Here is the latest news from Mike and Greg. I just spoke to Mike and he says they are tired but in good spirits as the Red Baron flew like a beauty. They have however been searching for fuel since last night and still no luck. I think the problem is no Avgas and the Mogas is really low octane. So it might mean doing ferry trips into town with 25 litre containers to fill TAD. Then of course there is the challenge of getting fuel through customs……. That is what I got from the phone call but did hear Greg calling in the background to say “fuel guy is here dad”…. So lets hope that means Avgas has been acquired.
GREG BLYTH – Bloody hell the internet is rubbish here… I’ve been trying to get this message and photos through for an hour now to no avail. I have had to give up on the photos I am afraid. Anyway we made it ok, flight was turbulent for quite a long time and now we’re at a dirt trap hotel about to prep for tomorrow’s flight.
Flight from Johannesburg to Luanda, Angola (21 July 2013)
We took off in the sexy red ZU-TAD at sunrise this morning. Really heavy with the A, B and C tanks on the backseat filled to the brim (450 litres in total) and all our tools, bags, life raft, immersion suits, food and water, survival equipment and spare parts on top of it. We cleared customs at Lanseria in ten minutes flat and got airborne heading in a north-westerly direction with beautiful tailwinds (thanks to Michiel de Koker). Crossing Botswana was like sitting on the beach with a drink in the hand and I remember thinking this trip was going to be a piece ‘o cake.
Angola kicked us in the teeth like it had a score to settle seeing as Botswana and the top little corner of Namibia had done such a poor job of making our flight suck. We hit a lot of horrible turbulence and within a couple of hours I was feeling sick as a dog. Worst motion sickness I’ve ever had. But some meds and a few hours shut-eye did the trick. There’s really nothing in this country outside of the cities. We’d been going for hours and hours without spotting more than a few tiny villages. This oil producing country is also in the business of producing truckloads of smoke. We hit a thick blanket of smoggy air and had to clear it to see the airport in Luanda.
The landing was a beautiful success to a long day and now we’re in the hotel about to start flight planning and weather-checking for tomorrow’s flight. A shower will do us good – there’s more oil in the air than oxygen. More to follow tomorrow. Thanks to all the messages from our supporters. Andrew has relayed that you guys are watching and wishing us well every step of the way. Sorry about the no picture situation. Internet just wont allow out here!