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About Maverick_aus

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  1. Yes, that's exactly what I'm finding. It add a diversity of drama and challenges. Cool. Looks good. That really helps to grasp where you went. All the best for Laythe!
  2. Days 17 - Gulf Crossing Dawn, Y1 D106 At first light, Jeb and Berthy perform their morning rituals, laden with boredom and yet with a sense of comfort. Again they power on the electric rotors. Again they begin to part the waves with their motion. Again they track their progress, but wonder what could be ahead. After hours staring at the blue beyond, his mind playing with possible futures, still disturbed by the brief but vivid terror-vision, Jeb takes a deep breath to clear his head and calm down. Opening the top hatch to let in the sweet-salty air, he inhales deeply and slowly. Relaxing… “Land ho Jeb!” calls Berthy from the helm. Closing the hatch with a thud-clang, and climbing down swiftly, Jeb joins Berthy in gazing intently upon the tiniest green smudge on the horizon. Squinting, Berthy says: “A small hill… I wonder if that is the mainland or an island?” Jeb: “If you’ve laid in your course right, as you usually do...”: a smile, which is returned with a wink, “...then we ought to be hitting this projection from the mainland… here.” “Yep” Berthy agrees. A silent pause. “We’re so far from home, Jeb”. “Yes. I know. You’re finding it hard again?” “I miss home - the meeting of the two oceans, was a lovely place...but… it’s just been so long” “Mmm.” He pats her on the shoulder, a reassuring, brotherly care. “Well, in that case, I tell you what.” says Jeb thinking. “Once we pass this, peninsula or whatever it is, why don’t we, instead of heading as the rocket flies towards the land crossing as planned, head southwards, in search of the exact nadir location. I think that would be really interesting and give us a mini-expedition to keep our mind off other things for a while. Besides, I’m sure Mission Control would love some data from there.” “Yes. That sounds like it could be good” Berthy agrees “Ok”. Moment by moment the green smudge grows into a larger scene. Berthy has indeed navigated accurately, and arriving at the western end of the Gulf, they flag this point with E42 officially recording the name of Nadir Gulf itself. Flipping open her notepad, Berthy, consummate engineer and explorer quickly calculates the exact opposite point on the globe to KSC - well specifically flag Elcano 1 - To Boldy Go… (E1) at the end of the flight apron - as: 0° 3’ 21’’ N, 105° 23’ 19”” E. As the pair watch the longitude and latitude slowly creep closer to those coordinates, mammoth rock rises from the sea, impressive in its grandeur. As night is once again approaching, the two decide to get as close a view as possible of this intriguing outcropping. The outcropping is revealed to be but a part of a magnificent range. The pair heave to and make camp at E43 - Breathless Promontory. Breathless Promontory as seen from the camping site. Day 18 - Black Rock Y1 D107 1:15 In the morning, Jeb and Berth are inspired and invigorated by the views, the air, and the mission. They drink in all they can of that mysterious, glorious, unnamed range and moved, but happy, they head off in search of the precise nadir point. Making way Being now beyond the extent of any prior overhead KSC survey flight, they are navigating ‘blind’. They still have the older, crude orbital charts, but without the detailed maps they feel naked and exposed. Regardless, they summon deeper reserves of courage, content in each other’s prodigious skills, training and knowledge and press on. Sailing along parallel to the coast, Berthy is alert to the task of piloting, but keeps stealing glances back at the sight of the mountain range. Their grey curves invite her to come closer, to climb them and… Suddenly out of nowhere a sandbar is directly ahead! “Watch out!” Jeb yells, catapulting out of his navigator’s chair to grab the wheel… Jerking the wheel, Jeb manages to skid the craft, avoiding hitting the bar just in time. It takes some time for Berthy to regain her composure. And as for Jeb, he holds his own doubts and fears inside. He must be the rock of the team. He reassures her, and they get under way. Now, having hit the right latitude, the pair make a southern turn heading ever closer to the nadir. As the sea ends in this bay, and with kilometres to go, the two realise… “We’ll have to head over land.” “Yes, but what about the wheels” says Berthy. “We must leave them up until the land crossing, as the R&D engineers back home instructed”. “Hmm. Feel like a walk over the hills?” The two prepare for a mini-expedition. They pack essential supplies, a remote-controllable camera for photographic record, and other items essential for a day-hike. They heave