Capital Air is a small local operator who conduct scenic, charter and [from September to April each year], a scheduled Wellington - Takaka - Wellington service. The main aircraft is a Piper PA32R-301 Saratoga, fitted with comfortable club seating for the 45-60 minute scheduled flights. There's also a C172 available for more local scenics.
Today I got the opportunity to tag along and see what it is all about. I've never flown in to Takaka before, so it was a good opportunity for me to find out exactly where the aerodrome is in case I want to go for a visit some time! Lastly, I know just how scenic the Marlborough Sounds area is, and I wanted the chance to be able to relax a little, enjoy the view, and not have to worry about flying the plane while Chris [the pilot] did all the hard work.
The weather was fine - a perfect day for flying actually, although quite dull with some high cloud, so the pictures are not as good as they could be. I really want to get an opportunity to flying through the Sounds on a brighter day and just see what I can do with the camera.
Anyway, here are the photos. The first 3 are heading towards/in to Takaka, the other 2 are on the way home again. Top to bottom are:
An interesting cloud bank [or so I think!]
The Saratoga instrument panel
Short final approach to Takaka runway 18
At 5000' feet looking south over the Marlborough Sounds [x 2]
Thanks Chris and Capital Air for allowing me to pop along for the ride!