There is the old saw about getting your Private Pilot certificate, that it “is a ticket to learn,” meaning that you’ve just gotten the little slip of paper that lets you learn to be a better pilot. I totally buy that. I didn’t count on forgetting some of the things I learned, though. To get […]
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high
Where knowledge is free
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments
By narrow domestic walls
Where words come out from the depths of truth
Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit
Where the mind is led forward by thee
Into ever-widening thought and action
Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake
— taken from the Gitanjali by Rabindranath Tagore
After a fun evening and morning spent with family and friends, my copilot and I reconvened a little before noon at Republic Airport for the return trip back to the Mid Atlantic. Aircraft fueled and preflighted, we set off north this time. The plan was to circumvent the busy NY airspace around JFK and LGA airports from the northeast and fly down the Hudson River from the north heading south before flying back home.
The airwaves were quieter on Easter Sunday and the air smooth as we made our way south. There was not a cloud in sight but sadly haze still clung around the area preventing crisp, crystal clear photographs and videos. We flew southbound reporting all the check points along the way: Alpine Tower, GWB, Intrepid, Clock and Statue of Liberty. We descended lower to 800 ft as we practiced our turns about the point over the Statue of Liberty.
Tracing the eastern New Jersey shore past Long Beach Island, Atlantic City, Ocean City and Sea Isle City we landed at Cape May, the southern tip of New Jersey a little after 2:00 pm. Cape May Airport (KWWD) is a general aviation airport with 2 major runways.
Once a Naval Air Station, it is currently a civilian airport and houses the Aviation Museum in Hanger 1. The Flight Deck Diner is located in the main terminal building and open daily from 6:00 am to 2:00 pm. Unfortunately, we had forgotten to check the operating hours of the restaurant, after feeding the aircraft at the self serve fuel station, my copilot and I headed home, sans any veg(ham) burger. If you did get one at Cape May, drop me a line 🙂
“The year 2000 marked not just a new decade but also a new century. The previous century saw the birth of powered, heavier-than-air flight and the amazing development of this world-changing technology. The 20th Century also saw the horrors of two world wars, the Great Depression, the tension of a cold war, the Civil Rights movement, the space race, the spread of democracy, the rise of the internet, and significant advancement for women.
It is unlikely the first decade of the 21st Century will be considered any type of Golden Age. September 11th, 2001 — more simply known as “9/11″ — was a day of tragedy, keenly felt by all of us for whom flying is an integral part of our lives”
Quoted from the April 2017 Aviatrix Aerogram
Flying was lighthearted, fun and innocent until 9/11. That changed everything. Not immediately, but in the months and years following that tragic event. Living in California the impact was not as strong, but still prevalent. I am more cautious of what I say and how I behave in the wake of 9/11.
Although I flew three or four times back in 1998, my first official flying lesson was in August 2000 and I got my private pilot certificate in May 2001, and Instrument rating in May 2004. Although I started my first round of Commercial flight training in fall 2006, I am yet to complete it.
I had a terrific support group with members from my local 99s chapter (SLO99s). Several of us learnt to fly at the same time. We did cross-country flights together, interacted with controllers and other pilots to organize events: we sponsored discovery flights, mentored high school girls, supported airport day events such as Tower Tours, organized safety seminars, and sponsored scholarships.
Fun Flyouts from the 2000s
- Flew the legendary Palms to Pines Air race from Santa Monica, California, to Bend, Oregon, and back. What a fantastic trip!
- Flew into Edwards Air Force Base, organized by the San Fernando Valley 99s.
- Flew to Lancaster Airport for the Southwest Section (SWS) Meeting, visiting NASA Dryden and Scaled Composites and surreptitiously touching SpaceShipOne before its historic first flight into space and history.
- Flew to Catalina Island. What fun we had landing at this airport!
- Flew my first foray into the clouds after getting my instrument rating to Watsonville for lunch with the SLO99s.
- Flew to Columbia for another memorable SWS meeting, camped under the aircraft, and got a chance to fly a Taylorcraft.
