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  1. After a good and long breakfast we had to check out at our hotel in Nelson and hurry on. Too late to use a car, so we went to the airport. We leaft eastbound, with Tasman Bay behind and Nelson underneath us. Following Maitai and Pelorus River... ... and passing Havelock... ... we reached Picton, with the ferry piers below, abandoned. So we went along Queen Charlotte Sound... ... and there we met the Aratere, finally. That´s the price for the long breakfast, we had missed our ship. Good that we did not pay in advance. At least we could overlook the northern peninsulas of NZSI... ... and stay in the Dornier for the hop over Cook Strait. Turning into Wellington is a nice approach as well... ... and the runway is easy to spot. Plus, it is long enough for a smooth landing. Maybe even smoother that the waves during the ferry ride... Documentation: Check.
  2. When taking off from Greymouth we encountered some cloudy conditions. At least the forests around Runanga were clearly visible, ... ... as well as the Punakaiki Rocks below. But turning inland made the situation a bit more tricky... ... with only limited space between the cloud layer and the "scientific mountains". Look at these names: Ramsay, Dewar, Priestley, Curie, Mendel, Pasteur, Einstein, Rutherford and Euclid. Quite the educational trip if you type these names in wikipedia. And quite the uncomfortable trip if you continue in VFR. At least we discover Buller River, ... ... Murchison, ... ... and finally a window opened towards Tasman Bay. A great scenery, ... ... at the Moutere region... ... and downwind into... ... Motueka. The proof.
  3. On this nice autumn day we make a little tour around the NP, starting from Motueka... ... passing other potential accomodations at Kaiteriteri... ... and "kayak" along Adele Island... ... towards Pitt Head. We make our way towards the shores of the Golden Bay near Takaka, ... ... climb back over the Kahurangi Hills... ... across our starting point, Motueka... ... and over the bay... ... into Nelson. The grass runway 20R is hard to spot. But it works!
  4. I know you have been waiting for your pilot for about a week, while he was skiing in the Alps (in real life, and in the European ones, but the sentence fits). And now the pilot is here! All seated, engines running. And here we go out, towards Mitre Peak. Looking back into Milford Sound... ... and ahead towards the Tasman Sea. Slightly north we cross Martins Bay. And Big Bay should be suited for a swim as well (just a bit on the cold side...). Heading 315°, with some hills ahead. The coastal landscape looks great, this is Okuru River. Haast River and the city of the same name. You like a history lesson? - Sir Johann Franz Julius von Haast (1 May 1822 – 16 August 1887) was a German-born New Zealand explorer, geologist, and founder of the Canterbury Museum in Christchurch. He was not only doing excursions, geological and geographical expeditions, but also contributed a lot to the knowledge about the extinct bird Moa: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julius_von_Haast https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moa End of history lesson - If you drive this way you would use SH6, for example across Paringa River. 10 Minutes later we pass Fox Glacier... ... and finally we land at Franz Josef airstrip. Just to show you what we were talking about.
  5. From the Franz Josef airstrip we take a slightly smaller plane to take off along Waiho River... ... before turning inland towards Franz Josef Glacier. Quite the work to climb with our 185... ... but rewarded with a beautiful view over Lake Mapourika and the coast. Behind us is Mt. Cook, the highest mountain of New Zealand (and Oceania). We descend northwards along the famous Hokitika Gorge... ... and pass the city of the same name. Unfortunately we can´t see the Glowworm Dell in the sim, and I do not expect it to be modeled in MSFS either. We follow the Westland coast... ... to today´s destination, Greymouth. PS: The service part of this post:
  6. Here you see us boarding in Christchurch, ready to bring tourists to the adventure capital. Quite a big city, at the pacific coast of the southern island. No doubt: flying the higher level planes is still a lot of fun in p3d. Everything works seamless: GSX, AI traffic, ATC, weather. Coming to the region of Wanaka a question pops up: Does the landscape look so dry because it is the end of summer? Or should it look more greenish in reality and the look is due to the sim version? The Crown Range appears even drier. But: we can see Lake Wakatipu in the distance... And as we descend the landscape gets some more colour again. We follow Kawarau River... ... straight into Queenstown. Ready for some days of hiking, abseiling, speedboating and bungy.
