Toughest air race on the planet!
We have experienced just about everything Mother Nature can throw at us, and there is so much more to come.
We started at sunrise this morning from Salmon air field. To push on towards the boarder of Utah.
I decided to take the more direct but longer route to the next fuel stop where Byron and Miro opted to take the route more to the west which was a shorter hop for more fuel.
Getting airborne with all my gear and at 4K feet and really cold is stupidly hard! I ran a 1/4 mile for sure! I am using a higher pitch prop for this race which means less static thrust but lower RPM at cruising speed making the 230 even more efficient.
Once airborne I made my way down the valley towards my next scheduled stop at Mud Lake.
About 30min into the flight it was clear it wasn’t going to a walk in the park! The valley floor was rising the further south leading up to the pass and the cloud was very low, what started out as a few drops of rain turned to sleet then snow very quickly!
I can tell you the sunnies got put on quick smart after the first piece of sleet went into my eye! That sure wakes you up.
I wasn’t sure if I could get through the pass as visibility was getting low and it was hard to tell where the snow stopped and the cloud started.
I pushed on and the weather was easing in my favour and I could follow the road.
The other concern I had was carb Icing, having never flown in this sort of weather I wasn’t sure. I made sure I followed the road most of the way through the the pass just in case but my machine ran perfectly.
It was a nice relief to fly out of the valley and into the flat lands. It was lien escaping from a giant ice breathing dragon. It was warmer and much more friendly terrain.
I made it to Mud Lake not problem and landed behind a gas station in the wettest field ever.
I found out they flooded the one I landed in yesterday. It was sticky as anything and let’s just say it wasn’t the most graceful landing I have done. Mud everywhere! I fueled up and got chatting to the locals who thought it was the best thing ever. The have me a ride to a drier field so I could takeoff.
I waited for a slight breeze to ease the pain of running and got away first time. I headed south again and about 15min into the flight I was arranging my instruments and realized I had not tracker! Just a bit of string it was attached to!
I couldn’t believe it! Did it fall off during launching was it in flight? How the hell am I going to find it?!
I couldn’t continue without it so I Turned back and sent Shane a message asking for the coordinates and told him I dropped it so he wasn’t having a heart attack watching my tracker stop dead!
I then looked at the live tracking page and j could see it was still where I launched so I flew back and spotted it form the air and landed next to it. I couldn’t believe my luck.
I landed fully loaded with fuel this time which made it very fast on landing and there was no wind.
I was so buggered I spent some time adjusting my brake lines waiting for the wind to kick in like forecast. Sure enough it did and I could launch easily.
Next stop was Black foot. I was hoping to make this one on the first day but the weather had other plans.
I landed in yet another soaked field and waddled over the road to the fuel stop.
I couldn’t launch out of where I landed as it was too wet so a couple of nice guys used thier trucks and blocked and area of the car park for me to launch from. By this time the local papers were there checking everything out and there was a massive crowd gatherings airing in anticipation of this crazy guy and his flying machine.
I launch out of there with Boss status and on towards Pocatello.
I the wind was increasing the further I went south and getting. More turbulent which forced me to land just north of Pocatello.
I found a motel went to get a new pair of sunnies from Walmart as I dropped mine while launching somehow.
I must look pretty shady as a dude standing on the side of the road trying to hitch hike runs up to me and asks if I’m selling weed! Must be the green jacket, I don’t know!
Mexican for dinner and fueled up ready for the morning.
Fingers crossed the wind is favorable to pass by Salt Lake City tomorrow or Scotty will be hot on my tail.
Toughest air race on the planet!