e5c0993af131d9c5bfe880fbbc2a0.gif:confused:. This sort of thing cannot help our cause as Recreational pilots.


After displaying for the three days we did the reverse shuffle to get the 2 aircraft and a car back home.


Both trips were not the smoothest air, but it was a thrill for Hellen & I to fly together but in seperate aircraft for the first time.


Attached is a pic of the Skylark and Sportstar together @ Bundy.









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G'day Donk


Remember the bearded bloke that you both chatted with next to the J160 .... before you walked over to the pink one?


Well that was your "Captain" speaking.


Regards & nice to meet ya both.





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Guest JRMobile

A quick report from our Bundy trip having arrived home last Friday after a detour to Western Queensland.


We departed first light Thursday, being due to attend an OHS class after lunch, as I was to do some marshalling at the air show. Our route took us to the west of Mt


Warning 1_01.jpg, then Stradbroke Is, Moreton Is, into Caloundra to refuel, then on to Bundy. This route is one of our all time favourites.


After refuelling at Bundy, I went to move the Jab and managed to clip the refuelling truck. This truck is large and painted bright yellow – hard to miss - strange what excitement can do to your concentration. A big thank you to John at Jabiru for his help in putting the patch on the wing! Then taxi the Jab to the Jab Paddock for the weekend 1_Jab_s_at_bundy_07.jpg.


Most of the Yak 52s and Nanchangs 1_02.jpgwere already on the flight line along with many of the War Birds. Friday was mainly air show practice with most of the GA and RAA arriving, and me busy marshalling.


Up early Saturday for my morning shift. (Thanks to Bundy Aero Club for their wonderful breakfast feast.) This was the main display day with a very large crowd. The day’s thrills ranged from graceful old ladies 1_03.jpg through to the RAAF’s ultimate in crowd pleasers 1_04.jpg.


I had the pleasure to be marshalling with Ian who had flown this old girl 1_05.jpg in Vietnam. He was good enough to give me the full tour of this aircraft 1_06.jpg with some great stories from near on forty years ago. 1_07.jpg


Sunday saw a repeat of Saturday, with the grand finale of Jet A1 being torched at Mach speed, my tax money being well spent!! 1_08.jpg.


Monday up early for departure to Longreach via Emerald, with a great 10 kt tail wind. The reason for the detour was the Qantas Founders Museum 1_09.jpg. We really did enjoy our day looking through this wonderful museum 1_10.jpg and the guided tour of the Boeing 747 1_747_cockpit.jpg.


Got up close and personal to some real rubber 1_11.jpg (At $5000 a pop I’m glad the Jab’s tyres don’t come with their price tag!)


Wednesday was a long flight to Moree via Charleville, again the wind god giving us a 15 knot helping hand. This chap joined the circuit behind us at Charleville with another two joining him on their way to Mount Isa 1_12.jpg. Funny thing, he was grumbling about the headwind, you can’t please some people!


After a day soaking in the thermal springs at Moree, something we would recommend after 5.5 hours in a Jabiru, it was back to Lismore, and yes, a tail wind…


35 knots on the tail, ground speed 142 knots. Wind straight down runway 33 on arrival. Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together. And thank you Louise for the great camera work.



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