Flights PIL016 to Maun and PIL017 to Victoria Falls

December 9, 2012


Departure from our wilderness airport Chitabe looked like a piece of cake after our departure from Geluk. The runway was relatively clean resp. free of stones and moreover in use by Cessna’s every day. Our driver got the same instructions to clean out the surrounding of the runway from animals, something he did with great skill. I received from Commander Urs the same -non POH prescribed- instruction “select flaps 30” once we reached 50 knots IAS. Clean departure. 12 minutes later we landed in Maun.

preparing the A/C in the sand of CHITABE

Harry during another RWY inspection

Wilderness Safari’s were so kind to let us use their Wifi in their air conditioned office. Finally we could send out our blogs and photographs from Namibia and Botswana. This was the reason why we stayed in silence during nearly on week.

From this blog we are back on track.

We passed customs, restowed our luggage and prepared the a/c. At the very last moment the Handling Agent’s rabbit came out of the hat. He presented us with a bill of nearly $1.800 which we refused to pay. Then he said it would be better to deal with this matter via Andy. We agreed, though we did not believe that the tower would give us a clearance to depart. We were wrong and took off without having paid these BANDITOS. They must be brothers to those in Windhoek. Later in Victoria Falls we talked to Deon, who organized our trips and stays in Namibia, Botswana and also in Victoria Falls. He said they must be insane and would contact them and Andy.

Victoria Falls: landing after a thunderstorm

the two batteries of the A/C have to be disconnected…. – with and without water!!!

In Victoria we had rooms in the Victoria Falls Hotel. Beautiful, old English style.

The Victoria Falls Hotel

The next day we made the nearly compulsory visit to the Victoria Falls and to the bridge from Zimbabwe to Zambia. Suddenly I found a link to Winsome and the Solent: The Solent Flying Boat Service by Imperial Airways, Route 1948-1950 from Southampton to Johannesburg. A trip in seven days with stops in Augusta, Cairo, Luxor, Khartoum, Port Bell and Victoria Falls. I remember that the man in Gosport who took our old Perkins engine out of Winsome, dismantled it and put it all back in order, talked of the glorious days for British a/c flying out of the Solent. I do not remember his name now, but am sure that you, David Street, will draw his attention to my small story.

Imperial Airways: Southampton – Johannesburg

Looking back at our joint waterfall excursions: Schaffhausen, Niagara, Angel (Venezuela), Iguazu and Victoria, we hereby declare the Iguazu Waterfalls as the outright winner.

Victoria Falls


The Bridge to Zambia

Will be continued from Lilongwe, Wifi permitting.

Post by Harry Heijst | December 9, 2012 |