The CIX VFR Club Biggles
Club Events - Somewhere in Morocco
A new Biggles Story by Capt. P.W.Dodds
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Briefing FEBRUARY 2121
The Story

Captain Bigglesworth, can you spare me a moment please" barked Squadron Leader Barnes. "Yes Sir" returned Biggles in an equally crisp manner. What he was thinking, however, he gave not away one jot. "Now what? Another near impossible mission with some undeserving VIP who needs to get out of Germany, I expect". He was in for a shock though. This mission was going to be an aeronautical challenge, not a "sneaking past the enemy flak accompanied by sarcastic comments from the passenger" one.

"Bigglesworth, we want you take a top secret piece of equipment to our forces in eastern Morocco. It must not fall into enemy hands which is why we want to take it by air in a single aircraft across sparcely populated country, well away from the front lines. The mission is so secret, we are not even able to tell you the name of the airstrip at which you will land. Here is the information you need for the mission", and the Squadron Leader handed Biggles a slim fiolder.

Biggles opened the folder which contained a commercial aeroplane ticket from London Airport to Gibraltar, a simple and crude hand-drawn chart which showed not much more than a track line and the coastline of North Africa, and a letter of authority to the Gibraltar Garrison Commander authorising Biggles to collect three packages and take them to the airport for loading onto a type of aircraft he had never seen - A Beech 18. He was then to fly the Beech 18 to this unidentified airstrip "somewhere in Morocco". There was also a note pinned to the letter stating "there is a small town near the destination, but it is not in Allied hands". After delivering these mysterious packages, he would be taken to the small port of Al Hodiema from whence he would return to the UK by sea.

It sounded rather fun, this mysterious unidentified airstrip, but he was all too aware of the danger of not finding it in such a sparcely populaated land. He studied the crude chart carefully. The flight was apparently from Gibraltar in a southerly direction, passing 5 miles east of Saniat R'mel airfield (the airfield, the town of Tetuan and the surrounding area was fortunately in Allied hands). At a point marked "40 miles to Fez ", the route turned sharp left on a bearing labelled 114 degrees. The destination was marked with a triangle and the words 23 minutes/184mph. There was no other information except the height of some of the mountains en route which indicated 1,219 metres. (Morocco having been French). The highest peak, Jbel Keiti, at 1,912 metres was just to the west of the initial track.

As he closed the folder, two small photographs fell out onto the floor. He hadn't seen those - careless Biggles. They each had notes scribbled on them. One was of a hill, with the note "last hill visible at 17 mins" and the other had an arrow pointing to a darkish patch of ground amid the featureless desert and the note "visible at 20 mins. runway 08 1,180 feet". On the back of this photograph was written "Geben Mehr Flug Zeit". He presumed that it must have been taken from a German PoW, and thought no more of it.

This information didn't seem much to go on, but when he thought of the incredible navigation skills of the bomber pilots of 617 squadron, he told himself to buck up and be a man. "You can do this", he said to himself.

The Folder

Chart           Hill             Airstrip

Click images to enlarge.

Event Notes
  1. The flight may be made on any day in February. Flight must be conducted on VATSIM or IVAO
  2. The flight is fairly short, but the thinking, planning and calculations needed will take just as long.
  3. The Beech 18 is available for FSX as freeware from a number of sources. Alternative light twin-engined aircraft may be used.
  4. Radio navigation aids were not available during World War II. Don't cheat!
  5. There is a hidden clue in the text which identifies the destination airfield.
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