Mesogeion Aeroclub, because of the increasing flight activity, as well as of the strong will of its members for flight, had decided in the general assembly of association in February 2009, the acquisition of one more Cessna 172. The search was mainly focused in europian market in order to obtain a model similar with the Reims Cessna F172M SXASG (former OOSKG) which had been bought from Belgium. The new plane therefore was found in Holland in the airport Lelystad (EHLE), with registration PHTWY (manufacture of 1976), it is exaclty the same model (Reims Cessna F172M) with SXASG (1973). PHTWY model differs very little from SXASG, having lightly improved flight characteristics (1-2Kts), while the major difference with SXASG is standard tanks. Having the experience of Ferry Flight of OOSKG, the administration board decided to send a ferry crew to fly the plane from Lelystad to Megara Airport

PHTWY in Lelystad Airport Holland 12/10/09

On 13/10/09 the ferry flight of PHTWY started from Lelystad Holland (EHLE) to final destination airport of Megara Greece (LGMG) with ferry crew Rigas Iasonas (CPL/FI) and Tsopelas Ilias (PPL) VFR VMC. New experiences, beautifull pictures and landscapes for the crew. Entire the route as well as VFR Routes of intermediate airports where PHTWY landed either for refuelling or for overnight stay you can download it in pdf format.

First take-off and right turn-climb to 1500AGL from Lelystad (EHLE) at 13/10/09 06:55 UTC, day Tuesday, and heading 202. Leaving Lelystad area over ERMELO we change frequency to Dutch Mil Information. Flat landscapes are difficult for navigation with the scattered urban regions, the rivers, the fields etc. check-points are not very clearly distinguished. None the less, good reading of map, crossroads, train lines and PAM VOR radials help us reaching boarders of Belgium passing outside of Gilze-Rijen (EHGR) and Eindhoven (EHEH) CTRs with a precision of 2-3NM. Until then weather is not a problem at all, because we fly at low altitudes, a tailwind results to 105-115Kts GS, and clouds are 500-1000ft over us.

Crossing Belgium boarder line we contact Brussels Information having good signal of BUN VOR/DME, we pass over this VOR and continue with 258 heading through a 2NM "channel" between Brussels (EBBR) and Antwerpen (EBAW) CTRs, reaching W Point and continue SW to AFI VOR/DME. In order to avoid CTR of Chievres (EBCV) we continue SW passing 10ΝΜ WSW from CIV VOR, then we converge to radial 185 of CIV VOR and after 5ΝΜ we cross the boarders of France where we contact with Lille Information. All those narrow passings through CTRs and the classification of aerospace, in combination with the increasing density of Dangerous and Prohibited Areas did the Holland-Belgium-North France legs very difficult.

Heading now 188 we leave Belgium and passing over North France climbing to 3500, the weather seems to be interesting, as we have SCT 1500-2000 and BKN/OVC 4000, but no other problem, concerning map reading, wind-turbulences. Urban zones of Holland and Belgium have been replaced now by country landscapes of North France, villages and small towns. Laon was one of these being 23NM NW of Reims where Reims Cessnas are manufactured. By folding Jeppesen's ΕΒ/ΕΗ VFR map, and opening the corresponding LF-2, with fixed heading 188 we pass 10ΝΜ West of Reims CTR continuing to CTL VOR/DME. We pass over it changing frequency to Seine Information.

At 3500, over scattered clouds, with PHTWY close to Reims, France 13/10/09

Weather seems to be still bad, while only 50NM have left for our first landing at Troyes (LFQB) airport. Approaching TRO VOR (but not DME..) scattered to broken clouds at 2000, and close to TRO VOR (3-4NM from LFQB airport) we descent through a cloud hole.. We follow the central road that leads to the town but clouds are 600-700AGL.. Finally we find Troyes town and after that very easy the airport with which we have been in contact, visibility is very low, however a safe and easy landing is performed on runway 17 at 09:55 UTC with calm wind. Total time chock-to-chock 03:15, total distance covered EHLE-LFQB 281NM, fuel consumption 94lt, very cheep AVGAS and almost no-landing fees. We proceed quickly to the weather briefing, refuelling and next leg preparation and we have a pleasant taxing with a small hare on apron...

Taxing at Troyes airport (LFQB) with PHTWY and the small hare, France 13/10/09

After 1:15 start up and take off on runway 35 at 11:20 UTC from Troyes to the military airport of Valence (LFLU). Weather forecast was more optimistic for the south and east regions of France, however for the first 50-70NM again we had scattered clouds low (at 2000) and broken-overcast more high, so we flew between those clouds for an hour at least. Following radial 171 of TRO VOR that leads to ATN VOR/DME, we contact with Paris Information. At 25ΝΜ inbound to ATN VOR/DME, we establish clear contact with its DME and we contact with St. Yan Approach. Passing Montceau Les Mines city, the weather sky-clear, we fill the sun, the wind gets stronger, providing 115Kts GS.

