Saturday, October 25, 2008

Navigating Camp David

Last Sunday, the Tiger was ready to be picked up from Hagerstown, where she had been in having some avionics work done. Greg's brother, Dave, was visiting him for the weekend, so, after some early morning excitment over a flat tire, we set off in Romeo for the short jaunt. The restricted zone around Camp David was expanded for the weekend, bringing it within two miles of the Hagerstown airport, so I sat in the front to help navigate while Dave sat in the back. Dave, as with most of Greg's passengers, couldn't hold in a few well-deserved screams on take off.

Greg pretended not to notice as we headed West to pick up the Potomac and then continued out over Harper's Ferry.

With the cooler temperatures finally having arrived in D.C., the leaves have started to change colours, making for pretty views. The rape seed fields also looked more vibrantly yellow than they had the week before when I flew the same route with Ruth.

It was fun to get chauffered for a change, as it gave me a chance to work on my photography. As we flew, Greg and I discussed how it is clearly a pilot's affliction to want to capture part of the plane in the picture.

Although I have been informed that I suffer from an afflication whereby I believe that "tilted is artsy", the day was clearer than it had been for awhile and made for some good photography.

I've flown over Harper's Ferry so many times of late, I think I'm going to put together a mural called "The Changing Weeks of Harper's Ferry." Then I'm going to sell it to the Ottawa Museum of National Art. Hey, they bought The Wall of Fire for $10M, so I figure I've got a shot.

The winds were pretty tough coming into Hagerstown, but Greg did a good job of landing a heavily loaded plane that he hadn't flown for a while. The Tiger was waiting for us when we arrived, so Greg and Dave hopped out to continue their explorations of West Virginia, while I flew Romeo home.

It had been awhile since I'd flown Romeo, so I was glad to have the Potomac as a visual landmark to keep me away from the Camp David airspace as I got used to the GPS unit in the plane.

My landing at Gaithersburg could have been better. Although it would be nice if every landing was perfect, I've noticed that the bad ones make you want to strive for perfection almost more than the good ones. I've also been told that the day I stop learning is the day I should stop flying, so, onward and upward....


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