Official 8th Annual Mudspike Christmas Flight 2022 Discussion and AAR Thread

Never tried Lone Star. Not that keen on Bud or Coors but Sam Adams isn’t a bad drop. Speaking of Fosters, yeah nobody here drinks it and apparently, according to a Dutch colleague, “Heineken is Dutch for Fosters”

Back on topic. Looking at these ‘adventures’ I have to give it a go but I’m too newb to join in this year and rapidly running out of time. But just bit the bullet and got X-Plane 11, also have a 4TB drive inbound so I can actually download it + scenery and migrate a lot of other shite off my C Drive (currently only have 150GB free).

Anyway, by next year I might even be a half decent virtual pilot - Vegemite for everyone :stuck_out_tongue:


Well good old DHL managed to courier the missing cargo once it had been collected from the many villages round Welshpool and we’re now back on track for another episode of “Don’t do it like Keets”.

Currently onboard we have:

Welshcakes from Wales

Vat of lobscouse from Liverpool

Today’s flight, I wanted to get further north, checking the weather in the UK it was horrendous, though a little more favourable on the NE coast of Scotland. So that will do. I could have gone to Inverness, but I’m sure the RAF won’t mind me dropping in.

Leg 2 proper: EGGP → RAF Lossiemouth (EGQS)

A filthy start to the day

Running through the checklist and getting the 146 started is an achievement, Hairy palms doesn’t offer much support and generally gets in the way. So much so, I’m considering modding him out. We get things running in about 20-25 minutes and requesting pushback I taxy to Runway 23 departure for a WAL2T SID.

Its an ugly day for flying

Opening up the taps, we roar (ok Whisper) along the runway and Hairy palms announces V1…rotate… I glance over but he’s still got that thousand yard stare. Easing back on the stick, I’m pleased to report we climb out and everything seems to be on track. There’s piloting breaking out on this here flight. :slight_smile:

Murky Murky

Running through the post takeoff checklist, I engage the autopilot and we begin our climb and route.

Hairy palms is unmoved

After a while I expected we’d arrive via the transition to WAL VOR but notice we’re in a right turn. hmmmmmm… Checking the map in the EFB I’m holding somewhere west of Telford. This isn’t right. The early exuberance is rapidly draining away, I’ve done or not done something… think man think.

Running through things mentally, then breaking out the manual, I remembered the RNAV switch on the console… You can see it in the above screenshot and the error… here

Needs to be “up” and then the LNAV button pressed on the autopilot.

Having sorted that out (it took around 15 minutes flight time), we were back on track, but what a detour.

Shame :bell: Shame :bell:Shame :bell:

Out of the mire

There wasn’t much in the way of scenery once I’d got out of the mirk, the TCAS system blared at me at one point just over the Lake District, which was a flight 500ft above. I’d no time to react to the “DESCEND DESCEND” call but disaster was avoided.

Scafell Pike

Another moody weather shot

I started descending with around 90 miles to go. The autopilot on the 146 doesn’t support VNAV, so its more of a “put the auto pilot on hold” set the V/S and then put it in V/S mode. I need to check this out a bit more in the manual as its highly likely this isn’t the way it should be done.

South of Inverness

With the sun setting, I was keen to get down knowing the likelihood of poor vis on the approach. With about 35 miles to run and down at 9000ft I could see it wasn’t going to be a visual landing.

I have a bad feeling about this

Descending into the murk and trusting the instruments was a little unnerving. I’m not sure I could do this in real life. Getting closer to the windscreen didn’t help either.

I continued downwards to around 2000ft. The mountains in this part of Scotland are small and this was reflected by the radar altimeter showing I had a nice bit of clearance. Turning out over the sea was a relief though.

Turning to finals… on mars

As we turned onto the final heading, the ILS needles kicked in. I couldn’t get the autopilot to follow this so it was time to do pilot stuff.

Where is the runway…

A bit high…

Resisting the urge to dive for the runway. as it broke out of the weather, we descended for a reasonable landing.

Full stop somewhere in Scotland.

