Saturday, October 03, 2020

Martin State and Time With Friends

A few weeks ago Mary and I had planned to fly over to Martin State to meet up with fellow BAC friends Les and Nahia.  Unfortunately, Mary injured a rib, tearing some cartilage loose when she stretched across a railing to grab a bird feeder.  Thankfully, she is feeling much better and we were able to make the flight across the Chesapeake Bay to visit our friends.

The plan was to head to the airport in time to pre-flight and get in the air by 11am. Ziva was fed, the house locked up, and off we went for todays adventure. We did make one stop to pick up flowers, a mum of some sort that looked like it was crossed with a daisy, very pretty.   We wanted to bring something since Nahia told Mary not to bring anything but ourselves.

I had fueled 3 Tango Charlie up yesterday while Ziva had time to play.  Ziva girl ran her self silly and while I was getting fuel I took a picture of her flat out on the pavement, I think we broke the dog. After fueling I had a total 40 gallons on board. The plan was to tanker as much fuel home from Martin State, since they are .86 cents a gallon cheaper then OC.

Taxing for runway two and upon completing my run up we rolled for take off. 3 Tango Charlie enjoyed the cool air and quickly had us at three thousand feet for todays flight.  I contacted Patuxent approach on 127.95 and did not get an answer, that was odd.  I made a couple of calls and received a response to switch to "my frequency" 121.0.  Again odd, I can't remember ever using that frequency before for approach. After a few more tries on this new frequency I gave up and switched to Dover approach on 132.425.  Dover quickly responded and we traded information, I received the barro setting, and squawk code once Dover had my plan of flight, destination, and altitude.  We were on our way with an extra set of eyes.

Dover handed us off to Potomac and we rode along with a few traffic call outs.  The air was cool, the view spectacular, and the ride smooth.  We could see the cooling towers at Salem, just South East of Wilmington Delaware (KILG) from Easton Maryland (KESN),  approximately 42 miles. About eight miles out from the airport Potomac handed me off to Martin State tower, I was cleared to land and report a three mile final.  That worked for me since I had the airport and massive runway in view.  

I did fly through the tip of the restricted area under the control of Martin State which I wasn't comfortable with but received no warning from Potomac Approach or Martin State Tower.  I was directed to keep my squawk code.

Les met us on the ramp when we shut down.  I ordered 20 gallons of fuel, instructing the lineman how to use the hinged cover to insert and remove the fuel nozzle. With that task completed we headed for the home of our hosts.  Once off the beltway the ride through horse country was beautiful. Les pointed out the house where Cal Ripken had lived and a few other famous homes/owners.  The ride reminded me of driving through Beaver Valley in north Wilmington, home of the Duponts Granogue Mansion, the Brandywine river, and Hagley Museum

We had a wonderful time with Les and Nahia in their beautiful home.  Our hosts provided an unlimited array of appetizers followed by a most delicious lunch of Chicken Cordon Bleu with potatoes, a veggie, and a most tasty dessert.  We were stuffed, and I honestly wondered if I had taken on too much fuel to accommodate the new weight and balance calculation. Yes, we needed a doggie bag for what we couldn't finish.
Mary enjoying the fountain and Sangria
Time flies when you're having fun and our time together was indeed too short. It would be a forty-five minute drive back to the airport and since I'm not night current I wanted to make sure we landed back home in time before turning into a pumpkin. We said our goodbyes and saddled up the flight home.


I contacted Martin State ground with the current ATIS and advised ready to taxi for our VFR flight to Ocean City, KOXB.  I was directed to taxi via Foxtrot and Echo then hold short runway three-three. Once the run up was completed we were ready to go. I did not check my transponder, brain fart, which I normally reset to 1200 after landing. I took off with my previous squawk code "in the box".  What a putz, the tower advised reset squawk on my climb out.


The flight home was once again smooth and now sporting a bit of a tailwind that we had pushed through heading into MTN. Ground speeds were on average 135-138 knots despite dialing back to twenty-four squared. It was good to once again view the Ocean City skyline just before sunset and to capture a wing view shot to go along with that view. 

We enjoyed our visit with Les and Nahia and we are looking forward to more meet ups in the near future.  We had a fun time, enjoying excellent company, great food, and our friendship by way of aviation and the Beech Aero Club.

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