First, what is actually calima. Calima is (mostly) hot, dust and sand laden wind blowing from Sahara from easterly direction. This wind causes a lot of respiratory problems, brings dust, the visibility drops and sometimes this causes problems in the aviation (like in the year 2020, when the airports around the islands had to be closed during several days).
I was flying today (again) around Tenerife and as we wanted to stay above this calima layer and get some better visibility, we have climbed up to 6.500 feet where we broke out of the sand and were flying above it in the nice, clean air…
Most of you know the scene from the movie “Top Gun“, where Lt. Mawerick explains a manouver with an enemy MIG-29: Because I was inverted… 😀
Well, recently I’ve done my Upset Prevention and Recovery Training (UPRT), which made me feel a bit like a “Top Gun Pilot”…
The UPRT is mandatory from December 2019 and is a requirement in order to obtain the first type rating on a multipilot airplane. Be my guest; there in no other profession in the world, where you need to stay current (and healthy) at all times, and to maintain the currency you need to keep spending a lot of money…
Even though the things are pretty messy (and of course not only in the world of aviation), but generally, despite this I’ve decided to go through the training.
Before this course I’ve only once experienced how it feels like to fly “upside down” during a looping in a ultralight plane when I wasn’t even a pilot yet. So it’s been a loong time ago…
On a recommendation by a friend of mine I’ve travelled to Merzbrück, Germany (EDKA), to do my course at the Westflug.
It consisted of 1 day theory and 4 flights of 45 minutes divided in 2 days. During the theory session we have discussed a lot of important topics from human factors, how our body reacts to different kind of manouvers, and a have refreshed airplane general knowledge as well. Our instructor Rob really surprised me with his technical and physics knowledges, and I cosider him one of the best instructors I’ve ever had. So even the day in the class was not boring at all.
The practical part should be more fun they said…. Well yes, it was, but after pulling the G’s for 30-35 minutes you are simply exhausted… And don’t mention the stomach… That’s why there is a pause of couple of hour, so the body can recover before the next flight.
For the training they use the Extra 330LX, 2 years old, which is a kind of plane you can find in the Red Bull competitions. 🙂
The instrumentation is very simple; altimeter and airspeed indicator (and my legs lol). The instructor sits behind me, and his panel consists of more instruments, including the acceleromenter to measure the G-forces.
Extra 330LX is a german two seat low wing aerobatic monoplane with a taildragger landing gear, powered by a a Lycoming 6-cylinder with more than 300hp, which made my feel to fly a rocket rather than a GA plane I was used to… 🙂
Unfortunately all my images were spoiled by the stupid mask. It is everything but comfortable flying like this and on the top of that all the images look a bit weird… But there were other choice, we had to comply with the regulations…
The idea was to learn how it feels to recover from the manouvers with +3G’s; but I’ve pulled up to +4.5G’s. While flying inverted, -1G was experienced.
There we are a lot’s of “for the first time” during this training:
My very first D- registrated airplane in my logbook
My very first time at controls in Germany
My very first acrobatics flight
First flight in a taildragger
First spin recovery
First time flying inverted
My very first stall flying inverted
Experienced first time +4.5G’s and -1G
And much mucho more… 😀
And of course my GoPro was on board with me; here comes a short resume of my UPRT training.
I’d definitely like to repeat this experience and just to have more fun (as far as the stomach this allows) :-D.
Not many know about the old (former) airport of Fuerteventura situated at Los Estancos, not far away from the capital city of the island Puerto del Rosario.
I’ve done some research on Google, but there is not much information to be found, and actually nor are there many signs of the old airport left, except this old terminal. This was the second airport on the island, after La Tefía (which I’ll need to search on my next visit :-D) and it was in service between the years 1951 and 1969.
The runway 03/21 was 1.350m long.
This aerodrome was replaced by the new airport situated at El Matoral, which is still in service.
I have the impression, that this 2.200km2 big island has many aerodromes we do not know much about. The Jandía strip, another one situated not far away from this one as well, El Jarde, La Tefía, etc…
This is my third compilation of aerial images of flying around the Canary Islands; in this post I’ll share with you some images of La Palma. If you have missed my previous compilations, you can see them here: Tenerife and La Gomera.
Hope you’ll enjoy the views as I did enjoyed them when flying around La Palma!