- Flew to Van Nuys under instrument flight rules and flew my first standard terminal arrival route (STAR) after getting my Instrument rating, making it to another fantastic SWS Meeting. Visited Jet Propulsion Lab.
- Flew the San Francisco Bay tour several times with friends and family members.
Note: A version of this appears in the April 2017 Aviatrix Aerogram
Republic airport is located in Farmingdale, Long Island. Nestled between the bustling Class Bravo Airspace surrounding the New York John F. Kennedy airport to the west and the Class Charlie airspace surrounding Islip, Long Island MacArthur Airport to the west, it is a busy general aviation airport, a stone’s throw away from the Big Apple.
After a leisurely lunch at Montauk Point, my copilot and I walked the short distance back to the airport and departed for the short hop to Republic airport where we planned to overnight. The skies had cleared and the sun was shining brightly as we retraced our path, following the South shore over the rich and ostentatious Hamptons, home of the rich and elite.
The air was smooth along the shore, but as we tuned to Republic airport, we could hear pilot reports (PIREP) of moderate turbulence and chop. The airspace was busy with valiant student pilots conducting landing practice and others arriving and departing the area. Other than some slight excitement during landing, the flight was uneventful.
There are three FBOs on the field and all had good reviews, but based on fuel prices we opted for Talon Air. The airport has a landing fee of $20 and tie down fee is waived if 15 gallons of fuel is purchased. We left the aircraft parked at Talon for the night and head out to hang out with family and friends.
There is no restaurant on the field. But transportation arrangements can be made with the FBO. There is an Air power museum on the field.
Note: Photos and video courtesy Gert
Will you take one?
Flying the Hudson River Corridor Exclusion & Montauk Point!
“First will be xxxx aircraft, then John in xxxx will follow on and next will be…” continued Bob from our flight school, who had planned the whole flyout to the last minute detail.
I wondered how in the world we were going to keep the order straight leave alone spot the aircraft in front of us. Countless times ATC gives traffic warnings routinely. Only on a rare occasion am I ever able to spot the traffic. Often, I rely on ATC to tell me that I was clear of the traffic or to provide me deviations to avoid the traffic.
Maybe it will all work out, I thought.
Being in a C172 and in no hurry to exit the Hudson river corridor, I and my passengers opted to fly second last.
Bob in the Cougar was planning to fly last.
What I want to do my next trip to NZ! Can’t wait to hear about the flying adventures….
It was raining when our bus pulled out of Dunedin headed across the South Island toward Queenstown. After two relaxing nights and a good part of three bright days here, it was a change to see it so gray. We wondered if the whole journey would be like this, obscuring the mountains and dampening the […]
In 5 days, Women of Aviation Worldwide Week (#WOAW17) kicks off.
March is Women in History month and also Women of Aviation month. Many events are organized across the globe.
Here are a few key events:
The Women in Aviation Conference kicks of March 2nd – March 4th in Lake Buena Vista, FL.
The Smithsonian Women in Aviation and Family Day is March 18th, 2017
The Fly it Forward event runs March 6th – March 12th, 2017
Flying season in 2016 didn’t get started till almost March for me. Although I love to fly on January 1st, this was one of the years when I couldn’t. My first fun flyout of the year was a $500 lunch with the Flyout group (FOG) at Williamsburg, VA.
I have been yearning to fly in a foreign country. I finally checked off one item on my bucket list when I flew in Sydney, Australia in April.
In May, the FOG again made a successful flight to Chester County for lunch. We had a huge turnout on an incredibly fine late Spring day. And in June and July, we flew to collect stamps for the VA Ambassador program: 11 more!
After years of trying, I finally made it to Niagara Falls! Another bucket list item: Check!
Weather hasn’t been all that cooperative this fall, but we did fly down to Tangier in October for lunch and stamps. What a beautiful fall day!
The year is almost wrapping up, and although I didn’t fly to the Bahamas or Oshkosh, it has definitely been a fun year!
Have a Very Happy New Year!