Date: 29/12/2008

Time: 12:50 - 13:50

Aircraft: Ikarus C42 - G-CDRO

Chilbolton (Aborted Compton Abbas)

Colin, Jac, Ian and I are heading for Compton Abbas today - I've never been there. We have two planes booked for 4 slots each, so most of the day. Just as well really, as the aircraft are covered in heavy frost and it took a couple of hours to de-ice them - it just kept refreezing.

Eventually we get on our way, taking off from 08, with Colin as my passenger and Ian piloting the other plane. The reports are that the visibility is very poor and once we are up, it does prove to be the case. I slow it down to allow the others to catch up. It looks a lot better above the inversion layer, so I climb up to 4400 feet above it and it is indeed perfectly clear. We can still see the ground but it is murky. Over Bullington Cross and then we follow the River Test south until we reach the railway line and turn east. However as we get near Alderbury the smog below thickens and appears as clouds at the inversion layer and we can't really see through it. We decide to try flying below it and we have to do a large orbit to descend. But it is just too poor, so for safety we give up, and head back. We decide to drop in to Chilbolton and I haven't been there either, so Colin tries rapidly to draw the circuit pattern on a bit of paper. Join isn't too bad and landing is OK despite the bumpy field.

Ian lands shortly afterwards and we go into the little caravan for some tea and crisps. For the short return journey, I am in the other aircraft, being piloted by Jac (Colin's wife). We follow the A30 and then the A34 back to Popham a quick overhead join and down.

Oh well didn't make it to Compton, but at least I have been somewhere new!

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