Sunday, July 17, 2011

Cross Country Flying


I finally did it!!! I finally “cut the cord” and flew a good distance away from the field and stepped out of my comfort zone flying PPG’s and went somewhere.  Where? 20.02 miles down the way!  I departed Morgantown this morning and pointed Bertha East towards Kolb Field in Phoenixville.  I immediately began wondering if I made the right decision because it was quite a bit bumpy with early morning lifty / sinky air.  I pressed on and 37 minutes later, I landed at Kolb Field. 

I thought for a while about calling for a ride back, but figured I’d better at least try the flight back to Morgantown before throwing in the towel.  On the way out to Morgantown this morning (at 5:00 am), I stopped by Kolb and left a full gas can and set up a wind sock.  I topped off my fuel tank and got airborne again, this time having difficulty gaining altitude due to the “rotor” effect of the wind off the tree line surrounding the field.  I did get airborne and high enough to miss the tree and the lines and began my SLOW 6 mph journey back to Morgantown.  I was headed in to the wind this time and boy it showed. No longer could I enjoy the 40+mph ground speed that I had experienced on the way over.

I flew about 1/3 of the way back to Morgantown before finally accepting the fact that I wouldn’t have enough fuel at this speed to make it back.  I landed in a field across the street from O & J Roberts High School and gave my buddy Matt a call to come get me.  He quickly arrived and back to Morgantown we went.  I’m really happy that I did the cross country and I can’t wait to redo the return trip with more cooperative winds.  Here’s the vid!

My First Real Cross Country PPG Flight. Morgantown to Kolb, 20.02 Miles!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons license.


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