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Aegean Seagull Flies to Santa’s Home !!!
* VATSIM'S oldest VA event
A nice holiday flight from Athens Hellas to Rovaniemi Finland
Saturday December 10th, 2016
This is the well-known annual event in Aegean Seagull’s calendar which has become a nice tradition for all of us. This year is the 16th consecutive one we organize this flight to Rovaniemi. Something that makes us really proud, and having the honour to organize VATSIM's VA oldest event, we will fly from Athens Eleftherios Venizelos airport (LGAV) to Rovaniemi (EFRO) Santa's Home! As in the several previous times, our event coincides with VATEUD & Scandinavia vACC "Fly and See Santa" event, so we expect some fun up there. Everyone can take part in this event, no matter if he/she is an Aegean Seagull pilot. Please feel free to invite your fellow simmers to this flight…Let’s meet altogether and feel the Holiday Spirit in another dimension….
1. Organizing the Flight
We will fly our 737-700 or 727-200, but you can fly any of your favorite aircraft as long as you can cruise with minimum Mach 0.78 at FL390. If you take into account the holding time you will face in the end of the trip, this speed is objectively the very minimum, except you have virtually no time limit in your life...:-)
2. Scenery Files
a. For Rovaniemi Airport (EFRO) and other Finland related scenery
a.1 FS2004 scenery
Check Finnish Scenery Designers page http://fisd.fsnordic.net/projects/
a.2 FSX scenery
- Free scenery for Rovaniemi (EFRO). Special Christmas edition by Tatu Kantomaa.
Download : http://simulaattori.mik.fi/efro_x-mas/Rovaniemi_revisited_Christmas.zip
- Download : http://files.fsnordic.net/?download=2225
Note : Only an AFCAD file that changes the apron, taxiways and ILS frequency on top of FSX default EFRO scenery.
- For FSX users, there is a light weight scenery package including all controlled airports except Helsinki Airport (EFHK) and Malmi (EFHF). The scenery package is built for FSX, but should in theory work also for Prepar3D v2.
Created by Juha Holopainen.
Download : http://www.kolumbus.fi/holopainen.juha/misc/EFxx_FSX_1407.zip
It would be a good idea to dowload and install scenery for Ivalo (EFIV) and Kittila (EFKT) airports since experience shows that quite an amount of traffic diverts to these airports. Unfortunately Scandinavia vACC has chosen to man alternative airports in Sweden and Norway so in case someone decides to divert he/she will be probably with no ATC coverage.
Please note! The ILS frequency for EFRO rwy 21 has been changed. You must download the v.4.1 update to get the new ILS frequency 111,7 MHz active. Otherwise (in both FS2004 and FSX default) the frequency is 109,1 MHz.
b. For Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport (LGAV) and other Hellas related scenery check here.
It would be great to have the following sites under mind when you search for up to date freeware sceneries. Our good friend Robert Jan Osterloo takes good care of them.
FSX Freeware Scenery FS2004 Freeware Scenery
3. Registration - Is it obligatory?
By no means reservation is an obligation of yours. But by doing this, you make our planning efforts much easier and our feedback to the corresponding ATC will be more accurate and credible with the minimum possible surprises. On the other hand if you found out about this event some late never mind, just appear in LGAV and fly with us. This is what counts after all !! In case you register, you will receive your assigned gate to place your aircraft and an assigned time slot. Have we convinced you? Please send us your Full Name, Callsign, e-mail address, Country of Origin, Flight Simulator version, Aircraft you plan to fly as well as the time you wish to depart from Athens and e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact talos334 on Skype. We will try to satisfy your wish for your time of departure, but only if this slot is not reserved for another pilot that has opted for it prior to your registration. All registrations will be treated on the "first come - first served" basis. Have under mind that the first departure time slot is 16:00 UTC (18:00 Local Hellas Time). Rest will follow with a 2-3 minutes interval depending on the final number of registrated pilots. It will be quite difficult to intervene in this slot procedure once it is started and if you would not like to expect your turn after all pilots have departed. So Please Do Register !! A final request to last minute appearing pilots. Please show respect to the registered pilots sequence and avoid creating a mess in a well streamlined procedure !!!
4. Pre – Connection Procedures - On Line flight
Be advised that our flight planning has been made on the basis of the AIRAC Cycle 1612. Be sure to have this AIRAC data installed in your system, or check for possible incompatibilities with older or newer cycles. Also if you use FS Navigator 4.x or any other AIRAC compatible addons take care and update it, dowloading from NavData.
Prior to your connection here is a piece of advice that could be proved to be wise. We urge you to utilize the ServInfo, a MUST HAVE utility created by Michael Frantzeskakis (check our Links Page) and find out which of the active servers has the smallest ping time for you. You should choose to connect to this server in SquawkBox/FSInn. Although this is already a standard procedure for the regular and experienced On-Line Flight Simmers, we mention it, so that we reduce the lag factor to the minimum possible level.
As mentioned above, we will connect to VATSIM network and we expect ATC coverage up to a satisfactorily level along our route. No need to worry about departure and destination ATC. IT IS FULLY GUARANTEED!! For the record, you are supposed to have at least a fair knowledge of on-line flying otherwise you better leave it for next year when you will be more experienced :-).
5. Meeting Point-Communications
First of all : The date of flight is Saturday December 10th 2016.
We will meet at the apron of Athens Eleftherios Venizelos (LGAV) at 16:00 UTC (Zulu), which is 18:00 Local Greece Time. The whole procedure (clearance delivery) will start at 16:10 UTC (Zulu) and the first departure slot (take off) will be 16:20 UTC (Zulu).
Bear in mind that we will apply time slots and assigned gates for our departures to honour our registered pilots. On connection with VATSIM be sure that you have your Squawk on stand by mode and please have your aircraft positioned in the assigned gate prior to this event. Not a big deal after all…
Aegean Seagull’s event company frequency, which is rw.liveatc.net/ase, will be available for pre-flight chat as well for chat while flying in no-ATC covered areas. As experience showed, not all participant pilots use this frequency, so it will be not be "obligatory". It will be there for everyone...
PLEASE set your reality preferences to “IGNORE CRASH” while on the ground. No reason why we should lose time by unpredictable aircraft (pilots ?) behaviour in LGAV's or EFRO’s Apron.
Connecting to VATSIM network does not mean that voice capability is mandatory. All controllers will provide ATC services even to text-only-able pilots. But… voice makes things much easier for all of us and is one step closer to reality. Not to mention that text communications will be a torture for any ATC controller in this specific event. So use voice please!
Try to use radio laconically and speak loud (not too loud) and clear. You must have your system well tuned in order to take the maximum out of it. Make some testing of your settings. You must also understand that not all of people have English as their native language…. Just for this reason please use standard ATC phraseology as it will facilitate things a lot. Clear, Simple and Effective communication!
In FIRs that their ATC is not manned, participating pilots (and other event observers of course) have the option to tune to our company official frequency (rw.liveatc.net/ase) for some chat. We will return to ATC voice frequency when ATC is again available.
6. Aegean Seagull Log Book and Santa Claus