  7. Here we went, with a scenic flight by Air Milford, ... ... everybody on board, ... ... and out of Queenstown. This time we turned east along Lake Wakatipu and followed the road. One can´t go wrong, there are not too many. Heading northwest a little later, we reached Manapouri just below the Southern Alps... ... and turned north along Lake Te Anau. One could climb higher, but following the Eglinton River does it as well. Just after Lake Gunn... ... we turned left to follow Milford Highway. Hard to spot: Homer Tunnel below. I was not sure if I can fly through it. NZMF. Well, after these mountains we came in a bit high. So we descended out over the Tasman Sea... ... and went into the Sound again. Not easy to find a parking lot at NZMF, ... ... but the professional tower guidance helped a lot. PS: A little documentation for you.
  8. For many weeks I have been flying across virtual Australia, now be prepared for a surprise. The choice of plane and livery in Melbourne already gives an indication. Get her up... ... out of Tullamarine, with the city behind. Such an office view is fantastic. Summer-y Melbourne at the end of Port Philip Bay. Here we climb along Wilsons Prom. NP, the southernmost point of Australias mainland. You may spot the oil rigs of Bass Strait below... ... and the Furneaux island group right/south of us. This time we do not visit Tasmania... ... but continue over water until we make landfall over Franz Josef and Fox - New Zealand welcomes. The two most prominent glaciers of the Southern Alps. Mt. Cook NP, covered with snow - in Summer. It gets warmer as we descend eastwards to the plains of NZSI. And Rakaia River brings the melted snow down to the Pacific. Here you can spot our runway at Christchurch... ... a bit more obvious... ... even more obvious. Now: grab your bags and go hiking!
  9. Hi. I just bought the Orbx NZQN scenery and installed it onto P3D v5.2 running the latest Hotfix 1 (5.2.22.27615). When I load into NZQN, the runway texturing appear to be flickering. Furthermore, taxiway A, for light aircraft is not visible. It is a photoreal image that is being shown. I do have NZ-South Island installed as well. Have uninstalled and re-installed both of them but to no avail. I haven't yet done a flight from elsewhere into Queenstown. So I cannot say if the "runway texture' missing problem is also existent. Have attached some screenshots as well below. Thanks
  10. ... and they will continue to be from P3D. I see there is more VFR eye candy in the new model, but I am totally happy with the flying in my complete P3D instalment. Like this flight (already done two months ago), from Wellington... ... over Centennial Park, ... ... and the Capital´s city center... ... to Westwind windfarm. Bye, bye, North Island. Hello South Island. Cook Strait can be a bit rough when travelling on sea level (I´d like to do this in a few years). And this is the ship one may take: The Kaitaki. Picton, the cross-strait ferry port. If one likes, take the numerous curves of the Queen Charlotte drive, ... ... passing Havelock, ... ... and towards Nelson. We would drive around Wairoa Bay... ... through the green fields... ... to Motueka. Quite a good trip for one day, me thinks.
  11. Following yesterdays arrival... ... my favourite airline with one of my favourite jets is getting ready in Christchurch. A thorough inspection might be wise before this flight. But all looks well maintained... ... so we can take off to the west, ... ... with a last view to the Pacific. Crossing Arthurs Pass NP... ... and Hokitika Gorge, ... ... before we leave island 1: New Zealand. Here we are already at island 2. Ya might guess the city below, even with the payware airport inactive. The lovely Blue Mountains, with the chain of settlements to our right. The "X" is Katoomba airstrip, added with OZx. Uuups, that was obviously the wrong altitude... Now much better. Alice Springs. I suspect all famous places can be seen here. A little close-up for the thirsty souls. Right from the plane one of the many salt lakes show up, Lake Gregory. And Cape Leveque is the point where we leave the 2nd island of this flight. Here we pass Bali (island 3), ... ... turn west towards Pulau Singkep, ... ... descend... ... over Pulau Bintan. I am really looking forward to OLC Asia... Now a quick turn into Singers... ... overlooking famous Tanah Merah golf club. And here we are. Could be on the way back to Europe - but I´ll reveal my plan soon...
  12. After yesterdays flight ... ... we will now continue on our way back from the southern end of Aotearoa. The Dash is being made ready in Queenstown... ... and off we go. Looks like a steep climb, please keep your seatbelts fastened. Turning westwards over Lake Wakatipu... ... before crossing Shotover River in quite some altitude, already. We see the eastern plains of the Southern Island in brilliant Summer weather. At least the visibility was better when we were flying on base into Christchurch. Established with a slight offset... ... and finally safe. Nearly ready for the next connection.
