Time: 12:35 - 13:40 & 15:45 - 16:35
Aircraft: Ikarus C42 - G-CDRO
Wing Farm, Farway Common and Newton Peveril
Didn't get to go flying last weekend and won't able to go next weekend. So it was great when Ian suggested taking the day off to go on Wednesday. The plan was to go to go west to Westonzoyland, Farway Common and Newton Peveril.
Amazingly, I get to the airfield in good time. We get the aircraft out, fuel and prep it. PLOG all planned, we are just about all ready, but unfortunately we can't get hold of anyone at Westonzoyland airfield - which means no PPR, so no Westonzoyland. Eventually we have to give up and decide to go to Wing Farm instead. It's sort of on the way.
Ian flies the first leg. We go up past Bourne Park, Manor Farm and then skirt round the north edge of the Salisbury Plain danger zone. Once we get to Westbury, with its big chimneys, we deviate from our original planned route, southwards to Wing Farm. Joining from overhead, there is quite a low circuit that takes you close to the surrounding hills. Clearing the noise-sensitive farm we turn final for 09, but the complete absence of wind makes it impossible to get down, even with sideslip, so Ian goes around. Second time landing goes OK.
We make a cup of tea in the scabby caravan and look at the chart for our next leg. If we head straight west from the airfield, we should get to Glastonbury and rejoin our original route. After a quick checkover, it's my turn in the left seat. The visibility is a bit murky, but alright. Past Glastonbury and its prominent Torr and the over the Westonzoyland airfield that we couldn't get hold of - no sign of anything going on there. Then past Taunton and south to Axminster and Seaton - a bit of a dogleg to avoid the Exeter ILS approach. We find the airfield easily and join overhead for 10. It's quite hilly and the final approach is over a valley. Sadly, I too get caught out by the lack of wind and despite sideslip, it doesn't look good, so I go around. Second go is alright and I notice some of the cows in the preceding field getting out the way. Once we turn onto the taxiway, the plane stops dead and requires a fair amount of power to keep it going over the long grass. We proceed slowly and park up at the west end and look around for the 'C' sign - can't see one, so we wander over to the owners house where there are two people talking. We are welcomed and given some tea and sign in. I eat my sandwiches on his patio, whilst Terry (airfield owner) goes about some business - very pleasant in the sunshine.
Soon it time to move on and Ian takes off and we follow the coast past Seaton, Lyme Regis and West Bay, where the series 'Harbour Lights' was filmed. Then inland towards Dorchester, but we can still see Chesil Beach. Then on to Newton Peveril, which we find easily. The right hand circuit for 08 is a bit difficult because the is a no-fly zone which means you start your decent and turn blind and tight for final approach. We are subsequently told that although we did it right to the book, but they would prefer joining left base from the north. More tea and a chat.
I fly the uneventful last leg home. I cut the corner, not bothering to go up to Blandford. We cross the NOTAMed Kite Flying area at a suitable height - not that anyone would have been able to fly one, with the lack of wind. We pass to the south of the Boscombe zone and up the between it and the Southampton zone back to Popham. Both of our second landings went OK.
A nice day out and a very welcome relief from work.
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