We remind you that you do not have to be a qualified Aegean Seagull pilot to participate in our flight, BUT you must be good at flying your aircraft. Have under mind that ASe is an advanced virtual Airline System, the very first worldwide that introduced the exclusively on-line flying in its operations, and its pilots fly with the highest standards available in the FS community. That means that the fun factor will be greatly enhanced. It is a good opportunity to have a good taste of our operations level and perhaps apply to join us. ;-)
7. Flight plan
Here is the flight plan :
LGAV SID NEVRA UG33 KOROS UN133 PEREN UN133 EVIVI N133 EVRIK Z317 RUMUK M977 SUW M985 TLL P855 DOBAN P870 TEVRU Y75 RIBVU M6 NEPIX STAR EFRO
And here is our Navigation Log with full details:
Aegean Seagull flies to Santa’s Home Year #16
LGAV-EFRO FLIGHT LOG
A/C : 737-700, 727-200 or any a/c type able to cruise with at least M0.78 at FL390
FLIGHT LEVEL 390 - CRUISE SPEED : M 0.78 - FLIGHT’S DURATION : 4,0 hrs
Airway Country/FIR Athens Eleftherios Venizelos LGAV AIRPORT Hellas/Athinai FIR/LGGG NEVRAxx SID 33 NEVRA NEVRA ISEC - 061 33
AMISI AMISI ISEC - 014 42.5 KOROS KOROS ISEC - 014 15.9 GIKAS GIKAS ISEC - 332 26.6
PEREN PEREN ISEC - 332 73.2 EVIVI EVIVI ISEC - 332 53.6
VANET VANET ISEC - 355 53.6
DOTAM DOTAM ISEC - 355 3.7 SOFIA SOF VOR/DME
355 20.5 TODRO TODRO ISEC - 352 13.4 OGOTA OGOTA ISEC - 352 17.7 RESLA RESLA ISEC - 352 6.9 ERDOM ERDOM ISEC - 352 11.4 LOMOS LOMOS ISEC - 352 19
OVDOT OVDOT ISEC - 342 43.9
SODGO SODGO ISEC - 342 20.5 NEKUL NEKUL ISEC - 341 40.5 OBEBI OBEBI ISEC - 342 30.7 NEKUL NEKUL ISEC - 341 9.8 EKNAB EKNAB ISEC - 341 13.2 VASIS VASIS ISEC - 341 14.1 OLMIP OLMIP ISEC - 341 5.7 EVRIK EVRIK ISEC - 341 19.2 OBARA OBARA ISEC - 022 45.2
NEDKO NEDKO ISEC - 019 40.8 RUMUK RUMUK ISEC - 021 24.2 Exit/Entrance SVITA SVITA ISEC - 351 63.4
DIBED DIBED ISEC - 351 48.9 Exit/Entrance OSMAT OSMAT ISEC - 355 21.3
BALBA BALBA ISEC - 355 37.1 SOVUR SOVUR ISEC - 355 29.4 DISBI DISBI ISEC - 355 42.9 ETUBO ETUBO ISEC - 355 24.2 BESOT BESOT ISEC - 355 27.2 EVODO EVODO ISEC - 355 22.4 SUWALKI SUW ISEC - 355 46.5 BOKSU BOKSU ISEC
VAKAL VAKAL ISEC - 005 34.1
INBOV INBOV ISEC - 008 34.8 GUNTA GUNTA ISEC - 007 57.2
ATRAK ATRAK ISEC - 008 13.5
RIGA RIA VOR/DME 112.05 007 20.2 RIGSO RIGSO ISEC - 006 31.2 SOKVA SOKVA ISEC - 006 28.4
ANAMA ANAMA ISEC - 006 31.5
KEMET KEMET ISEC - 005 18.7 KUNUX KUNUX ISEC - 005 12.7 TALLINN TLL VOR/DME 112.20 005 29.3 DOBAN DOBAN ISEC - 329 26.1
Exit/Entrance EVIRO EVIRO ISEC - 011 36.1 P870 TEVRU TEVRU ISEC - 356 26.8 DIPUM DIPUM ISEC
001 23.9 Y75
USUPO USUPO ISEC - 001 23.9 ROMOP ROMOP ISEC
355 14.7 OTLUD OTLUD ISEC - 355 18.3 OSKEK OSKEK ISEC - 355 30.5 ADEDO ADEDO ISEC - 355 6.2 MIMRU MIMRU ISEC - 355 31.7 ELPOP ELPOP ISEC - 355 28.4 SUVIB SUVIB ISEC - 355 39.6 RIBVU RIBVU ISEC - 354 42.9 ASLUP ASLUP ISEC - 354 15.1 M6 NEPIX NEPIX ISEC - 353 42.6 NEPIXxx STAR
Total Distance is some 1761,5 nm.
Study your flightplan and have a copy handy, as many Air Traffic Controllers issue directives "direct to..." and it would be embarrasing to try to find your fix at the moment.
FSNavigator 4.X format flight plan can be found here and PMDG FMS flight plan for FS9 (FS2004) can be found here.
Note: Although we would very much like all of our event pilots to have the suggested flight plan, the Final Route is definately up to pilot's discretion.
8. IFR charts
You can find all nessecary IFR charts for Athens Eleftherios Venizelos (LGAV) here (Official Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority / AIP Publications --> AIP --> Aerodromes --> AD-2 LGAV /Free log-in required) and for Rovaniemi (EFRO), Ivalo (EFIV) and Kittila (EFKT) airports here (Official Finland AIP Aeronautical Charts).
