Discussion in 'Upcoming Events and Trip Reports' started by davidb, Jan 26, 2019.
Are these 7 day trips an adventure for you? (or more of an ordeal?)
After landing in Merced with only one leg to go, I considered spending the night. It was 3 pm on a Saturday and I was the only life form at the airport. I was cold and hungry with only my cockpit for shelter and a few peanut M n Ms for food. I relaxed for a bit while being serenaded by rain hitting the canopy. A rainbow and a unicorn lifted my spirits enough to press on. Didn’t get a picture of the unicorn, sorry.
Scattered showers in the valley but easy enough to get around.
The shear between the warm and cold air breeding these showers was some of the roughest air on the trip but it wasn’t too bad. I did test the impact resistance of the canopy with my head a couple of times though.
The surface winds at home weren’t too bad and were forecast to get better. That was my main concern. Of course, 30 minutes out they changed to a direct crosswind of 8 gusting to 18 knots which is over my airplane’s limit and well over my limit. A quick check of nearby airports provided no better options. Comic tragedy thoughts of scuffing my newly covered airplane on the last landing of the across the country journey filled my mind. Luckily, they let up 10 minutes out. Did I mention it’s good to be home?
I was overjoyed today to watch a hail storm from the comfort of my home with my loving bride by my side and my airplane safely hangered.
This was mostly a stressful ordeal with only brief moments of enjoying the pleasure of flying. I regret having to do this “mission oriented” and under a time crunch. When I’m retired and have no obligations, I hope to explore and enjoy the whole country. So many rivers to follow, lakes to splash and people to meet.
This trip to and fro was a ferry operation for the hail damage repairs. The insurance company compensated me at an amount equivalent to what it would cost to ship it to and fro (which is a lot). Missing a week of work for this was cash neutral but I couldn’t afford to miss the several weeks of work needed to make this a truly enjoyable adventure.
In my limited experience a cross country ferry flight in a newly purchased airplane is never purely a "fun trip", because you are (and should be) completely consumed by the one task of getting the airplane and yourself back home undamaged. Only after you are home and have had a chance to study the airplane can you figure out just exactly what you got, what problems and issues you just bought, and what parts of the plane are good/bad/risky/fun.
Ferry flights never go as planned. The one I remember the most was in the winter 1995 when I was ferrying an airplane for the new owner from Minnesota. Airplane just went over by a maintenance shop along with a new annual and all radios checked out by the radio shop. Between 2 close, strong arctic fronts and just getting dark, discovered I had lost all radios except for the transponder and no idea how long I had been following dead VOR needles, with 8' of snow on the ground where you couldn't identify an interstate if you were over top of it. Long story.
Ferry flights are called "building memory flights".
I'm glad you and the airplane are home safe, and that the trip was (largely) uneventful. Thanks for sharing!
And a big thanks to you and the others who provided useful information and emotional support along the way!
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