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Leg 52a: Luxor HELX to Embaba HEEM

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Thebes. Ancient capital city of Egypt. Founded around 2100 BC (Before Concorde), many believe it was the site of the world's first airport, literally thousands of years before any human-built flying machine. The Arrival Hall of Amun Re (above) was definitely built to impress.


The Departures building was built into the side of a cliff, but as countless users of FSX can testify, airports built into cliffs are not a problem. A definite sign of the prescience of the ancients.



Most remarkable is the fact that the first runway is still partially visible, and even includes edge lighting. At the far end is parking for five chariots of the gods. I have to admit though, I did think the Sphinx was bigger. It's also evident that this runway formed the inspiration for the famed airport on Tracy Island.


Sadly, the modern airport is a dismal affair compared to the ancient splendour of its ancient cousin. But my new steed (courtesy of messers Carenado & Sons, aircraftiers to the gentry) was fuelled and waiting. I only had to find J.G. to collect the baton, and I'd be off. The only cafe, being largely derelict, wasn't exactly crowded, so the handover went smoothly.


I spent a good half hour cooing over the interior of my new steed, but I remembered to stow the baton, and I did manage to get the coffee going (I wasn't going to drink the sludge they served in that so-called cafe!). A voice over the radio, "Seven India Mike, I'm about to cancel your departure slot!" signalled that I'd better get on the hurry-up.


Oh this plane is sweet! Just pile on the thrust and . . . voom!


Today's city of Luxor, with its modern "random autogen" styling, bears little resemblance to ancient Thebes. Still, with visibility this bad, we wouldn't be too troubled.


We climbed out over the desert. I had opted for the slightly cheaper "in-flight type rating" package on this aircraft, something that would come back later to bite me.


But for now, I basically just had to follow the Nile. It wasn't exactly hard to spot!


My one enroute turning point corresponded to a bend in the river. Achievement gained. Yay!



Uh-oh. I sense trouble ahead, and I still haven't figured how to make the nav radios work!





Eventually I broke out below the clouds, and fortunately I was still within a gnat's whisker of the river.


Approaching the southern outskirts of Cairo.


We have pyramids!


And more pyramids! Some people believe they were navaids built by the ancients; a kind of celestial NDB...



Ok, whatevs.


Somewhere in this lot is the airport... Better check what it says in Pooleys: "Embaba Airport, Giza. Closed in 2002 due to safety concerns." Gee thanks, Joe!


Yeah, I can see why they closed it!



Ok, Meigs-style landing coming up!


Modern-day Embaba. So impressed were the locals with my landing, they didn't even look up from their game of footie!

To be continued . . . 


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13 hours ago, Tim_A said:

The Departures building was built into the side of a cliff, but as countless users of FSX can testify, airports built into cliffs are not a problem. A definite sign of the prescience of the ancients

:rofl: oh how true...

Brilliant PIREP Tim. 

Watch out for pyramid power... it can play havoc with navigation equipment.. just as well you didn't have to turn it on on the first leg. 

Look forward to part 2


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