After three tries I finally completed my Saddle Sore achievement on a flight in a C172 from Hillsboro, OR (KHIO - Portland area) to KSNA in southern CA. The first two times I left virtual aluminum carcasses in central California mountains as my autopilot was buggy and spun the airplane into the ground when I wasn’t watching. It’s hard to sit at the simulator for 8+ hours and monitor, but three seems to be a charm.
The autopilot seems to be working fine now. It could be the sim updates or it could be that I recently updated my yoke. The old yoke was doing some odd things and I wonder if it might have been contributing to the surprise spin of death.
- first part of the trip involved total overcast and icing conditions which required me to drop to lower altitudes and slowly increase altitude as the temperature (OAT) came up. I was lucky the skies cleared by the time I had to go over the hump so I could establish my planned altitude.
- I hit the virtual tanker about 4 hours into the flight. (You didn’t know the C172 had mid-air fueling capability!!). I have a pre-set key that sets fuel to max that I learned to use in the bush trips.
- I had a nasty 35kt headwind over the first part of the flight. I had intended in the plan to go father but ran got to 8 hours in the LA area. It was kind of fun changing the G1000 plan to land at KSNA (change of destination) and to load the resulting procedures and approaches in.
One buggy item. I started a timer outside of the sim when wheels left the ground in KHIO. Upon arrival in KSNA that timer said 9 hours 24 minutes. But my log entry only credited me with 8 hours and 18 minutes. I wonder if this is why some are failing their attempts at this achievement because the sim clock might not be working correctly. I plan on testing this out over the next few flights.
I speculate this might be why some don’t make the achievement when they think they’ve been flying 8 hours. Maybe you need to fly for 9 hours, I did.