Leeward Islands of The Lesser Antilles (Trips 01- 03)
File Updated 9/25/23
NOTE: Removed electrical system and avionics shut down requirements for leg completion at each stop for trip One only! Just need to set brake and turn off engine. Will adjust if further reports of final leg completion not activating is shown on legs two and three.
Just picture it. You're relaxing in the warm glow of the sun. There's a gentle breeze that blows across your face. You can smell the ocean and feel the spray of the waves as they crash along the shoreline. You start to unwind on the beach with your toes dug down into the powdery smooth sand. This is the perfect way to drift off as you let the rhythmic drone of ocean waves and island beats invoke a sense of inner calm and peace. Ah, yes. What a great way to enjoy some of the islands that are located in the Caribbean sea. Where the turquoise waters sparkle and the laid-back pace of island life attracts visitors from all over the globe.
Now think of doing this with a pilot certificate in your pocket. This exotic locale in you dreams may not be as hard to reach as you think. True, you’ll need some planning and prep work, but a flight to the Caribbean is certainly achievable. You can do it on your terms, at your pace, and with your own aircraft. On top of that, the sense of accomplishment that comes with this type of trip can be a reward in itself.
Several common questions come to mind for pilots considering a trip to the Caribbean. How difficult is the paperwork? Will I be able to find fuel? Can my airplane even make the trip? While there are a few important items to consider before your flight to ensure your safety and the safety of any passengers, they should in no way impede your ability to enjoy this jewel of a destination. And, oh yes, it may also help to know that even a modestly equipped Cessna 172 can easily make a trip to just about anywhere in the Caribbean.
On this series of trips, you'll discover the Leeward Islands of the Lesser Antilles. These islands follow a gentle arc traveling in a east and southeast direction. They start just off the eastern coast of the island of Puerto Rico and end at Guadeloupe.
Place this archives three separate main folders into your community folder. Load up the simulation. All 3rd-party bush trips can now be found inside the sim by going to the Activities → Custom Content area. You’ll need to scroll all the way to the right of the Activities screen to see that option. Load the trip you want by clicking on the Activity Image for that bushtrip.
This is part of a planned series of adventure flights that will visit destinations in Microsoft Flight Simulator using pre-selected routes that your aircraft will follow using the autopilot. Altitude choices are based on VFR cruising altitudes planning where the standard practice is that for compass headings of 000 degrees to 179 degrees use odd 1000's plus 500 feet MSL and compass headings of 180 degrees to 359 degrees use even 1000's plus 500 feet MSL, so plan your altitude for flights accordingly. These flights use pre-programmed departure and destination airports and GPS waypoints that the flight plan will use. However, if you want to disconnect the autopilot and go stop at any of the other spots you discover along the way, feel free to go exploring. Once you get back on the flight path for the trip, you can re-engage the autopilot and the GPS route will then pick back up and continue on as originally planned.
Aircraft Used: This flight set uses the default Asobo Cessna 172 Skyhawk with G1000
Mission Leg completion: After you land at one of the leg destination airports, be sure to park your aircraft at a nearby parking spot that should be next to the airstrip and then set the parking brake. You'll need to shut down the lights, engine, battery and avionics and then the "Leg completed" window should activate. You'll be able to end the flight at that point, or you can choose to continue on for the next leg of the journey.
Enhancements and Tools: There are text to sound files used to share information along the flight route at various waypoints to enhance the experience. This is not a typical bush mission inside Microsoft Flight Simulator where you have to constantly look at your navlog. I personally found that cumbersome and sometimes incomplete. I enjoy using the various navigation tools available in a modern aircraft and you will have access to those tools to use at your disposal that will help keep the aircraft flying along the intended route on each flight. If you want to use the ATC, autopilot, GPS map, change the weather, refuel, etc. you should be able to accomplish those steps to make your flight more enjoyable. Want to just put the aircraft on autopilot and let that take care of everything, you can do that. Feel like the live weather is too harsh, change it to clear skies. Weather conditions are again entirely optional based on each individuals wishes. You'll start with clear skies but if you want live weather, select that or one of the simulator presets or go ahead and create your own conditions. Best of all is that you have choices that you can use to make this more in line with whatever conditions you prefer to fly in.
Easiest way is to select the Weather Icon on the onscreen toolbar at the top of the screen in the simulation. It's the cloud icon. From there set real weather or choose your own preference. But the important note for this discussion is to select a time that follows the time of day you left off at. It's important to know what those times are so make a note as you land at each location along the way what time it is locally. Then, if you leave the adventure and return to discover it's early morning again, you can choose to change the time to match your last location timeframe and continue on your journey.
Time Changes: Set your preferred date and make time changes as well. The steps to make this happen go as follows: When you start out the adventure, and select the point of origin flight of the journey, it should start up at the flightplans desired parameters that were originally set when the plan was created. Once you get inside the cockpit you can change the date, time, weather and make things more to your liking if you want.
Weather Changes: The weather can be changed between live and preset weather using the "Cloud" icon menu inside the cockpit with the menu at the top of the screen. Choose a favored weather scenario. Live. Preset. Etc. Or set your own choices to customize as you see fit.
Refueling Aircraft: If you are parked at an airport that has a refueling location, you should be able to see the "Weight" icon on your cockpit menu. You can then add the fuel quantity you want at that time. Also you can create your own key binding to accomplish this. "Refuel and Repair" is the keystroke you want to look for.
There will be other options in the onscreen menu like the navlog, vfr map, settings, camera, etc.
This trip is a flight adventure set created by Brad Allen for use in Microsoft Flight Simulator. It's freeware and should remain that way. No part of this adventure can be re-purposed or included with any payware scenery collection. Any remodeling or editing of the contents of this package will need my permission please. This flight experience is the first part of a "Lets Fly To..." series of adventures that are being developed. This is a fictional flight for private enjoyment using that program. Look for follow on adventure flights all around the world in the future.
If you'd like to send me compliments, critique, give me feedback or even a small donation if you'd like to help inspire me to make more of these adventures, please email me at: [email protected] or use my paypal.me/bradallen43.
Thanks and enjoy your flight.
Copyright 2023 by Brad Allen
Storyline and inspiration for this trip: https://iflyamerica.org/destinations_island_hopping_in_the_caribbean.asp