A Flight Simulator Odyssey

by Charles Gulick

The Road to Freeport

Chart: Miami
En Route Coordinates:
   Aircraft: N10807, E20106
   Tower: N10733.729, E20204.975
   Aircraft: 1500
   Tower: 11
Heading: 204
Time: Daylight

Unpause and follow the highway you see on the left side of your windshield. As you begin the flight, you are looking toward the aptly named town of West End on the northwest-ern tip of Grand Bahama Island. The highway will take you to Freeport International Airport.

Fasten your seatbelt a little tighter than usual because you're flying in the Bermuda Triangle.

Grand Bahama Island, and Great Abaco Island east of it, are the northernmost of the Bahama Islands. Grand Bahama is about 83 miles long, and Freeport is its major resort city, with a full complement of hotels and tourist and convention facilities.

While only a few of the northwestern islands in the chain are accessible to us in the simulation, the Bahama group comprises 700 limestone islands and over 2,400 rocks and cays (keys)--actually the peaks of a submerged mountain range--and numerous coral reefs. After a couple of centuries as a crown colony, the Bahamas became an independent nation in 1973.

Freeport International is on the north side of the high-way, and parallels it, so if you keep the road to your right you'll be in fine position for a landing on Runway 06. Elevation is about 14 feet.

I don't know about you, but I saw some strange lightning when I was on final. And now that I've come to a stop, I'm looking at a crazy triangle of water in the sky. It merges with a lopsided rectangle of sky at the far end of the runway. If I didn't know this ugly phenomenon was almost universal at airports near water in the Amiga version, I'd blame the Bermuda Triangle.

I love airports near water, and I trust that one day soon we'll have an Amiga version without these unhappy and illusion-shattering bugs.

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