Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Difference A Few Miles Makes

Well, it was certainly an interesting drive into work this morning. Behold, the METAR from Cleveland Hopkins:

KCLE 151351Z 21003KT 1/4SM FG VV001 00/00 A2985 RMK AO2 SLP115 8/6// T00000000

Meanwhile, safely ensconced in my office overlooking Burke Lakefront Airport, it's a completely different story. Witnesseth:

KBKL 151353Z 24004KT 5SM BR FEW060 02/01 A2983 RMK AO2 SLP105 T00170011

There's actually been some flying of Mike Hotel lately, but work and other responsibilities have made it darn near impossible to carve out time to write things up and post them here. Suffice it to say the WAAS-enabled Garmin 430 (aka Garmin 430W) is the best thing since sliced bread. MS and the IFR Pilot have both renewed instrument currencies with the benefit of the wonderful magenta line it produces. The refresh rate is astonishing, and the added situational awareness that comes from compliance with TSO C146a (the FAA standard for WAAS receivers) is amazing.

There's some possibility of some quick turn flights to Buffalo in the next couple of weeks thanks to work, so that will present the first opportunity to try the 430W in something other than training conditions. Failing that, the annual Stag Flight is in early April. Destination is the Udvar-Hazy Wing, in which case the 430W will assuredly help us avoid P-40!

1 comment:

PlasticPilot said...

I know that quite well...

Geneva (my home-base) is by the end of a lake, between mountains.

It's sometimes sufficient to move by 10 kilometers to change from low stratus to CAVOK...

Frustrating, particularly when you also live below the stratus.