Sunday, 11 November 2012

Gooney Bird over Melbourne

Last night, we took the Gooney Bird flight over Melbourne. It was a dinner flight and we began with champagne, and finished with port and chocolates.
The Gooney Bird (aka DC3) first began flying in the 1930s, only thirty years after Wilbur and Orville did their thing. This particular Gooney Bird was one of the last production models, and was owned by the military until 1989. It's done relatively few miles compared with jets of today.
We had picked the best night of the year to fly. It was clear with just enough clouds to make brilliant the sunset.

We took off from Essendon Airport, headed for Westgate Bridge then turned right.

Locals might recognise Altona's Cherry Lake and Kororoit Creek

past Werribee to the sea to the sea ...

Once we reached the heads, we crossed coasts and travelled up the Peninsula to Melbourne. In the bottom right St Kilda Pier. To the right of the bright lights, Albert Park Lake.

The Gooney Bird seats 28 and includes a lounge.

This is Melbourne's first passenger terminal (just the bit with the fence). Tiny. Hard to imagine really.
Most of the passengers had flown on Gooney Birds before. We met two people who like us had travelled from PNG to Australian boarding schools. For one, the smell and sounds took her back to those days. Others had worked on them and/or flown them.
Our trip was a gift from our sons. It was fabulous.
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