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Thread: My trip around the galaxy [pic heavy]

  1. #1

    My trip around the galaxy [pic heavy]

    A couple of weeks ago I returned home from a 79 day journey around the galaxy, a total distance of around 200,000 LY. This is a short account of that trip.

    The plan was to circumnavigate the galaxy following the galactic arms anti-clockwise, crossing inward when the stars grew too few and far between. I hoped it would take about 2 months. This proved to be slightly optimistic.

    My place of departure was Schroeder Gateway in the Hyldeptu system. Before setting out, I visited a few high tech systems to try to find an A5 AFMU. Schroeder was my last stop. (I didn't find an AFMU better than D5; outfitting can be rather frustrating.)

    The first three days were not incident free; I had three FSD emergency stops. The first was at a planet's rings that I'd been approaching too fast. The second came after I parked next to a neutron star while deciding on my next destination. When I exited the map the target circle almost directly in front and I could only see empty space, so I throttled up. Oops. Never leave your ship pointed at a neutron star. And the third was a planet that I failed to slow down for - this one was scary as it zoomed in at me at high speed and I couldn't steer away in time. Luckily I suffered only minor damage each time and still had 97% hull integrity, but I wouldn't make it this way. I decided that I had to be a lot more careful (and possibly not drink too much at the controls.)

    After about 6,500 LY I found my first Earth-like. I was very excited and flew around it for quite a while taking lots of pictures.

    I then turned slightly core-wards and headed for the Eta Carina nebula. On the way I realised that I had reach a distance of about 8000 LY from home; the furthest out that I'd yet been. I opened up the galaxy map and zoomed out to see my progress. It looked like I'd hardly moved.

    NGC 3199 was my next target. When I got there I found that it was already fully explored by Cmdr Swift Arrow. His report on the sector is elsewhere on this forum. It was somewhat dispiriting.

    The stars on the Orion arm were thinning out, so I moved inward and looked along the Carina-Sagittarius arm for a new target. I wanted to stay away from the centre, so my next target was the Eock Prau nebula. It was some 10K LY away. This felt like the longest leg of the journey - a seemingly endless procession of systems. I realised that I couldn't continue like that and stopped worrying about how long it would take and stopped whenever I felt like it. Somewhere on this leg I found an orange supergiant with a binary pair of suns orbiting just above its surface. When I realised that they were ordinary-sized stars, I felt a strange shift of perspective.

    Eock Prau is low down in the galactic plane and one half of the sky is nearly black. I hadn't been so far down, so I carried on until there were hardly any stars below me. The blackness feels strange.

    At Eock Prau I saw one star that had been tagged by a previous visitor (Calbaron). This was the last sign I saw of human activity until I was near the Bubble nebula and almost home many weeks later.

    I went out wide towards the eastern edge and slowly made my way around to the very far side of the galaxy. I reached a maximum distance of 64,490 LY from Sol before turning back. I could certainly have got further away by following the arm around, but the route planner was playing up and I was keen to start back towards home, so I crossed inward onto the Scutum-Centaurus arm.

    In quick succession I found two binary pairs of ammonia worlds, just a few systems apart. The next point of interest was the Thueche nebula, the only nebula that I visited on the far side of the galaxy. After this I made the mistake of travelling too far along the arm and had to backtrack by 2-3000 LY before I could cross inward. I was wishing at this point that I hadn't taken that A3 shield and that I had a little extra jump range. If I were to do such a journey again, I would go clockwise to avoid the need to backtrack.

    I now sped down the New Outer Arm and when I crossed onto the Perseus arm, the distance to Sol was only 30,000 LY or so. I felt like I was almost home. A complete change to my perspective compared to my journey out on the other side. Quite possibly space madness.

    Now heading for home, I aimed first at the Bubble nebula, which I hadn't visited before despite having been to the Heart and Soul nebulae. I recommend a visit. Last up was the small Iris nebula and now I was almost home. I turned on my shields and headed straight for Lembava and the new community goal there. I was extremely nervous on the run-in but didn't see any ships at all until I reached inhabited systems, and I didn't suffer any interdictions. I remembered to ask for docking permission and kept my speed low, nervously watching the scanner and trying not to hit the station. It was a huge relief to land safely.

    At the end I had 95% hull and only a bit more internal damage. I didn't repair life support on the trip, and it was at 85% at the end. I had 3 overheating incidents when I jumped into close binary systems and about half a dozen more when I simply engaged the FSD too close to a star.

    Then the hard part began - selling all that data. More than 7000 systems. It was incredibly slow for several days and it looked like I might have to spend weeks just clicking buttons. But then, good news. Universal Cartographics were giving up their centuries-long practice of having everything copied out in longhand by interns, and were installing a new bank of BBC micros. It was super-fast by comparison.

    In all, I found 28 Earth-likes (didn't get the discovery tags for one of them) and lots of other stuff. The trip took me up to Pioneer and 61% of the way to Elite.

    Here's a map of my route:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    And finally, here are some of the better pictures from my trip:
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    Cmdr Turambar.

  2. #2
    Welcome back, Commander!

    That's quite something, and brilliant pictures!

  3. #3
    In 80 days around the galaxy... Respect.
    Have you visited the Restaurant on the end of the universe ? Delicious cocktails there :-)

  4. #4
    Great story and welcome back!

    Thanks for sharing and for the pics.

  5. #5
    Beat me to it! I wonder how many systems I have/will visited that you've been to!

  6. #6
    An amazing achievement commander! It takes a great deal of stamina to keep going week after week, I am seriously impressed! Rep +10 if I could.

  7. #7
    That's an epic trip. +1 and then some

  8. #8
    Awesome trip, well done! +1

  9. #9
    Wow..a true endurance test.

    Welcome back!

  10. #10
    Thanks, guys. I'm glad to be back.

  11. #11
    Congrats on accomplishing the journey. I really enjoyed your screenshots. Cheers!

  12. #12
    wow, cmdr. amazing. inspiring. extraordinart.

    (i'd love to see all % of modules, duration stress testing, if you could share that too).

  13. #13
    Fantastic trip CMDR

    I had not seen a discovered system for at least Five weeks on my travels until i came across this intrepid Explorer

    Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14

  15. #15
    Awesome trip man. +1 rep for you.

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