PHTWY Ferry Flight Crew: Rigas I. (left), Tsopelas I. (right),
France 13/10/09

Approaching Lyon CTR, LSE VOR/DME help us passing 5NM east of St. Etienne's CTR. The last miles of this leg are very easy as Valence town is insight from miles away. At 10-15NM NW of the airport we contact with the tower, passing overhead 1500AGL, entering right downwind of runway 01, and landing in a 30-32Kts headwind at 13:25 UTC. Total time chock-to-chock 02:15, total distance covered LFQB-LFLU 202NM, fuel consumption 69lt, cheep AVGAS and zero landing fees. A funny misunderstanding in EnglishFrench language for the payment method with happy end.

With minimum delay for the necessary procedures, we start up at 14:25, take off at 14:30 on the same runway of LFLU, heading to MTL VOR/DME, passing over it. Then we follow 182 radial which leads AVN VOR and we contact with Marseille Information. Passing Avignon city we continue SE contacting with Provence Approach at Salon de Provence where we have to follow local VFR Routes, in a high traffic aerospace. Close to Marseille we pass NA, and NB Ref. Point, overhead of LFML (Aeroport de Marseille Provence) runway threshold, we proceed to SA, to S and finally to SE Point flying over Mediterranean Sean at 1500AGL.

At 1500AGL, over Aeroport de Marseille Provence (LFML), with PHTWY, France 13/10/09

At 1500, with PHTWY close to Toulon city, France 13/10/09

Next, the Rep. Points are visible from miles away, thus we continue very easy to east passing close to Toulon, Hyeres and St. Raphael cities. Close to Cannes Mandelieu Airport (LFMD) we call the tower, then we enter to the left downwind of runway 17, the landscape is really beautiful, many pictures were taken, and finally we land at 16:45.

Left downwind runway 17 with PHTWY Cannes Mandelieu
Airport (LFMD), France 13/10/09

Left base leg runway 17 with PHTWY Cannes Mandelieu
Airport (LFMD), France 13/10/09

PHTWY at Cannes Mandelieu Airport, France 13/10/09

Total flight time chock-to-chock 02:25, total distance covered LFLU-LFMD 174NM, fuel consumption 71lt, AVGAS and landing fees at very reasonable prices. A nice hotel very close to the airport, self-service for flight-planning and weather forecast.

On next day, Wednesday 14/10/09, forecast was good for the difficult leg of Apennines mountains. Take off on runway 17 at 07:27 UTC almost no-wind, left turn and climb to 1000. We contact very quickly Nice Information, on the left Nice town and then Monaco where borders with Italy are.

Monaco city, 1500ft with PHTWY, France 14/10/09

Climb up to 3000, with a small delay, we contact with Milano Information and then Genova Approach. Crossing Genova aerospace south from Albenga (LIMG, an airport which is literally planted into the mountains of south Alps) to Sestri Levanti Rep. Point passing outside Genova CTR. After Sestri Levanti, for a few miles we follow the autostrada and then headind NE we pass outside a prohibited area starting climb in order to crossover Apennines mountains. PHTWY reached FL90 with ease, with a standard performance (similar to AFM), providing 300fpm at 9000, with almost full fuel, and a lot of weight (2 on board and many many baggages!). Outside Air Temperature indicator shows -9C and the view is unbelievable!

FL90 Apennines mountains at -9C with PHTWY, Italy 14/10/09

Rigas I. has the controls of PHTWY over Apennines mountains at FL90, Italy 14/10/09

Small lake of Apennines mountains, Italy 14/10/09

FRZ VOR/DME initially help us for cross-check position until we established contact with BOA VOR/DME. Approaching Bologna we start descent passing Sasso Marconi (S1 Ref. Point) at 3500 and after that direct to Ozzano di Bologna airport. 2NM inbound to the beautiful airport of Ozzano, we contact with Ozzano radio, we pass 1500 overhead and we turn on final runway 21, landing at 10:05 in 10-12Kts crosswind, runway grass and slippery!

Ozzano di Bologna Airport, Italy 14/10/09

Total time chock-to-chock 02:55, total distance covered LFMD-OZZANO 234NM, fuel consumption 88lt, MOGAS more expensive than in Greece but no-landing fees! Excellent hospitallity and service by Ozzano staff!

In less that 50 minutes, start up and take off at 11:08 UTC on runway 21, left turn and climb. For a few miles we contact with Bologna Approach and over Imola town we follow local VFR Routes from Forli to Rimini at 1000AGL contacting with Romanga Approach. Over Fossombrone Point we call Ancona TWR, passing 17NM SW from Ancona city at West JESI (SW1 Point), and after that we continue SE with Brindisi Information climbing at 3000. The weather is getting worse, at 3000-3500 SCT to BKN. At Giulianova Point we approach Pescara airport, crossing extended centerline of runway 22.

