best full logo smallAviation Historical Society of Australia (NSW) inc

Smith Centenary Celebration Group

From Tom Lockley, secretary
PO Box 301 Pyrmont NSW 2009

0403 615 134 ahsanswsmithflight@gmail.com

Darwin to Adelaide flight, March 8-22: Please circulate to your members

 

Between 8 and 22 March 2020 groups of light, historic and ultralight aircraft will make their way from Darwin to Adelaide. This will recognise the centenary of the flight by Ross and Keith Smith, James Bennett and Walter Shiers across Australia in 1919-20, in their Vickers Vimy aircraft. The route chosen for the 2020 flight largely follows the route used by the Vimy, with a few additions to visit places of special interest in the history of Australian aviaton. As well as the group of aircraft making the whole journey, other aircraft are welcome to join for part of the journey. The event will culminate in a major fly-in to Adelaide airports on the weekend of 21-22 March, and it is expected that many aircraft will take part in this.

The itinerary in brief is Darwin, Emkaytee Airfield (home of the Top End Flying Club), Katherine,  Daly Waters, the AACo stations of Anthony Lagoon, Brunette Downs and Avon Downs, Cloncurry, Longreach, Charleville, Caboolture*, Bourke, Narromine*, Richmond or Luskintyre, Shellharbour*(HARS, Albion Park), Temora, Cootamundra, Benalla*, Lilydale or Little River airports, Nhill, Gawler (Adelaide) and Aldinga (Adelaide) for 22 March. Weather permitting, aircraft will stop overnight at the places underlined and spend a full day, two nights, in the places marked with *. A fuller itinerary is on the back of this sheet and a publicity booklet will be available on Monday 20 January. A full pilot handbook will be available early in February and by March 1 we expect to have the final organisation complete.

Light, ultralight and historic aircraft are welcome to take part, either for the whole journey or for chosen sections. At each stopping point there are special features that will underline the historic importance of the flight – and to enable participants to have fun meeting other people interested in aviation and its history.

There are no entry fees. AHSA will provide a technical consultant who will consult with all pilots on timing and safety, but pilots and aircraft owners are entirely responsible for their own decisions and for all costs. In some stages, numbers of participating aircraft are limited, so please register your interest in participating as soon as possible. Email ahsanswsmithflight@gmail.com or phone Tom Lockley on 0403 615 134.

 

 


One of the lead aircraft for the flight is Michael Smith’s state-of-the-art Sea Bear Amphibian, in which he flew from England to Australia, arriving in Darwin on December 10, 2019, the hundredth anniversary of the arrival of the Smith flight in 1919. Michael was Australian Geographic Adventurer of the year in 2016 after flying his Searey amphibian around the world.


DAY

ROUTE

ARRIVAL DATE

NM

NOTES

1

Darwin to Daly Waters

Sunday
8/03/20

200

Lead aircraft depart Darwin 0900 and fly to Emkaytee airfield for fly-in and departure for Daly Waters. Options: stop at Katherine (Tindal RAAF), overfly Warlock Ponds (Elsey)

Alternatives for slow aircraft available: day 2 is very long!

2

Daly Waters to Cloncurry

Monday
9/03/20

555

Stops – AACo stations Anthony Lagoon, Brunette Downs and Avon Downs

3

Cloncurry to Longreach

Tuesday
10/03/20

270

Evening at QANTAS Heritage Museum

4

Longreach to Charleville

Wednesday
11/03/20

235

Visits to local attractions and evening meal with interested people

5

Charleville to Caboolture

Thursday
12/03/20

368

Visits to local attractions and evening meal with interested people

Day 6: Friday 13/3/20: full day at Caboolture, (TAVAS Museum) various options

7

Caboolture to Narromine

Saturday
14/03/20

594

Via Bourke (otherwise 444 NM),

Day 8:   Sunday 15/3/20 day at Narromine: Various activities – Narromine Aviation Museum

9

Narromine to Wollongong (HARS)

Monday 16/03/20

265

Via Richmond or Luskintyre, then V1 to HARS Albion Park. Landing at Rose Bay by seaplanes if practicable

Day 10: Tuesday 17/03/20 day at Historical Aircraft Restoration Society museum etc

10

HARS to Cootamundra

Wednesday 18/03/20

203

via Temora to visit Australian Aviation Museum

11

Cootamundra to Benalla

Thursday 19/3/20

250

Henty optional stop

12

Benalla to ‘Little River’ airstrips (full journey participants) or Lilydale

Friday
20/03/20

Visit to Point Cook Museum

13

Melbourne airfields to Adelaide (Gawler)

Saturday 21/03/20

445

Nhill as staging point fuel etc and visit Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre

14

Adelaide

Sunday 22/03/20

Gawler to Aldinga fly-in to culminate flight; fly-in at Aldinga

Day 15 Monday 23 March: Exactly 100 years since the arrival of the Smith Flight: visit to South Australian Aviation Museum and possible event eg at Adelaide airport if desired.