Saturday, July 27, 2013

Taven's First Flight!!

As a pilot, it was important to me to be able to tell my children that I had been the first person to take them on a GA flight.  I wanted the memory, and I wanted the story.  But, like most things worth wanting, it's not always easy to turn the dream into a reality.  

So, after more than two years of not flying with any sort of regularity, I made a push to get up a few times with my former flight instructor and shake the dust off.  We were working towards the goal of returning with our families to the Flying W airport resort (N14) - a little gem of an airport we had discovered in New Jersey several years early.  Poor weather preempted a combined family trip on the only weekend both were available, but I took advantage of decent weather and an available club airplane another weekend to fly Rich, Isabelle and Taven (on his first GA flight) to the Flying W.

The kids (and Rich) found ways to amuse themselves, while Mummy did her pre-flight on the Cessna 172 (Bravo Alpha) belonging to my Congressional Flying Club at KGAI.

Good thing Isabelle was practicing her roars into the headset BEFORE it was plugged into the plane's avionics system!

The visibility to the Flying W wasn't great, but the flight path from Gaithersburg crosses over a lot of water bodies, which always make for pretty pictures.

The kids were excited about the flight, but even more excited by the amenities at the Flying W.  In addition to a large pool, they have riding toys, grass and sand for romping in, etc.  Unfortunately, they also have a stone pathway that Taven took a digger in on our second day, but the cuts and bruises just made him look all the more a Maverick on his return flight home.

Here we are just arriving, with Isabelle practicing her photography skills.  I say she did quite well for a not quite three year old!

We also lucked out in that the Flying W granted me "pilot's privileges" and gave us a room that became available at the on-site hotel at the last minute.  Due to a band playing the Flying W all rooms were booked up when we arrived.  The logistics with kids of going to another hotel was no easy task, so I was very relieved when they offered us the cancellation spot.

It didn't seem long before we were heading for home, and the weather on the flight back was less hazy and allowed Rich to take some good photographs. 

Mines and quarries always make for neat shots, as the water turns such amazing colors due to the sediment in the pits.

Here we are coming up on the Susquehanna River. 

Taven fell asleep quickly, but Isabelle needed some help staying amused, so Rich gave her the camera.  She took some fun shots from a perspective I had never seen (at least of myself flying) before!

It's surprisingly hard to get all four people in a picture in a Cessna 172 when the two in the back seat are much smaller than the two in the front seats, we discovered.

This is my strongest memory of the flight.  Taven snoozing away peacefully and Isabelle playing with her barbies.  A friend looked at this picture after the flight and asked me if everyone flew naked on GA flights.  No, but not a bad idea, eh?


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