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Reasons why pilots fly

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Occasionally in the past I’ve tried to describe the sense of magic, freedom and exhilaration that comes with flying aeroplanes. Each time my vocabulary has disappointingly lacked appropriate superlatives. Now I’ve discovered a 4-minute video which does the job much better.

It is a pilot’s eye view of the final approach into Queenstown, New Zealand. Beginning with breathtaking views of solid gold mountain tops before descending through a blanket of cloud. We are then treated to aviation’s most astonishing conjuring trick; making an airport runway appear out of nowhere.

Instrument Landing Systems must surely be high on the list of mankind’s greatest technological achievements.

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PS….It does however worry me slightly that the aircraft still seems to be traveling rather fast when the video cuts out at the far end of the runway.

 

http://www.chonday.com/Videos/pilotnewzdalnd1

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About GOF

"Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it, depends upon what you put into it." (Tom Lehrer)

18 responses »

  1. It sounds like the most wonderful feeling to take yourself up, all alone, above the clouds. Or through the clouds.
    I love flying with a pilot in the plane.

    Reply
    • It is a wonderfully liberating experience, but in the case of this video, something that needs to be done only in the presence of an extremely competent pilot.

      Reply
  2. Gorgeous video. Sharing with hubby.

    “tried to describe the sense of magic, freedom and exhilaration that comes with” …

    I have the same problem trying to describe the sense of exhilaration and freedom that comes from figure skating. Landing a big, powerful jump. Manipulating centrifugal force to make easy spins look brilliant. The sheer power of speed skating is my crack now. I can’t adequately describe it to anyone who hasn’t already skated their entire life.

    Reply
    • I think ice skating is the most technically complex, beautiful and graceful sport on earth and I totally understand the difficulty you have in conveying your feelings about it to others. Defying gravity then landing one of those difficult jumps must leave you with an extraordinary feeling of accomplishment.

      Reply
  3. Wow, what a wonderful video. Being able to fly must be absolutely wonderful. No matter how many flights I take I can never get over the view out of the window. It must be something else enitrely to have the freedom to fly where you want.

    Reply
    • I keep coming back to re-watch this video time after time. Those golden mountains are just magnificent. It is the detachment from earth……the feeling of leaving behind daily trivia that many pilots treasure,

      Reply
  4. Illustrates your feeling perfectly, GOF. A beautiful part of the world. Even from the ground the view of the Remarkables is special.

    Reply
  5. I thought it was ‘to get high?’
    HAR!

    It is lovely and I love to fly, too!

    Reply
  6. Oop, meant to say love your new layout/ theme! I liked my dark wood with pretty pink flowers one but the font was SO SMALL I couldn’t read my own stuff — with my specs! So, I hope the new plainer one is easier to read, at least FOR ME. Ugh. Yours is easy to read and ‘clean.’ I like this!

    Reply
    • I spent a lot of time swanning around themes until I found this one…..good because of the reasons we both require; simplicity and easy of reading. My old one was too complicated.

      Reply
  7. It must be such a fabulous feeling, and a great adrenalin rush when you’re coming in to land. 8O

    Reply
    • Landing is one of the most challenging phases of flight and ‘greasing’ one onto the tarmac provides great satisfaction.

      Reply
  8. Whoa, pillowy clouds! That is very cool. I don’t know that words were invented to describe such an experience. If we could just put it into a sentence, it wouldn’t be that special. Even video……I’d love to be right there. Thanks for that great inspiration GOF.

    Reply
    • Thank you Emmy. Clouds are another beautiful part of flying. You can leave behind filthy rainy weather on the ground and five minutes later enter another world of sunshine illuminating the tops of the clouds. Magical.

      Reply
  9. It must seem very magical to soar above everything like that. The clouds would worry me a little – I like to be able to see the “road”…

    Reply

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