  13. Here we go again, taxiing in Milford Sound. Quite impressive, at least in motion. Heading out into the fjord, with Mitre Peak ahead... ... and the settlement behind. Plus Bowen Falls in its glory. One can imagine why the rock ahead is called "The Elephant". Tourists heading north at the coast... ... while we turn inland over Martins Bay. I would welcome a slight name change to "Martyns Bay" @VH-KDK. Climbing is needed over Lake McKerrow... ... following Hollyford River... ... to Dart River and Diamond Lake. Not easy to get enough altitude to cross the Southern Alps. But once you reach Lake Wakatipu is becomes easy, you just need to descend... ... and bring your bird (and the wealthy tourists) back into Queenstown.
  14. ... only visual, by the way. Starting at the Milford Lodge... ... we move to Milford cruise harbour, ready to change to a canoe. The first sight is Bowen Falls. Must be @BradB who dropped the name here. Looks fantastic even from the distance. Just turning around we face Mitre Peak. Plus some wildlife on the way back to the harbour. Wouldn´t it be great to travel again?
  15. In a flight sim we can not do some of the classical Queenstownactivities, like speedboating on Shotover River https://www.queenstownnz.co.nz/listing/shotover-jet/2272/, bungeeing from Kawarau Bridge https://www.queenstownnz.co.nz/things-to-do/adventure-activities/bungy-swing-and-zip/ or hiking on tracks like the Routeburn https://www.queenstownnz.co.nz/stories/post/great-walks-from-queenstown/ . But we can virtually hire a car or take a bus tour, ... ... drive SH6 southbound, ... ... turn west at Oreti River... ... until we reach Te Anau. Then head up Lake te Anau, ... ... follow Milford Highway... ... along Lake Gunn, ... ... pass the (hidden) Homer Tunnel, ... ... and then we´d suddenly see Mitre Peak. The icon of Milford Sound. Where we find our colleagues already parked.
  16. For this flight we start on Fox airstrip TO20, at the Tasman Sea coast of NZ´s southern island. We leave Fox River behind... ... and reach Haast Highway (SH6). You´ll meet Julius Haast´s footsteps everywhere here, fer example at Haast River. Sure the village under the left wing is named... Haast. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julius_von_Haast Now we turn upwards the river and get to... ... Haast Pass. Haast was the first European to lead an expedition across the southernmost and lowest of the passes traversing the Southern Alps. Following the Haast Pass Highway SH6 further south... ...we reach Queenstown, ... ... throw a view onto the Remarkables, ... ... fly downwind over downtown... ... and get the King landed in the town of the Queen.
  17. Hokitika has two touristic sights (as per my knowledge): The glowworm dell https://www.adventurewest.co.nz/Destinations/hokitika/Hokitika-Glow-Worm-Dell , which should be near the airstrip but invisible in such thing as a flight simulator... ... and, if you follow Hokitika river some miles upstream, ... ... the Hokitika Gorge. https://hokitika.org/places/59/Hokitika-Gorge Seems like a suitable place to hike. We complete the day by heading further south to Lake Mapourika... ... and to a small airfield which is called Franz Josef. Let´s see what´s next.
  18. This inofficial tour starts at Franz Josef airfield NZFJ, ... ... whilst you could book some official ones at this helipad. https://www.glacierhelicopters.co.nz/ No matter from where, you should follow Waiho River... ... to Franz Josef Glacier. Sure we are not just passing over it, ... ... we have the right bird to land and explore. Before cooling down too much... ... we cross the peaks around Mt. Cook... ... and visit the neighboring Fox Glacier for another hike. Some 500 $ lighter we return into Summer, towards Fox Glacier Helipad NZFH. https://www.glacierhelicopters.co.nz/fox-glacier The landscape looks great here, even if it is "just" p3d.
  19. This is my first travel report after months of stay-at-home, even virtual. In this case mainly caused by renovation work and the related honeydo stuff. But my P3D is still working, nearly unchanged and free of unwanted updates! After trekking along the Abel Tasman NP it is time to leave Motueka, ... ... travel through the hinterland of Nelson, ... ... and work down into the west coast mountains of NZSI. Driving along Kawatiri highway would be much easier than flying in this conditions. But we come clear pass Mt. Lyell. Descending towards New Creek, ... ... and following State Hwy 69 to Cronadun ... ... and Reefton. Following Grey River we reach the settlements at Greymouth. From there it is just a short descend into Hokitika. Coming in by a fast transport we are too early for the Glowworms. So Hokitika Gorge is the trip to plan now ...
