Charles Blair examines his astrocompass shortly before his 1951 trans-polar solo flight.

After completing the first solo trans-polar flight using pre-computed positions provided by P. V. H Weems, Blair told reporters that the flight was "easy." Weems wrote a letter to Blair in which he stated, "That kind of navigation is still complicated, and if you tell people there's nothing to it, they'll try to fly over the poles in ignorance of all the ins and outs of celestial [navigation], and kill themselves!"

Caption:
Made first trans-polar flight with assistance of P. V. H. Weems.
Type: Photograph
Image Date: 1951
Credit: National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
NASM 9A-06505
Navigators & Inventors
Navigation Methods
 
Made first trans-polar flight with assistance of P. V. H. Weems.