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Well, I am officially back to work so my flying will be moved strictly to weekends from now on. But I did get a chance to fly this week prior to starting my new job. Which by the way is pretty darn good.  I flew on Tuesday and if anyone recalls the day, it was a beautiful clear September day, but a front was moving through and the winds were shifting from west to north east and gusting.  There were clouds scattered at about 2800-3000 feet which I found annoying since I was flying from Bedford to Hyannis, across the Cape Cod Elbow to Chatham and then up over Wellfleet and on to Provincetown.   I flew for about 3 hours sometimes above the clouds where the air was a bit smoother and then other times below the clouds in and around the Boston (bravo) airspace.  Below the cloud layer was definitely bumpy.

My other challenge was flying the glass cockpit (G1000).  It was my first time in several weeks so it took a little bit getting use to … but it came back after awhile and I was feeling much more comfortable.  I really need to keep practicing with the avionics. 

All in all it was a great day.    Take a look of the view I had …. this is from a very bad camera phone.  Not to shabby !!!

P-Town's Race Point

P-Town's Race Point

 

 Next flight in a week.  I am going to check out a low-wing Piper Arrow with retracable landing gear.  I’ll be doing that with my instructore … should be fun.

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Pilots always talk about the flights they take for that $100 hamburger … well, this week it was more like the $200 breakfast.  But even in this new economy, I must say it was worth the trip.  If you are in the New England area, check out the “Cockpit Cafe” in Sanford, Maine (KSFM).  They house the incredibly friendly Southern Maine Aviation FBO with virtually any service you will need.  The only change that is fairly recent to the airfield is the lack of self service 100LL, they use to have that but now it is basic auto fuel so you will have to use the FBO for fuel.  Not a big deal since they are so friendly … just have to be aware of their hours of operation.

I highly recommend this airfield and location.  They have two very well maintained runways over 3000 feet and the proximity to places like Ogunquit and Kennebunkport make it a great option for a southern Maine excursion.   Here are a couple of my very different neighbors where I parked as I had breakfast with the nicest people I have ever met.

 

How adorable is this little bi-plane

How adorable is this little bi-plane

Low Wing with retracable gear - maybe next

Low Wing with retracable gear - maybe next

Another beautiful “fall-like” day in New England, and of course every time I go out to fly I learn or see something new.  Today, after flying for 2 years out of Bedford’s Hanscom Airfield, the active runway was number 5 and I have never taken off on this runway.   This was great for my ultimate heading northeast, but there was little room for run-up and I was feeling rushed once again.  I really have to get over that and do my checklist exactly how I like.   So by the time I had completed my run-up, there was a small jet behind me.  I called the tower, asked for take-off straight out to the northeast.  I was cleared for immediate take-off and then asked to move to the right and turn out to the right for a short period of time so the jet could get off quickly.   So much for my nice straight out take-off.  Well I got back on track after about 5 minutes and I was off to the southern coast of Maine. 
 
Of course like any good pilot I was listening in on the emergency frequency 121.5, Boston Approach frequency and various airports along the way.  Then all of a sudden I hear something I have never heard before.  It was a military aircraft trying to contact a small plane.  Multiple times the military aircraft asked the plan to identify themselves and to confirm they were communicating with Boston ATC.  Uh Oh !!!  Sounded pretty serious and finally the small plane replied and the military guy basically said …. “I have been asked to intercept your aircraft, what is you tail number and are you in contact with Boston ATC”.     
  
I had a funny feeling someone was in big trouble.  They must have gone into the Boston airspace without clearance.  While it is a mistake it is NOT a good one.  Glad it wasn’t me !!!
 
Here are a couple of pictures I took on my way back to Hanscom.
Corporate Jet Landing @ Hanscom

Corporate Jet Landing @ Hanscom

KLWM from 4500 MSL

KLWM from 4500 msl