Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Short Angel Flight tonight

It is rare that I sign up for midweek Angel flight.  But today was different.  The passenger today was a brave, young woman who was participating in a clinical trial at Moffitt Cancer Hospital.  If you haven't heard of Moffitt, it is one of the best cancer hospitals in the country.  In addition to standard treatments, they also do a lot of cutting edge research and clinical trials.  As a result, there are many Angel Flights that begin or end in Tampa.  This one was a short hop from my home base late in the day. So I was able to do it after work and best of all the patient got to avoid a 4 hour drive, which was her alternative.

As usual, I got my paperwork and planning in order before leaving the house.  Then while driving to the airport, I talked to a Lockheed briefer for one last check on weather, NOTAMs, TFRs, etc.  Everything looked good except for the Lake Placid MOA, which was active today.  This caused a slightly less than direct routing on the way there.  But no worries, it was a typical beautiful day in FL.  Here is the routing, I ended up getting:

On the way home, I flew basically the same route.  However, this time the weather was not as cooperative.  Palm Beach Approach cleared me to 7000 ft.  But that was just NOT the right altitude.

As you can see, that was right in the middle of the cloud deck.  After asking for altitude changes multiple times with no luck, I came to the conclusion that both Palm Beach Approach and Miami Center were just too busy today.

After 10 minutes of getting used to flying entirely on instruments, the clouds passed (or should I say were just lower than me) and it was beautiful once again.  See for yourself:
From then on, it just got clearer and clearer and then I had time to play with my new toy:
This little gorillapod tripod, is my latest gadget.

This is what it looks like in the cockpit

Watch out! ... I sense you will see a bunch of landing videos soon! 

== T.J.==

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