Another fun flight, lots of reading to do, especially on the autopilot. Its the Faeroes next, Vagar is always a fun place and its bound to be wind from the SE so the tricky approach.


Awesome report!

You know, I was just thinking of Lobscouse…mmmm, Lobscouse…:drooling_face:

Say what you want about FO Hairy Palms (incidentally, funniest waypoint name: ROSIE off the 29 Palms VORTAC),

but that SOB has more type ratings than anyone I know…:wink:


nice reports again and looking forward to new participants :+1:

paving my way up north along the Chilean coast. CJ4 looking for some loops, maybe mach or similar :wink:

but somewhere at this point I started to be fed up with all the same trees and buildings. my fault, no seasonal mod purchased :slight_smile: plus after our discussion about new shiny module purchases I also realized that I have lots of modules which needs to be dusted off. so decided to switch to XP.

…but, I have many XP11 modules and would like to use XP12. so did my homework and tweaked a bit MLADG L-29. she flies reasonably well now but I guess she will require some more tweaking …

… not my best landing … definitely some more tweaking needed :sunglasses:


Robert Downey Jr Ok GIF


Loved it. That purple skin is amazing….

jimi hendrix GIF

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Great reports, everyone. We seem to be converging on the NAT tracks all at the same time!

I took a few days off in Northern Europe. My sunny, bucolic dash across the eastern continent seems to have turned a bit cloudy and grey.

Still, what makes a poor day for flying makes a great day for schnapps and a warm fire!


Can’t just sit here all winter, however, can I?

Hmmm, or can I? :thinking:

No, I guess I can’t.

Leg 27 Eindhoven Airport, Eindhoven, Netherlands (EHEH) TO RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire, England, UK (EGVN)

A splash of water on the face, a brisk tip toe across the cold floor and into my flight boots (which I’ve left by the fire), and I’m off to Old Blighty.

260NM and a hop across the Channel (even I should be able to find that) and @Victork2 gets an unexpected house guest. :wink:

“Cue the music, Squiffy!” (It makes the report better, trust me)

Ron Goodwin : Battle of Britain, original film soundtrack (1969) - YouTube

It stands to reason that there would be only one proper aircraft to make this leg, the Flying Iron Spitfire Mk IXc. Here in Wing Commander J.E. ‘Johnnie’ Johnson’s livery by Jankees.

Now, with LIVE WEATHER!!!. Yes, Live Weather has returned to Deacon’s computer with SU11. This has really made my day. REX weather was great, but the better meshing of METARs and frontal weather by MSFS makes for a much more believable environment IMHO.

And as a special reward for my patience…

Ta Da! The Goo! The Soup! The Clag! This might fall under the heading of, “Be careful of what you ask for”. :rofl:

Actually, the weather in Eindovhen isn’t particularly bad. It’s just misty. But it does shorten the horizon somewhat.

Still, all I have to do is find the Channel and I’m hoping gross map correlation will take me on from there.

Let’s see how that works out!

Turns out, the Low Countries are actually quite, wait for it, low. Flat too. Other than hawking the compass, my best tool seems to be pinging off the passing towns, like a Snooker ball.

The distant lights of what must undoubtedly be, he said with more confidence than he felt, Tilburg dial me in to my approximate position.

Followed by a close encounter with Baarle. You can almost imagine the flat silence of a foggy Fall morning…

being interrupted by the high tearing of a Merlin coming in over the treetops.

The sun is beginning to peak over the flat haze layer. But the misty air coming in through my open cockpit still brings a damp chill.

I pull the collar of my Irvin higher up against my neck.

A last pass, eye level to the church steeple at Wouw, tells me I should be getting close to the sea.

Time to take my usual peek.

It seems that I am approaching the Oosterschelde, literally the eastern estuary of the Schelde. I can work with that. The peninsula to the south of me appears to be the Walcheren (Maybe? I still can’t tell sometimes what the map is referencing. City or state? Fish or fowl?)

In any case, this seems like something there shouldn’t be two of.

Map says it’s the Werkeiland Neeltje Jans. “Work Island” I’m assuming is the loose translation. Artificial island, maybe? The wacky part, at least to me, is that it seems to be both the location of a theme park and the anchor of the Eastern Scheld Storm Surge Barrier; visible to the north and south.

