ALK-VA | 'Monara' E-Zine
News Magazine of SriLankan Virtual Airlines
Round the World On Equator
RWOE FLIGHT LOG: 05 NOV 2011 - 04 FEB 2012
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Leaving VCBI for an epic journey
Bandaranaike International Airport (also known as Katunayake International Airport and Colombo International Airport) (IATA: CMB, ICAO: VCBI) is Sri Lanka's only international airport at the moment. Mattala International Airport, when it gets built will be the second International Airport of Sri Lanka. It is located in Katunayake, 35 km (22 mi) north of Colombo.
The airport began as a Royal Air Force airfield in 1944 during the Second World War, RAF Station Negombo. In 1957, when SWRD Bandaranaike removed all the British Military airfields from Ceylon (Sri Lanka), the airfield was handed over to the Royal Ceylon Air Force (RCyAF) and renamed Katunayake. Part of it still remains an Air Force airfield.
Approaching VRMM runway 18
Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (IATA: MLE, ICAO: VRMM), more commonly known as Malé International Airport, previously known as Hulhulé Airport, is the main international airport in the Maldives. It is located on Hulhulé Island in the North Malé Atoll, nearby the capital island Malé.The first commercial flight was an Air Ceylon flight (4R0ACJ) landed on this runway was at 15:50hrs on 10 April 1962. The first aircraft owned by the Maldives landed on the runway of the Hulhulé Airport on 1974.
Ready to takeoff runway 13 at FSIA
Seychelles International Airport (IATA: SEZ, ICAO: FSIA) or Aéroport de La Pointe la Rue as it is known locally is located on the island of Mahé, Seychelles near the capital city of Victoria. The opening of the Seychelles International Airport took place on the 20 March 1972 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
HKJK Gate 14
Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, (IATA: NBO, ICAO: HKJK) formerly called Embakasi Airport and Nairobi International Airport, is Kenya's largest aviation facility, and the busiest airport in East Africa. The airport is named after the first Kenyan prime minister and president Jomo Kenyatta.
Another day, another sector. Leaving runway 17 of FEFF
Bangui M’Poko International Airport (IATA: BGF, ICAO: FEFF) is an airport located 7km (4 miles) northwest of Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic.
About to land at FOOL runway 16
Libreville Leon M'ba International Airport (IATA: LBV, ICAO: FOOL) is an airport situated in Libreville, Gabon. It is the main international airport in the country. Named after the first president of Gabon, Léon M'ba, it was the hub of former national airline Air Gabon until March 2006.
Last view of African continent, leaving Leon M'ba, Gabon (FOOL)
Only location in the world to read all latitude/longitude same: 00 00 00N / 00 00 00S, 000 00 00E / 000 00 00W
4R-ADA over that unique location, while en-route to Ascension Aux AB (FHAW) from Leon M'Ba (FOOL)
Finals runway 16 Ascension Aux AB (FHAW) in the middle of South Atlantic.
Royal Air Force Station Ascension, more commonly known as RAF Ascension Island, and sometimes known as Wideawake Airfield or Ascension Island Base, is a British military airbase on Ascension Island in the Atlantic Ocean, near the Equator.
Taxing for early morning departure from Augusto Severo Intl. Brazil (SBNT). Yes, taxi lights were having a problem.
Augusto Severo International Airport (IATA: NAT, ICAO: SBNT), formerly called Parnamirim Airport, is the airport serving Natal, Brazil, located in the adjoining municipality of Parnamirim. Since November 24, 1951 the airport is named after the aviator Augusto Severo de Albuquerque Maranhão (1864-1902).
Inbound to Val De Caes, Brazil (SBBE), sunrise over Atlantic over African coast
Belém/Val de Cães–Júlio Cezar Ribeiro International Airport (IATA: BEL, ICAO: SBBE) is the main airport serving Belém, Brazil. Val de Cães, the name of the neighborhood where the airport is located. Since April 13, 2010 the airport is named also after Júlio Cezar Ribeiro de Souza (1837–1887) a researcher of balloons.
Arrival at Mariscal Sucre Intl., Ecuador (SEQU) marked many milestones in the trip.
