Tumut to Bundaberg - 2009 Wide Bay Australia International Airshow
A mixture of X Series and XT series Airborne trikes made the 1,500 nautical miles flying trip from Tumut near Canberra to the Wide Bay Airshow at Bundaberg in Queensland and back.
Peter Wilson, Chief Flight instructor at Tumut led the pack collecting next group of pilots at Goulburn before flying Sydney’s spectacular Victor 1 on the route up north. Russell Duncan Airborne Director joining them from Newcastle with the Airborne XT-912 demo aircraft.
Richard Tabaka joined the group at Byron Bay making the nine trikes group.
Every detail of this, my first time 1505 nm (2788 km) adventure, will be etched in my mind forever. Flying north along the scenic coastline at 500 ft at the rear with eight wings in front, Peter (mother goose) barking on the chat channel to tighten formation along the controlled airspace as we passed the Heads of Sydney Harbour, with the Bridge, Opera House & City Skyline all in clear view? WOW!!! This is for REAL!!!
If this wasn’t enough, the same happened along the Gold Coast section with spectators waving from below and the high rise apartments above. I proudly acknowledged.
I still smirk when I remember The look of concern from the hoteliers face in Bundy when Collin as a last resort asked for “The best park for the night?” Thanks to Mitch we ended up at a good B&B even though I had to share the double bed with Col. As for the camaraderie, friendship, help, fun and excitement I experienced flying as a group I can sincerely say to everyone “It’s been a privilege and Thanks.”
When asked “how was the trip?” on return to Tumut, my reply was “A huge learning curve”.
Wow! What a blast! Not only did we see the most spectacular coast line and countryside but we stayed in some of the most delightful establishments and enjoyed the hospitality of local Australians in their country towns. Perhaps best of all are the fantastic friendships that are made between the participants. It’s an experience that will never be forgotten, that will ensure countless reunions and friendships that will last a lifetime. It is this that is the essence of a trike trip and what make these adventures truly unforgettable.
These trips are an absolute must for anybody who has a love for adventure, an inkling for the ultimate freedom and an insatiable appetite for life at its very, very best.
The greatest highlights of the adventure were to be able to fly with a few expert pilots who have far greater expertise than I will ever have, and to be able to improve my own skills along the way.
I also got two once in a lifetime opportunities, namely flying through Victor 1 past Sydney and to fly past the Gold Coast along the shore line. To fly over the openings of Botany Bay and Port Jackson, viewing Sydney and the Harbour Bridge, plus flying along the beach past Surfers Paradise halfway up the tall buildings with people on the beach waving and people on building balconies waving to me, was something I could not do without Peter Wilson and I sincerely thank him for the opportunity.
The flying, the social life and the camaraderie on the whole trip was great and you can’t do better than that.
I have flown most of my life, after flying in many countries overseas the most enjoyable part of flying for me is the scenery of the Australian coast line and Outback.
On these tours you will meet all types of interesting friends that come from all types of professions. What a great trip with long lasting memories it was. I will take the next tour, when is the date again?
Russell Duncan - Airborne
I can’t help but reiterate the sentiments of the other pilots, the scenery and comradeship with them was simply awesome! The less experienced pilots drew confidence from each other enabling each of us to achieve and experience things that we almost certainly would not have even attempted on our own. We should all be proud and reflect on what can be achieved if one is prepared to live by our Aussie conviction. You’ll never know unless you give it a go!