to at the beach, right on the nadir longitude, to make a bee-line for the nadir point as efficiently as possible by foot. This means climbing a vast hill, almost cliff. The DT heaves to at the base of a severe bluff “ that a good idea?” says Berthy looking at the slope and height. “Given your calculations of how far we’d need to hike to reach the nadir...I think we need to make up time any way we can. I don’t want to be gone longer than we need to” replies Jeb “Ok. Well, how about we radio Mission Control, letting them know we could be gone longer than expected?” suggests Berthy. Standard protocol called for a high-output, burst transmission of their location and status in circumstances like this. In certain circumstances, such as being away from the vessel for a non-standard length of time, they could send extra data, including the duration of this leave. “Good idea” agreed Jeb. After they make the transmission, they switch non-essential craft systems into standby, and descend the ladder. But as Jeb steps upon the beach… ...the image of the terrifying, high-seas dream flashes through his mind again. “Ugh!” exclaims Jeb “You alright!?” asks Berthy. Recovering, Jeb shakes his head clear, taking a deep breath of the fresh wilderness air, and distracting himself, forcing his mind to imagine what the view must be like over the top of this steep ridge… “’s ok...let’s keep going. We don’t want to take too long. You’ll…'ll love this, Berthy… I’m sure!” he says, trying to convince himself too that everything is all right. The pair step on to the first, sharp, harsh, black rock, the foot of the cliff - talking of the new views of the mountains, eager to reach the official Back of Kerbin, and hopeful of leaving their fears and doubts in the past for good. Summary Recap
  3. Day 15 - Secret Seas, Krakens, Claws and Sounds Dawn, Year 1 Day 104, Hour 0:19 Jeb and Berthy awaken to sight of the small bay. One end of this bay opens into the larger water which constitutes the headwater of two continents and the meeting of the two oceans. The other end appears as a sandbar stretching over a narrow inlet. From the angle of entry into this bay, this bar seems to block progress. A passing traveller would easily overlook this as a pathway of passage. However, our Elcano team are not your regular passersby. The team have access to the standard global low resolution terrain maps, that are well known. These show the rough outline of land masses, and the approximate location of waterways. However, smaller details like this apparently impassable sand-bar only tens of meters across, are much too small to be detected and reproduced. The low-res imagery comes from a single satellite entered into Kerbin orbit. This marvel of engineering is the only permanent artificial satellite that Kerbals have managed to put into space. Aside from this monumental aerospace achievement, the Space Over Kerbin, or 'Space' as it is known for short, remains all but unreachable. The Scan Sat is not only an achievement with respect to aeronautics, harnessing the vagaries of the mystical orbital mechanics. Aside from the many millions of Kerbal funds poured into the launch, delivery and successful maintenance of this system, further vast quantities of resources, enabled the refinement of unfathomably advanced sensors aboard the probe. And it is these which enable the, by some standards, crude images of the surface. However, Jeb and Berthy, as members of the Elcano challenge team are privileged to access another set of images. These images are of much higher resolution, are incomparably secret, and are all but a rumour to those outside the Program. These images were not taken by the famous 'bird' flying high in the Space, but much closer. Two high resolution sets exist, the first taken aboard a high flying, high-speed manned survey aircraft known as the Wedge-tail. This aircraft imaged the path from KSC heading East all the way to the planned land crossing. The other set of image going west from KSC to the present location (just east of nadir) were taken by a unique unmanned aerial survey probe, known as the Tomahawk . This small, jet-powered aircraft, able to run autonomously, or over a remote radio link silently flew from KSC, in advance of the Elcano crew, at an undisclosed date, early in the mission. With a digital optical camera and RADAR terrain-mapping imager powered with spare energy created by the jet's alternator, the Tomahawk for the first time opened up swathes of Kerbin like never before, enabling the planners of the KSC Elcano Division a level of precision unknown for prior expeditions. Planners and crew can zoom right in to see every curve in a river, every corner of a bay, every kink in a mountain range. Flicking one last time through the incredibly detailed maps of terrain, slope, and biome Jeb is settled in his mind. By