Below you can find a summary of the latest changes in IFR charts. These changes happened after our last year flight to Santa's Home.
Recent changes for EFRO charts refer to
Visual Approach and Landing Charts
No recent changes for EFIV charts.
No recent changes for EFKT charts.
Last year, as in all recent years, the event was a huge success on pilots participation terms and holding stacks were heavily loaded. It would be a good idea if you could refresh your holding procedures knowledge, to avoid causing any kind of inconvenience to the overstressed ATC or yourselves ;-).
9. Flight Duration - What to expect in Rovaniemi
Duration of the flight will be approx 4,0 hours, from engine start up to engine shut down, not counting the delays that may happen due to increased traffic on ground in Athens, plus the time that you will pass in the holding stacks.
" If landing runway 21 please pay attention to any vacating instructions, if there are departing aircraft you need to vacate via B or A as vacating earlier will block the departing aircrafts taxiroute. The most efficent usage of runway 21 is when aircraft vacate via B so if able try to plan your decelleration to exit via B. " (VATEUD note)
"The west side of the airport is military, the civilian apron is on the east side of the runway. There are 13 stands available, there might be minor scenery displacments but stand 2-9 should be in almost the same location for all sceneries. If required parking will also take place on taxiway S." (VATEUD note)
As stated above our event co-incides with VATEUD & Scandinavia vACC Christmas Event "Fly See Santa" on Saturday 10/12, so expect quite a lot of traffic on EFRO arrival. To be more accurate expect traffic congestion on your arrival to EFRO, so be sure to have your fuel tanks full, and also take the time and be updated on the holding patterns in the area. Our experience from all these years shows with no doubt that this may be well the busiest approach you make for your all around the year flights.
As we approach Rovaniemi from the south please be advised on some details from VATEUD site about holding in NEPIX.
Also remember to take some extra fuel with you. In virtual world fuel costs nothing and most likely you have to hold at one point. Better be safe than sorry when it comes to fueling your aircraft for this event.
In the quite likely event of high traffic, holdings will most likely be used to stream the traffic. There are only few enroute holds published, and none of them are very useful for traffic to Rovaniemi.
If you are instructed for an enroute holding, please pay very close attention to the holding details given to you, and if in doubt ask!
In the case you do not have time to hold (or do not have the fuel to do so) please inform ATC so we can send you to another airport where is less traffic.
If instructed to descend in a hold, be very careful with your cleared level as there will most likely be traffic both 1000 feet above and below.
Holding at NEPIX....
The holding over NEPIX ..... is your last step before getting in touch with approach controller who will guide you for your approach into Rovaniemi. As these holds will be the busiest holds during the event, but are not published on any charts, it’s good to take a closer look on these so everyone flies the same procedure.
Remember that you have to hold only when you are told to do so by ATC OR you don’t have your STAR yet inbound Rovaniemi TMA. If you have an inbound clearance (STAR) and ATC doesn’t tell you to hold anywhere but directs you to contact Rovaniemi radar, you can continue through these holds.
NEPIX holding: inbound course 006°, right turns, 2 minutes leg (controlled by Rovaniemi Feeder on 131.600)
Expect clearance into Rovaniemi via STAR for the active runway. .....you can expect a STAR from NEPIX to Rovaniemi. The STARs into Rovaniemi require RNAV equipment, if you are not able to fly an RNAV STAR please inform ATC.
Initial approach will be done with star but ATC may start vectoring you off the STAR at any time in order to merge the arrival streams most effectively.
Please pay attention to vectoring instructions and speed control as the spacing will be as tight as possible. If instructed to "leave" a point on a certain heading make sure you do not start turning at present position since there might be other streams of traffic in the way.
When ordered to contact Rovaniemi radar (EFRO APP) on 129.900, state your altitude, aircraft type and ATIS information letter.
When contacting Rovaniemi Arrival state callsign only. “Rovaniemi arrival, XXX123”
Arrival will clear all RNAV capable aircraft to ILS Z approach and all non-RNAV aircraft to ILS Y approach. The only difference between these two approach types is the go around procedure. More information on Go around section. If runway 03 is in use, then RNAV capable aircraft can expect RNAV approach runway 03 and non-RNAV aircraft VOR/DME approach runway 03.
