A Cold and Lonely Place: question

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George Patton
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A Cold and Lonely Place: question

Post by George Patton »

I'm about to start this scenario (#4 of Northern Fury's serie)

I can read, in the briefing, that I have 4x F-5 and 1x P-3 operating from the gravel airstrip.
This is the point. Were the F-5 and P-3 able to operate from this kind of airstrip? I supposed it was to dangerous for the engines and for the landing gears.
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Gunner98
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RE: A Cold and Lonely Place: question

Post by Gunner98 »

Its February above the Arctic Circle and therefore the strip is actually ice, which the F-5 operated from often. Not sure about the P-3 but as a turbo-prop I figured it would be OK. Desperate times call for desperate measures.[;)]

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jmarso
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RE: A Cold and Lonely Place: question

Post by jmarso »

Can't speak to the F-5, but the P-3 could not operate from a gravel strip- the props would suck all kinds of stuff up and damage both prop blades and motors. As for it being totally frozen over, in theory you might be able to operate that way but only in uttermost extremis. Icy ramps and taxiways in Keflavik used to be a real problem sometimes, but we NEVER operated with zero braking action on the runways. It would be safe to say that you would only try taking off that way in a no-shit shooting war AND if you were planning on recovering somewhere else.
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Gunner98
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RE: A Cold and Lonely Place: question

Post by Gunner98 »

I'm an Army guy so am not an expert on this stuff. I know that I've landed on an iced over gravel strip in a Hurc (as a passenger) and have been told that gravel strips in the arctic are preferred over tarmac strips because they allow for much better traction when iced over. Also remember a bar story with a German Tornado Pilot explaining his landing on an iced over runway in North Norway - there was beer involved soooo[;)]

Made me curious and found this document dealing with temporary ice strips produced by transport Canada: https://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/civilaviation/ ... 3-1420.htm

And this doc from USAF: https://www.wbdg.org/ccb/DOD/UFC/fc_3_260_06f.pdf

Also found a Y-tube vid of a C-17 on an ice strip, sea ice mind you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fTGOPCiDnCM

And a 'Wired' article on ice runways - smaller AC though: http://www.wired.com/2015/03/landing-ic ... zy-sounds/

Anyway, the scenario paints the picture of desperately attempting to hold back the Soviet horde so risks will be taken. I think its plausible.

Pretty sure that's a P-3 on ice in the photo (sea ice again I think)



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jmarso
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RE: A Cold and Lonely Place: question

Post by jmarso »

Gunner, that's definitely a P-3; I'm not sure where it's at though. The ramp in the pic looks like packed snow rather than ice; we'd taxi on iced over ramps and runways in Kef but to takeoff and land the runway itself had to be plowed down to where there was at least a usable breaking action (or mu reading, if you are familiar with all that aviation stuff).

It's been almost 20 years since my time in P-3's now, and I do not recall if the NATOPS manual on the war pig allowed the aircraft to be operated from gravel runways- I'm thinking not, but I honestly don't remember and in wartime the book sometimes gets thrown out the window. I'd say if you want to do something for a Command scenario, just do it. Hell, I put a carrier in the Baltic and loaded it with fictionalized tomcats in one of mine!
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