2000 miles

Started in Iceland,

Flew over the Greenland ice cap,

 

Landed in Narsarsuaq

then flew on to Goose Bay Labrador and finally Bangor Maine.  In one day, and boy are my arms tired, ba da boom!  Only eight hours of flight time left and I can call this trip done.  I hope.

Finally

Saints be praised just as I was about to pop smoke and make like a sheep herder I got the call that the bank had released the Baron and I could finally get the heck out of Dodge England.  Things were starting to look doubtful because I HAVE to be back in Wisconsin by Saturday for my daughter Claire’s graduation.  I’m still not out of the woods because the weather gods still have a say, and I’m not going to go and get myself killed just to save the boss some money.  If it looks like I might miss the graduation I’ll leave the plane where ever I am and run home, I only have one little girl and a man has to know what’s important in life.  I was able to make two legs today despite the late start and had a beautiful flight to Wick Scotland followed by another to Iceland.  The weather was just challenging enough to be interesting but not too scary in an unfamiliar plane, and the ILS approach into Reykjavik wasn’t too sloppy if I do say so myself, which I do.  I did manage to snap a few pics along the way of an unusually cloud free Iceland ice field even though the Baron is a crappy camera platform.  I’m not sure why there are roads over the glacier but I bet it’s a pretty drive.

A Good Day At Goodwood

A day at the races

I was in the Goodwood aerodrome’s maintenance office on Friday afternoon when I found out that I was grounded for the weekend.  Taking pity on me the manager took me out back behind the hanger where some of his mechanics were enjoying an end of the week beer and would I care for a Fosters?  Why yes, indeed I would.  They then proceeded to try and come up with ideas on how I should spend the next two days.  After drinking thinking long and hard the mechanics concluded that there isn’t much of anything to do in the area except maybe go to the horse races on Saturday.  The chief pilot showed up and after hearing the plan kindly loaned my his all access members badge that would not only get me in for free but allow me into the high class mucky muck area.  “Although you might have not be allowed in if your not wearing a jacket and tie.”  he warned me.  Not a problem I assured him, I’d have just as much fun slumming with the rabble in the common area, as least I’d have something to do.

The next morning at breakfast I met two couples how were also heading out to the races and after chatting with them accepted their invitation to ride with them to Goodwood.  At the entrance I was stopped by an apologetic old man who sadly informed me that my polo shirt was lacking the required tie necessary in the restricted area but if I’d care to donate five pounds I could borrow one from the small selection he had.  It seemed like a good deal and after finding one that didn’t look half bad was declared “quite dashing” by Sally one of the wives in our little party.  We found a table outside and shared a pitcher of some fruit, tea and gin concoction called Pimms before they left me to my own devices to go have some lunch.  As I sat finishing my drink a group of about fifteen middle aged men were pushing two tables together and wondered if they might steal a few of the empty chairs at my table.  I assured them that it would be fine and as a matter of fact they could have my table as well.  “Jolly good!” they shouted and “Won’t you join us for a drink?” they asked.    To which I’m sure you know my answer.  It turned out that the group was a bachelor party and I fit right in.  They were a great bunch of guys and I spent the entire day with them drinking and betting on the ponies.  I even won a fair amount on the first two races and managed to end the day up a small amount.  Afterwords the guys invited me to accompany them to Portsmouth for dinner so with nothing else to do I hopped on their bus and spent the entire evening with them.  I had a great time with those guys and on the cab ride back to the B&B once again marveled at just how unpredictable ferry flying can be.  You just never know what the next day will bring.

Ferry Flihgt Pic of The Day

 

 

This thick steel hanger door in Singapore was riddled with bullet holes and bomb damage from a Japanese attack in World War Two.  The pilots who worked there said that the hanger was going to be torn down next year and I’ve been trying to figure out how to get that door shipped over to the United States.  It’s simply the coolest hanger door ever.

Trapped in Amber II

“Come to England with me,” he said, “we’ll have a few laughs then fly a cool plane to Miami” he said. “The bank loan is all taken care of” he said. “The plane is all ready to go, all we have to do is show up, hop in and take off,” he said. So how come I’m sitting by myself in the garden of a beautiful bed and breakfast, eating said breakfast under a clear blue sky instead of the cockpit of a Beech Baron halfway to Greenland? Because I’m screwed again that’s why.

After riding a train an hour and a half south out of London I arrived at the Good Wood aerodrome only to find that the owner wasn’t there to meet me, my first clue that something was amiss. When I finally tracked him down he told me that the bank STILL wasn’t happy with how he was paying off the loan and seeing that it was Friday afternoon nothing could be done until Monday. ARRRRGGGGG! I was hoping to make this trip a quick one but instead of making it to Scotland or Iceland one day one I was going nowhere. Some of you might remember that Cory and I were stuck in this same place trying to get this same plane about a month ago and after a week of doing nothing went back home in defeat.   So back I went to check into the little B&B I stayed at last month where in response to the question of whether I would like anything to drink said that I would love a beer if they had any. After realizing that the owner was digging into her own very limited personal stock, that consisted of exactly two beers, I protested that I couldn’t possibly take one, but only halfheartedly. It was a really good beer.  Oh yeah and that Saturday night in Reykjavik I was looking forward to?  Not gonna happen, instead I get to spend it in the beautiful town of Box grove.  Whoopee.

Going To England To See A Baron II

Cory finally found a way to satisfy the bank in England and get them to allow the Baron we tried to ferry last month to leave the country.  So I’m off to Jolly Old today to give moving this plane one more shot and due to his busy schedule Cory will not be joining me.  What, I don’t have a busy schedule too?  That means flying over the north Atlantic, Iceland, Greenland and northern Canada alone, all alone, by myself, no help from the right seat, solo, you get the idea.  Actually I like to fly alone.  I can do what I want without explaining my actions to anyone or arguing over such important decisions as where to have dinner or how late to stay out this Saturday night in Reykjavik.  I’ll try to keep you all updated as to my progress but I can’t promise anything.  I did mention Saturday night in Reykjavik didn’t I?

Wingsuit Landing

My skydiving friends and I always knew that someone would eventually land a wing suit.  We were going to be even more impressed if someone could do it twice.  Looks like this guy has a shot.