Matt Dearden

English born professional pilot, writer, blogger and columnist. Currently flying the Pilatus PC-6 Turbo Porter in Papua, Indonesia.

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5 Responses

  1. Jon Grace says:

    Hi Matt,

    Another great post mate. I can imagine your tail wheel not liking the undulations and a few corrective mearures are probably taking place on take off!! To be fair looking at the picture, looking down the airstrip, the first time having to land there I bet was a little nerve racking?

    The good news here is that the weather is beginning to realise that it should be spring, and I have managed to get a few more hours under my belt. Still not as many as I would like, but last week I managed to fly as many hours in three days as I had the whole year up to that point.

    Anyway safe flying mate and keep up the great posts!!


    • Matt Dearden says:

      It certainly can take a decent amount of rudder to keep it vaguely on the centreline, even to the point of having to brake a wheel along with a boot load of rudder.

      I relish the challenge of new airstrips now but you’re quite right, there’s always a few nerves the very first time I go to a new place, especially if another pilot’s mentioned a scare they’ve had landing there…

      Happy landings :o)

  2. adi dayu says:

    Hi Matt, greetings from HLP.

    I’m really interested in your plane the Pilatus porter and cessna caravan. I’m wondering what is it there at your left wingtip? rounded, black, bulked it a weather radar? and how you determine the length of the runway in the first time you land there? how you make sure you can land there? i know its hard to find that information especially that was a airstrip! thanks for answering it capt. I really interested in bush flying technique.

    • Matt Dearden says:

      Halim hey? Flown into there a few times over the years!

      You are quite correct about the black dome on the left wing, it is indeed a weather radar which comes in very handy when flying thought the muck trying to avoid big CBs.

      Thus far I’ve always landed on runways where another pilot has gone before, so have known that the Porter can get in and out ok. However, sometimes the runway length figures I’ve been given have been a little out.

      It’s always good to overfly airstrips before landing to check the general layout and condition of the airstrip. If going somewhere for the very first time, it’s always best to go in to the airstrip with no load on board because with an empty Porter you barely need 100m to get into the air, so if the runway looks long enough, it probably is. The more places you go, the better you become at judging runway length from the air.

    • adi dayu says:

      You can touch me when you land here at Halim Sir, it’s been about 2 years since I always been seated side of the GA apron awaiting of my instructor to fly with. 🙂 Here is my email, Feel free to mail me sometime when you free, I really interested with your fascinating story of flying in the beautiful jungle of Indonesia. I’m lucky to found your blog Sir! keep posting and have safe flight!

      Best regards.