Sunday, May 14, 2006

Nothing In Particular

MS and the IFR Pilot went flying twice this week. Monday saw us playing hooky and doing some sighseeing just for the heck of it. We launched from the home base on an IFR flight plan to our first destination, Royalton Airpark. Before we got there, though, we did the aerial tour of Niagara Falls, after taking a bit of a shortcut across the lake.

This was the fourth time the IFR Pilot's done the tour, but MS's first. So the IFR Pilot did the flying and MS did the photographing. We got some nice shots, don't you think?

One interesting development was that we thought we'd be required to cancel IFR to do the tour. Turns out we didn't, they kept us on the instrument plan and we just advised when we were done with the tour and got a clearance direct to 9G5. It sure generated a funny track from Flight Aware.

After that, we launched for Sidney, NY, on the eastern edge of the Catskills/Finger Lakes Region. The entry in the Flight Guide noted that the airport was surrounded by 800' hills, so we were pretty sure we wouldn't see the airport right away. Which turned out to be quite prescient, we saw the airport after we crossed one last hill to the west.

MS, who was doing the flying, got turned around on which runway we were approaching from, and we ended up having to circle the airport. What wasn't helping us was a Cessna 180 that reported it's position rather inaccurately. We forgave her, however, once we saw her on the ground, as she was there to purchase a Panther Navajo. Her French-Canadian accent was rather intoxicating. Did see some interesting birds on the flight line in Sidney, including this one:

We borrowed an old F-150 from the airport geezer (a phrase stolen from Rinker Buck's "Flight of Passage") running the desk and treated oursleves to the local culinary delicacy: Burger King. Yep, Sindey's a right big town with lots of places to try...

We were gonna head home then, but decided to do some more flying since it was still early with good weather. We looked at the map and just picked an airport: York, PA (KTHV). It was uneventful trip, as least the part that I remember was, having managed to sneak in a nice little nap. The views as we passed over the nuclear power plant at Three Mile Island was something to behold.

Then, it was the IFR Pilot's turn to aviate and we made a bee-line for the home base. With the favorable tailwinds, it only took about 2 hours to get home, and we landed just after the sun set. Rats, couldn't log it as a night landing. But, we flew about 8 hours for the day and had one hell of a blast. And, we were treated to some lovely views as the sun was setting:

Yesterday, MS called and rousted the IFR Pilot out of his lazy funk (break-ups do that, don't they?) and made him go flying. We considered going to Pittsburgh, just to add another Class B to the logbook, but decided to be lazy and just go to New Philly and eat junk food at Perfect Landing. So that's what we did.

Strangely, MS decided we didn't need the 396, so we didn't bother to hook it up. Can you see the foreshadowing here???

While there was no convective activity to speak up, there was considerable moisture in the air and we had to dodge a big shower cloud while executing the GPS 14 into PHD. On the way back, it was even worse. Akron Approach advised that it had a large area of "moderate precipitation" between PHD and the Home Base. So we diverted around it and landed before the skies opened up.

Then we zoomed around the airport on MS's newest toy, a golf cart. Sure makes it easier to make that last minute visit to the little boy's room.

Y'all have a good night.

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