1. Airport at highest elevation, 9226ft.
2. Exactly 180 deg East/West of home base, VCBI
3. Reached halfway point around the world, after flying 10 sectors.
Mariscal Sucre International Airport (IATA: UIO, ICAO: SEQU) is the international airport serving Quito, the capital city of Ecuador. It is named after Venezuelan-born Antonio José de Sucre, a hero of Ecuadorian and Latin American independence. It began operations in 1960.
Leaving SEQU for the second half of the world tour.
Daniel Oduber Quiros Intl. Liberia, Costa Rica (MRLB). Aircraft had an APU failure. Fortunately maintenance staff managed to rectify the problem in time.
Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (IATA: LIR, ICAO: MRLB), also known as Liberia International Airport, is one of the four international airports in Costa Rica. The airport is located in the city of Liberia in Guanacaste Province. It serves specially as a tourism hub for those who visit the Pacific coast and Western Costa Rica.
Descending through mountains, inbound to Lic Benito Juarez Intl, Mexico (MMMX)
Stand 21 at Lic Benito Juarez Intl, Mexico (MMMX)
Benito Juárez International Airport, (IATA: MEX, ICAO: MMMX) in Venustiano Carranza, one of the sixteen boroughs into which Mexico's Federal District is divided, is a commercial airport that serves Mexico City, the capital of Mexico. It is Mexico's busiest airport by both passenger traffic and aircraft movements and is the Latin America's second busiest airport by passenger traffic after Guarulhos Airport in São Paulo, Brazil and the busiest airport by aircraft movements.
Turning finals to runway 34, Los Cabos Intl. Mexico (MMSD)
Parked until next flight surrounding picturistic setting at MMSD
Los Cabos International Airport (IATA: SJD, ICAO: MMSD) is the seventh busiest airport in Mexico, located at San José del Cabo, Baja California Sur, Mexico. The airport serves Los Cabos area: San José del Cabo and Cabo San Lucas. This airport has three terminals with 4 concourses.
Late night departure from MMSD. Good bye Americanos.
Longest sector of the tour. 6hr flight en-route to Cassidy Intl. Kiribati (PLCH) under twinkling stars and full moon sky.
Among early morning crispy clouds looking for the tiny island with just a NDB beacon to guide.
Found it! In line to tropical paradise Kiribati - Christmas Island (PLCH). Precise approach was critical as no VOR/ILS guidance, and short 6896' runway.
Cassidy International Airport (IATA: CXI, ICAO: PLCH) is an airport located north of Banana, a settlement on Kiritimati (also known as Christmas Island) in Kiribati. It is the only airport in the Kiribatian part of the Line Islands with an IATA and/or ICAO code.
4R-ADA is passing the unique position, 00 00 00 N/S, 179 59 59 E/W
Downwind for runway 12 Nauru Intl. Nauru (ANYN).
Formerly known as Pleasant Island, this small island nation is in the middle of Pacific. Clouds ceiling was 1800'. Nauru International Airport serves as the main hub of the national carrier, Our Airline, formerly known as Air Nauru.
Touchdown!, Nose wheel still in the air & full reverse thrust applied. Runway is just 7054' long.
Departing ANYN runway 12
Nauru is the world's smallest republic, covering just 21 square kilometres (8.1 sq mi). With just over 9,265 residents, it is the second least-populated country after Vatican City.
Final approach runway 34, Honiara Intl (AGGH), formerly known as Henderson Field, is an airport located on Guadalcanal Island in the Solomon Islands.
Parked at AGGH under heavy rain, encountered for the first time in the tour. Surrounding mountain range was clear of low level clouds.
It is the only international airport in the Solomon Islands and is located 8 kilometers (5.0 mi) from the capital Honiara. Control of the airstrip was the focus of months of fighting in the Guadalcanal campaign during World War II. In 1942 the airfield was under construction by the Imperial Japanese Army when captured by American forces. Henderson Field was named for Marine Major Lofton Henderson.
After an early morning departure from AGGH inbound to AYPY, sun is about to rise from Pacific ocean
Early morning approach to AYPY Runway 32R.