viewing these images, securely stored on board the Dolomedes Triton R1 that Jeb and Berthy now know that the apparently impassable sand bar, is nothing of the sort. Actually, it is a marvelous hidden entry to the Secret Sea! From time immemorial the main entrance to the Sea has been known as a cursed place. Colloquially known as the 'Jaws of the Kraken', brave sailors might dare to venture past the Kraken-Wart Point, even the outer jaw extremities, but none would pass the "teeth" - the sharp-looking promontories facing each other, forming the entrance to the Sea. All manner of rumours abound - tales of lost seamen, fell creatures rising silently and swiftly from the deeps. Jeb, knowing much of this lore, is wary but comforted by the modern marvel of his high-resolution ground maps. For some time, thanks to the flight of the Tomahawk the Elcano Division has known there appears nothing untoward at all in these silky waters. "Let's just see if this Sea contains any of those Krakens! Ha!" Jeb's exploring spirit is back. Yesterday, the Glad Glade had lifted Berthy's spirit palpably. But turning round the End of the West into this wonderful land of ocean-ends, and land-beginnings, of isles and sounds and Tridents, Jeb's heart had rekindled. His remnant fear at Bill's fate, forgotten, for now. And his face grinning with daring and bravado, savoring the feeling of imminent new sensations and experiences so characteristic of the personality-type known as BadS aka the Grinners. Come hell or high water, safe splashdown or explosion, a BadSes had always a defiant grin on the face, even staring into Death itself. Now, he's back. Jeb closes the precious, detailed maps. "Ready, Berthy?" With pre-sailing check complete, Berthy throws two switches with a 'click'. These start the massive electric motors, causing power to flow from the blueish electro-voltaic cells blanketing the craft, brimming with solar energies. The tips of the counter-rotating blades spin faster and faster, heaving greater and greater volumes of air past the stern of the craft. The DM starts to move, the waters breaking with her passing. In this protected bay, the waves lap gently at her pontoons. Under way, they soon make their passage through the heads into the Sea... The Dolomedes Triton passes through the Secret Heads (flagged as E30). What a magnificent water! Protected on all sides from inclement weather, with a large enough entrance to accommodate sizeable watercraft, and yet small enough to shelter from the waves, this is an ideal bay: Conveniently located near the meeting of the oceans - potentially busy waterways - as well as the near meeting of the two extremities of two major continents. Here, KSC could invest in an outpost to serve all Kerbal-kind... As the two sail on, enjoying the gentle lapping on the hull of the reflected, residual waves which have found their way into the Sea from the open oceans, Jeb shares the history and significance of this part of the world with his partner. Now, both fully convinced of the safety of this peaceful place, they discuss the development of its mythologisation within Kraken lore. "Hmmm. Actually this could work to the KSC's favour. If they do proceed with building a base here, the ‘Kraken's Jaws’ stuff could keep unwanted folks away from the main entrance - give a bit more privacy to the place." Jeb notes. "I see what you mean. It's an excellent place for a harbour, and with such glorious surrounds! I do hope they decide to open it to the public though..." With this in mind, whilst passing the main opening of the Secret Sea back into the inter-ocean region of islands, the pair decide to confirm the special meaning of this place in the collective Kerbal consciousness by officially naming the head of the Sea as 'Kraken-Tooth Head' (flag E32). This is soon followed by a stop-over and flagging at E33 - ‘Kraken-Wart Point’. From here the naming and meaning-making take a happier turn, with ‘Crab-Claw Island’ (E34), the ‘Claw Pools Region’ (E35) (in special honour of a particular personage of some significance within the Elcano culture), and now taking a southwesterly course back through the main straights where the oceans actually meet, they name these 'Straits of Freedom', for the sense of ease and abandon that any Kerbal must experience being able to move from one major region of the planet into another like this. For the rest of the day, the pair pass tropical archipelagos of surpassing beauty, magnificent mounts, and glorious headlands. Having spend the entire day exploring but half of this incredible region, the crew pull over near a lovely archipelago. Day 16 Naming the ‘Gateway Archipelago’ (E38), Berthy and Jeb head northwards again through the easternmost of three N-S passages: Godspeed Sound (E39). Coming to the northern end of the Sound, they bid farewell to the familiar