In January 2021 I attempted to fly the outline of the border of Victoria as accurately as possible using only traditional navigation techniques – no GPS, no following magenta lines on my iPad. Just a paper map, a pencil, and a few other analogue tools.
It was both a success and a failure.
A success in that I did in fact manage to navigate the border without once using GPS tracks connected to the autopilot in my Cirrus SR22. Yet also a failure, in that I didn’t exactly fly the border to the level of accuracy I was originally hoping when planning this adventure. In fact at some points I went way off track, way waaay off track (we’re talking up to 20 kilometres here).
But judge for yourself – here is an interactive Google Map of the GPS track I flew so you can see how accurately I flew it. The border has been measured at just over 5000km but that takes into account every twist and turn of the Murray River, and every inlet and cove along the coastline.
Watch the ‘Fly The Border’ series
I flew the adventure over 3 days and filmed it for a series on YouTube. These videos feature footage from the aircraft, GPS overlays of the actual vs intended tracks, Air Traffic Control calls and more. I’ve made these for aviators and non-aviators alike, so even if you don’t have much of an interest in aviation but just fancy watching a fun adventure hopefully you’ll enjoy the series.
If you have any other questions about the trip let me know in the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer them for you.