Beautiful Jacksons International Airport (IATA: POM, ICAO: AYPY), also known as Port Moresby Airport, is located 5 miles (8 kilometres) outside Port Moresby, in Papua New Guinea. It is the largest and busiest airport in Papua New Guinea and is the main hub for Air Niugini, the national airline of Papua New Guinea, as well as the main hub for Airlines PNG.
Early evening arrival to runway 29 Frans Kaisiepo (WABB), Indonesia
WABB in Biak, Papua, Indonesia. It is also known as Mokmer Airport. This airport is named after Frans Kaisiepo, the fourth Governor of Papua.
Leaving Biak (BIK) VOR at WABB inbound to WALL
Downwind for runway 07 of Sepinggan International Airport (WALL)
WALL is the principal airport serving East Kalimantan area on the island of Kalimantan, Indonesia. This airport is named after Sepinggan, a village (kelurahan) in which the airport is located.
Such a tropical sight! Lining up WALL runway 07 for the next sector to WIOO
Misty surroundings over WALL
Late final to runway 15 at WIOO
Supadio International Airport (IATA: PNK, ICAO: WIOO) is a small international airport in Pontianak, West Kalimantan, Indonesia, operating regional flights to Sarawak (Malaysia) and Singapore
After landing at WIOO next sector was continued to WIBB in the same day.
Ready to go for the last sector of the voyage, waiting for clearance at WIBB runway 18
Sultan Syarif Qasim II International Airport (IATA: PKU, ICAO: WIBB) is an international airport that serves the city of Pekanbaru, Riau, Indonesia. The airport is often referred as to SSQ II, SSQ or Sultan Syarif Kasim II International Airport (SSK II), and formerly known as Simpang Tiga Airport. The name of the airport is obtained from Sultan Syarif Qasim II which is a pre-independence historical figure from Riau.
After leaving WIBB 4R-ADA is over the Indonesian coast entering vast Indian Ocean inbound to the final destination VCBI
Route taken for final flight was longer than typical airline route. Route was along airway N628 to BASEV, then N640 to VCBI. This gave the closest track over equator, the main requirement of the flight.
Approaching waypoint HAMBA over southern coast of Sri Lanka.
When descending aircraft tracked along the southern coat line. Southern most land of Sri Lanka "Point Dondra (Dewundara thuduwa)" is below the aircraft.
Abeam Katukurunda airfield
Established by the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy, the airfield at katukurunda is located 40 Km South of Colombo, close to the A2 highway. The present SLAF station was established in 1984 to reactivate the air field.
Over Ratmalana airport. Aircraft had to descend to 2000" due to overcast clouds
Ratmalana Airport (IATA: RML, ICAO: VCCC), formally known as Colombo Airport, is a major domestic airport and military base in Colombo, Sri Lanka. It was once Colombo's international airport, until the current Bandaranaike International Airport opened in the 1960s. It is now used solely for domestic flights and for military purposes.
Arriving after 3 month historical voyage around the world, over Sri Lankan Airlines home base VCBI, Katunayaka
As Sri Lanka's 64th Independence day being celebrated in the city of Anuradhapura aircraft was routed over airport and city for a low fly pass.
SLAF Anuradhapura (IATA: ACJ, ICAO: VCCA) is a Sri Lanka Air Force base located near the ancient city of Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka.
Late in the evening 4R-ADA is on final approach to VCBI runway 04
After flying 22 sectors, ALK343 mission accomplished successfully. Aircraft is turning to the apron.
ALK-VA WISH TO THANK ALL WHO HAVE JOINED FOR FLIGHT PLANNING, ROUTE/AIRPORT RESEARCH, AND VARIOUS OTHER SUPPORT RENDERED FOR THE VOYAGE AROUND THE WORLD ON EQUATOR. SEE YOU AGAIN IN OUR NEXT TOUR!
Editor's Note: We welcome your feedback. For the benefit of other pilots please send your ideas, unusual flying experiences, advices, etc. We will publish them in Monara editions.
The Wright Brothers created the single greatest cultural force since the invention of writing. The airplane became the first World Wide Web, bringing people, languages, ideas, and values together.
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