  20. Hiking is the ideal way to explore this peninsula. "Unfortunately" this is still a flight sim, so we take a plane from Motueka... ... pass the Motels and B&Bs at Kaiteriteri... ... and kajak along the coastal forests near Marahau... ... to Torrent Bay. The Torrent River with Cleopatra´s Pool should be just under the plane. At Awaroa a little airstrip and helipad are installed, ... ... just next to the beautiful bay. We finish the day by crossing Takaka Hill (where the Rivendell forest scenery was filmed), on the way back to Motueka.
  21. This is P3Dv5 (would you believe). I was testing out a shadowing bug with Orbx NZQN (no shadows on the runway or apron) when I happened to drift away from the runway a short way ... Whilst I really am struggling to get decent image quality with P3Dv5 on my ancient 3.5GB GTX970, this shot came out of the blue. Full marks to the dev that worked on that bit of photoreal! For once, P3D actually gave me some decent water (!!!) so the gods must be smiling on me after all! Adam.
  22. This will not be an unexpected journey (as the livery might suggest), but an uncommon one. Especially for a twin engine plane. From Christchurch... ... we are heading southbound over NZ´s South Island. Near Dunedin this is Mahinerangi Lake, ... ... and over Stewart Island we leave New Zealand. Time to reveal where we are going to: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_route#Antarctica The problem of this route is illustrated here: TINA (= there is no alternate). Instead, we can see the icy coast of Antarctica. The only airfield around is Wilkins Runway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilkins_Runway Along latitude 66°S for hours and hours... ... but in local time we stay at the same hour that we departed in Christchurch: Just after 9 a.m. Even after turning north... ... still the same local time. But you can see UTC has proceeded by 3 hours since the last screenshot. Finally landfall over South Africa. The aeroworx freeware adds a bit of landclass, ... ... but Johannesburg still has room for improvement. And O. R. Tambo International airport is totally disappointing - though it is the most frequented airport of the continent. That´s what a 2006 simulator looks like.
  23. The passengers arrived too early at Milford Sound airfield, ... ... but this gave them the chance to get some more great views of Mitre Peak. Great views are also guaranteed for the pilot here. Enough space for a canyon turn, ... ... and here we go, ... ... following Milford Sound Highway, ... ... that leads us to Homer Tunnel. East of the tunnel the name of the road changes to Te Anau Highway. We just hop over the mountains to Lake Wakatipu, ... ... leaving Glenorchy behind, ... ... before approaching Queenstown soon after. Parked at the right place, and at the right time to spot the stars. And to spot the bars, I suspect.
  24. For my flight to an airport that can handle bigger metal I used a little, quick trainer: The lovely Iris PC-21. Rapidly climbing out of Queenstown... ... along Kawarau river, northbound. Lake Dunstan, ... ... and the central highlands in the evening sun. Near Twizel village one can see interesting manmade features: Windbreaking hedges and some hydroelectric instalment. Unfortunately part of the scenery was covered ... ... which showed to be an even bigger challenge when turning into final at Christchurch. Puh, safe. And here we got it. Christchurch airport, where I will prepare for a loooong flight.
  25. If you are overdone by hiking, bungee jumping, paragliding or jetboat blasting, there still remains one thing to do when you are in Queenstown: Take a little scenic flight. Starting up the Kawarau River... ... and then back south over Frankton. Passing Queenstown CBD, ... ... which is a slight way down from Frankton and the airport, ... ... out to Lake Wakatipu. The calm village of Glenorchy ... ... is the gateway to some movie stages of the Lord of the Rings, ... ... which should be visible from Lake Sylvan quite well. It needs some 10000 ft altitude to cross the southern alps here... ... but finally we drop down to Martyns Bay. Pardon, Martins Bay. Now we descend further down this magnificent coast... ... until a gap to the left. Altitude 1500 gives a little thrill... ... as we enter Milford Sound. The Elephant. The Lion. The airport. No worries, ... ... there is enough parking space next to the colleague. And famous Mitre Peak waits in the background.
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