Crossing extended centerline of runway 22 of Pescara airport (LIBP)
with PHTWY, Italy 14/10/09

Following exactly the local VFR Routes at Ortona Point we call again Brindisi Information, and then at Forti Fortore Point we meet rainbow! Heading SSE to the next point descending at 2000, we call Amendola Approach which send us direct from S. Severo to Foggia airport (LIBF).

Meeting the rainbow over Forti Fortore, Italy 14/10/09

Entering left downwind of runway 33 we are on ground at 13:55 at LIBF. Total time chock-to-chock 03:00, total distance covered OZZANO-LIBF 258NM, fuel consumption 95lt, AVGAS more expensive that in Greece and handling at normal price.

On Thursday 15/10/09, a good planning is performed as the detailed meteo forecast shows that enroute weather to Kerkyra may be very bad with CBs, low clouds and raining. Pre-flight inspection has completed with torch at 04:10 UTC, while flight plan's take off time is for 04:40 for VFR night. However, the ice on the fuselage and wings of PHTWY didn't allow us to execute a night VFR, thus take off at 06:11 UTC with day light.

Pre-flight inspection has completed with torch at 04:10 UTC, but the ice
kept us on ground until daylight, Foggia (LIBF), Italy 15/10/09

Turning left and climb at 1000AGL following local VFR Routes we cross Amendola CTR until Trani Rep. Point, where we call Bari Approach. We cross Bari CTR and over Mola di Bari we enter Brindisi aerospace in which we fly over Ostuni, S. Vito Dei Normanni, Mesagne, S. Pietro Vernotico and Trepuzzi Points. Next, we call Brindisi Information, we establish airway L995 on 124 radial of BRD VOR/DME, leading direct to KRK VOR/DME. At 5500 we pass South East Italy's coastline and we can see clearly the small islands NW of Kerkyra. We continue on L995, at Tigra point (FIR Boundary point) we contact with Kerkyra Approach, over Othoinoi Islands we descent to 4000, and at 2000 over the NE coastline of Corfu. No problem with the weather, fortunately, forecast was a bit pessimistic. We pass overhead at 1500 and then entering right downwind of runway 35, landing at 08:55 UTC, it's the first landing of PHTWY in Greece! Total time chock-to-chock 03:00, total distance covered LIBF-LGKR 248NM, fuel consumption 90lt, AVGAS and Olympic handling as usual..

Ferry Flight was almost at the end, only the leg LGKR-LGMG had left, but the weather became even worse especially over central Greece. For this reason we planed a trip on airways: KRK VOR->ARX VOR->IXONI->PIKAD. Take off at 11:17 UTC from Kerkyra airport, heading south-east 139, passing KRK VOR/DME we proceeded to Preveza aerospace. Maintaining 3500, clouds were 500ft over us, visibility well enough (over 20NM), with no turbulence. Passing 35NM south and east of Preveza we contact with Andravida Approach. Establishing contact with ARX VOR/DME we pass over Araxos and then we continue to Patras, Rio and IXONI point. Abeam Patras, visibility is very low, clouds are lower now, and severe turbulence, we call Athens Information. From IXONI to PIKAD flight altitude varied from 800ft to 1500ft because of clouds. We pass Lehaion-Korinthos at 900-1000ft, and we continue to Dapori where we turn to the final destination, airport of Megara (LGMG). PHTWY was landed at Megara at 13:55 UTC on runway 08, in rainfall conditions. Total time chock-to-chock 02:50, total distance covered LGKR-LGMG 223NM.

In conclusion, a cross-country trip of 1620NM (Holland, Belgium, France, Italy, Greece), was done only in 3 days (13-15/10/09), in October month, total flight time Chock-to-Chock 19:40, fuel consumption less than 600lt, and 4 Qts of oil. All legs were executed exactly as they had been planned (overnight stayings, refuellings etc.) without no delay despite of bad weather conditions. Maps EB/EH, LF-2, LF-4, LI-1, LI-2, LI-3 VFR of Jeppesen and a TPC G3A, as well as France and Italy Bottlang trip kits were used, while many information was derived from Holland and Belgium AIP (free internet access). Avionic equipement of PHTWY is consisted of 2 NAV/COM, ILS, ADF, DME, X-ponder, Audiopanel, Intercom. The general planning of this trip had been done few days before the first take off from Lelystad, while the exact and final planning of navigation log was done few hours before take off and in some cases during the flight! It is worth mention that DURING THE WHOLE TRIP NO GPS WAS USED, instead of that good studing and planning, excellent map reading, time, track and log keeping, proper use of radio-navigation aids, and of course true love and willing for flight led to a safe and successful navigation flight.

The Administration Board of Aeroclub Mesogeion would like to thank all those who helped our club to obtain this plane and fly it safely to Greece. Special acknowledgements to: Rigas Iasonas member of the Ferry Flight Crew, Mitrovgenis Stathis and Dimitris engineers for the first check of PHTWY in the end of July at Lelystad, Domeniconi Papadakis Alessio trainer for the info of the general planning of the trip, and the owner and the stuff of Ozzano airport of Bologna.