Wednesday, August 1, 2007

No Frustrations to Report Today!

Nope. No problems today. Today's been a good day. I finally got in that third solo cross-country flight: Ithaca (KITH) - Canandaigua (D38) - Wellsville (KELZ) - Ithaca. Put 2.6 on the hobbs, baby - that's all me!

O'course, my bill just went up by $200... oh, well. There's always a price to be paid, right?

Pretty darn beautiful day. Clear skies, for the most part (on the last leg, I started to get a little close to a pocket of clouds... but not to worry, I just dropped from 5,500 to 3,500 and kept on cruisin'), good visibility - a little haze, but no real problem, and very little traffic to contend with. Nice FBOs, too - the lady at the front desk in Wellsville was very friendly. Ma'am, if you read this - you rock! Thanks for making a student pilot's first impression of your FBO a favorable one!

Wellsville was also just a pretty cool airport - almost like an aircraft carrier, being that it's on a plateau above the city. You're probably around a thousand feet above the city when you're just sitting on the runway. You take off and the ground drops away in front of you. There's enough of a safety margin there, though. It's not like the end of the runway is the edge of a cliff or anything, but it's still pretty neat!

Anyway, other highlights of today's flight:

1) Nice views of some Finger Lakes - Cayuga, Seneca, Canandaigua, Honeoye, Hemlock, the little one next to Hemlock (Canadice?), a distant view of Keuka, Lamoka, Kayutah (does that count as a Finger Lake?).... Saw a lot of boaters out, too, and that's just a really groovy thing to see from the air.

2) Flew right over Taughannock Falls State Park. That's one of the first views I got of a gorge from the air, back in September of 2005, when I took my discovery flight. At that time, the falls were dry. Today, there was at least some water going over - just a trickle, but impressive nonetheless.

3) Being able to recognize some of my landmarks from previous trips. Seen 'em a couple times. They're getting to be like old friends.

4) Watkins Glen State Park - can't see much beyond a beautiful, dark green strip of trees, but it's awesome to know it's there.

5) Watkins Glen raceway - never attended any races there, but it's still a pretty big deal 'round these parts. Having never been there, I thought it was ROUND. Apparently, I'm not a big enough racing fan (translation = I never watch the stuff) to know these details. Oh, another fun bit - at least one car was running on the track. On the Western side of the track, heading South, about to hit the turn. :-)

6) Flew right over Burdett, the town our head custodian at the church lives in. Never seen it before, but now I've seen it from the air!

7) Very nice landing back in Ithaca, if I do say so myself!

All in all, a great flight.

Now, I get to prepare for a concert in Homer, NY tonight. I'm playing with the Ithaca Ageless Jazz Band for a community concert on "the Village Green" there. Should be fun, as long as we're not looking directly into the setting sun, like we did at Taughannock Falls a couple weeks ago.

Did I mention I just flew over Taughannock this morning? :-D


One last note, since a lot of blogs leave a space for "Current music," and mine is so amusing at the moment:

Strongbad - "The System is Down."

"Dah - dah - dahdah - dah - dah - dahdah - dah - DOOM!"

No comments: