The CIX VFR Club Michael Barralet Morroccan mountain range
Club Events - Himalayan Adventure
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Briefing 18th January 2016

Having during the Christmas Caper visited the airfield with the lowest elevation on the planet I thought it might be fun to go to the other extreme! Hence we are heading to the Himalayas. Vital equipment for unpressurised aircraft will be oxygen bottles as we could well be in what mountaineers call the "Death Zone". We will leave from VNKT Kathmandu and fly to Everest base camp. Those feeling adventurous can make an orbiting climb to view Everest summit from above. For those who have it (it is a default field in X-Plane) we will land at VNSB Syangboche (12500 ft) before continuing on with everybody else to VNLK Lukla (9100 ft) (I found it useful to watch YouTube real world videos before attempting landing or take off in the simulator.) and finally to VNRT Rumjatar.

Start Time and Place

The event is to take place on Monday 18th Jan - just to add to the fun of having to do a quick turnaround at Lukla to make room for other members flying the event. Again to maximise traffic density on the 18th I would advise logging onto Teamspeak by 2000z (2000 UK Local).


Notes about Lukla: -

  1. Landings 06,
  2. There is no possibility of a "go-around" the mountainside rises steeply at the end of 06! - Get it right first time -OR ELSE!!!
  3. Take offs 24
  4. The ground drops sharply at the end of 24 many thousand feet to the valley floor! - Once you are rolling it is impossible to abort a take off!
There is only room for 4 aircraft to park at Lukla, so it is imperative that once landed we make as quick a turnaround as possible to make room for people behind us!.

Weather or Not

Before starting we will check the weather. If it is unsuitable for our trip as planned, (and it may well be - the scheduled flights are often cancelled due to rain!) then we will fix it. Something we can do in the simulator - wouldn't it be nice if we could do it in real life!
FSInn has a "CAVOK" button. Click this and you get calm clear weather.
Those using SB or XSB will need to turn off the on-line weather updates, and select calm in the FS weather options.

What Aircraft can I fly

Any aircraft can be flown in this event as long as it is within the EASA GA category. (Real world the aircraft of choice to operate in and out of Lukla would appear to be the Twin Otter.)

Flight Planning Your flight plan should show:
  • MSFS (FSX, P3D etc)
    • Departure = VNKT (Kathmandu)
    • Destination = VNRT (Rumjatar)
    • Route = Everest base Camp and VNLK (Lukla)
    • Comments = /V/ DAYLIGHT / CIX VFR CLUB /
  • X-Plane (or any sim with VNSB (Syangboche) installed):
    • Departure = VNKT (Kathmandu)
    • Destination = VNRT (Rumjatar)
    • Route = Everest base Camp and a full stop landings and take offs at VNSB (Syangboche) and VNLK (Lukla)
    • Comments = /V/ DAYLIGHT / CIX VFR CLUB /

At 120 knots this Route should take about 1hour 08 minutes excluding time on the ground. However it may not be possible to maintain a cruise of 120 as until we reach the base camp we will have to climb hard to get over some of the ridges - hence the need to carry oxygen!
(Note: on my trial run however, my IAS was 60 knots, but PlanG gave my groundspeed as 79 knots- so we might complete the route in slightly less time than the above.)
The MSFS & X-Plane Plan-G files for this Event can be downloaded from HERE.


At the time of publishing this event plan, ATC has not been confirmed.
Syangboche airport has "few facilities"
Lukla (AKA Tenzin-Hillary Airport) has no landing aids available and the only air traffic service is an Aerodrome Flight Information Service.

Radio Discipline

Take care not to let our Teamspeak chat cut across ATC. Stop any conversation immediately the R/T comes alive, then continue if "he wasn't talking to us". This is difficult because when transmitting on Teamspeak you can't hear the R/T. So be brief on Teamspeak, and be aware that ATC might be trying to get through. If anyone hears an R/T message which seems to be being ignored, just say "ATC is calling G-CIXN" if you have identified the callsign, or "ATC is calling us" which is a cue for everyone to be quiet on Teamspeak until ATC call again (which they will). Remember too that if asked to "Stand By" by ATC, you do not reply - not even "Roger", but simply wait until you are called again.
Remember also that there are several different ATC frequencies in use, and you may not be able to hear when communications are taking place. Make sure you have set and know how to use a Teamspeak mute switch.

Acknowledgements Event planning & Briefing: Max Symons
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