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Douglass' European Journey (Flight Sim Career)

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Today's flight takes us from EGNL to EGWI with a load full of vaccines. I remember @hayvis talking about some unvaccinated heathens in some desolate area, so I'm assuming this helps!

18879
I didn't want to fly back north, but this mission allowed me to fly over the Lake District, which is something I've really wanted to see. The district is located in Cumbria and contains all the peaks over 3,000 m in elevation in England, including Scaffel Pike, the tallest mountain in England. On the flip side, it also contains the deepest and largest natural lakes in the country as well, Wastwater and Windmere.

The weather... doesn't look promising. I hope this doesn't turn out like my tour of the Highlands...
18870

We got a nice view of Windmere, but I'm afraid this might be the best it will be for this trip. The weather looks like shit on the radar and that's a solid wall of grey!
18871

The stunning Lake District!
18872

Our turning point for the flight is the town of Ambleside. It seems like a great destination to use as a basecamp for touring the lake district. It's the starting point for several trailheads and also the launch point for "steamers," or ferries which will take you on a fine tour of the lakes. We're not stopping here today because there is nothing to see, but Douglass notes the alleged charms of the town for a future visit in another version of the sim.
18874


Later we catch a glimpse of a memory of a lake... and the memory is fading:
18875

The clouds part, as if on cue, as we begin to leave the lake district. We get one glimpse of Bassenthwaite Lake through this brief window!
18876


The clouds dropped back in low as we turned on final approach.... uhhhh where is the runway? Looks like no lights on this one! Gonna have to trust the instruments!
18877

There it is! Just like I always knew it would be! Ma'ass can unpucker now!
18878
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Today's flight takes us from EGWI to EGXE... Wigton to Leeming, with a load full of vaccines and some cell phones for profit!
19058

Weather today is much nicer in England than in my version of the sim! That's a first!
19052

Flying over Carlisle, I've been tempted to manage them in FM a few times!
19053

Along the way we took a very slight detour to checkout the Hexhamshire Moors and the North Pennines. The bogs in Hexhamshire Moors don't look very inviting from the air, they are just kinda brown and gross looking! The darkest areas would be called blanket bog and the light brown areas are heathland.
19054

The mining history of the area is also apparent from the air! It's interesting that this is all designated an "area of natural beauty," when so much of the landscape has been so imp[acted by human activities. The hills are all heavily scarred by mining activities.
19055

Apparently sheep grazing and hay farming are also what caused the bogs and heathland to form in the first place. They disturbed the natural ground cover, exposing highly acidic soils that became the bogs and heathland. So again we see how human activities have shaped the landscape in this area. It's certainly a very unique looking landscape!
19056

I almost forgot how nice it is to be able to see the runway from 10 miles out!
19057
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Next flight is a shady figure who mentioned something about firebombings! I have to fly him over the Manchester area at night and drop him off at regular Chester! @adchester because from whence he came!
EGXE to EGNR at night! Also carrying a load of fish!
19094

I love the scenery of day flights, but sometimes a little claustrophobia is a nice change of pace! A dark and rainy night awaits us!
19086

It's a dark and rainy night, but I think I can just see a faint glow of a fire in Manchester, leaving me wondering about my mysterious passenger! @chibob
19087

Dropped down below the cloud deck and spotted what appears to be a school with an athletic facility!
19088

Sprawl land between Manchester and Liverpool!
19089

Liverpool John Lennon airport out the passenger side window!
19091

Even though it was rainy, we still had good enough visibility to see the runway from over 5 miles out.
19092

Final approach, I fly these "Instrument Landing" style even though I can see. 90 knots approach allows me more room for a go around if something doesn't look right. I almost went around on this one because it looks like there is a tree or building sticking up in the approach lights! Pretty good 15 knot swirling cross wind on this approach made it fun. You can see how the wind direction shifted dramatically between the two landing screenshots. Touched down with under 100fpm vertical speed to keep my firebomber happy with me.
19093
 

Attachments

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
It's been nearly a month since Douglass last flew. Life has been a bit tough lately and he's been engineering too many hours a week, but today we'll definitely make at least two flights for stress relief before diving into another long work week. First up, we have a short tourism mission of some sites in Liverpool, while transporting some cell phones for fun and profit! Taking off at EGNR and landing at EGGP.

