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Leg 80: Lagos DNMM - Dakar GOOY


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Evening all,

Just to let you know that "Challenge 80" has just landed in Dakar after a 3hr 20min flight from Lagos :-) Typing this from the crew van en route to the hotel, once I've set up camp there I'll be able to sort through and post the shots.

Thanks.

Dave

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After Dai's brilliant trip to Lagos in the classic 707, I thought it'd be a good idea to fly out again in the 707's younger, bigger, and faster brother - the 747-400. I'll never know how the ops guys got this one off Boeing - but I wasn't about to complain. Operating as "Challenge 80" and cruising at 37,000ft above Africa, we'd be in the air for around 3 hours and 20 minutes according to the FMC, touching down in Dakar at 1530GMT.

ATW80 "Challenge 80"

DNMM POLTO UA601 YF

FL370 - 1357nm

Takeoff Weight: 251.2 tonnes

Our noble steed awaits. I'd never really liked the 747 until I got PMDG's rendition of it - what a beautiful plane.

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Pushed back and starting engines 3 and 4 simultaneously (yes, the APU can do that - what a machine) as a British Airways 747 taxis past having just arrived from Heathrow.

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Taking off from runway 18L today, and with no SIDs to choose from it's direct to POLTO for us. A B737-200 is lining up for a flight to Kano.

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Pulling the massive 747 into the air. Having spent so much time in smaller narrowbodies, it's always a struggle for me to keep the tail off the ground when rotating.

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A spotter catches 250 tonnes of 747 climbing in to the mild Nigerian air.

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Climbing along the Ivory Coast - who's up for a scam? :mrhappy:

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Still climbing, but with only 100 people on board - the baton carrier, support staff, various dignitaries, and passengers willing to pay outrageous prices to avoid the airlines - the 747 makes an easy job of it.

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Traffic alert! A 737 at our 12 o'clock high.

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An aircraft that looks good...

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...no matter what the angle.

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30 minutes after takeoff, we're cruising comfortably at FL370.

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A few views from the office.

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Looks pretty deserted down there - wouldn't be a good time for a medical emergency.

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Wow - an ACARS printer. PMDG have thought of everything with this bird.

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Descending past 11,000 feet now, and up come the speed brakes to get the speed below 250kts.

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Turning onto our approach course of 002 degrees, for runway 36 at Dakar. Note the missed approach procedure on the ND - a climb out of GOOY to hold at APTON.

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Gear down, flaps extending, and slowing down to our landing speed of 136kts.

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Look at the size of those flaps. Spectacular in my opinion.

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No VASI or PAPI here it would seem, although there is an ILS to follow. I have the reins 1060 feet above ground level.

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Decision height at 180ft AGL, and a Condor 767 on approach behind me.

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A gentle touchdown - a little off-centre but not bad for someone with so little experience in the B747.

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I worked hard to get the aircraft stopped before the only two taxiways off the runway, to avoid a lengthy backtrack. Even so, I was surprised that it worked.

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Another once-in-a-lifetime shot for a local spotter - 747s don't come to Dakar much.

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Engines off, doors open, and switching over to APU power as the passengers disembark.

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Cold and dark, accompanied on the ramp by a First Choice 767-200 and a TAP A320. A short walk through the terminal allows us to rendezvous with the crew van and we are on our way - another leg completed.

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Thanks for viewing, hope you enjoyed the shots :-) Next up is Kris to take us on to Tenerife I think.

Cheers,

Dave :-)

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Wow! I loved that flight Dave, it's very humbling knowing all that was laid on for the baton! :mrhappy:

Great shots and as with all your posts oh so believable, Cheers Dave

I sent Kris a communique earlier on today so hopefully he will be there to collect the baton!

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I've re-viewed your post at least half a dozen times, Dave, and each time I spot something new - really excellent shots, showing the A/C in all her glory - brilliant, thanks. Mind you, I'm going to have to work on the SID, POLTO, GOOY and APTON bits!?!

Cheers - Dai. :mrhappy:

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