If landing on runway 21 please pay attention to any vacating instructions, if there is departing aircraft you need to vacate via B or A as vacating earlier will block the departing aircraft’s taxi route. The most efficient usage of runway 21 is when aircraft vacate via B, so all pilots are encouraged to plan your deceleration so you can exit via B.
The west side of the airport is military. The civilian apron is on the east side of the runway. There are 13 stands available. There might be minor scenery displacements but stands 2-9 should be in almost the same location for all sceneries. If required parking can also take place on taxiway S.
Once you park your aircraft, please disconnect from the network to give room for the other aircrafts. If you want to stay there watching the traffic you can connect back as an observer (option on vpilot and fsinn)."
A good friend flightsimmer and real life commercial pilot, Mr Vangelis Hasiotis ASe411 was lucky enough to fly the LGAV-EFRO flight in Christmas 2004 period. To see a photo-report from his visit to EFRO Rovaniemi, click here.
10. Cruise Flight Level and Mach Number
First of all we would like you to participate with aircraft that are able to cruise with M 0.78. The suggested Flight Level is FL390. This way we will ensure that the final Finland ATC will receive our flight within the specified time window and will not have to wait for us being widely dispersed. Now if you insist to fly with a slower aircraft then you should select a lower FL to keep clear of the M 0.78 main stream. In a case a faster aircraft is your choice, please select a higher Flight Level.
11. Alternative Airport
Our past years experience shows it would be good to be ready for diversion to one of the EFIV Ivalo (128nm northeast of EFRO) or EFKT Kittila (72 nm northwest of EFRO) airports. After all these years, Finnish vACC was absorbed to VATSIM Scandinavia vACC, which will man alternative airports in Sweden and Norway. Keeping our tradition, we will continue having EFIV and EFKT as our alternative airports. Nevertheless be advised that VATEUD-Scandinavia vACC will have ATC manned Lulea (ESPA) and Tromso (ENTC) in case you prefer to divert there should your patience or fuel are expended :-) You can find charts for ENTC here (Official Norway AIP) and for ENTC here (AROWeb – AIS MET and Flight Planning).
12. Fuel on board
For Boeing 737-700 flyers such as Aegean Seagull’s “Island of Skiros” or "City of Chania" 45.000 lbs of fuel should be enough to cover the flight plus 45 mins of holding plus diversion to the alternative airport of Oulou (EFOU), Ivalo (EFIV) or Kittila (EFKT) plus medium delay on Athens ground. Expect long holding times approaching EFRO so take care to have as much fuel as you can in your tanks. Although it is very good to plan carefully your fuel load, our events experience shows that 100% full fuel tanks will keep you out of agony's way.
13. Missed Approach
Some details about missed approach…
This is something that every pilot, who respects himself, should pay some, at least some, attention. We, Aegean Seagull pilots, pay much, really much, attention to it. As weather conditions are not a controlled parameter to a flight, you can very easily be engaged a situation well under the minima for the decision altitude in your destination. In that case we execute a missed approach and we either go for a holding pattern and a second approach later either climb and fly direct to the alternative airport. The latest happens when the main destination airport is closed or there is no chance for the weather to become better. We also execute a missed approach when communication with ATC is lost prior to our landing clearance.
ILS Z 21: Fly hdg 206° to ROPOV climb 2500ft. Hold at ROPOV as published unless otherwise instructed.
ILS Y 21: Fly radial R203 ROI to GOSOV (7 DME from ROI), climb to 2500ft and hold as published unless otherwise instructed.
RNAV 03: Fly hdg 026° to RO364 and then to VEKIP, climb 2500ft. Hold at VEKIP as published unless otherwise instructed.
