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Old 11th Mar 2017, 05:11
  #4181 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Toowoomba
Posts: 33
A (true) tale of a different time.

Scene - briefing room below tower at POM
Time - early on Hagen Show day.
Cast - crews of about 17 a/c, all planned for Hagen ( except us, going to Mendi)
Problem - one of POM rare sea fogs, thick enough to reach about half-way up the tower.

Enter the tower controller, come down to make a cofffee, to be treated to friendly abuse on the lines of "C'mon, we've got to get these people to Hagen".

Unexpected reply, "You want to go, go line up."

Well, no-one was conviced it would happen, but no-one was going to back down. So we all taxied out nose to tail, the leader was cleared to "line up, report ready". When ready, "clear for take-off, report abeam tower on course for Hagen." As each completed the 180 to head N-W, line up the next one.

So 17 (from memory) mostly VFR flights departed with less than 50 yds vis on the runway. The story I heard was that tthe controller had already resigned & was going home to Canada.

Then there was the exchange on the radio changing from tower VHF to area HF.

"Moresby, this is XYZ, on track for Mendi, climbing thru 8000, to cruise 12000."

"Good morning XYZ, QNH 1012, traffic is---(long pause) ah bugerrit, there's about 6 in front of you, 12 behind you, they're strung out from 8000 to 12000 and they're all going to Hagen."

A memory to hang next to the other classic exchanges with towers jn the good old, bad old, days.

And I still have some rather poor photos of the Patair DC3 as we overtook him near top of climb.

Memory is not to be trusted after so many years, so others may remember it differently.
FL235 is offline