Wednesday, 19 November 2008

2008/05 IFR training Toussus-le-Noble & Annecy

click on the title to see the video on DailyMotion

Another great trip we made during IFR training was a 2-day trip Paris - Annecy - Meribel - Lausanne - Lelystad. This issue covers part 1 ending with an overnight stop at Annecy after landing at the closeby Meythet regional airport.

First stop was Toussus-le-Noble (LFPN), an airport just south-west of Paris. ATC guided us very close over the south side of the city, directly over Versailles and with a clear view on the Eiffel tower. Above the city the heat produces some additional turbulence so filming stable images was not easy.
Even though the big southern airports of Paris are very nearby we did not see any traffic, it seemed to be a very quiet (time of the) day. Landing on LFPN was pretty standard, and the weather during the first leg was good.

No reason for refuelling as we can easily fly the Pancake for more than 7 hours with its long range tanks.

LFPN has a long asphalt runway and a restaurant. As we saw when departing there is a nice golf course directly in the neighbourhood of the field. We wanted to head for Annecy now. We planned the route in detail, but around Paris it is not very clear which exact routing you will be given.
An added difficulty was provided by ATC by directing us to a waypoint which just asks for confusion. In the same area there are both an NDB and a VOR with the same name. We did not know this and ATC did not spell the ident, so of course we went for the wrong one.

When getting further south we encountered isolated CB's. Even without experience a couple of them were clearly threatening enough to don't even consider flying into them. Avoiding the clouds we tried to remain VMC as much as possible. When in IMC you're no longer able to identify the CB's and our PCA did not include the optional Storm Scope. Still it is difficult to judge how far away from the darker clouds you should stay. The video shows clearly the dark weather and showers starboard and the fair weather on port. We saw a couple of lighting flashes but nothing very serious. The DA40 is certified to be lightning resistant, but we would rather not test this in a real life situation.

Closer to the Lake Geneva (with the Euro Championships football in the lake clearly visible) the weather improved I we got a magnificent view of Lake Annecy with the mountains starting directly behind it. More distant you could already identify the bigger white Alps, the destination for the morning flight the day after.

Approaching Meythet airport we were cleared approach very early. This was confusing us a bit, resulting in a to early turn to intercept the radial. With no wind the tower anticipated perfectly in offering us a circling approach to land in the other direction. Again an additional lesson without even asking for it.

Pancake Airlines Crew is trained by Dwarf Powered Gliders ( and Wings over Holland ( Information on the PH-PCA Diamond DA40 can be found on You can click on the title link to see the HD video on DailyMotion.

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