Back to the world of C-64 era simulation “Solo Flight”

 

For some reason names like “Kelso”, “Yakima” and “Portland” in the area where I was flying a Project Opensky B747-400 sounded familiar. I was on my virtual way from San Francisco to Seattle, in the final stages of the descent into KSEA.
Portland and Yakima were familiar due to the fact that I fly the ATP certification flight in FS2004 (yes, I’m an oldtimer with not so sophisticated hardware!) every year. But “Kelso”, why did that ring a bell? And then it hit me: it was “Solo Flight” by Microprose! The sim was well-received at the time, as I read various internet sources. You could simulate VFR and IFR or you could choose to run a mail route. Either way, it was a fun piece of software and I recall having spent quite a number of agreeable hours with it.

So I searched and found that “Solo Flight” had several areas in the US where you could fly. As the Seattle area had remained in my mind, I decided to check out the airports used in the 1985 classic, find them in my preferred modern-day flightsim program FS2004: ACOF.  They’re all there. I only found add-on scenery for Portland to download and install, but that won’t deprive you of flying around in area that really has flightsim roots!

Have fun!

 

The airports

The “Solo Flight” map of Washington state shows the following:

As you can see, Salem, Portland, Kelso and Olympia are somewhat further from the mountains, Seattle and Yakima are nearer to them and Chelan is really in mountain terrain.

These are the airports and their ICAO-codes:

Airport

ICAO code

Link

Kelso

KKLS

https://www.airnav.com/airport/KKLS

Portland

KPDX

https://www.airnav.com/airport/KPDX

Olympia

KOLM

https://www.airnav.com/airport/KOLM

Seattle

KSEA

https://www.airnav.com/airport/KSEA

Yakima

KYKM

https://www.airnav.com/airport/KYKM

Chelan

S10

https://www.airnav.com/airport/S10

Salem

4OR7

https://www.airnav.com/airport/4OR7

 

You can basically fly around at random between these airports, using functionalities within your sim regarding flight planning, weather, etc. I do recommend you use real world weather every time to enhance your flight experience and expertise!

So what are you going to fly in?

 

The aircraft

Again, here you can vary as you desire. I recommend reading the information in the above mentioned URLs over at AirNav, as it will provide you with data on runway lengths and surfaces. Salem has a very rural landing strip, made out of turf, so choose wisely  when it comes to selecting the aircraft for a flight there.

Suggestions:

·         The default Cessna 172/182/208; suitable for every airport in the list

·         Cargo 737-300/400; check out the Historic Jetliners Group downloads pages

·         Beechcraft 1900C with Ameriflight repaint [flightsim.com]

·         Models like ATR-42/72, Dash-7/8 (check for repaints)

·         Default Beech King 350, Beech 58 (check for repaints)

 

Marcel Hendrikse