Dave Jacka


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Birdsville and Back…

Another test flight is underway for On a Wing & a Chair. This time is to see whether Louise (coordinator for the round Australia flight) can hold her lunch down. Miraculously, with some good meds and being pilot in command for a while, she averted distributing her stomach contents within the aircraft.


Time to go flying.

We’re doing this trip to refine the team and work out some of the logistics and possible glitches associated with the future round Australia flight. Today is day one.

The weather was looking very dodgy at Tooradin, our take off location. Myself and Lida (a friend helping out in a ‘carer’ capacity) were to meet three other aircraft at Maryborough to accompany me on the flight. Luckily the weather cleared enough to fly and we finally met on route to Maryborough, and in person at Swan Hill.


Crop circles at Swan Hill – can’t believe the aliens are still at it.


A very bumpy landing at Swan Hill.

Flying between Swan Hill to our final destination for the day, Broken Hill brought back some memories as I passed over the cattle station – Tor Downs. I had engine trouble there in July last year and ended up having to stay overnight with the farm owner and their family. I will always be grateful for the hospitality they showed myself and my passenger, Brian that day. This time, circling over the airstrip and homestead to see if anyone was at home, I could barely recognise the landscape from the previous year when it was so red and barren. Today it was green and full of shrubs and greenery, barely recognisable.

We were up high at 8,500 feet avoiding the turbulence and getting the smooth air, but after circling low over Tor Downs I couldn’t resist doing a bit of sight seeing and checking out a rice crop farm in the middle of nowhere. It’s amazing what you see out here, miles from anywhere.

Tomorrow we’re off to two spots that I couldn’t make during my Central Australia flight. These being Cameron’s Corner and the Burke and Wills Dig Tree. Ever since I was 17 and wanting to drive through the outback, it’s been something I’ve always wanted to do…experience a little bit of Australian history.


Louise, Pauly, Brian, Linda, Greg, Kate and Lida at the Junction Hotel in Broken Hill.

Over and out

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