Sunday, July 18, 2010

Taking my sister's boyfriend up in the Cub

Plane: Cub, 85 hp
Route: 40I, Local
Weather: Overcast, haze, 82 degrees, wind 250 degrees at 10 knots

My sister, who I took flying for the first time last year and then again with my dad on Father's Day weekend, came down to visit this weekend with her boyfriend. They spent Friday at Kings Island and then we all went to the Dayton Airshow yesterday. Gina and Lauren were going to spend a few hours this afternoon looking at bridesmaid's dresses so I figured Scott and I could find something more exciting to do. Not that there's anything wrong with wedding planning! :)

It was hot and humid this morning and some showers were moving through but the radar showed them beginning to dissipate. We hopped in the car to drive down to Stewart and I kept my hopes up that the weather would cooperate. The winds had picked up and were near the 10 knot maximum they allow for flying the taildraggers sans CFI, but it was straight down the runway and we were still ok to launch.

I ran through my preflight, which only took a few minutes even as I explained things to Scott - it is a Cub, after all. CFI Joe met us out there and we talked for a couple more minutes before climbing in. Joe gave us a prop and the 85 hp engine roared to life. I made sure the passenger was briefed and ready to fly, then taxied on to Runway 26 and we lifted off following a very short ground roll. Nothing like the big Cub coupled with a hefty headwind.

Unfortunately, it wasn't a great day for sightseeing. There were rain showers in most directions so I didn't venture more than 10 miles away from the airport. Visibility was also impaired by lots of haze - we still had 6 to 10 miles but I couldn't point out things like downtown Dayton or even Caesar Creek Lake. Scott definitely enjoyed the limited view, though, as I cruised at 2,000 feet around the local farmland. I took us down over top of the Wal-Mart on the north side of Lebanon and he was amused by how big it looks from the air.

We hadn't been up long but there wasn't much more to see. I also had forgotten our earplugs in the car so I figured it would be best to minimize my long-term hearing loss caused by flying a noisy old Cub with the door wide open. Coming in from the south, I followed US-42 up and entered the pattern on a 45 for landing Runway 26. The wind was still in line with the runway as I bounced slightly and then added a touch of power for a gentle touchdown.

Scott seemed to genuinely enjoy the flight and we took a walk around the field to look at a few more airplanes before driving home. It's always great to take someone new on their first GA flight. Maybe the next time him and my sister come down I'll take all four of us on a $100 burger run!

Today's Flight: 0.5 hours
Total Time: 170.6 hours

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