Wednesday, May 24, 2006
The weather was great. A weak cold front had stalled just south of us yesterday, turned stationary for awhile and had been over come by a high pressure area in the Gulf turning into a warm front moving the other way. Clear sky, 10+ miles visibility and calm winds made for a perfect late afternoon flight. Cornelius Moore Field in Polk County GA is about 25 miles due west of home base. 4000ft of paved runway it is very busy on weekends with Skydivers. I usually avoid it for that reason, but I figured there wouldn't be any traffic on a Wednesday afternoon.
Objectives for this flight: Stay current in the Cessna 172. Hard to believe but my last logbook entry for a C172 was March 30th, so it was getting close to the 60 day limit for the club. I scheduled the airplane and arrived at the airport at about 5:30, just as it was coming back in. I got the dispatch kit and walked out to the airplane with just a slight sense of unfamiliarity. That went away quickly when I bumped my head on the extended flap during the preflight. It became very comfortable when I turned on the avionics master and the Garmin 430 sprang to life. I like this! Comm 2 has Ground dialed in with ATIS on standby, the 430 has the Tower as active and I can put the Unicom on standby. TOYS! (I love 'em.)
The plan is to fly west to the DALAS intersection, do the VOR/GPS RWY 28 into 4A4, then turn north to the Rome VOR and try the GPS-A back into 4A4. Next depart Cedartown and go over to Cartersville via ERLIN for a few T&Gs and return home for a visual full stop. That should give me some good use of the GPS, cover all the checklists and procedures, and have some fun as well.
Ground procedures all went well. Takeoff was normal and I climbed to 4500ft while heading toward DALAS intersection. The high wing does limit visibility compared to the Tiger, but I have to admit I really enjoy flying this plane now. She's a friend. My traffic is an Experimental, but he departs by the time I'm procedure turn inbound. Its nice to have the place all to myself. Checklists complete, there are some rather intimidating trees close to the end of the runway, so I come in a bit high (according to the VASI) but make a nice touch down.
So, depart to the north, use Nav 2 VOR to go to RMG and take a turn in the holding pattern to reverse my course. UNICOM is still quiet but I make my calls at the VOR inbound, 5 miles, and 1 mile approaching the field. It is hard to see the runway down in the trees. Once over the field I time for 20 seconds and make a standard rate turn to the left for 90 degrees. I'm pleasantly surprised when I raise the wing to find myself just where I want to be. Another comfortable landing there and I turn north for ERLIN. Checking my watch says its time to go home, so I skip the Cartersville leg and head for Lost Mountain. It is just a beautiful day. Entry back home is uneventful. The most difficult part of the day is pushing the plane back into its slot. Steering is just a bit different on the Tiger...and today I had to push up hill.
I flew 114 miles, climbed to 4669 ft and reached 155 mph.C172
Time = 1.3