Hopefully, not serving both functions at once! :flushed:

I try to get to the point of Walcheren. That’s its name now, dammit! I’ve decided. :wink:

And turn back on course towards England. The fog bank in the distance is completely failing to fill me with enthusiasm.

In time…


No, Bradwell on Sea, but good guess!

A fog lays upon the land like a blanket. “Blankets it”, someone better at English than myself might say.

I need to see what the view is like down low. I don’t have a ton of gas and no idea of how to shoot an approach in this thing without a good, old fashioned GCA.

You don’t happen to have a GCA on you, do you? No? Me neither.

Not good. This is the view from about 600ft.

I probably get down to about 400ft before I chicken out and climb back up to 1000.

I may have to make a play for it eventually. But there’s no point in smacking into a hillside any earlier than I need to.

There is a brief sucker hole that fills me with false hope. But it disappears within a few minutes.

Eventually, the time comes to poke my nose back down in hope of sighting the field.

With exquisite care, I get low enough to make ground contact. After a fashion.

The houses streak by below, close enough to touch.

And then, in what is becoming a bit of a “thing” for me, I unexpectedly break out of the fog and into the misty sunshine!

I spy what looks like it could be the spires of Oxford. I heel on over and make a play for them.

Bloody Marvelous!

From Oxford, I can find the Farmoor Reservoir.

Which leads me, through spectacular rolling fields,

To Brize Norton!

No ILS this time ‘round. Time to wake up the Wheels Watch!

Pitchout to landing.

Not bad, particularly compared to some of mine recently. :grin:

And here we are, on what turned out to be quite a lovely morning!

And for @Victork2, I bring Frankincense from Qatar because, if you are buying Christmas gifts, and you go through somewhere that actually sells, you know, Frankincense, how can you not?

So again, both fun, and somewhat harder than I expected. These, launches into the “Dark Cloudy” with little gas and no plan make for terrible aviation…

but GREAT aviation stories! :rofl:


Spot on. Skiing is the same. :ski:

I did my flight to the Faeroes this afternoon (report incoming) and the take off from Lossiemouth was horrific. A schnapps and a warm fire was much more sensible.

Loving the reports so far. I’ve stuff to drop off and it may take me a few months. :rofl:


Special big ups for this. :heart::heart::heart:

And this is genius…. I have envy, want and I wish I’d done that all in one screenie. It’s just perfect. :rofl:


The L-29 is just a beautiful aircraft.

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Leg 28 RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire, England, UK (EGVN) TO Welshpool Airport, Welshpool, Powys, Wales, UK (EGCW)

Almost done this side of the pond! Once again, the Christmas Trip nears its end for me. Today, we go see the inimitable @keets.

Do you ever feel like you’re pushing your luck? After a few recent takeoffs with no clear plans for landing, I’m beginning to wonder when I’m going to arrive over a field out of altitude, airspeed, and ideas.

So, discretion being the better part of, blah, blah, blah, I wander through the hangar and see what I might have suitable for the prevailing damp English weather.

The conditions here have been favoring low vis, which really puts the kibosh on most anything I have without an ILS. But the field is short as well, so nothing too heavy.

In the end, I pull the pitot covers off the MilViz Cessna 310R and push her out of the hangar.

Ick, wasn’t someone just offering schnapps and a fire?

Well, nothing ventured…

The 310 is wonderfully good natured. My only real experience in a light twin is an old, busted Seminole back when I got my ATP.

This aircraft feels nothing like that!

The weather is showery, but the viz is actually not that bad. Plus, with a working GPS, I’m back in the 21st Century.

It’s remarkably comforting.

My first thought is to see if I can get VFR on top. But, climb as I might, there’s only more cloud and rain.

I’m also very near the freezing level. The 310 does have deicing boots and a heated prop. But, having tempted fate for several thousand miles already, I choose now to start playing it safe! :laughing:

Settling in at 6000ft, I gave in to the temptation to start fiddling around to try to get my avatar back to my usual Nom de Plume.

