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Helicopter Desert Approach and Landing

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As we flew south east towards Saudi Arabia, we stopped on the west coast of the Gulf of Suez, where a range of low mountains runs north-south along the Gulf. We took some photos of the harsh and impressive lunar landscape. The ground, made up of what looked like small pumice stones, burnt our feet through our shoes. We seemed to be the only living thing visible from horizon to horizon. Our helicopter, twinkling in the setting sun, looked like an Apollo landing craft on the moon.

Suddenly, we woke up to the significance of the fact that the sun was indeed touching the horizon behind us. We were going east, and we were more than 20 degrees farther south than when we started out from home, so it got dark much earlier than we were used to in the UK. And because we were much closer to the tropics the days were ending more suddenly, without much in the way of twilight. We should have taken all this into account, and kept going, rather than wasting time drinking Coca-cola in the lonely desert.

For more information on learning to fly a helicopter with me, please visit TimGilbert.com

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