|All of you who read "Around the world in 80 days" by Jules Verne probably know the answer to this question already. I always wanted to travel around the world, to visit all those places I have been reading about in adventure books, or have seen on Discovery channel. Unfortunately, as the years go by, my "trip around the world goal" seems less and less achievable. Then, I found out that such an adventure is possible in the Flight Simulator. OK, but that is not "real" you might say. Yes, I am aware of that (no, I really am), and I thought at first that going around the virtual world would be silly at best. But then, I figured that going around the virtual world in real life is still better than virtually going around the real world in a dream, so I started getting ready. I was reading the theory of flight, learning how to fly Cessna 182S, did many training flights and finally, when I felt I was ready, I took off from Salt Lake City international heading south towards Tucson. As I am flying around the virtual landscape, which BTW is amazingly realistic, I am reading about the countries and cities I am flying over and about the interesting geographical features I can see thorough the windows of my plane. It is not like being there, but I believe it really is the next best thing, and for now, that will have to do.|
|WHY CESSNA 182 Skylane?|
|Of all the planes available in the FS 2004, Cessna 182 Skylane is the smallest one capable of pulling this off. Obviously, one can fly around the world in 747 (also available in FS 2004), but what fun would that be? It would take 3, maybe 4 days at the altitude of 40,000 ft or so and all I would see would be clouds from the above (even if I could figure out how to operate that plane, which seems next to impossible without formal training). Besides, if I am ever to get a pilots license and actually fly in the real world (not necessarily around the world), the odds are it will be a small Cessna rather than a gigantic jet. So, the 182S seemed to be the best choice. It can fly slow, and low enough so that I can see ground features (some of which are all too real in this program). That will allow me to really get good feel for the geography of the places I am flying over. The range of 182S is just enough to get me over the longest legs of this trip (Cessna 172 would probably not work).|
|HAS THIS BEEN DONE BEFORE?|
Yes it has and you can read all about it if you click on the following links.
ATW in Cessna Grand Caravan
and Piper Archer.
Ari has completed his (Ari's page).
I am amazed by his navigational skills (much better than mine).
Then there was Boeing 314 Clipper RTW page (page is not up any more). RTW in a Beechcraft Baron 58.
Finally, here is very professionally done and nicely documented Sixpack team's effort.
Let me know if you find any other ones, I will put the links to them here.
Of course, many have actually done it for real. We salute and admire them!
Michel Lagneau has translated this trip into French and published it on
Thanks Michel, that was a lot of work! On Ricoooo you can also find Michel Lagneau's Historical Flight Plans for Flight Simulator;
from Alexander the Great to the French Air Mail of the 20's and 30's and a great selection of other freeware flight plans for trips all over the world.
Not to be outdone, Eddy Belfiore, a Belgian flightsimmer and video maker, has created an amazing movie documenting parts of this trip. You can also check out Eddy's pages for more info. All I can say is WOW!