December took me through hundreds of photos to find a winter scene, finally deciding to use one of Mark Ogden’s top shots that he took for Ned Dawson’s magazine “HeliOps” some 7 years ago of my old operation over the Victorian High Country.
The BK117 was introduced to the Mt Hotham – Falls Creek ‘HeliLink’ in 1997 to connect two Australian ski resorts that are owned by a single company, and have a common lift ticket. As an alternative to a two hour (good weather) drive the resorts offered a 6 minute helicopter link with 4 hours skiing in the other resort, at the then unbeatable price of $A50 return. Needless to say we were full every flying day, with 10 return flights in the morning carrying 8 pax and the same every afternoon! Cruising at 8,000ft the visibility is usually good enough to see the NSW ski fields as well as the Victorian resorts.
These days an AS350B2 Squirrel is contracted for the task and is a little less busy, but over the years some 40,000 passengers have been carried with special approval to ‘charter equivalency’ requiring single engine helicopters to be put onto Cat A maintenance!
This will be the last Rotorheads calendar from me, after nine years it has lost the appeal it once had and is getting too hard to put together. If someone with basic Photoshop skills and a bit of interest would like to take over let me know and I’ll pass on my overlays, but you’ll need your own hosting site too.
Wide screen size:
Standard screen size:
As always, for Windows users click on the thumbnail to open a higher resolution full picture, and then right click to select “Set as Background”. Mac users should select the background via System Preferences.
Happy Christmas to you all, and may you find a suitable gift under your tree