19383

Flying over Birkenhead:
19372

Our flight took us by the Royal Liver building, one of the very first buildings to be built with reinforced concrete! On the top of each tower sits a legendary and mythical Liver Bird, which is some sort of cormorant that the denizens of Liverpool have repurposed. If the birds ever fly away, Liverpool would cease to exist. Good thing they are made of concrete!
19374

Next up we have some sites for the FOOTBALL FANS! I had no clue Goodison Park and Anfield were so close together. This would be like if the Rockies and NUGGZ played the same sport and were rivals with stadiums like a mile apart.
19375

Overhead view of the two stadiums:
19376

Goodison Park:
19377

Anfield:
19378

Flying over Liverpool as I make my way back to the airport. Look at all those row houses
19379

One last look back along the Mersey River estuary. For reference, the Liver building is back on the right/east bank right about the narrowest point:
19380

I downloaded a new piece of software called Sim Tool Kit Pro that features more flight tracking and replay capabilities. I'm going to start including their landing reports, because they include a bit more data than NeoFly does. This was a really nice landing. I crossed the threshold right at 70 knots, my target slow landing speed and touched down just a couple feet beyond my target at 67 knots and a nice low vertical speed of 58 fpm. Really near the centerline as well, only 3 feet right of center.

19382
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Next mission is EGGP to EGNX, East Midlands Airport in Nottingham. We're flying another load of vaccines! Hopefully some the folks in Nottingham are more receptive to modern medical miracles than Utopians such as @bruin @Lloyd Carr @Wolfman21. Douglass Tagg can lead a trog to water by providing vaccine delivery, but unfortunately he can't waterboard the trogs.

19391

Enough about the trogs, look at the amazing weather in England today!
19384

Along the way we took a slight detour to see the Jodrell Bank Observatory, which hosts a number of radio telescopes. It was started in 1945 by Bernard Lovell, a radio astronomer at the University of Manchester, and the most famous telescope in the observatory now bears his name. It became a UNESCO world heritage site in 2019. I gave those science nerds a bit of a scare!
19385

really pretty country out here:
19386

Flew over a very large mining facility. This is why I love the real world satellite imagery. This is the sort of stuff that would always be left out of human generated scenery
19387

On our final approach to the East Midlands airport, we flew over Donington Park, a motorsport circuit that was typically the British host for the MotoGP Motorcycle Championship. It fell on hard times in the early 2000s, but has seen a resurgence since 2010 due to large investments in the venue, and it now hosts the Superbike World Championship.
19388

Even more impressive overhead view of Donington Park.

19389

Another nice landing to ensure the vaccines arrive undamaged. Right on target and just a hair to the right of centerline. Vertical speed was a hair faster than I'd like, but still well under the 200 fpm requirement for fragile goods.
19390
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
EGNX to EGTK with some regular low paying passengers on an overcast morning! I selected only airports with ILS landing approaches so that I could work on that. I recently downloaded the Working Title G1000 and G3000 updates (they are going to be working for Microsoft officially to update the Garmin units). These downloads are highly recommended and really improve the functionality of the Garmin units.
19417

Now that my new streamdeck makes flipping switches more fun, I'm starting cold and dark in parking, coordinating with ATC, taxiing, all the good stuff. I also finally figured out how to display navigation markers on the flight sim planning map, which makes flight planning much easier now, lol. It's in the "filters" area all the way at the bottom. Being able to add the nav aids to flight plans is really useful. Here is Douglass holding short of the runway while requesting takeoff approval.
19411

England is so green! I've been doing some Colorado flights between my Douglass sims and the difference in landscape is amazing.
19412

More huge mining operations! What's going on over there @hayvis?
19413

Flying along right at the bottom of the cloud deck!
19414

The sky/weather in this game can be so pretty. This made Douglass feel #BLESSED
19415

Just flipped the Autopilot over to APPROACH MODE with my ILS frequency selected. Entering this through the button box is MUCH easier, lol. I literally quit doing these because I hated trying to enter the fucking thing with the hamfisted sim knobs with a mouse. About to drop the throttle back and add some flaps to get down to 90 knots. Getting better at ILS approaches will really help Douglass' night and bad weather flying game!
19416

I was landing with the wind (this was the only ILS runway and I'm not sure how/if you can do the reverse). Tried to float a bit to compensate a bit for the wind to avoid a hard landing. Floated a bit long/left, but the landing was nice and soft.
19418
 
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hayvis

Will-Gnome Member
England is extremely green. It's a familiarity of home that always strikes me whenever I fly back on a plane. It's because it rains all the fucking time, but in the summer it's a very special landscape. There are no functioning coal mines left in the UK, but due to our small size and large mining history you're not ever too far from a disused one, and I'm sure there's a lot of other mining going on. There are fewer and fewer though as you head south, although near Deal in Kent is Betteshanger coal field, one of the last functioning collieries which has now been turned into a park which we often visit. They have tried to build the longest visitor centre in Europe there after being given lottery funding, massively overspent and hence it sits half built and empty. The ex mining community down in Deal is very strange. It should have moved on, but as always with such things it hasn't, and they just sit on the fringes complaining about tourism and voting for the things that hurt them the most. The way we have treated the coal miners is an extremely tragic part of UK history and culture.
 
