Thursday, September 24, 2015

Currency Extended

With me being grounded for seven weeks my IFR currency was going to lapse the end of the month.  If I went out and did at least three approaches I would extend until November 30th., this would keep me legal for IFR flight during our vacation travels.

I had posted on Facebook and made a few calls and could not find a safety pilot.  My good friend Mike B, CFII, and flying partner was going to be in town for work. We hatched a plan for me to fly up to ILG and pick him up, shooting approaches on our way back to Ocean City.  So many airports along the way, it would have been a blast, like old times.  Wednesday afternoon Mike let me know he was not feeling well, seems he caught a bug from his Bride. No fun flying feeling like crap so we ditched the plan and agreed to catch up the next time he was in town. I miss flying with you Mike!!  Who else tortures me like you do? :)
Cape Henlopen
I got up this morning and headed to the airport determined not to return home until I flew the approaches I needed. Without a plan I pulled 08Romeo out of the hangar and completed my pre-flight. I checked in at the terminal desk and no pilots hanging out.  Hmmm...I walked across the parking lot and checked in with the flight school, no go unless we fly in their planes due to insurance.  That's ok but I won't be flying their planes, with my avionics.


Dave S sent me a text message that he was available in the early afternoon.  This would be the back up plan but I wanted to get done and home as early as possible since Mary was under the wx with the start of a migraine.

I headed back to the hangar and decided to cross the Delaware Bay and look for breakfast and a pilot that I knew to help me out. I launched off of runway two and flew along the coast enjoying the view and trying to relax.  There were a few planes on the ramp at WWD but nobody I knew. I figured I would eat then try Millville Airport next followed by Big Sky Aviation to see if they could fly with me.
RT 50 into Ocean City
While catching up with my former co-workers I got a text from Bob C, He was done work early and could help me out now.  I said my goodbyes, skipped breakfast, climbed back in 08Romeo and headed to Brandywine Airport, KOQN.  Bob needed to get his tach pulled from his plane and delivered to 58M so they could order what he needed. We were going to meet there but why have Bob drive when I can pick him up AND shoot an approach into Claremont, 58M.
I made a decent landing at Brandywine-OQN and Bob climbed aboard.  We taxied out for runway nine and launched. After reviewing the plate and getting set up I put those hated foggles on.  The first approach would be the RNAV GPS RWY 13.  It's windy so it will be a challenge knocking off the rust and landing on 3000' with a 1.5% grade downhill.  I get 08Romeo lined up, needles looking great, getting 08R down and stopped.  We taxied in to see Roger and drop off the parts for Bob's plane.
C and D Canal at the Delaware River
Next up, lunch!  We taxi out and launch for Chester County - KMQS.  This place was busy with jets and I had one in trail maybe 5 miles as I was short final.  I had shot the RNAV GPS RWY 11 approach and it looked better than the first.  I cleared the runway and the Citation wasn't far behind.
Dover AFB
Bob and I had lunch at the Flying Machine Cafe' located in the terminal.  Good food and service made for a pretty quick turn around. I took on some fuel so I wouldn't have to stop on the way home, 08R was back to forty gallons.  Bob and I launched for Brandywine and I set up for the RNAV GPS RWY 9 approach, tracking out to ECZEL. This approach was very good, needles steady and altitude on the money. The LNAV allows me down to 860' and when I tossed the foggles the runway was right smack in the middle of the windscreen.  I added flaps and with some added stall horn planted 08R.

I can't thank Bob C enough for being my safety pilot. I am once again in your debt, Sir. At least when you work on your instrument ticket you will have a safety pilot available, benefits of my retirement.  We said our goodbyes and I secured the door for my taxi out.  Thankfully I got out just in front of a Pilatus PC-12 who was also getting ready to go.
I departed to the south being mindful of the Philly Bravo airspace and ducked under at 3000'.  Passing just west of Wilmington I pointed for Dover and the AFB.  I passed just north east of DAFB and cranked up the music for the remaining ride home. I averaged 115 to 120 knots with the tailwind. As I approached the beach there was an update for AIRMET Tango and the boundary line fell along the beach and OXB. It got pretty bumpy at 2000 and below as I made my way in for runway two. I made my calls and entered the pattern making another nice landing.
With the approaches completed along with crosswind landings, I'm ready to head out to Dubuque Iowa.  More flight time next week then I'll tank up and give the plane a once over getting covers and tie downs packed.
Flying time today 4.5 hours.

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