In the process, I seem to have picked up some company.

Now, the only method of getting rid of her (nowhere near as creepy as it sounds), involved reaching for the iPad stowed down on the right side of the cockpit.

And I can tell you, that fishing around for the hotspot to bring the iPad back up was, every bit as creepy as it sounds!

So much so, that after failing to find it despite several minutes of trying, I literally succumbed to the urge to look around and make sure no one was watching.

Is there a hotkey for: “Pardon me, miss. I don’t want to get maced. So would you kindly hand me that iPad next to your leg?”

Passenger safely and respectfully…cough…removed, the clouds part in what I am sure was a coincidental occurrence. :blush:

Ah, that’s much nicer.

The weather.

Not the company.

I feel it’s important to state that. :laughing:

The earlier clouds have given way to a well defined overcast with clear conditions beneath. Despite that, I really appreciated the GPS for helping me find the field in the low angle afternoon light.

Here I am, turning base. You can just barely make out the field beyond the car park above my left tip tank.

I really don’t know what kind of landing distance I can get out of the 310. So I am motivated to put the aircraft down as close to the piano keys as I can.

I make a decent job of it. Only gave up a few feet.

Of course, as I discover when I do a 180 on the runway, it would have probably helped to land into the wind!

And here we are. Welshpool.

For @keets, I have spirited (see what I did there?) a fine bottle of Hungarian Pálinka. My grandfather used to serve this stuff at parties.

It’ll put some starch in your shorts.

Also takes the tarnish off silver. :face_with_spiral_eyes:

And now, here I sit. I’ve got about 5 weeks until Christmas and a few more legs to go. I’m very much on the fence about getting the crossing done now, in one long flight or diverting north and stretching the journey just a little longer.

May have to have a pint and think on it. :thinking:


I’ll meet you in Keflavik if you like :beers: :beer: :beers: :beer:… I’m getting ready to hop across from Goose Bay to Narsarsuaq in the DC3, and then the next leg will be to Iceland.

Before that though, a quick AAR for the flight from Monkton to Goose Bay.

I wanted to fly a leg in something fast…the F104 should fit the bill nicely.

By the time I was ready to fly, the weather had cleared up considerably.

Farewell Monkton…

Climbing out towards the ‘Great White North’…

Mach 1.6 above the clouds…and it is looking just a tad chilly down there.

Descending into the Goose Bay area, I find the weather is mostly good nut a few scattered showers…hopefully not freezing rain!

Downwind at Goose Bay. Looks like the showers have moved away from the field at least…the runway definitely looks contaminated.

Left base…


And safely shut down…



I’ve a mind to turn around and catch up with you!! Great report as always and it looks like the Welsh weather was kind to you.

I’ve called the boss (SWMBO) and she’s on the way with some food after such a journey. :slightly_smiling_face:

If you do the northern journey stop at the Faeroes, the landing on Runway 12 is an interesting approach!

That’s likely to be on my list, it’s going to be quite the party. :sunglasses:


I’ll see you both there!

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Yes, because…

(tap to unmute)

Basically: All was good since when snow was introduced in Christmas 2020. And then the snow removal tech got broken around SU9. They should be able to fix it in the upcoming update.

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so I should kick the tires :slight_smile:

I would need similar warm outfit if I did rebuild my home cockpit in my garage :cold_face:

wondering how far we are from the release of COLIMATA’s Starfighter for XP

Delfín is definitely a looker, even more so in XP12

takeoff went much smoother than landing

much better, we didnt even blow tiers


Leg 29 Welshpool Airport, Welshpool, Powys, Wales, UK (EGCW) TO Hawarden Airport, Flintshire, Wales, UK (EGNR)

Having completed my Holiday shopping this side of the Atlantic, I found myself floundering a bit. Looking at the great circle route between Wales and North America, there was a strong temptation to get the Translant done with. I’d avoid adding several hundred miles to my journey and, should real life intrude, I’d only be a few hops from mission accomplishment.

On the other hand, there was some very fun flying to be had between here and there.

