(Updated December 30, 2020)
This was first, really cold day in
After short chat with my fellow pilot and with another
gloves on, I took off towards
Weather was forecasted as one of the still relatively
warm days. I had to do it. Flew over the famous North Thompson river sand bars,
then river upstream towards
This was one of the best and the most beautiful flights. The flight took 2 hours to cover 140 km, through extremely beautiful mountain valley. Leaves were in full colors in spectacular scenery. I encountered several very heavy turbulences, but I had fun with them. I explored that region the following week from the road. It is definitively very beautiful area.
It was my true first cross country mountain flying through potentially very hostile and quickly changing weather conditions. The weather was perfect, but still with occasional heavy turbulence. Eventually I enjoyed those challenging flying conditions and even sought some thermals under mountain clouds. I gained a lot of confidence. I had to repeat this experience the next day with flying another mountain cross country.
It was very unusually turbulence free day for very relaxing flying above and along the South and North Thompson rivers. The visibility was not the best and especially the low sun position on the western horizon did not help either.
It was beautiful, a bit crispy day with no wind, while
sun heat started to slowly change the tranquility of the still air. Originally my
flying goal was much more ambitious, but turbulence did not allow me to reach
it. It was getting unpleasant and fear of air sickness was very real for me. I
was pushing my comfort envelope with hope that I will have very good video from
my bumpy experience. I was not disappointed from this aspect. You could see
from the video how the terrain is complex below and around, and how many
potential sources of thermals and downdrafts are there.
I used special post processing software, where the video from the wing camera is transformed into more realistic viewers experience. Instead of background moving around and the trike stationary in one place on screen, the software reverses it. The trike is realistically moving in the air and the background is relatively steady. It looks like someone else took the video of me. It is very tedious process, taking hours, but very cool effect.
I speeded up some sections up to 4x to show the beauty, but eliminated boringness of the normal speed flying, which sometimes looks like I was stationary there.
I flew west over Tranquille farm to take pictures of
newly created corn maze. Continued NW over the
Early morning flight in smoky sky from BC forest fires, following South Thompson River East. Very tranquil flight up to the last minutes. It was turbulent above city on the way back. Strong sun heat created many local up and down drafts based on the ground colors. Overall it was very good flight.
Just short, 50 min flight to get my flying fix.
I was thinking about this flight for a long time. I
was watching very carefully the strange
I felt almost like Lindberg when he decided to fly
solo across the ocean from
I was ready to take off at 5:45 am. It was just 19C, which was very pleasant compare with those 40C hot days. It took a lot of pushing "up hill" from 1100' to 6000" to cross the mountain peaks. I do not like to rev up my Rotax 582 too much, which I no not think it is healthy for it.
I was following more-less the Coquihalla highway, the famous highway from Discovery channel series Highway Thru Hell.
Government in July of this year increased speed limit there to 120 km/h. This was met with very vocal opposition, because it is dangerous, people will die and all this normal nonsense. I was ready to document all those dead people and vehicle pile ups along the highway. Fortunately and of course there was nothing of this gore stuff to photograph.
The weather was perfect, no wind and no turbulence, which does not happen very often here. I landed in Merritt Municipal airport (2090') after 75 min flight. Took some pictures, refuelled from my spare fuel can, and took off again further south towards Merritt town. I did not spend too much time there, because I wanted to enjoy the same perfect weather on the way back. It was already 25C, so the heat was on...
I was enjoying the scenery even though the visibility
was not the best. It was actually the first day this summer with hazy sky. The
flight was very uneventful and I was almost day dreaming when suddenly I
received several jolts of unexpected turbulence. I still had about 30 min to go
so I was hoping that this will not be my fun spoiler. Luckily it lasted just
about 5 minutes, but I decided not to go exploring, but head straight home. In
45 minutes of in bound leg flying I was back at the
This was my milestone flight, the longest cross-country so far.
It was one of the best flying
days. Warm, no wind and no turbulence, which is very rare combination. Flew
This Sunday morning was
perfect day to do some flying. Checked the flooded areas near Tranquille Farm
and then turned East and eventually NE to follow
It was beautiful weather with almost no wind. Turbulence grabbed me as soon as I was air borne. I fought it for several minutes, but eventually gave up, because it was dangerous. I was back in my hangar in just 5 min, where I discovered that I forgot to turn my video cameras on.