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Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Flying from EGTK to EGLL, LONDON HEATHROW! Douglass is gonna land his Cessna 172 without clearance at one of the biggest airports in the world!

Along the way we flew over Oxford. Douglass is actually an Oggsford man. It's obviously a University town, It's the oldest University in the English speaking world. Here's an overhead view of an amazing looking place.
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This is some Harry Potter looking shit.
19428

Someone drew some drunk squiggles in this field!
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The landing report had some trouble picking up the threshold location on this one for some reason, but I made a nice gentle touchdown.
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Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
This flight is a big one! EGLL to EGLC. Flying along the Thames through London and landing at London City Airport with a load of vaccines and some mechanical parts! There's far too much to even comment on for this flight, so I'll just show a few screenshots and say this is definitely an area ya'll should check out for yourselves. LOOK KIDS, BIG BEN... Parliament! The photogrammetry/detail of this area turned my computer to a slide show when I first messed around in this area after the UK update, so I downloaded all the data to my cache in high quality, hoping that would help! I actually did just change my graphics to "High End" so that I could stay solidly above 30 fps. I also stayed about 1,000 feet up, as I think the Photogrammetry looks a lot better with enough altitude to be looking down on it rather than at the side of melting buildings.
19452

Up ahead you can see where my CPU will probably shit it's dick! I simmed ahead a few hours into the future and it looks like @hayvis might have a dreary day.
19444

Hyde Park! I really like the idea of huge parks like this in Urban areas. I feel like they are 100% necessary and pretty much the places where I hang out when I go to big cities, lol.
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THE Eye and the Palace of Westminster up close. That London Waterloo train station looks enormous. In the background you can see a couple cool looking buildings. I believe the pointy one is THE SHARD, but @hayvis will have to help me with the others!
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Some very unique skyscrapers on both sides of the river. London Bridge looks underwhelming, but the Tower Bridge, which I believe is just left of THE SHARD looks cool. I think that fort looking area just to the left of the Tower Bridge would be the Tower of London? I expected it to be bigger!
19448

A nice view of the O2, I assume this is where @Irishman goes to watch Kylie Minogue?
19450

Coming in for a landing at London City. Glad I figured out how to use Autopilot for ILS approaches, because it gave me more time to observe the skyline and snap photos.
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Forgot to connect to SimToolKit, so you get the crappy version of the landing report: Floated a bit, but a nice soft landing at -37 fpm... Note, the paint in sim was a bit different and my only set of landing points was about where the second set are on the below photo. It was a nicely centered landing as well.
19453
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
I'll give you a tour of my neck of the woods in South East England - Fly over the white cliffs at St Margarets Bay. You can get low, and see Ian Flemming's old beach house, and the Pines tea rooms, run by a lovely bunch of old ladies, and where I have eaten over a hundred roast dinners. -

St Margret's Bay -



51°08'57.6"N 1°23'02.2"E

Tea rooms are -

51°08'56.2"N 1°22'58.9"E

Ian Flemming's - notice how inspiration for the lairs of Bond villains is taken from the architecture and location -




51°09'08.2"N 1°23'17.2"E

From here, you can take a turn north and fly over Deal, where I have been for most of the pandemic.

On your way be sure to check out Walmer Castle - Which used to be the Queen Mother's favourite seaside residence -



51°12'02.0"N 1°24'07.9"E

Then swoop down to Deal Pier -



51°13'25.4"N 1°24'21.0"E

Then my house is tucked just behind the beach -

51°13'32.2"N 1°24'12.4"E

After this, continue north and you will have a view of the local golf courses which are some of the best in the world. The Ancient Highway (mentioned below, passes through and is extremely beautiful -

Royal Cinque Ports -

51°15'02.4"N 1°23'42.4"E

Royal St George's (home of The Open Championship 2021) -



51°16'27.8"N 1°22'05.9"E

Then be sure to check out Medieval Sandwich town (literally the BIRTHPLACE OF THE SANDWICH) When in Deal I ride there and back every day via the beautiful ancient highway (started by the Romans) -



51°16'27.8"N 1°22'05.9"E

You can finish your journey around the tip of South East England taking in the beaches of Broadstairs -

