Jun 21, 2011

CAZ5 and a nice CH601XL

A reminder that there was a time when the Canadian government actually supported and helped grow our network of local airports. Not now.

Jun 20, 2011

100 Mile House Airport

Where's the rest of the runway? Just over the hill... That's the top of the windsock located at the far end. The 100 Mile House airstrip has a definite slope and is generally used as a one-way runway, landing uphill and taking off downhill.

Jun 7, 2011

Airport Meandering

Sunday, on the way to Victoria, I stopped in at the Duncan airport. It's a compact private airport surrounded by a gravel pit, which makes for some challenging approaches at the best of times. The runway is about 1500 feet long, so depending what you're flying, you may need to be very accurate on speed and touchdown point.

Jun 5, 2011

Augering In

An auger is a tool used to dig holes for fence posts, or holes in the ice on a frozen lake to go ice fishing.

"Augering in" is an expression used by pilots to describe what an aircraft does when it spins out of control and hits the ground.

Today as I was helping patrol the aircraft parking area at the Nanaimo Fly-In & Airshow, I turned at the sound of a very low-flying plane behind me just in time to watch the aircraft in the opening act of the airshow, auger in. It was a sickening sight. At my first glimpse I was aware that something wasn't as it should be, and in the space of about five seconds, it was over as the plane snap-rolled to the right and plowed into the grass on the far side of the runway. A sudden squelching of the engine roar. A dust cloud kicked up, and the silence.

That was a few hours ago now and according to the CBC news report "a 71 year old pilot was airlifted to Victoria Airport with life-threatening injuries..."

At least it seems, he survived the impact - he may still live... That's all I know right now.

And in the age of youtube, here's your chance to share the moment. Appropriate comments supplied by shocked spectators.
(better link from Jeremy - this should work better)