Tried again in the in the evening and it was fun. Explored NW of North Ridge where I had to stay due to skydivers activities in the NE region. Tested Garmin sport camera "VIRBelite" which I forgot to set in the same format as the other two GoPro Hero2 cameras. It seems to me that the stabilization of Garmin is better and it appears that it stabilizes background (horizon) and the trike is moving as this is how it supposed to be. I do the same with my GoPro camera in very lengthy and time consuming process with Muvee TVS (see http://youtu.be/GT1MQhoJxK8 for explanation). GoPro has overall better and more natural colors. Garmin colors are bluish especially under contrast or low light conditions.
Flew to NW of beautiful
region of Kamloops North Mountain Ridge with spectacular view of 150 m deep
I am getting better now in
handling turbulence. I came from
It was very good day for flying. Check the
Very light wind and ideal flying conditions at the airport turned into 22 km headwind and unpleasant turbulence. Half way to my original place to fly I had to turn back, because it was not fun to fight the elements. The video shows the effect of turbulence on this light aircraft.
It was very promising day for enjoyable flying. Low
clouds hanging above and around the peaks which I liked to explore. Flew east
following the North Mountain Ridge towards Mt Peter and Paul. Noticed that my neck
camera was low on juice, so I turn back to get fresh batteries. I encountered
some bumpy right around to Mt Paul. Flew NW of Kamloops Lake to check the
"Sediment Wall", which I discovered a few days earlier on my hike.
Did some low flying above the
This was the first movie which I edited in updated version of MovieMaker 2.6 for Windows 7. It allows to take default of GoPro HD 4:3 format (widest viewing angles in 1280x960), edit it and save it into the same format. Up to now I always had to use several different packages. I like 4:3 format because you can see it perfectly on iPad which is in 4:3. Majority of people watches YouTube videos on mobile devices which are mostly in 4:3 format. The industry is pushing 16:9 format, cameras follows and editing softwares all ignores millions of mobile devices and the majority of users. The resulting 16:9 video viewed on iPad loses 25% of pictures with black stripes above and below the video. I processed small section from the wing camera in Muvee Turbo Video Stabilizer, which stabilizes background so the trike is moving instead, normally and unnaturally other way around.
I re-edited the previous version into 16:9 format. I used 2 GoPro cameras at 4:3 format and ActioPro at 16:9, The original version did not look good. I spent several days to fiddle with this nonsense. Millions of people are using GoPro cameras which is set by default to 1280x960. It is the best format for flyers, skiers, bikers, because it captures the most info. Every other format is in camera cropped result. Majority of people watches the YouTube videos on iPad and similar devices which is in 4x3 format. There is nothing on the market (as far as I know) to just take HD 4:3 format, edit it and save it into lossless original format. 16:9 is the best on TV, for minority of YouTube watchers, 4:3 is the best for mobile devices, which is the majority of people.
1. I processed ActionPro (wing camera) in Muvee Turbo Video Stabilizer, which stabilizes background so the trike is moving instead, normally and unnaturally other way around.
2. I used AVS Video Converter to Crop the upper portion of video files from 2 GoPro cameras mounted on the control bars. I changed it from 1280x960 to 1280x720 to have the same format like the wing camera. I could set GoPro to 1280x720 in the first place, but there was very good chance that it would crop wrong portion of the frame. I cannot see what camera see, I just estimate the aim.
3. I used MovieMaker 2 (I am PC guy), which is very simple, free and produces excellent video quality, but unfortunately, it is in *.wmv format which is then butchered by YouTube by their conversion.
4. I then process complete video from MovieMaker in
It was very nice weather, almost no wind, just ideal conditions for flying. I took off with 3 cameras mounted to get different views. The tranquil conditions changed very quickly. As soon as I was over the North Mountain Ridge, the turbulence started to bounce me around. It was still bearable, so I continued to North. It got really bad. I was searching for some better conditions to go higher, lower, in the valley, above valley... Nothing worked, but it was getting increasingly worse. I was like garbage bag in the wind. Eventually I made it back close to the airport, but my timing was wrong. I had to wait for 3 airplanes to land while I was kicked up and down like a yoyo. It was the most scary flight so far.
Finally I could cross the airport to partially frozen
It was very nice weather, almost no wind, just ideal conditions for flying. Took off with 3 cameras mounted to get different views. The tranquil conditions changed very quickly. As soon as I was over the North Mountain Ridge, the turbulence started to bounce me around. It was still bearable, so I continued to North. It got really bad. I was searching for some better conditions to go higher, lower, in the valley, above valley... Nothing worked, but it was getting increasingly worse. I was like garbage bag in the wind. Eventually I made it back close to the airport, but my timing was wrong. I had to wait for 3 airplanes to land while I was kicked up and down like a yoyo. It was the most scary flight so far.
Finally I could cross the airport to partially frozen
Finally, after month and half of unusually cold