Finally after weeks of planning and canceling due to family issues, scheduling and weather we were able to take the little Cherokee on it's first trip to the coast.
We got a late start on Sunday and didn't leave until around 2:30pm
which was way later than I wanted to leave. This flight was also my
biannual review and I wanted to work on some tower work. Our first stop
was to KFLO in Florence SC. There was a big nascar race in town and
the airport was pretty hopping. We stopped for a 'bladder break' and
went into the FBO. I found a copy of this months AOPA Magazine on the
table, about that same time someone recognized the plane N number and
asked if this was the same plane from the article. That was a pretty
The plane did really great and I still have a lot to learn about
controlled airspace. It's amazing how sanitized the training was for me
doing controlled work during training compared to the real world. I
realized that during my training we never actually went to a controlled
airport, shut down, got out and got back in the plane. I had no idea
how to 'get out' of a controlled field.
Hanging with jets...
The guys down at Florence were great and talked with us for about
half an hour before we decided to head on to our real goal which was
making it to the Myrtle Beach (KCRE) grand strand.
It was pretty bumpy down to KFLO, but the ride to KCRE was very
smooth and what a view we had of the coast line. I have done this trip
a few times in other planes but there is just something special about
flying over the coast line in your own aircraft that just adds to the
excitement. It was shockingly quiet despite being a holiday weekend but
we made it into CRE just fine. Unfortunately all of the courtesy cars
were out so we couldn't make it anywhere to eat, so we just ate a pack
of crackers out of the vending machine. But to be honest I really
didn't care because just being able to fly down was great.
The view I've been working over a year for... finally made it
Short final for CRE
It was smooth as glass on the way back, however it was VERY dark by
the time we reached Monroe and we learned on final that our landing
light had gone out at some point. Landing with no landing light is a
lot harder than expected, your depth perception is really off and the
ground will come up to meet you quicker than you think. All turned out
well as my CFI friend gave me a little assist on the landing back to
Monroe and we were back safe and sound. Total time was 3.7 for a total
of 250nm. By far the longest trip yet in one sitting.
I replaced the landing light on Monday in prep for our trip this
weekend to Triple Tree (SC00) if anyone is looking for a great place to
come and camp out with your plane I encourage you to check out Triple
Tree. The annual fly-in is this weekend you still have plenty of time
to plane to visit! 7000ft grass runway, we are bringing Tinker Belle in
this weekend along with the Cherokee.