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About pbearsailor

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  • Birthday 01/01/1

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  1. Hi Dominique! All Twin Otters all the time when I flew Ofu and real world, I don't know how much quicker you could go. I've flown various King Airs and don't think Ofu would work unless you were extremely lightly loaded. Sim is different and much more forgiving for sure. Cyclone season was around December to March. Still had trades most of the time. The north wind days would be felt on the ramp as calm, but they would bend around Tutuila and be southwesterly where I started my day, in the harbor. Pago didn't get affected the way Ofu did. We could comfortably land 26 with a 15 knot tailwind. It would float, but you had a lot of runway. Hope that helps, Steve
  2. It's always been too much to hope for a Samoa in FSX/P3D, but now we have the whole thing and it is stunning. In late 1998 my wife and I entered Pago Pago Harbor in our sailboat planning to interrupt our wandering for a couple of years so we could replenish our cruising funds. I hopped on a local bus and headed to the airport wearing my best pair of flip flops. After being ignored for a couple of hours the chief pilot saw my resume and came out to speak to me. I'd never flown a Twin Otter but had several thousand hours with the same PT-6 engines in King Airs. I wound up flying two years with them as a line captain. I generally had the first flight in the morning, a 0600 departure from Pago to the Manua islands with Ofu and Tau. Neither had fuel nor power carts, so it was quick turns with only the left engine shut down. The Orbx versions of both are very accurate with virtually no ramp at Ofu, a short runway with water at both ends. You would touch down close to the end, go into reverse, and as soon as speed allowed shut down the left so it would be stopped by the east end of the runway where we loaded. I'd hop out and help with loading while the FO was very busy with weight and balance with onloads and offloads for the two airports. Three minute turns could be done as we headed for the same routine at the less difficult Fitiuta. The FO had the leg back to Pago and if the wind, almost always from the southeast, was not too strong I'd encourage a downwind landing on 26, saving a few minutes that could give us time to grab coffee before two or three round trips to Fagalii in the other Samoa. The afternoon and evening flights went to the other crews, using just Pago and Faleolo after dark. We had two Twin Otters as did Polynesian and they also used an Islander. There were a couple of flights to Maota from Pago each week. That tiny ramp is accurate and I can remember using reverse there a couple of times to clear another plane on the ramp. A memory that will stay with me always is a ramp guy bringing an ice cold liter of raw milk out to the plane for me-- it tasted so good. Don't know where he got it as cows were very rare and powdered or boxed long life milk was the norm. It was quite the honor. In bad weather, the wind came from the north and turned Ofu into the most difficult airport of my flying career. The wind would flow over the island and downdraft onto the airport and the approaches. Often it was just impossible and it became a judgment call for each captain. You really wanted to get in too as there were no boats supplying Ofu and Tau, just our two planes. The other flight I had was a once a week trip to Vavau in Tonga, a lengthy over water flight for the Otter. We'd cross the dateline on that flight arriving in Tonga a day before leaving Pago, but a day later than Tonga on the return. It was the most fun flying I had in my career. I loved the people and their islands. The challenge was always there in the flying. Now I get to go back there. Thanks so much to Orbx and Tim and Ken for this jewel. Cheers, Steve
  3. Looks just like the real thing, Heiko. Thanks for all the effort at Rosario. The mansion looks super and the floatplanes will love those docks. Tight little marina like the real one-- pretty hard to manuever in there with my fat old sailboat. Orcas really is a special island. cheers, steve
  4. Sorry Steve, it doesn't cover other islands - BUT... we are working on other points of interest across Orcas. I'll post some pics from those locations soon . Did you stay at the resort We can make a coverage map as soon as the additional photo realistic areas are finalized (in the bag). Shouldn't take too long. We've stayed at Rosario on our sailboat, Heiko. The main building was built by a Seattle shipbuilder named Moran in the early 1900's. He used his shipwrights for the cabinetry inside and it is really beautiful. Moran brought in a pipe organ to entertain his guests, but couldn't play it himself--it's a player pipe organ. Not sure if they currently do it, but they've normally had free concerts on Saturday nights by a local pianist and composer, Christopher Peacock. He tells the history and plays piano and the pipe organ. Very impressve. The old store at Olga would also be a nice addition. No problem on Sucia as I'm sure it'll be a part of Vic+ when it's updated. cheers, steve
  5. Rosario Resort looks absolutely fantastic. I can hear the pipe organ inside! Heiko, is Sucia Island just to the north going to be within the package? Great work! cheers, steve
  6. Yep, me too! I'm lucky enough to live in the PNW and to have flown for real here for many years. It just looks like it should look, it feels so real. I'm really happy with it--big step forward for FSX for me. I'm also so impressed with what has been done to so many of the airports with hangars and aprons and static planes. Just adds so much and from what I've seen, is really quite accurate. Great job guys and a great job with customer service with the few glitches with the downloads as well. cheers, steve
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