Viking Bay -

51°21'29.0"N 1°26'36.5"E

Kingsgate Bay - Dog friendly and our favourite sandy summer beach spot -

51°23'02.4"N 1°26'32.7"E

And finally Botany Bay -



51°23'21.2"N 1°26'06.9"E
Alright, I booked some tourists in London and they want to see the White Cliffs of Dover. I'm going to give them the @hayvis special and show them the local tour. I'm flying the other way around (from north to south). The tourists were amazed! Flying from EGLC to EGMD, a small airstrip in Lydd... the closest overlapping mission spot I could find to the area. This will also conclude my UK portion of Douglass' Euro Tour. After this I'm going to take a break to fly in some other areas, when I return I will head to France!
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Botany Bay is in the distance... Margate wastewater pumping station in the foreground, that looks like an amazing beach, just remember to wear your shit loafers!

(I accidentally deleted this photo. It was cool :( )


This is the famous Royal St George's golf course!
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Flying over Ramsgate, looks like rain up ahead in Deal...
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yeah, that's a squall line!
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I believe the famous @hayvis 2nd home & quarantine zone is just off the red light on my wingtip. Unfortunately, Microsoft didn't shell out for the high quality aerial imagery here (Google did!) so we get some really bad blue tint to the imagery that makes it look like Hayvis lives on 8mile Road with Rabbit.
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Deal Pier has been swallowed by the sea, and it's pouring rain. This disappointed me... I heard MSFS is working on adding tides and working on water masking with some improvements in ocean fronts slated for 2022.
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Ian Fleming's house is a barn and that beach looks like we're 10 years into @bruin228's global warming nightmare with ocean levels so high! This is the non-handcrafted area of the white cliffs. I was afraid they'd look worse. To see Hayvis' favorite tea room where he eats many roasts, look at the south end of the beach (in front of my plane). Let your eyes climb halfway up the hill, there is a solid sized mansion/house. Just above and left of that is an open area/tennis court. Just above/left of that is a small brown building (the Tea House) with a white tent/yurt just a bit further up the hill. If I ever go to England I want to eat a roast at this place. I love roasts.
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Just a little further I came across the handcrafted area of the white Cliffs of Dover.
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We finished the UK portion of the trip with a decent landing. I touched down a little hard at 150 fpm, but I was dealing with a 12 knot cross wind. It's been a while since I've dealt with any wind and I was shook!
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@hayvis, I'm sorry it took me so long to make it down to this area, but I really appreciate your efforts to show me the sights. I checked out the other areas as well, but Nutopia limits us to 10 photos per post, so I just picked my favorite spots. Plus, Walmer castle looked like a barn in the sim, lol. This is a place I am excited to see in person one day.
 
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Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
Almost 40 flights in the UK, from mid March until early July. A lot of stressful stuff happened in my life and this was a really nice way to find some calm and serenity.
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hayvis

Will-Gnome Member
@Travis7401 - It's been fun watching the flights leading up to this. The sea level is correct for St Margarets. When the tide is in there is only 50m or so of visible shore up to the cliffs. Was interesting to see Deal pier submerged, and you could see the entrance.... Did you see the lighthouses at least?
 

Travis7401

Douglass Tagg
Community Liaison
@Travis7401 - It's been fun watching the flights leading up to this. The sea level is correct for St Margarets. When the tide is in there is only 50m or so of visible shore up to the cliffs. Was interesting to see Deal pier submerged, and you could see the entrance.... Did you see the lighthouses at least?
None of the lighthouses were handcrafted, so they were just little barns/sheds in the sim. One didn't even have a building, I could just see it on the aerial. The Margate/Ramsgate had pretty good aerial imagery, but the stuff south of there along the cliffs and through Deal/Dover was some of the worst I've seen in a populated area of the sim. They regularly update the sim with new imagery, so I'll make the trip again in the future to see if anything has changed!
 

hayvis

Will-Gnome Member
None of the lighthouses were handcrafted, so they were just little barns/sheds in the sim. One didn't even have a building, I could just see it on the aerial. The Margate/Ramsgate had pretty good aerial imagery, but the stuff south of there along the cliffs and through Deal/Dover was some of the worst I've seen in a populated area of the sim. They regularly update the sim with new imagery, so I'll make the trip again in the future to see if anything has changed!
Such a shame, as it's very lovely, and probably the nicest place to see the cliffs on the entire coast. The lighthouses are very famous, and Broadstairs is Dickens country. I suppose I'm not too surprised at Deal as it was off the radar until a few years ago. For some reason it's only recently been recognised as one of the top tourist destinations. I've made a 100% profit on my house over 7 years though which is a benefit of this though. I think a lot of people that lived/had second homes there wanted to keep it quiet. It does have quite heavy footfall these days.