This leg was a bit of a meander. I thought to just leave it off but decided to play the ball where it lies in the end. :wink:

I’d been dying to play with all the new toys that ASOBO gave us with the latest SU. So, I decided to take the venerable Beaver to…

…to wherever I was going!

The weather was about what you’d expect. Not much of a day for sightseeing. But I was going anyway.

Say, this is a good looking Beaver!

Up in about two plane lengths with the wind, I try to pick the most VMC direction I can see out the windscreen.

I stick mostly to the valleys, moving north and west. I figure, if the weather gets bad, I’ll hightail it to Dublin and reconsider the Translant from there.

The weather is in and out. Here I dip down into the Llyn LLanwddyn to stay below the clouds.

As the sun comes up, at least it’s not dark and stormy anymore.

I find myself following the River Conwy valley to the coast.

But with more low clouds off ahead, I decide that, while picturesque, this all feels a bit aimless. I need to set down and make a choice as to my way forward.

I take a hard right along the coastal highlands towards Hawarden. From there I can either continue up north, or set off towards North America.

Probably just in time too. The rain comes in from the southeast, making the field difficult to find.

I keep it close and high to keep the field in sight. The runway appears and disappears in the rain.

Honestly, I just want to say that I don’t fly like this in real life! :rofl:

The Beaver wheel lands nicely enough. Not too much rudder dancing required.

Tying her up for the evening. Think a pint is in order.

LOL, clearly no direction on this flight. But I think I’ve chosen my path for the immediate future.

The next leg is considerably more purposeful. But I’m off on a trip tonight, so you’ll just have to wait! :laughing: :salute:


If you’d have flown this flight before 11am GMT, it was lovely. Blue skies and little cloud. Then the weather steamed in from the SE.

I was due to fly to Keflavik today, but sheep called and I got bogged down in RL.

Tomorrow is the day. Weather looks bad still though, so take care.


Goose Bay (CYYR) to Narsarsuaq, Greenland (BGBW).

Back into the DC3 for this leg across the Labrador Sea to Narsarsuaq…

I used Sky Vector to create a basic navlog… 4 hours and 10 minutes doesn’t sound too bad.

Ready to taxi just as the sun was coming up…

I have to admit that I love the cluttered cockpit. AH did a great job with this one.

Away we go…

It looks like I got out of there in the nick of time as the weather was definitely getting worse on the field…

Full of fuel and cargo, climb performance was definitely lacking. I bet she would be a handful on a hot day at a high elevation airfield…

This sim leaves me speechless sometimes…

Coasting out, leaving Canada behind…

And ahead, a little over three hours of nothing but very cold ocean…

Land Ho! My ADF needle tells me I have drifted well to the left of track, but thankfully I was still close enough to pick up the NDB signal.

Heading towards the SI NDB…

I tracked a little to the right of the direct course to the NDB so that I could turn in at the appropriate time to pass over the beacon on a heading that would take me up the fjord towards the NS NDB.

As I make my way up the fjord, it becomes apparent that there is some weather up ahead…this could get interesting.


I got lucky…runway in sight!

Easy does it…

Made it!

This was my planned route and an estimation of the actual route flown. All done with the navlog headings and stopwatch.

Keflavik, Iceland will be my next port of call.


Nice AAR. Well done with crossing the ocean and hitting the NDB signal in the end :+1:

This leg is also in my planning but in reverse order. Though I am still sitting in Iceland :grimacing: in Isafjordur looking west towards Kulusuk in Greenland.

I will be in a similar situation as you when it comes to navigating over the water. Only in my case, the distance to cover between Isafjordur and Kulusuk is about 350nm but the Kulusuk NDB signal reaches out just 38nm. This means that if my ground track is off more than some 8 degrees, I may arrive to Greenland out of reach of the Kulusuk NDB :neutral_face: And there is no navaid in Iceland to get me running on track outbound (the Isafjordur NDB range is also 38nm).

Anyhow, I am quite sure I will eventually arrive to Greenland so if I take the DC-3 instead of the DC-6 I wanted to fly initially on this leg, I could land off-field without much fuss and call for help :slight_smile:

Wish me luck :slight_smile: