Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Aussie Outback Multi-stop With REX: TSV To ISA  
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 6838 times:

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7429/8730539307_04c4a83c27_c.jpg

Hi all. Hot on the heels of Markus’ recent great report on Regional Express to Bathurst in New South Wales, here is is a short(er) trip report about a long day’s flying back in March 2013 in Central North Queensland.

It’s no secret that I love multi-stop flying but these days, it’s increasingly more challenging to find a through flight with a single flight number that operates with more than one or two stops. Historically this was never the case, and it was common to find “puddle jumpers” plying the skies above many parts of the world, stopping at every airport with a runway enroute. Sadly, with the hub and spoke system and deregulation generally in many parts of the world, most of these classic routes have disappeared, along with the aircraft which used to operate them. Some of these airports are practically ghost towns with one or two flights a day, or in some cases, no flights.

Thankfully, there are a few multistop flights operating in Australia, and Regional Express, or Rex, operate an interesting “three stopper” between Townsville and Mt Isa, using a Saab 340.

The flight operates 3 times a week to Hughenden, Richmond and Julia Creek. The other days of the week, the flight is nonstop between the two places. The flight time between each of the towns enroute is about 45 minutes and overall, it’s about a 4 hour experience onboard. Probably one of the longest Saab 340 experiences you can have as a passenger today!

The road journey that goes from Townsville to Mt Isa and beyond is known as the “Overlander’s Way”. While I love a good road trip, this one takes between 10 -11 hours to drive it, so I’d much rather fly.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7387/8730459675_325f85393f_c.jpg

This report is a continuation of Fokker And Dash Lovin' Down Under: Alliance And QF (by palmjet Apr 13 2013 in Trip Reports) which is a continuation of The Canton Route To Australia: China Southern In J (by palmjet Apr 14 2013 in Trip Reports).

REGIONAL EXPRESS

Rex has been reviewed a few times on A.net, including a flight I did in 2011 up to Ballina and back. They are a significantly sized regional airline in Australia and have the largest fleet of Saab 340s in the world. Most of their flights operate in the southern part of Australia – in New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia.

ROUTE MAP



Rex’s Queensland flights are pretty niche – being operated in conjunction with the Queensland Government, to provide essential air service to small isolated outback communities.



It was still dark when I arrived at TSV the following morning, after a good night’s sleep. The flight was scheduled to depart at 705am and I wanted to sort out check in formalities in good time. I hate rushing.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7428/8730125432_49763a6316_c.jpg

TSV is compact with a small landside area and facilities. There is one security checkpoint, which was pretty quick to pass through. The route to ISA was being promoted next to the check in area.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7439/8729005355_b9d00de559_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7290/8730125136_69b65d415f_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7288/8730125020_f58606fe5c_c.jpg

A number of early morning flights were due to leave, some of which were going directly to mines in Central Queensland.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7353/8730124798_751929ae83_c.jpg

The flight was not full and I was issued with a window seat in the last row by the friendly check in agent. I had a small rucksack which I elected to check in as well. This was no problem.

Airside was busier when I went through and there are a couple of shops and a cafe for that early morning coffee. I spent most of the time seated nursing a latte and waiting for the boarding call to be made. Of course there was time for some people watching, which I always enjoy at airports – no matter how big or small they are.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7433/8729005505_f2e7a4a1b7_c.jpg

I was reading a guidebook about Townsville while waiting for the flight to be called and came across this little public service message - yikes!



A B737-300QC was loading up outside, but it was pretty quiet otherwise.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7330/8729004707_685aa56e13_c.jpg

A Jetgo EM135 heading off on a mining charter. First time I’ve seen these guys.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7387/8729009027_89b2b8aba9_c.jpg

The flight was called for boarding by the same ground agent who checked me in – calling out all the intermediate stops. It was music to my ears.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7365/8730129118_003e146c9d_c.jpg

We were led downstairs and outside to the ramp – my favourite way to board. The aircraft was parked side on and was ready for boarding. Today VH-ZRZ would fly to ISA and back. It was delivered to American Eagle in 1996 as N388AE and has been with Rex since 2008.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7384/8729008849_573dec2d92_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7445/8730128904_2fb6afe369_c.jpg

SEAT AND CABIN

A single flight attendant was at the door with a friendly welcome and she checked my boarding pass before I passed down to the last row. I find the Saab quite comfortable with its 1 -2 configuration. The interior looked identical to the aircraft I flew back in 2011.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7388/8729008795_4891b93191_c.jpg

The legroom in the last row was however, terrible: a very tight squeeze for anyone who has legs.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7422/8730131444_32c8384fd8_c.jpg

Thankfully I had nobody next to me so I could sit slightly sideways which gave a bit more room to spread out. Having passengers in the row in front did not help things because that pushed their seats further back into my already limited space. I resolved to try and move as soon as possible. The flight would have been about 75% full for the first sector. Not bad for a Wed in March.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7285/8730128474_33221e2d92_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7431/8729008395_e83077ee88_c.jpg

We departed TSV to the east and out over the sea before making a sharp left turn to backtrack inland, making a beeline for our first stop, Hughenden. The sunrise was very pretty from the air.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7311/8729008431_d9f3d7d74e_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7453/8729013689_5516ab10ee_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7443/8730131606_a8dffe7bda_c.jpg

Magnetic Island, from the air

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7388/8729011727_f5a79662f9_c.jpg

Leaving the coast behind

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7447/8729011435_e81b34f512_c.jpg

CREW

The single flight attendant worked very hard throughout the flight – being on her own, she had to do everything. She did it all seamlessly and in a relaxed and friendly way. It seemed like she enjoyed her job. She told me later that she was Townsville based. That figures – the people there were nothing but friendly during my short stay.

We had multiple cockpit crew messages throughout the morning on each of the sectors – usually just before starting our descent. All were greatly appreciated by this traveller, especially with regard to the ground temperatures at some of the stops – which progressively rose and rose as the day went on. By the time we touched down again at Richmond on the way back in the afternoon, it had reached a balmy 36C (96F) and that’s technically Autumn in this part of the world.

ONBOARD SERVICE

This is no flight to experience culinary delicacies – if you want that, best stick to some heavily travelled and somewhat more boring mainline truck routes (!)

Cabin view just before the first round of service began.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7458/8729011415_19ab44c53e_c.jpg

The service consisted of tea or coffee, water and sweet or savoury snacks on each sector. On the slightly longer sector between Mt Isa and Julia Creek, some BOB drink items were offered. I did not see anyone purchasing alcohol or hearing it offered either outbound to ISA or back to TSV. I took a refreshing Coke Zero on the way back.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7292/8729011059_a752c22cdb_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7319/8729023851_0e7989dd0d_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7410/8729062615_20c3aa450f_c.jpg

QUEENSLAND FROM THE AIR AKA THE IFE

I’ve more recently come to appreciate just how big the State of Queensland is and there is no better way to do this than by flying around and over it. Today I spent most of the flight gawking out of the window, and watched the landscape change from lush and green toward the coast where TSV is located, to gradually dryer oranges and browns of the outback and Gulf country. “Gulf country” refers to the fact that this region is near to the Gulf of Carpentaria.

The lush greens just west of Townsville.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7352/8730131178_3bcbc35b83_c.jpg

Enroute to Hughenden

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7332/8730137188_839587a564_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7356/8730138158_7c2fe805ac_c.jpg

It was a glorious day for flying. It stayed like this the whole day. With virtually nothing for hundreds of miles around, the views seemed endless. There were also lots of dry riverbeds.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7450/8730138466_0418e8c606_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7403/8730137936_4c2bcf234a_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7334/8730138200_6b3a42f493_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7347/8730137768_2c8cc04854_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7289/8730137190_857843c6d3_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7397/8729017603_e9ba563551_c.jpg

Our landing in Hughenden was smooth and scenic

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7322/8729016955_fe0eb6fa2f_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7318/8729020959_73fb73b6be_c.jpg

It also meant we had great views sometimes of the towns themselves and the airports while making our approach, or on departure.

Saying farewell to Hughenden

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7454/8729024371_09bc3b3301_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7299/8730144506_db45839a22_c.jpg

The town of Richmond, on descent

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7355/8730143838_4881b49535_c.jpg

Richmond Airport, from the air on departure

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7335/8730147184_79604d6a09_c.jpg

Goodbye Richmond

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7295/8730147814_9b655a319f_c.jpg

Enroute to Julia Creek, our last stop before Mt Isa

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7417/8729027157_c686ecb797_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7342/8730147212_85bd222492_c.jpg

Looks like a cattle feeding area

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7401/8729026665_4ca4c6b526_c.jpg

Julia Creek

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7297/8730151792_7abec1287c_c.jpg

Leaving Julia Creek

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7295/8729030687_4bf7502c0f_c.jpg

Julia Creek Airport from the air

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7382/8729030351_aa3309e216_c.jpg

On the last sector to Mount Isa, we flew directly over the town of Cloncurry. I moved to the other side of the last row after Hughenden, after checking it was OK with the flight attendant.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7388/8730151128_070fea8a59_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7407/8730150486_dac47ed2b4_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7377/8730167134_dc3c4d3409_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7372/8729046405_1037017dd2_c.jpg

Rex also have their own inflight magazine “OUTthere”, which I spent some time reading while on the ground in ISA.


.
TRANSIT STOPS

At each of the stops, passengers not leaving were asked to remain on the aircraft, as the stop is very brief and the starboard propeller is kept turning to keep essential power to the aircraft on the ground. This was in contrast to my Skytrans experience where passengers were free to leave and stretch their legs at some of the stops enroute to Mt Isa from Brisbane. Mind you, there were a lot more stops on that flight.

Cabin view while on the ground in Hughenden, awaiting our new complement of passengers.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7360/8730141014_abdfa517c3_c.jpg

The airport “terminals” at Hughenden, Richmond and Julia Creek are tiny. Not much bigger than a garden shed in some cases. I was unable to go exploring so the only pictures I have of the facilities are from the aircraft window.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7345/8729020499_f06bda647e_c.jpg

Richmond Airport terminal

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7453/8730147916_453107773c_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7343/8730147716_51dbc6f080_c.jpg

Julia Creek Airport terminal

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7409/8729031331_3c9967ec01_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7429/8730151512_f82274b0ac_c.jpg


So, what’s there to know about these enroute places?

I managed to do a bit of research before the trip to see what I could find out about them so here’s a quick rundown of Julia Creek.

Julia Creek – “Gateway to the Gulf”

The town did not receive an electricity supply until 1952.

Located 632 km west of Townsville and 411 m above sea level, Julia Creek can claim to be the first European settlement in north western Queensland. A Scot called Donald Macintyre arrived in the area in 1862 - only a year after the ill–fated Burke and Wills expedition had passed through the region on the way north to the Gulf. Most Australian kids know about Burke and Wills - the story of these early explorers who perished in the Australian desert was taught in history classes across the country.

Macintyre didn't come as a result of the explorations of Landsborough or Frederick Walker (who opened up the area while searching for Burke and Wills) but rather on his own initiative. He travelled up the Darling River and established the property 'Dalgonally' about 70 km north of the present town.

The creek upon which the town is located was originally named Scorpion but, in 1870, it was changed to Julia Creek in honour of Donald Macintyre's niece. Julia Creek's moment of importance came with the arrival of the railway in 1908 which meant that the town became the railhead for north western Queensland. The transport industry became the town's main economic raison d'etre until the railway moved on to Cloncurry and Mount Isa.

Julia Creek is home to the rare and endangered Julia Creek Dunnart. This tiny bright eyed creature is an insect eating marsupial, only found in the Mitchell Grass Downs of North West Queensland within a 100km radius of Julia Creek. With a body length of 100-120mm and a tail length of 90-100mm, the Julia Creek Dunnart can be distinguished from rats and mice by its size. Unlike rodents, dunnarts have pointy noses, large rounded ears and dog like teeth. Dunnarts also have the ability to store fat at the base of the tail when food is plentiful, giving it a carrot like appearance when they are in good condition.

Exhibit A - one freaked out dunnart


.
So what else has put Julia Creek on the map?

Well there’s always the Julia Creek Dirt & Dust Festival, which will celebrate its 19th year in 2013!
From modest beginnings, today’s event brings together people from all walks of life – people from Queensland, Australia and overseas.

From the Festival’s website:

“Building on the success of previous years, the Festival is quickly becoming more than “bulls, bikes and butts”. Situated in the centre of the adventurous Overlander’s Way, the Julia Creek Dirt & Dust Festival provides the focal point in the magnificent month of April for our many visitors who gather and celebrate, before heading out to explore or work in our glorious outback. The Julia Creek Dirt & Dust Festival now offers visitors three jam-packed days of fun and entertainment. Experience real outback hospitality when the tiny North West Queensland outback town of Julia Creek swells from 400 people to 3,000 in one weekend!”

I later discover the reference to “butts” is actually that – behinds, bottoms or to use Ricardo’s favoured reference “derrière”. The festival includes a competition called “ABB” or Australia’s Best Butt. I could not help but check out the competition rules (being a stickler for rules and regulations as part of my day job) and here’s what I found:

Competition Rules for Australia’s Best Butt:

-All Australia’s Best Butt contestants must be over 18 years old and signed the registration forms
-All Australia’s Best Butt contestants must be wearing jeans or long pants
-All Australia’s Best Butt contestants must sign the waiver (talent release) for use of any photos in promotional materials.
-Australia’s Best Butt contestants must not be intoxicated.
-Any indecent exposure will result in instant disqualification and removal from the event and/or venue.

Any a.netters out there who fancy their chances shouldn’t miss ABB the next time they are travelling through this part of Australia!


Eastern - Number One To The Sun
30 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 1, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 6862 times:



We made good time during the morning and were pretty much on time for our arrival into Mt Isa. We approached the airport from the east and north so for passengers on my side of the aircraft (I had moved to seat A on the last row), there was a view of the main parts of Mt Isa, along with the enormous mine on its outskirts. I really enjoyed Markus’ recent report from the other side of the country on SkyWest – lots of mines in Western Australia too: "Super Pit And The Island Of Inspiration" (by FLIEGER67 May 1 2013 in Trip Reports)

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7397/8729045831_333b6eb672_c.jpg

Mt Isa

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7323/8730167114_de140e0465_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7336/8729045453_456089498f_c.jpg

Commencing a tight left turn

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7376/8729050431_4687b5d86f_c.jpg

Quite a bit of greenery down there

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7449/8730170228_a1a0671d50_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7322/8729049745_aececc69af_c.jpg

After a smooth landing and the props being shut down, I bid farewell to the flight attendant and told her I would see her again soon if she was going back to ISA. Thankfully she didn’t think I was totally nuts although I suspect it must have entered her mind.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7338/8730170074_c855003e34_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7357/8729054355_1e93952c40_c.jpg

Hello to a sunny Mt Isa – sure beats a grey and cold Europe I had left only a couple of weeks previously.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7401/8730174922_99e3cb8c76_c.jpg

It’s fair to say that ISA is the aviation hub for this part of the State, and although the airport can hardly be described as busy, it is served by Qantas (direct from Brisbane), Qantaslink, Virgin Australia, Skywest, and Rex.

Landside terminal views, advertising those airlines with service here. I particularly liked Darwin based Air North’s simple slogan “Together We Fly”. Well, you’re an airline - so of course, you can’t say “Together we drive/sail/float”! They run an interesting service through ISA using an EM 170 which goes from Darwin to Mt Isa to Coolangatta (OOL), on the Gold Coast of Queensland.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7291/8729053959_2f10173d41_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7338/8730174580_957bd71935_c.jpg

It’s also an important centre for the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, which is one the largest and most comprehensive aeromedical organisations in the world. These guys provide emergency and primary health care services for remote communities all over Australia and was formed in 1928 – making it a lot older than some of the world’s airlines today. But then again aviation has such a rich history in Australia.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7296/8729054189_88a8972780_c.jpg

The terminal here is not as large as TSV, but seems functional. It reminded me of some of the terminals I visited last year on my Eastern Canada trip, except here, there was no signage in French, and it was a lot warmer.

A single baggage reclaim belt is all that is necessary here.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7458/8729053425_5e6fc9d1b7_c.jpg



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 2, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 6860 times:



I spent a couple of hours outside relaxing out in the sun, and working on trying to shed the white and pasty European winter look that I arrived with.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7371/8730174812_a0a3c7f27e_c.jpg

Not surprisingly, the return trip on ZL5268 was much like the outbound one, although we had fewer passengers heading back to TSV. There were 8 passengers for the first leg to Julia Creek. The flight left on time a little after 1230pm. This time I was in 10C - the second last row, where the leg room was better.

The Brisbane Qantas flight pushed back just before we did.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7365/8730178802_700d603a0e_c.jpg

and left for Brisbane shortly after.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7304/8730178750_c237383fb0_c.jpg

Goodbye Mount Isa!

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7314/8730178574_f95e8fc023_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7308/8729057991_3df1c0af2b_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7307/8730178276_128f3eb620_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7388/8730178334_83bea8d133_c.jpg

A big hole... in the ground.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7286/8729057083_d06c78ac9b_c.jpg

And there’s a short view of Mt Isa as we head back east

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7417/8730178096_49e80a779c_c.jpg

The same crew operated the flight back and service options were identical on each of the sectors. The flight attendant was very chatty to all the passengers, stopping to talk to anyone with ease. There were a couple of passengers returning to TSV who were sleeping soundly and a passenger who got on the aircraft at Julia Creek, who clearly knew another passenger sitting a couple of rows behind him. He was having quite an animated conversation and the flight attendant, seeing the sleeping passengers, approached the “loud” guy and asked him if he wanted to move a couple of rows forward with his mate so they could chat away and not disturb anyone else who wanted to rest. A nice proactive touch.

Given the temperatures had risen considerably during the day, the approaches into each of the smaller airports enroute was beyond bouncy – all that thermal air was playing havoc with our little Saab and I have never been bounced around in an aircraft in such a sustained and violent way during any of my travels. At times it was impossible to even hold the camera steady so pictures were a challenge. The pilots did a great job and getting us in and out of these places with no delays or hiccups at all.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7353/8729057013_8a2985ec86_c.jpg

We passed directly over Cloncurry again.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7460/8730182950_cdb336e6e5_c.jpg

The landscape down below was amazing just as it was on the way to Mt Isa earlier in the day.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7378/8729071409_bfe251da77_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7321/8729071235_0723707dce_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7342/8729071249_ecfe4a1f78_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7330/8729071143_6b82e59a09_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7374/8729070197_54197a13ea_c.jpg

On final approach to Julia Creek

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7328/8729070631_899dc4fd3f_c.jpg

Bouncing into Richmond

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7293/8729076391_8d625bc8ee_c.jpg

Meanwhile, by the time our wheels touched down in Townsville a little over 4 hours later, the little Saab had been thrown around the sky quite a bit. Lots of fun - but not if you hate turbulence.

It was clear we were getting closer to our final airport when the browns and oranges on the ground were slowly replaced by green. The approach into TSV was a lot smoother than the previous three landings.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7347/8729061977_6c590d121b_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7398/8730182472_f969e5ccd1_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7387/8730182436_bc776ed513_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7376/8730182370_a14e2fbba3_c.jpg

Hello Townsville – again.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7281/8729061285_bffb8a5af6_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7441/8730181778_87891c4c64_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7446/8729061081_2da74eeba3_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7435/8730187490_251d0559e1_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7286/8730187402_fe10aa18d0_c.jpg

We parked next to a fellow SF340, VH-ZRM, which had probably operated to Winton and back.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7372/8729066767_f235eb747e_c.jpg

Goodbye and thanks to VH-ZRZ which had flown a total of nearly 1800km between TSV and ISA and back again.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7313/8729066703_e0d0bffd22_c.jpg
.
http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7304/8730186990_a755a4689b_c.jpg

The two Saabs resting together after a long day’s work.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7304/8729066445_14c4b7d2b8_c.jpg

My connecting flight to Brisbane left a couple of hours later, and I spent a bit of time in the Qantas Lounge with a Townsville Bitter in my hand, watching the world go by. The evening Qantas flight was operated by a B737-800 and was packed in Economy. For the 2 hour flight, a complimentary hot dinner and drinks (both alcoholic and non alcoholic) were served by a very good crew and we arrived back into Brisbane 10 minutes late.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7307/8736334426_683181f212_c.jpg

All walkways lead to.... a Skytrans Dash 8!

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7317/8736335420_05ae914cb3_c.jpg

And this cute little Air North of “Together We Fly” fame E-jet gets ready to leave for Darwin

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7322/8736331296_7f5720866f_c.jpg

FINAL THOUGHTS

I was able to tick off another 3 new Queensland airports to my log following this trip and really enjoyed the experience of flying to Mt Isa and back. It’s clear that these services are essential for the small communities living in this part of the world, and the service offered by Rex is of a good standard.

Seating at the back was tight - and thankfully the flight was not full. I don’t remember it being so cramped on my flight to Ballina a couple of years back, but I was further forward in the cabin.

It would have been nice to have been offered something more substantial F&B wise on the longer sector(s), just as Skytrans managed to do. Having said that, the crew on my flight seemed to enjoy their jobs and provided a positive experience for passengers. The transit stops were short, and it would have been nice to be able to get out and stretch my legs at one of the stops, but to be fair, I never asked if I could.

The turbulence on the return journey was pretty bad but it added to the experience and I would certainly recommend taking the “Overlander’s Way” by air with Rex if you find yourself flying in Queensland.

Finally, a very big thanks to my Sydney based friend who helped arrange these flights for me - much appreciated mate if you’ve got this far!

Thanks all, comments are of course welcome.

http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7324/8735210859_e254f46735_c.jpg

Other reports:

Saying Goodbye To Hochelaga: YUL-LHR With AC (by palmjet Jan 19 2013 in Trip Reports)
Ya D'ar Brezhoneg, Yes To Brittany: To UIP With BA (by palmjet Jul 14 2012 in Trip Reports)
Fevered Booking? To Aus With Qantas A380 In F/J (by palmjet Jun 16 2012 in Trip Reports)
A Shiny City Debut: Alitalia's New E-Jet To Milan (by palmjet Jun 12 2012 in Trip Reports)
Going Retro, Chasing The Sun: BA B763 To Cyprus (by palmjet May 21 2012 in Trip Reports)
1 Long Day, 3 Short Virgins: Virgin's New ATR72 (by palmjet Feb 9 2012 in Trip Reports)

The Reindeer Route To Australia In J (by palmjet Dec 15 2011 in Trip Reports)
Cathay "Reunion": BNE-CNS-HKG In J (by Palmjet Aug 6 2011 in Trip Reports)
Flying An Old Lady: Aer Arann To London City (by Palmjet Jul 2 2011 in Trip Reports)
Arctic "Dash" With Wideroe: 2 Days, 7 Stops (pics (by Palmjet Jun 22 2011 in Trip Reports)
"888": 8hrs, 8 Segments On An Aussie Dash 8 (pics) (by Palmjet Apr 3 2011 in Trip Reports)
Keep Climbing & Don't Stop - 48hr DL Marathon (by Palmjet Dec 15 2010 in Trip Reports)

Snow-2-Sun: BA J To Tampa And Beyond (pics) (by Palmjet Dec 22 2010 in Trip Reports)
Iceland Yes, Volcano No, FI451 LHR-KEF (pics) (by Palmjet Oct 9 2010 in Trip Reports)
Ballina Boomerang: Coastal Flying With REX (pics) (by Palmjet Apr 10 2011 in Trip Reports)
Almost AF ATR72: Skyteam Skip LHR-TLS (w/pics) (by Palmjet Nov 6 2010 in Trip Reports)
The Return: KL E190 TLS-AMS (w/pics) (by Palmjet Nov 28 2010 in Trip Reports)

Baby 737 To Dresden And Back - W/pics (by Palmjet Sep 4 2010 in Trip Reports)
Short Haul Austrian 738(w) VIE-LHR W/pics (by Palmjet Sep 3 2010 in Trip Reports)
Cayo Coco - Havana, Aero Caribbean W/pics (by Palmjet Jul 16 2010 in Trip Reports)



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From Germany, joined Sep 2003, 5163 posts, RR: 55
Reply 3, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 6766 times:

Hi, J.,

great REX stuff to follow here. Super nice landscape pictures and well written story.
That´s what I like. It seems I should go also sometimes for Brisbane and further.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):

Hi all. Hot on the heels of Markus’ recent great report on Regional Express to Bathurst in New South Wales, here is is a short(er) trip report about a long day’s flying back in March 2013 in Central North Queensland.

Thank you.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)



Next: The eastern Intersky!.
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From Germany, joined Sep 2003, 5163 posts, RR: 55
Reply 4, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 6747 times:

And once again J., great landscape pictures and story and:

Quoting palmjet (Reply 1):
I really enjoyed Markus’ recent report from the other side of the country on SkyWest – lots of mines in Western Australia too

Thank you.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)



Next: The eastern Intersky!.
User currently offlineB707MT From Australia, joined Apr 2013, 68 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 6662 times:

Hey mate, great report, and sensational photos, thank you!

Quoting palmjet (Reply 2):
It would have been nice to have been offered something more substantial F&B wise on the longer sector(s), just as Skytrans managed to do. Having said that, the crew on my flight seemed to enjoy their jobs and provided a positive experience for passengers.

Concur with both parts of your comment. But there really isn't a lot of room for legs on those SAABs, and I've managed to eat them out of savoury snacks even on much shorter SYD-MYA-MIM sectors! BYO sandwiches from the terminal has never been an issue.

Good to hear your ReXperience lived up to ZL's reputation. There's not a lot you can do on these country runs, and a good crew that's enjoying their job is the clincher. Almost all the f/attendants (and a surprising proportion of the flight crews) I've chatted with over the years expressed little desire in 'climbing the greasy pole' to the bigger airlines/equipment.

Invariably, their comments were that they loved the 'home every night' nature of the job, and the person-to-person interaction (especially with lots of 'regulars' among the pax) - and that more than made up for how hard they worked on duty.

Interesting that ReX is doing today - to a much lesser extent in Queensland - what TAA used to do with its F27s many years ago. Their route map was a spider-web of Fokker-stops at every country town which had an asphalt strip - and some that didn't:

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Daniel Tanner
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Andy Anderson



Cheers, Matt


User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 6, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 6607 times:

Hi Markus

Quote:
great REX stuff to follow here. Super nice landscape pictures and well written story.
That´s what I like. It seems I should go also sometimes for Brisbane and further.

Thanks for your comments! Yes - definitely, hopefully next time you can venture further north on your travels in Australia. It's a great part of the country  

It was great to read about your Rex experiences recently too - I am still working my way through your report(s) from down under. Looking forward to more hopefully soon from you!




Hi Matt

Quote:
Hey mate, great report, and sensational photos, thank you!

Glad you enjoyed! Thanks for your comments.

Quote:
Concur with both parts of your comment. But there really isn't a lot of room for legs on those SAABs, and I've managed to eat them out of savoury snacks even on much shorter SYD-MYA-MIM sectors! BYO sandwiches from the terminal has never been an issue.

Good to hear your ReXperience lived up to ZL's reputation. There's not a lot you can do on these country runs, and a good crew that's enjoying their job is the clincher. Almost all the f/attendants (and a surprising proportion of the flight crews) I've chatted with over the years expressed little desire in 'climbing the greasy pole' to the bigger airlines/equipment.

Invariably, their comments were that they loved the 'home every night' nature of the job, and the person-to-person interaction (especially with lots of 'regulars' among the pax) - and that more than made up for how hard they worked on duty.

Interesting that ReX is doing today - to a much lesser extent in Queensland - what TAA used to do with its F27s many years ago. Their route map was a spider-web of Fokker-stops at every country town which had an asphalt strip - and some that didn't:

Agree. Anyone looking for extravagant service on these flights would be disappointed. I really enjoyed the actual flying and the views outside - these days, I see so many trip reports where the report focuses so much on the menu and food service and there is barely even a view shared from outside the window... The crew was great on my flight. That certainly made it for me - as you say, if the crews are happy, the passengers are most likely to be happy.

There is certainly a lot of history on these routes in western Queensland. When I was in Charleville a couple of years back on my Skytrans flight to ISA, there were some old F27 stairs with the TAA camel hump faded logo still painted on the side. I should have taken a photo - but sadly did not.

Thanks again for your detailed comments. Much appreciated.



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineallrite From Australia, joined Aug 2007, 2057 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 6234 times:

Dear Palmjet,

Your report had me a bit confused. You wrote Australia and I thought Rex was a provider of services from Austria on the Vienna to Rome route. Or am I mixing up an airline with a police dog?  
Quoting palmjet (Reply 2):
The turbulence on the return journey was pretty bad but it added to the experience and I would certainly recommend taking the “Overlander’s Way” by air with Rex if you find yourself flying in Queensland.

Thank you for allowing me to experience the flight without turbulence, because I don't think I'll be doing that one! The colours and textures of the landscape are truly beautiful.

My only Saab 340 flight was from Parkes to Sydney and I remember it being very smooth, despite going over the Blue Mountains.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
Competition Rules for Australia’s Best Butt:

I thought you were into legs, not butts. Though I can imagine a few a.nutters making a beeline for Julia Creek now.



Applying insanity to normality
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 8, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 6007 times:

Hi allrite

Quote:
Your report had me a bit confused. You wrote Australia and I thought Rex was a provider of services from Austria on the Vienna to Rome route. Or am I mixing up an airline with a police dog?


Clearly you are watching far too much TV !

Quote:
Thank you for allowing me to experience the flight without turbulence, because I don't think I'll be doing that one! The colours and textures of the landscape are truly beautiful.

Oh no - that's right, I forgot that you hate turbulence. I think you'd be fine on the outbound morning flight as the temperatures are not usually high enough (at least in March) to create too much havoc. It was only on the way back. The landscape there is amazing from the air - stunning. See, Queensland really is the *best* State..  
Quote:
My only Saab 340 flight was from Parkes to Sydney and I remember it being very smooth, despite going over the Blue Mountains.

That would have been a scenic flight for sure. Did you do a report?

Quote:
I thought you were into legs, not butts. Though I can imagine a few a.nutters making a beeline for Julia Creek now.

Legs, butts - who am I am to be fussy about these things (in my older age)??  

Thanks for your comments



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineallrite From Australia, joined Aug 2007, 2057 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 5906 times:

Quoting palmjet (Reply 8):
The landscape there is amazing from the air - stunning. See, Queensland really is the *best* State..  

You know that views from the air can be quite deceiving. I was very impressed with the landscape flying over Afghanistan...  
Quoting palmjet (Reply 8):
That would have been a scenic flight for sure. Did you do a report?

No trip report - it was back before I ever thought to do such things, sometime between 2001 - 2003. I recall that it was a beautiful late afternoon flight with a stopover in Bathurst and truly gorgeous views of the Sydney CBD from the west as we descended from towards the south. The first time I'd ever had to duck when in an aircraft cabin.

Makes me think of a few other turboprop runs in the distant past. ROK-GLT-BNE in a Ansett Fokker something. ROK-BNE Sunstate Shorts 360, BNE-HVB Beechcraft 1900 (at least I got a photo of that), SYD-MRZ-NAA in a Dash-8. Would have made for some more interesting trip reports than yet another Airbus or Boeing.



Applying insanity to normality
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 10, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5813 times:

Quote:
You know that views from the air can be quite deceiving. I was very impressed with the landscape flying over Afghanistan...

Point well made allrite!

But the landscape over AFG does look amazing. I've marvelled at it from 35,000 ft during the day as well. Shame things down on the ground are not so good sometimes.

Quote:
No trip report - it was back before I ever thought to do such things, sometime between 2001 - 2003. I recall that it was a beautiful late afternoon flight with a stopover in Bathurst and truly gorgeous views of the Sydney CBD from the west as we descended from towards the south. The first time I'd ever had to duck when in an aircraft cabin.

Makes me think of a few other turboprop runs in the distant past. ROK-GLT-BNE in a Ansett Fokker something. ROK-BNE Sunstate Shorts 360, BNE-HVB Beechcraft 1900 (at least I got a photo of that), SYD-MRZ-NAA in a Dash-8. Would have made for some more interesting trip reports than yet another Airbus or Boeing.

Oh that's a shame - it might have meant more leg photos. Sounds like a great flight though. I imagine the Ansett Fokker something would have been the F27. I am not sure AN ever operated their F50s on those routes in Qld when they had them. I never got to try the Shorts 360 - really missed out on that. Shame that we weren't all trip reporting back then.. agree totally that they would have made for interesting subject matters!

Cheers P/jet



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 15
Reply 11, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 5784 times:

Hello Palmjet

Another interesting read from your side, great to see you are enjoying those milk runs!
Nice logging the SAAB as well and splendid pics of the Australian countryside!
What caught my attention the most was the size of Iljana creek and Richmond, haven't seen anything smaller actually.

Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlineinfodesk From Switzerland, joined May 2006, 1454 posts, RR: 33
Reply 12, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 5658 times:

Hi Palmjet,

Thanks for, once again, such a exotic report. It fits perfectly after your Canadian adventure last year!

I think what fascinates me the most about Australia is the sheer size. When you're used to Switzerland, where one village and town leads seamlessly into the next, such photos from Down Under leave you in awe. Take Richmond for example. An airport for that tiny settlement that's in the middle of nowhere. I love it. And the colours too! I never know there were so many shades of burnt orange! You really see the contrast with the lush greens of Townsville.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
The legroom in the last row was however, terrible: a very tight squeeze for anyone who has legs

Ouch! That is tight.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
That figures – the people there were nothing but friendly during my short stay.

Aren't all Aussies friendly though? I've yet to come across an unfriendly one!

Happy flying
Infodesk   



"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 980 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 5621 times:

Hi Palmjet! Another great report from your hand! I love the detail and stories as always! Beautiful scenery en route, really fun to see how the landscape changes as you head inland. Love the small terminal buildings too!

User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 14, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 5559 times:

Hi Marc

Quote:
Another interesting read from your side, great to see you are enjoying those milk runs!
Nice logging the SAAB as well and splendid pics of the Australian countryside!
What caught my attention the most was the size of Iljana creek and Richmond, haven't seen anything smaller actually.

Thanks for your comments. Glad you enjoyed. Yes, I am a big fan of milk runs - if you know of any others, please let me know! Yes, I do like the Saab (although not as much as the Dash 8)  

Yes, these communities are very small - to have scheduled air service is pretty unusual by European or US standards, but the distances are so great in this part of the world that without air service, it would take hours/days to get to large towns.

Thanks again!

Hello Hannah

Great to hear from you. Thanks for your detailed comments.

Quote:
Thanks for, once again, such a exotic report. It fits perfectly after your Canadian adventure last year!

A pleasure - yes, I love flying to out of the way places. Must be an age thing. I wish I could go back to Canada again this year - great memories.

Quote:
I think what fascinates me the most about Australia is the sheer size. When you're used to Switzerland, where one village and town leads seamlessly into the next, such photos from Down Under leave you in awe. Take Richmond for example. An airport for that tiny settlement that's in the middle of nowhere. I love it. And the colours too! I never know there were so many shades of burnt orange! You really see the contrast with the lush greens of Townsville.

It is indeed a huge country. Flying transcon is between 4 - 5 hours on an A330 so it's similar in some respects to a US transcon. These communities are so small and the area in this part of Queensland is so sparsely populated, so you really experience that from the air. Indeed, Townsville was a lot greener!

Quote:
Aren't all Aussies friendly though? I've yet to come across an unfriendly one!

Sadly, not. I've met some pretty rude ones. But thankfully not on this trip. Thanks again

Hey roberts87

Quote:
Hi Palmjet! Another great report from your hand! I love the detail and stories as always! Beautiful scenery en route, really fun to see how the landscape changes as you head inland. Love the small terminal buildings too!

Glad you enjoyed and thanks for your comments. I've tried to cut back on some of the details as people don't have a lot of time to read long trip reports. The landscape changes so markedly from the coastal region to the outback. The little terminal buildings are indeed very cute! Thanks again, P/jet



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineB707MT From Australia, joined Apr 2013, 68 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 5545 times:

Quoting palmjet (Reply 10):
h that's a shame - it might have meant more leg photos. Sounds like a great flight though. I imagine the Ansett Fokker something would have been the F27.

LoL those were the days - I used to do a lot of BNE-SYD trips in the 1980s and the cheapest fares - and most enjoyable flights - were the Air New South Wales F27 daily milk runs SYD-NTL-OOL-BNE and retun. Never flew higher than FL160 (on the OOL-NTL sectors), and the view through those gorgeous big Fokker Friendship windows right by your shoulder was panoramic.

Crews were great - same basis as your ZL ReXperiences - and I even scored a cockpit jumpseat one trip for the landing into NTL. The cockpit entryway curtain (yes: curtain, back then!) used to be tied back for takeoff and landing - standard safety procedure - so that made for some great views forward from the aisle and cabin - especially one bumpy summer's afternoon diving approach into OOL!

(Wrote that trip up as a report - in the days before the internet and t/reports! - wonder if I've still got the typed pages somewhere ...?) The "big canary" livery was pretty special too; shame there's no pix in the A.net d/base.


User currently offlinebobloblaw From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1713 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 5480 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Awesome cool TR............

User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 17, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 5368 times:

Hi Matt

Quote:
LoL those were the days - I used to do a lot of BNE-SYD trips in the 1980s and the cheapest fares - and most enjoyable flights - were the Air New South Wales F27 daily milk runs SYD-NTL-OOL-BNE and retun. Never flew higher than FL160 (on the OOL-NTL sectors), and the view through those gorgeous big Fokker Friendship windows right by your shoulder was panoramic.

Thanks for your further comments. Fantastic. My first flight ever was on a F27 on East West from Brisbane to Sydney via Grafton. I remember how big those oval windows were and what fun it was to watch the landing gear retract on take off and pop out before landing. I never knew that Air New South Wales flew into BNE - I don't remember ever seeing them at the airport there when I used to beg my Dad to go to BNE nearly every weekend! That route would have been very nice. I remember seeing pics of those amazing canary and red and black coloured F27s - pretty amazing colour scheme.

Quote:
Crews were great - same basis as your ZL ReXperiences - and I even scored a cockpit jumpseat one trip for the landing into NTL. The cockpit entryway curtain (yes: curtain, back then!) used to be tied back for takeoff and landing - standard safety procedure - so that made for some great views forward from the aisle and cabin - especially one bumpy summer's afternoon diving approach into OOL!

Very nice indeed. Those were the days indeed! I once flew with East West back from SYD to BNE via OOL and that last sector between OOL and BNE was so incredibly short and swift - it hardly felt like we'd left the ground and we were already descending into BNE. I remember that flight so well, even though it was back in 1986.

Quote:
(Wrote that trip up as a report - in the days before the internet and t/reports! - wonder if I've still got the typed pages somewhere ...?) The "big canary" livery was pretty special too; shame there's no pix in the A.net d/base.

If you find your report, please post it - or at least I would love to read it!

Hi bobloblaw

Quote:
Awesome cool TR............

Thanks! Glad you enjoyed.



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineWidebodyroga From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 613 posts, RR: 16
Reply 18, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 5239 times:

Hey Palmjet,

The first thing I thought when I saw your itinerary was “Oh, another of those TRs that make me feel inadequate for not knowing a single airport/town mentioned in them”. I do really enjoy such reports though. I feel I’ve learned so much after reading them.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
It’s no secret that I love multi-stop flying but these days, it’s increasingly more challenging to find a through flight with a single flight number that operates with more than one or two stops. Historically this was never the case, and it was common to find “puddle jumpers” plying the skies above many parts of the world, stopping at every airport with a runway enroute.

Very true. With very few exceptions (mainly to be found outside the 50 contiguous states) there are hardly any multi-stop flights in the US (that I know of). Your best bet is to dig into Southwest’s booking system and find an East-to-West Coast flight with 2 or 3 “no-aircraft-change” layovers*. But of course that’s quite different to what you’re talking about. No shortage of those kind of flights in Canada as you showed us in some of your previous reports!

*Speaking of which, I recently found a MDW to SAN itinerary via ABQ and TUS (no aircraft change) and I have been drooling all over it ever since.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
The road journey that goes from Townsville to Mt Isa and beyond is known as the “Overlander’s Way”. While I love a good road trip, this one takes between 10 -11 hours to drive it, so I’d much rather fly.

This reminds me of the stories I’ve heard (not sure if they are exaggerated of not) that if you want to drive between, say, Adelaide and Perth you have to carry extra supplies of gasoline with you because there are no gas stations in between. I wonder if something similar applies to this “Overlander’s Way” route. It sure looks empty.

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
Of course there was time for some people watching, which I always enjoy at airports – no matter how big or small they are.

Were you being a Bulgarian-wannabe again?

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
Magnetic Island, from the air

Did you feel its magnetic pull? (sorry, I had to ask!)

Quoting palmjet (Thread starter):
Burke and Wills expedition

Only recently did I become aware of this expedition (perhaps because of something you mentioned in a previous TR, which prompted me to read about it). It’s always fascinating reading about such “exploratory” treks. What brave men these were.

Quoting palmjet (Reply 1):
Exhibit A - one freaked out dunnart

What a cute animal and what an adorable posture!

Thanks for this report palmjet and for all the background info you offer us. I do truly appreciate the effort you put into making your reports so informative. You have single- handedly improved (probably threefold) my historical and geographical knowledge of Australia.

Widebodyroga



Visit my aviation page: http://widebodyroga.weebly.com/
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 19, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 5208 times:

Hi WBR

Always a pleasure to hear from you! Thanks for your comments.

Quote:
The first thing I thought when I saw your itinerary was “Oh, another of those TRs that make me feel inadequate for not knowing a single airport/town mentioned in them”. I do really enjoy such reports though. I feel I’ve learned so much after reading them.

Thank you - glad you enjoyed this type of report from an out of the way place. Likewise I enjoyed your recent trip to Greece because you covered parts of the country rarely reported on here so that was amazing - I got to learn something new about a part of Europe I clearly knew nothing about!

You might be pleased to know that the next report will feature more well known airports.

Quote:
Very true. With very few exceptions (mainly to be found outside the 50 contiguous states) there are hardly any multi-stop flights in the US (that I know of). Your best bet is to dig into Southwest’s booking system and find an East-to-West Coast flight with 2 or 3 “no-aircraft-change” layovers*. But of course that’s quite different to what you’re talking about. No shortage of those kind of flights in Canada as you showed us in some of your previous reports!

It's such a shame - the US was THE home of the multi-stop flight prior to deregulation. I know that WN have some pretty good multistop flights - which is great if you love flying but not the same as flying into and out of small regional airports.

Quote:
*Speaking of which, I recently found a MDW to SAN itinerary via ABQ and TUS (no aircraft change) and I have been drooling all over it ever since.

Do it! I've always wanted to get to ABQ as well. Perhaps we could do a multi-stop flight at some point ex ORD?

Quote:
This reminds me of the stories I’ve heard (not sure if they are exaggerated of not) that if you want to drive between, say, Adelaide and Perth you have to carry extra supplies of gasoline with you because there are no gas stations in between. I wonder if something similar applies to this “Overlander’s Way” route. It sure looks empty.

On long outback drives in Australia, there are always a set of rules to go by - and taking extra fuel in some parts of the country can be essential. It's true that you can go for 100s of miles without seeing any sign of human habitation.

Quote:
Were you being a Bulgarian-wannabe again?

Yes! I was practising my lookering big time. Good thing I've had plenty of practice. Might have to make another trip back to BG just to hone the skill a bit more.

Quote:
Did you feel its magnetic pull? (sorry, I had to ask!)

Oh yeah... ! I did indeed.   The island was named by James Cook when he sailed up the coast in 1770 because apparently, the compass or equipment on his ship went all haywire when is passed the island...!

Quote:
Only recently did I become aware of this expedition (perhaps because of something you mentioned in a previous TR, which prompted me to read about it). It’s always fascinating reading about such “exploratory” treks. What brave men these were.

They had no appreciation of the environment they were in - and with few maps and little knowledge of the area, these expeditions were very risky and at great cost. Had they listened and respected the indigenous communities, they could have learnt a lot more a lot quicker.

Quote:
Thanks for this report palmjet and for all the background info you offer us. I do truly appreciate the effort you put into making your reports so informative. You have single- handedly improved (probably threefold) my historical and geographical knowledge of Australia.

Thanks! I like to try and put my reports into some kind of context. For me, it's not just about going from A to B. There has to be some kind of context. Australia is a fascinating country - hope you can get there one day (plus there are plenty of Bulgarians too!)



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlineWidebodyroga From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 613 posts, RR: 16
Reply 20, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 5151 times:

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
Thank you - glad you enjoyed this type of report from an out of the way place. Likewise I enjoyed your recent trip to Greece because you covered parts of the country rarely reported on here so that was amazing - I got to learn something new about a part of Europe I clearly knew nothing about!

Thank you, I know what you mean. I’m planning a couple of other trips right now involving some equally unusual/rare destinations, albeit within the US, that some of you may potentially find interesting. I should have everything figured out pretty soon.

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
Do it! I've always wanted to get to ABQ as well. Perhaps we could do a multi-stop flight at some point ex ORD?

I need to go to SAN at some point for work but I’m still waiting to find out the exact dates I’m supposed to be there (which is why I haven’t book the above itinerary yet). I did read somewhere though that WN plans to suspend ABQ-TUS flights soon …

I’d love to fly again with some a.net company (doing so with Alex was great fun) so if you were to visit ORD it goes without question that we’ll organize something!

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
On long outback drives in Australia, there are always a set of rules to go by - and taking extra fuel in some parts of the country can be essential. It's true that you can go for 100s of miles without seeing any sign of human habitation.

How very interesting. Even if you are fully equipped and with all the necessary supplies there must be something quite unsettling about going on such a roadtrip. An adventure without a doubt. I wonder how many people (if any) do the Adelaide-Perth drive.

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
Yes! I was practising my lookering big time. Good thing I've had plenty of practice. Might have to make another trip back to BG just to hone the skill a bit more.

