It won't last, though. Can't. Maybe it helps me to appreciate it all the more knowing that it must end, but maybe not. Either way, 'tis glorious flying weather of which I gleefully took advantage today. Perfect weather for a trip to The Farm(tm).
With weather like this, there's no big hurry to get out of the house. It's not going to get frightfully hot and bumpy, precipitation of any sort is completely out of the question, and Darke Co. airport is never busy (except for the weekend Tony Stewart brings all of his friends out to race at Eldora, the track he owns in Rossburg). I think it was after 10:30 by the time I got to the hangar and started preparing for the trip. I was a beautiful morning to fly; clear skies, a combination of low temperatures and high ambient pressure contributing to Papa's virility, and a ride as smooth as silk. Smoother, in fact, if that's even possible. Smoother than silk. Hmmmm.... that would be a good name for a horse.
But as you'll see, I'm getting a little ahead of the narrative. The flight out to Darke Co. was a piece of cake, but as is always the case when flying to KVES I harbored a little trepidation for the impending landing. I never seem to get a good landing there mostly, I think, because of the stand of trees that roil up the ubiquitous crosswind. The winds, if not dead calm, were at least in a coma. Very light, in other words. This was reflected in my landing, which was actually pretty good. I had forgotten how bouncy Papa is just after flaring to a touchdown; the absence of the extra weight of a co-pilot keeps him a little lighter on his feet a little longer than when I'm flying alone.
This guy is a witness to every landing I've made at KVES, good or bad. He's pretty stoic about the bad ones - that's why I like him:
Although, come to think of it, he's not particularly effusive about the good ones either.
I was met at the airport gate by my parents and we got on the road to the Darke Co. Fairgrounds, where we would be visiting the newest member of the racing stable, Smoother Than Silk. He's a friendly young lad, and fine looking as well. You can get a look at him in the video:
I also walked around a bit with the camera:
Once back at The Farm(tm), I took another walkabout with the camera:
The flight back was a little warmer than the morning flight. I'd have to describe it as not-too-hot, but-could-be-a-tad-cooler. The ride was a little bumpier as well, but not horribly so, Still, I was a bit tired from the early morning wake-up when Co-pilot Egg got home from her band competition and kinda sorta wanted to get home. Unfortunately, my 2,100 rpm cruise power setting was only giving me 124 knots across the ground flying against a light headwind. I threw a few more AlGore Brand Karbon Kreditz(tm) ("The Best Environmental Abuse Dispensation Money Can Buy!!") on the fire to boost Papa up to 2,400 rpm, which gave me another dozen or so knots on the speedo. Kreditz well spent!
The landing back at Bolton was surprisingly easy. Well, to be accurate, it was the approach that was easier than expected. I thought I'd be trying to work my way into a pattern full of touch&go students, but such was not the case. I didn't hear or see another airplane at all. The landing? Well, it was pretty easy too.