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Click for moreMar 23, 2009 - Back in Time Over Toronto

A few months ago I found a very interesting blog called Toronto Before and have followed it ever since. The blog author, Alden Cudanin, updates it regularly with new/old perspectives of Toronto, often asking if people can figure out where a photo was taken.

Last week I saw a few posts about the old Palace Pier, located where the Humber River meets Lake Ontario. It was amazing to see photos from historical archives and realize how much the waterfront has changed!

Viewing Alden's blog, I remembered that I had some similar shots taken while flying over Toronto.

A few years ago, I was considering the pursuit of a private pilot's license. Using PC-based flight simulators, I started learning the basics including instrument navigation, radio communications, how to read the weather, and even ILS landings.

After much deliberation I decided against this hobby, at least for a few years. The problem with most good hobbies is they're expensive, flying an airplane is no exception, so I opted out of this plan to leave $$ for other pastimes.

Last week I dug through my own photo archives to locate shots taken in 2002 while flying over Toronto in a Cessna 172.

We departed from Buttonville airport and went south towards Lake Ontario. The pilot gave me a first-hand experience in zero-gravity, a sudden altitude drop, and what it feels like to have your stomach in your throat. For a few minutes I took control of the airplane. It was remarkably different from the experience I had flying on a computerized flight simulator. For the rest of the flight I was snapping shots with my camera.

Attached are some photos taken on the flight along with a few of what Palace Pier looked like many years ago. The colour shot of the mouth of the Humber River is looking west, the black & white is facing east.

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