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Articles by John Bassi

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Articles written by John Bassi. Based on his flying experiences in the bush John Bassi combines his love of flying with his passion for all things wild. Highly acclaimed, sometimes controversial, informative, witty and laced with unexpected humour, he gives readers the front passenger seat with his unique way of writing that borders on cinematic.

Think twice before you go low level flying

Yes, I am guilty of falling into that unknown zone where the line between life and death is simply luck, Luck that nothing catastrophic will go wrong leaving me no time or space to react. Only a few weeks ago I willingly risked all. I (had to) ferry from Bloemfontein to Lanseria. Look closely and there is the start of the fault... Read more...

Flying with night vision goggles in the Arctic

Airlift helicopters have a permanent base, further north than any other search and rescue heavy lift helicopter operator in the world and are fully certified for polar night operations under IFR and icing conditions. The Arctic base is at a small outpost called Longyearbean, where the Dauphin is used for light support work backing up their AS332 L1 AWSAR Super Puma. Read more...

Black Rhino Relocation at Lapalala

A furrow bored itself along the hillside, hissing through the long grass like a rip through fabric. A family of warthogs blurred away - a white and black martial eagle came into sight above them and then wheeled slowly, gaining height into the distance. Then on all sides every living creature that became aware of the presence of man took to flight. The panic gradually extended, emptying a whole corner of Africa. Anton and I turned to our left, looking into the sky about two kilometers away, the massive hulk of the Mi8-MTV helicopter slapped it?s way loudly towards us at 120 knots. It was no wonder all the wildlife was scattering! Read more...

What exactly does it take to be a Professional Game Pilot

This is something more than being just an ordinary, part time game pilot and it is a question asked of me on a continuous basis for which there is not really a simple recipe to follow. The one thing I am completely certain about is that it has absolutely nothing at all to do with the S.A.C.A.A. requirements which is something about doing a five hour dual flight with a game rated instructor and then getting a letter of approval that the candidate has the necessary experience, which is usually nothing more than having a mild interest in his neighbors budgie. Read more...

A micro second is all it takes

You?ve most likely heard ?it could happen to you? so many times by now that it most probably sounds boring, and I too used to sort of think that this did not really apply to me. Well, I was wrong. It?s right there waiting, an ugly little hole in the sky that?s invisible to all, with somebody?s name is written on it. Read more...

Impala Capture

The demands on a pilot to accomplish a successful Impala capture is in my opinion one of the ultimate challenges that requires total focus for as long as it takes. The flying is hectic, the amount of maneuvering and the concentration required is totally draining and while the feeling of achievement when you manage to outwit and actually capture them is pure adrenalin, the low if you fail after hours of hard work can be devastating! Read more...

Cheetah Tracking

The face is unmistakable, emphasized by the prominent black tear stripes that link the expressive deep redbrown eyes and mouth. The Cheetah is nominally protected by CITES and the African convention and although almost all African countries outlaw the killing of Cheetah, they remain endangered due to human persecution. In spite of improved legal protection, its range has shrunk and continues to shrink as livestock rapidly replaces wildlife. Read more...

Rhino Poisoning

Dedicated to the five rhino that were poisoned for their horns up in the Limpopo in May 2005. The two species of rhino that we are most familiar with are the Black and White, both of which have been around for 4 million years. But, like everything else we have touched, us humans, who can only brag about an existence of a few thousand years, are doing a great job of putting an end to that. Read more...

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Heuwelsig. 9332.

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Aeroprakt / Foxbat Dealer

J.Bassi Helicopters cc trading as Bassair aviation and Aeroprakt SA welcomes you to the Foxbat family.

We are the exclusive distributors for Aeroprakt aircraft, supplying spares, products, parts and accessories in Southern Africa.

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Established in 1985, Bassair Aviation, is an owner-operated specialist aviation company.

Bassair also offers wildlife management and veterinary services. We operate throughout Southern Africa.

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