I might actually write a front page article on this because it was pretty cool. And this is just a quick summary, I plan to write a full AAR on it.
Last night, continuing with my EPOCH Alaska travels, I flew a mission in a freeware Mi-8 to deliver 800 pounds of supplies to a high glacier strip just east of Denali. The strip (The Moose’s Tooth) was a bit under an hour away in the Mi-8, so I took what I thought was an appropriate amount of fuel for the trip…but it was just a best guess. Well, I got to the strip OK, unloaded my cargo, but when I looked at my gauges noticed I only had 800 lbs. of fuel remaining. OK, I thought, I’ll just hop down the glacier to a closer base and get some fuel. Well, apparently the fuel burn during the APU start, and initializing the engines and everything (I’m very unfamiliar with this Mi-8) used up a good bit…and my speed descending the glacier wasn’t all that great.
I ended up flaming out and pulled off a successful autorotation to the glacier. I considered just adding some additional fuel and then writing about it in my report…but then got to thinking…“I fly for a virtual airline…why not put out a mayday!”. So I did…and 20 minutes later a whole gaggle of EPOCH Air Alaska pilots were making their way up the glacier to deliver some fuel to me. It was really, really cool to see them coming and I was amazed (at 4PM on a weekday) that so many people were able to join up so quickly. What a great community! I made a short video about the mission - with an AAR to follow: