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Mysterious letters
By Sgt Alan Streeter RM

In 1973, during the annual winter exercises in Norway, in company with 845 NACS, 'Hookey' Walker and I were flying the Scout around the mountains with Montfortebeek Flight. The young Wessex drivers were confounded by the mysterious appearance of a word in large letters which kept appearing on the tops of mountains all around the area, with no visible access by humans.

In our corner of the shared crewroom, Hookey and I could not contain the sniggering from behind our hands, but managed to keep our secret safe.

Landing on any pinnacle large enough to contain a Scout, with the nearly 3m. bear pads attached to the skids to prevent sinking in the snow, we simply throttled back to ground idle, and frictioned down the collective. We would then climb carefully out onto our respective bear pad, and from there jump out about a metre.

We would then run around in a large 3m. circle stamping an 'O' in the snow. From there, we would jump out another metre and begin the last two letters in our word. With the letters 'B' and 'X' stamped in the snow, we would then jump our way from letter to letter back onto the bear pads, and thence into the aircraft.

Returning to flight idle, we would then lift off, and disappear, the Bear Pads having left the two vertical imprints of the two centre letters necessary to complete our signature word.

Having reached an age, where the grim reaper is starting to take an interest in us, I thought it unfair that anybody should go to their grave, the mystery unresolved, so now you know how the words appeared on mountain tops around the Bardufoss area.

To the uninitiated, if you have not been able to work out what the word was, then read the article again.