South and her sentinels the Guardian Isles (E40). and the Guardian Isles (E40) Heading due north for sometime, eventually the pair head east, rounding a point which marks the end of a colossal peninsula running N-E. They name this point the Caterpillar’s Feeler (E41). From here they decide to travel almost due west, cutting across the mouth of the enveloping Nadir Gulf (E42).This is significant for several reasons. And the two feel the weight of the moment, and are more than a little nervous. First, they are nearing the very 'back' of Kerbin: the nadir. One cannot get physically further away from home, and this plays with the mind. Second, the Tomahawk's flight ended, as planned due north of here. From her height she could map many kilometers in every direction, but the range of her jet fuel was limited and it was always a one-way flight for the UAV. Her job well-done, she glided down over the waves, until impact, calms settling on the surface in peace. However this means that those prized highly detailed maps which gave Jeb and Berthy such confidence in planning and navigating are now ended. Left to explore the most remote wilderness location on Kerbin, with only rough charts, once again, the pair press on bravely but warily. The sun is setting as the crew of the DT are upon the open sea again, passing between the two points. After finishing their duties, greedily eating their rations, and collapsing back into their reclinable chairs for the evening's rest, Jeb slips into sleep. But not a sound sleep. Soon Jeb is taunted and terrified by a nightmare. A horrible, monstrous, kerbal image…. Jeb’s Dream He awakes in a sweat, breathing hard. After staring at the flat blue for hours, is he subconsciously, slightly maddened by the open sea? Or could this be a wicked portent of things to come?
  4. @timmers_uk Good job! I enjoyed your posts. And I'm so glad to see Bill was in the cabin all along. After this shot (sorry, mobile phone), I thought Jeb had gotten sick of him and left alone! I'm exactly half way around, myself, having all sorts of adventures along the way. (Link in my sig if interested). One thing you could think about doing, if you're not totally sick of the challenge yet, which lots of us do during and/or at the end, is a map (eg kerbalmaps) with the route marked on. I was trying to visualise from your storytelling and your in game M map but would be good to see the detail. Ps: oh and bad luck about Historian not showing your commentary!
  5. Very good! I like the flag. Also, did you check out Fengist's boat mod I mentioned above?
  6. I'm sorry to hear about dramas mate. I hope you enjoy the building phase and able to get under way when you're ready.
  7. Got around to posting my F-111 analogue. Includes working fuel dump and burner, swing-wings, bomb bay doors, and RAAF roundel. Details at WIP thread over here: Album here:
  8. F-111 Aardvark Analogue Here's a little labour of love I've worked on. I can't seem myself coming back it to, so let's say it's finished. I'm not calling it a replica, as it's not close enough for my liking. I made it in part to demonstrate a small mod, well config really which is fuel dump and burner. (There's still a little work to go, but if I get interest from people I could finish it off as a mod and release it.) Ever seen this? I have, at an air show. It's quite spectacular. It's the great General Dynamics F-111 'Aadvark'. It's now retired, but served as a highly capable strategic and tactical bomber in various guises, after being developed with carrier defense and strike in mind. It's known for its large internal fuel carriage and subsequent long range, variable-geometry wings (popularising the concept prior to the development of the F-14, Tornado or Soviet swing-wings), enabling better flight characteristics at various airspeeds, and low-altitude high-speed terrain following ability. So in memorial to the great F-111, in homage to the spectacular dump and burn it could perform and in honour of the pilots, ground crew and maintainers of these aircraft in the RAAF...I present my Pig. Features: -Dry/wet masses, and thrust close in proportion to real aircraft. -Working variable-geometry wings based on the lengthened-wing C version. Wing sweep very similar angles to real aircraft. -Working bomb bay doors. -Working fuel dumper (my simple mod/cfg simply takes the puff model and more or less adds the SRB animation whilst drinking fuel) -Mods: Firespitter, B9, SXT, IR, tweakscale, KJR, MavAusAero (my own WIP mod). -Side-by-side cockpit -Parts: 82 -My KSP play is mainly peaceful, so conceptually it's been converted into the 'CR-111' for cargo and aerial survey duties. Full album (To add it to the spacecraft exchange, I'll have to finish off the mod/repack of parts. This is still a bit of work. So if there's enough interest, maybe I'll prioritise that.)
  9. Wrote up the next part of my Elcano challenge mission log - this time going for something more narrativ-y and charactery... The story is building...I have something big planned around the corner.
  10. Latest update of my Elcano is live. I'm trying something a little different, and getting more into a narrative approach with some character stuff. Constructive feedback welcome, but be nice, it's my first-ish try.
  11. Summary After an exciting morning of rescue and faring-well their mates, Jeb and Berthy head off. Making some progress before nightfall, the adventurers camp at flag E25 - Landlubber Cove. This is named both in somewhat exasperated recollection of having to spend so much time land-bound recently, and ironically in that they are now sea-worthy again. Day 14 - Sullen, Sadness; Glade and Gladness Making way the next morning, the crew pass a bay of space, beauty and protection. They note this location especially. Perhaps the mission reviewers will pass this location, along with several others to the planning board. It may become the site of a harbour or outpost for support of future expeditions and even colonisation. E26 - Safe Bay As Berthy is sipping the last of her beverage, thoughtfully brought all the way from home by her comrades, the cockpit printer squawks to life and the comms light blinks. As Jeb is at the helm, Berthy tears off the paper message, and reads aloud: .... TO: DT.R1 FR: KSC, MISCON, ELCANO DIR URG: PRIORITY UT: Y1-D103-1:50 1. WRT CRAFT FLIPPING: TO AVOID KRAKEN: R&D ENG RCMND GEAR-UP PERMNT 2. WATER TRAVEL ONLY 3. WILL ADVISE MORE AT LAND CROSS 4. GODSPEED J&B KSC SENDS ..... "Ahh, those geniuses! They've figured it out!" says Berthy. Jeb smirks, muttering: "Yeah, we have a lot to thank your fellow engineers for! If those 'geniuses' had've realised in the first place that mounting the wheel housing inside the pontoons would tempt the Fates, we wouldn't've been stranded out here so long!". Berthy, understanding his pain, winks at him: "It's ok. At least we're safe, and on our way, now." Thinking over the message she shares: "Well, if the ominous forces of the deeps are tempted by the the smell of undercarriage getting jammed....we'll just leave them up. Makes sense." Jeb: "Hmmph." Jeb is shaken. These recent close shaves with the Kraken bring back the horror of that fateful first day. All too clearly he can see the sunlight peering in through the open hatch, as Bill begins to climb out. He can smell that first salty waft entering the cabin, after hours sealed up tight. Bill clambers from the hatch towards the ladder, he hears, oh hears so clearly, the metallic thump...thump...thump..thum---BANG...and Bill was no more. "I'm sorry Berthy, it's.." "It's ok, Jeb." As the hours roll by, Jeb pilots the craft, whilst Berthy watches the shore passing. Thinking over the recent dramas, Jeb's outburst, the communique, she is reminded of her friends and mates back at home. She whispers a silent thank you to them for their work in helping them on their way. The flatter shoreline has evolved into something more hilly. As she watches the undulations, she's reminded of the familiar, green peaks of home. E-27 - Homesick Hills A squirm of the stomach. A tear. She misses home. She misses the safety, the ease of life with everything and everyone there that she needs. Compared to being on the seas..oh. She longs for her work at home. The safe freedom, the specificity, the satisfaction of testing. She loves her engineering job. Well, vocation. She doesn't do engineering. She is an engineer. "Some learn, work hard, study, and get there. But others...well, they're born, not made. They just are. Like you, Berthy." Bill Kerman's words come back to her, at the graduation after the final engineer's qualification trials. She'd blitzed it, a natural. Handing out the awards, Bill reserved that proud, relaxed gaze for her and a few other senior grads - born, not made. Jeb, noticing the silence, missing the usual chirpy chatterbox of his crewmate, and feeling the sullen melancholy of the past moments... "Right, that's it! There! Look!" Berthy looks up and sees it marked on the map. The End of the West - the final headland, on the Trident peninsula - the last point of the great continent they've spent so long with...reaching out for its geographic partner on the other side of the heads, but a world away. "Wow. We're here" says Jeb. "Oh, it's a beautiful, Jeb. We've made it so far!" View from the cabin, whilst rounding the tip of the Trident Headlands The adventurers have entered a unique region of Kerbin. Two oceans, and two continents meet here, resulting in a coalescence of mountains, peninsulas, archipelagos, islands, sounds and inland seas. Near the equator, it is a lovely and diverse country, with sunny coasts, hidden treasures and tropical delights around each corner. Moments later, following the shore northward, as the Dolomedes Triton gracefully slides through the trans-oceanic headwaters, powered by the bright, warm sun, Jeb spots it first... "Berthy! Trees!" E-30 - Glad Glade Only a handful of trees, but after the days travelling off-shore, past deserts and wilderness, this is the first life of this kind they've seen for what seems like an eternity. A fertile glade, green and healthful shines as a green beacon. Jeb knows this is just what his partner needs. He throttles down, and skillfully maneuvers the craft closer, parallel to shore at a convenient beach. Berthy dives into the water, running up the beach, almost tripping over, she comes amongst the trees. Tall, strong, old, wise masters of the End of the West. Seers over the headland. Watchers of all who have come from the north ocean to the south. Berthy among the trees Berthy feels her spirit rekindle. She breathes deeply of the fresh, rich air. To be amongst the trees again! When she wasn't testing or designing at the lab or in the hanger, Berthy loved to get away. She'd fly with a friend, or by herself, and land out in the forests around the KSC tableland, feeling alive, at peace. Like this. Several precious, eternal moment pass. Saying goodbye, and thankyou to the vivifying spirits of the trees, she slowly wanders back towards the DT, meandering, contended. "Oh thank you, Jeb. That's just what I needed. What a lovely place." she says entering the hatch. "My pleasure. According to the map, we could head east through here... towards a rumoured hidden sea of sorts. There's there two...see, promontories jutting towards each other... and this sea here looks promising." Jeb is pointing to what would become known as the Secret Sea, a place of delight in gentle waves, and quiet safety in the protected shore. A haven, an outpost where Kerbal mariners and their families could rest and recuperate, repair and refuel, on their way travelling from one ocean to another. However in years unremembered, in Kerbal lore, it had another name: Jaws of the Kraken. What history lurked behind this mythic title, no one now knew. But, wisely, Jeb keeps all this to himself, and simply spoke with his partner of discovery, and delight in the new. Now heading back east, but on the northern edge of the Trident Headland, the two sail on in the fading light. Nearing a hidden inlet, Jeb and Berthy heave to, and prepare to rest before another day. They make their camp and rest in the small cove leading to what would become known as The Secret Heads - the hidden entrance to the Secret Sea.
  12. Well, you've got a point. I really liked the idea of the support ship sailing behind in escort at least until I had proved the DT would need unflipping again. But as it happens, the support ship wouldn't have made it much further on its mission fuel load, so it's returning to KSC. I investigated and discussed the flipping here, and have so far discovered the lowering of the wheels seems to cause the flip. So leaving them retracted has enabled me to progress fine with zero flipping. At the the moment the DT is water-only. That will have to change ahead with the transition to land. But for now, we're making progress.
  13. Day 13 - Unflipping Day! Highlights include: -crane-lifting the vehicle then... -Kerbal crane rides -chilled beverages -tacos -beach party Now, the circumnavigation can finally continue!
  14. @LN400 You can do it. kOS my crappy programming skills can be hair-pulling, but automation with that thing is so worth it in the end, hey? (Great song reference too, BTW). Today, I completed posting the last part of the rescue of the Elcano exploration vehicle. The Dolomedes Triton is finally rescued by the Protector of the Waterways - the Waarn! Highlights include: -crane-lifting the vehicle then... -Kerbal crane rides -chilled beverages -tacos -beach party Now, the circumnavigation can finally continue!