Once I have the game I suspect I will keep flying around there so keep you updated.
 

hayvis

Will-Gnome Member
This flight is a big one! EGLL to EGLC. Flying along the Thames through London and landing at London City Airport with a load of vaccines and some mechanical parts! There's far too much to even comment on for this flight, so I'll just show a few screenshots and say this is definitely an area ya'll should check out for yourselves. LOOK KIDS, BIG BEN... Parliament! The photogrammetry/detail of this area turned my computer to a slide show when I first messed around in this area after the UK update, so I downloaded all the data to my cache in high quality, hoping that would help! I actually did just change my graphics to "High End" so that I could stay solidly above 30 fps. I also stayed about 1,000 feet up, as I think the Photogrammetry looks a lot better with enough altitude to be looking down on it rather than at the side of melting buildings.
View attachment 19452

Up ahead you can see where my CPU will probably shit it's dick! I simmed ahead a few hours into the future and it looks like @hayvis might have a dreary day.
View attachment 19444

Hyde Park! I really like the idea of huge parks like this in Urban areas. I feel like they are 100% necessary and pretty much the places where I hang out when I go to big cities, lol.
View attachment 19446

THE Eye and the Palace of Westminster up close. That London Waterloo train station looks enormous. In the background you can see a couple cool looking buildings. I believe the pointy one is THE SHARD, but @hayvis will have to help me with the others!
View attachment 19447

Some very unique skyscrapers on both sides of the river. London Bridge looks underwhelming, but the Tower Bridge, which I believe is just left of THE SHARD looks cool. I think that fort looking area just to the left of the Tower Bridge would be the Tower of London? I expected it to be bigger!
View attachment 19448

A nice view of the O2, I assume this is where @Irishman goes to watch Kylie Minogue?
View attachment 19450

Coming in for a landing at London City. Glad I figured out how to use Autopilot for ILS approaches, because it gave me more time to observe the skyline and snap photos.
View attachment 19451

Forgot to connect to SimToolKit, so you get the crappy version of the landing report: Floated a bit, but a nice soft landing at -37 fpm... Note, the paint in sim was a bit different and my only set of landing points was about where the second set are on the below photo. It was a nicely centered landing as well.
View attachment 19453
To the left of the Shard is the City of London - The building that looks like a walkie talkie is called..... "The Walkie Talkie". The one that looks like a vibrator is called "The Gherkin" The group of skyscrapers in the centre background is Canary Wharf.

I you look directly left of Canary Wharf in this picture, you will see a break in the buildings which is Victoria Park (It's actually as big as Hyde Park) and Hayvis' first home is right there.
 

hayvis

Will-Gnome Member
Btw, you are correct about the Tower Of London (which is the castle in the middle). It looks small because everything else is so big. When you are up close, not so small. I always think it looks at it's best at night when lit up, so if you visit, I would recommend taking a walk around that way late as Tower Bridge is also fantastic at that time. It's nice to drive through too. Great Indian restaurants close by (if we ever get past out trog cycle I might be able to eat out again in a couple of years).

Will post here on pandemic as I really don't want to go near that turd of a thread. It's very scary here. The government is dropping restrictions when a lot of areas are 30-40% vaccinated and over 1000/100,000 cases. Kids aren't being protected (long term risks), and it's the perfect scenario to brew another variant. Sylvie is having to isolate at the moment because they've allowed it to rip through schools and it's in her class. She's not going to go back in September. I'm going to wait for case rates to get low or if the US opens up childhood vaccinations, my neighbour's mum lives in Florida and they say they aren't doing background or ID checks for vaccinations in supermarkets (probably so that illegal immigrants can get covered). She said if they open up to kids we can go stay there and do it - she'll take her in and blag it. My friend is there doing his 14 year old at the moment. It's just so sad. We're half way there and they've just given up. USA has got this as they realise children/young people spread and are trying to cover it. Also you have good mitigations in schools (in a lot of places). It seems the UK again are just trying to mutate it. Boris Johnson is a sociopath, and just doesn't give a shit. Loads of vulnerable people are going to die or get seriously ill again. It's like a civil war here with actually most people not on board with it. The government are going to get a nasty shock when they realise that no-one wants to go inside/go on any transport and spend money with the mouth breathers anyway. I honestly have no idea how they think this is a good recipe for economic recovery.
 
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