Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Supercub 4104Z "Ragtag"

Today was my first solo flight in the Cub after a couple of hours training with Doctor Russell. I have been signed off in both my airplanes so far by Dr. Russell and each flight with him is a joy. He is calm when I screw up, and always offers gentle advice to help me get back on course. He is a master of the Supercub and claims to have just plain wore out about 4 of them. Before our first flight he told me the story of wearing out the first one. I agree, it was fully worn out..... Yesterday after finishing up my last check ride with Alex I called Gregg to see if he would be up for flying the next day and he was all in. Today Gregg and I lifted off around ten, and after a few touch and go's in the pattern we winged our way north over Turnagain Arm and in into the mountains toward Knik glacier. The glacier has carved out a huge valley with abundant rocky moraine fields, perfect training ground for a new cub pilot. The flight up was super bumpy, but by the time we dropped down into the valley, there was a perfect smooth wind that made for nice, short landings and take-off's. After an hour or so of practicing landings, checking out sheep, and taking a few photographs we headed out the valley toward Palmer/Wasilla, turned left, and headed over Fire Island and back to Soldotna. Thanks go to Gregg for a great first day, and a wealth of practical knowledge. On a side note: I rarely name my vehicles, but have decided to name my plane after the cub that piqued my interest in flying as a child. Ragtag was a close family friend's Cub that spent many years flying slow over most of Alaska. I'm not sure where that airplane is now, but hopefully I can do the name justice as I begin my career as an Alaskan Supercub pilot.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Setting sail out of Seward

I was lucky enough to get an email from John Baker out of Anchorage inviting a group of us out for a weekend of sailing in the Seward area. John's Boat is a 44 foot Jeanneau Sun Odyssey sloop that will comfortably sleep 5, but handled 7 of us just fine. The yacht is immaculate and John's cooking was even better. I'll throw up a few photo's tonight, and give a little more description tomorrow. It was a beautiful weekend for sailing and if you wish, you can follow the history of our trip on my SPOT page.