VOR 03: Fly radial R010 ROI to ABLAD (6DME from ROI), climb to 2500ft and hold as published unless otherwise instructed. (VATEUD note)
This is the reason why you should study the missed approach pattern at both the destination and alternative airports. If a controller has many aircraft in his area of responsibility, it will be quite difficult for him/her to pay the extra attention needed to you. Besides this way we are as real as it gets…
14. Saving your flight regularly - Reconnection procedures
We strongly suggest you to save your flight in regular time intervals. This way you can ensure that even if a reboot is inevitable, then you will be within close range of the other aircraft. There is an EXCELLENT freeware utility by Peter Dowson called AUTOSAVE. Its a DLL that goes into the MODULES folder and it does things like saving your current flight status (in standard MSFS situation files) and then if it crashes it just resets your flight back to "10 seconds ago" status. You can have as many sequenced files saved (say last 10 or each 10'') and choose where to start from again. If you crash the aircraft FS will restart from last saved file. If FS itself crashes you can just go and select the situation (flight) file you wish from the list of files when you reload FS. It can be found at www.schiratti.com -> DOWSON
15. Registered Pilots
In the table below you can find all pilots, that took part in our event. Thank you Gentlemen!
Aegean Seagull Flies to Santa's Home Year #16 LGAV-EFRO
Registration Sequence #
Pilot's Full Name
Assigned Gate / Stand
Assigned CTOT (UTC)
B15 16:03 2.
B03 16:12 3.
A32 16:00 4.
A31 16:06 5.
B07 17:00 6.
B09 16:15 7.
B11 16:09 8.
B11 16:09 9.
B13 16:18 10.
- - 11.
- - 12.
- - 13.
- - 14.
- - 15.
- - 16.
* flew together from the same simulator
16. Bonus ASe Christmas livery
Available for long haulers is the PMDG 747-400 repaint based on our launch livery with Christmas graphics added. This repaint was produced by Mr Paschalis Katsiotis ASe287. You can find it here.
Also available is a "Santa" repaint of our PMDG 737-700 NGX created by Mr Maximos Sevastopoulos. You can find it in AVSIM's library here.
You can also have the "Bold & Beautiful" project livery for our PMDG 737NG created by Mr Babis Peribolas ASe300 here , or if you prefer ASe's launch livery you can find textures for PMDG 737NG here.
17. Wrapping things up
Our dear Pilots and friends, we have established something special in the history of Aegean Seagull vAS, Hellenic vACC (the oldest event in its history) and also well known in the international FS community (the oldest VA event in VATSIM as well). Therefore we hope that we will see you flying with us. As it is a Special Event, please feel free to invite all FS friends of yours, even if they are not Aegean Seagull Pilots. We want to share this event with as many pilots as possible, because we want to celebrate the 16th anniversary of this strong tradition of ours. Be a part of our tradition! Most of the pilots that have flown in our event, are looking forward to flying in next year's event.
18. ATC Event coverage
All vACCs along our route have been kindly asked for their support. Below you can find the names of Air Traffic Controllers that offered their ATC services in our event. A big THANK YOU to all of them.
Aegean Seagull Flies to Santa's Home Year #16 LGAV-EFRO
Air Traffic Controller
ATC Post Description
Mark Julius Pikat
Rovaiemi Clearance Delivery
19. Event photos
We invite each and everyone of our particpants to shoot nice screenshots from their cockpit, their ATC console and send them to us. We will publish them along with their names in the debriefing page of our event. The best one will the "Photo of the Event 2016".
Special Thanks to
- Mr Vangelis Hasiotis ASe411 for his contribution in the real-life LGAV-EFRO flightplan and EFRO approach/visit photo reportage. It feels really good to know that one of us flew this dreamy route as a real pilot !
- Mr Babis Peribolas ASe300 and Mr Pachalis Katsiotis ASe287 for painting ASe's 737 and 747.
- Mr George Papanikolopoulos ASe011 for his general support.
- Mr Maximos Sevastopoulos for his "Santa" repaint of our PMDG 737-700 NGX.
- Mr Mike Ionas Olympic Airlines Virtual CEO for his kind acceptance of our invitation
- Aegean Airlines virtual (Mr Nikos Karitis) for kindly accepting our invitation
- Flightsimmer.gr for kindly announcing our event in their site
Do not hesitate to contact us for any additional information or question you might have. For real time contact on Skype: talos334
PLEASE, DO NOT FORGET TO INFORM US ABOUT YOUR PARTICIPATION.
Finally our best wishes for
Healthy & Happy New Year
to you and your family !!!.
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