Keep practicing because (as you know) I’m gonna rely on you to teach me!

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
Oh yeah... ! I did indeed. The island was named by James Cook when he sailed up the coast in 1770 because apparently, the compass or equipment on his ship went all haywire when is passed the island...!

Keep the historical info coming. I’m loving it.

Quoting palmjet (Reply 19):
hope you can get there one day (plus there are plenty of Bulgarians too!)

Is there any place in the world right now without plenty of Bulgarians? I’m actually trying to avoid places with too many Bulgarians. This is perhaps a bit ironic as I live in Chicago (claimed to be “Bulgaria’s third biggest city”) but in all the years I’ve been here I have managed to avoid all of them (not counting those at ORD of course – those cannot be avoided!).



Visit my aviation page: http://widebodyroga.weebly.com/
User currently offlineB707MT From Australia, joined Apr 2013, 68 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 5147 times:

Quoting palmjet (Reply 17):
Quote:
(Wrote that trip up as a report - in the days before the internet and t/reports! - wonder if I've still got the typed pages somewhere ...?) The "big canary" livery was pretty special too; shame there's no pix in the A.net d/base.

If you find your report, please post it - or at least I would love to read it!

Will do mate - if it survives. I'll dig through some boxes on the weekend.
Cheers, Matt


User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 22, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4983 times:

WBR

Part II - great stuff!

Quote:
Thank you, I know what you mean. I’m planning a couple of other trips right now involving some equally unusual/rare destinations, albeit within the US, that some of you may potentially find interesting. I should have everything figured out pretty soon.

I can't wait to hear about it. You're the only one who has covered Brainerd for example, so I would not expect anything less of you!

Quote:
I need to go to SAN at some point for work but I’m still waiting to find out the exact dates I’m supposed to be there (which is why I haven’t book the above itinerary yet). I did read somewhere though that WN plans to suspend ABQ-TUS flights soon …

Oh no! Well let me know what your flights are looking like. Sounds fun.

Quote:
I’d love to fly again with some a.net company (doing so with Alex was great fun) so if you were to visit ORD it goes without question that we’ll organize something!

Will keep you posted - Yes, you guys seemed to have a great day. A mini A.net meet of your own in ORD!

Quote:
How very interesting. Even if you are fully equipped and with all the necessary supplies there must be something quite unsettling about going on such a roadtrip. An adventure without a doubt. I wonder how many people (if any) do the Adelaide-Perth drive.

Indeed - these crossings need to be well planned if you're doing it independently. Plenty of people do but you need to have a lot of time on your hands.

Quote:
Keep practicing because (as you know) I’m gonna rely on you to teach me!

Ah no, you're a natural, I am sure! Mike can give you some tips from an American perspective.

Quote:
Is there any place in the world right now without plenty of Bulgarians? I’m actually trying to avoid places with too many Bulgarians. This is perhaps a bit ironic as I live in Chicago (claimed to be “Bulgaria’s third biggest city”) but in all the years I’ve been here I have managed to avoid all of them (not counting those at ORD of course – those cannot be avoided!).

No - that's true. They are all over the place. Quite the diaspora! I am sure there are some outback parts of Australia that are sans Bulgarians - you can fly there on Rex !  

Hi Matt

Quote:
Will do mate - if it survives. I'll dig through some boxes on the weekend.

Super - thanks! It would be great to read about a trip from the 80s - my favourite decade!



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
User currently offlinechristao17 From Thailand, joined Apr 2005, 940 posts, RR: 8
Reply 23, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 4952 times:

What a fascinating trip report! While you covered an airline and flights that wouldn't offer much that would normally be considered interesting, you managed to capture a nice little slice of Australian regional flying. Some of those towns are super-small and the terminals (shacks!) are funny. Thanks again for sharing the experience with us.


Keeping the "civil" in civil aviation...
User currently offlinepalmjet From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 1223 posts, RR: 17
Reply 24, posted (1 year 3 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4754 times:

Hi Christao17

Quote:
What a fascinating trip report! While you covered an airline and flights that wouldn't offer much that would normally be considered interesting, you managed to capture a nice little slice of Australian regional flying. Some of those towns are super-small and the terminals (shacks!) are funny. Thanks again for sharing the experience with us.

Thank you for your kind words. Something a little different for sure. Another side of flying that often gets forgotten about but an essential service for these isolated communities. Agree - those terminals are indeed no more than fancy shacks! Hope you are well!

Cheers P/jet



Eastern - Number One To The Sun
25 PlaneHunter : Hi Palmjet, great "prop hopping" report with beautiful pictures! I really like REX after my pleasant experience some years ago. Wouldn't mind to fly i
26 Post contains images sultanils : Hi pj, Another amazing milk run report of yours! Beautiful pics and Aussie scenery, going from the green and lush to the red and dry and all that in b
27 Post contains images adamspotter : Hi Palmjet, Another great report with many, many nice pictures! After closely following your Canada series which showed a bunch of great domestic hops
28 jwhite9185 : Hi there PJ - you're really selling down under to me! Seriously have to consider paying a visit next year, although there's so many other places I wan
29 vsmike : Hi PJ, You certainly do go up and down more times a day than... an elevator. But, I guess you like it that way. From all the juicy morsels in your TR,
30 Post contains images palmjet : Hi PH Thanks! I remember your Rex experience a few years back and they seem to be consistent with their product. I read about a few complaints by resi
Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Aussie Outback Multi-stop With REX: TSV To ISA
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
En Dagstur With Brussels Airlines To København! posted Tue Jul 5 2011 07:14:31 by photoshooter
Ballina Boomerang: Coastal Flying With REX (pics) posted Sun Apr 10 2011 14:08:57 by Palmjet
My EK Odyssey & CX With A Boat Trip To Macau posted Mon Oct 11 2010 13:07:28 by toby25
Flying With Malaysian Hospitality To Tokyo posted Sat Apr 17 2010 09:10:55 by ycp81
A Trip To IAH (with DL/NW) To Party With CO! posted Mon Feb 9 2009 23:01:07 by DeltAirlines
Delta (with Pics) JFK To DUB May 24, 2008 posted Mon Jun 2 2008 21:23:51 by Jumbojet
A Short Trip With Lufthansa/Austrian To Vienna (VI posted Sat Jan 12 2008 05:53:29 by Whisperjet
Live From KE Flight 81 With Pics ICN To JFK Part 2 posted Tue Apr 4 2006 04:58:09 by JumboJet
STN-VBS With Ryanair (deverted To GOA For Fog) posted Wed Jan 30 2002 12:18:08 by Airblue
Zurich To JFK With Swissair, What To Expect.... posted Thu Nov 2 2000 10:17:28 by Hepkat

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format