This trip came about because a friend of dads, Trevor always wanted to to go to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada to see the World War 2 era aircraft flown by Buffalo Airways and made famous by the TV series Ice Pilots NWT that chronicles the airline.
He also wanted to do some flights on float planes, see the spruce goose etc. two years ago I had done some float plane flights, but never seen the spruce goose.
Wednesday 14 August 2013
Adelaide – Auckland
Airbus A320-232 ZK-OJC
A fairly early start for this trip, usual traffic nightmares getting to the airport.
Did not have to queue long for check in, but had to take cameras out of my and dads carry on to get it under 7 kilos, Trevor, dads mate coming with us had to do the same.
Security was no hassle, except for all this putting the laptop through separately business.
Then going through customs was yet another checkpoint, but I didn’t have to put the laptop etc through on its own. A bit confusing if you ask me.
Once through the formalities it was time to sit and wait.
A few aircraft seen while waiting.
The A320 operating the flight today is in a temporary livery of white fuselage and black tail, as Air New Zealand are launching a new livery soon.
No problems boarding and the takeoff was nothing special.
There were a few spare seats so after takeoff dad moved so all three of us were not squashed in.
Cloudy conditions meant a little turbulence.
Air New Zealand have a partial buy on board service, depending on what fare type you have.
Seat only is just the seat, while seat plus bag means you can have one checked bag included. These fares mean you have to buy food and drink. The works included the other features of the other fares as well as food and drink.
However if you are connecting to a long haul flight with Air New Zealand, you automatically get the works option on the Trans Tasman flight.
Meal choices were chicken casserole or teriyaki salmon and noodles. Had the casserole and I think for airline food was very nice.
Descent was a little choppy as there was quite a lot of cloud.
Landing in Auckland was just before sunset, so gave good views of the city.
Short delay while an Emirates A380 taxied clear.
Waited for the crowd to go, quick photo of flight deck on the way out.
Out to international transfer only to find yet another checkpoint, again this one was the full get the laptop out deal.
Now it’s just waiting for the next flight to Vancouver.
Wednesday 14 August 2013
Auckland – Vancouver
Boeing 777-219 ZK-OKA
Boarding announcements were in English and French. The person making the announcements had a strong accent, which make both announcements sound strange.
Managed to board early so that was no issue, but the flight was full so took time of everyone else to board.
Takeoff was slow and to me it felt the aircraft was forced to fly against its will, as to me it felt like the aircraft lifted off momentarily, but sank back onto the runway, until the pilot got it airborne for good.
Climb was real slow but there was not much turbulence near New Zealand, but as we got further out into the pacific it did get quite rough in places. The flight crew at one stage seemed desperate to climb over some strong turbulence.
The entertainment system on this aircraft seemed to have some problems as my screen had lines through it and anything I tried to watch was all pixelated.
With the cabin too warm and being a full flight, sleep was near impossible.
Meal choices are chicken with mushrooms or beef curry with potatoes.
Was a bit cloudy approaching Vancouver, which meant a bumpy descent and Trevor and I commenting how the plane did not seem to handle the turbulence.
Landing was a bit on the rough side.
Getting back to the main story, getting the hire car, took ages, as they kept saying it will be here soon, and this went on for a good hour or so and on this particular day was quite humid, not the sort of weather we were expecting, and we were out in the carpark waiting.
Once that was sorted out, had a look around the airport environs until it got dark and headed off to find the apartment we had booked.