Oban to Gloucester via airways

Today was the day to return home. We had enjoyed our extra couple of nights away and awoke to a lovely sunny day, with a good forecast for weather for our trip. We had a leisurely breakfast, strolled back to the airport, paid the landing fee and prepped the aicraft. I had filed an IFR flight plan using Autorouter for 10am local time and we were almost exactly on time.

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Oban

I had planned to fly home directly from Glenforsa today, but the weather forecast for down south looked terrible with both strong turbulence and icing risks. So rather than sit in a washing machine for a couple of hours, we decided to extend our holiday by at least one night, enjoy some of the better weather here, and (depending on the weather) my wife would have the option to take

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Glenforsa and the Isle of Mull

One of the primary goals of this trip was to visit Iona. It’s not a terribly easy place to get to, so being able to land on Mull is a great advantage. We had stayed at the Glenforsa Hotel before but not explored the island, so we allowed a few days to do that. You could potentially visit Iona by bus and ferry but there is only one possible timeslot

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Plockton

Plockton is a small harbour village on the west coast of Scotland, close to the Skye bridge. It’s one of the most scenic airfields I have visited with an enjoyable walk down to the picturesque seafront. I’ve been wanting to visit for years but each time I’ve tried in the past, the weather has been terrible. The airfield is owned by the Highland Council and operated by PDG helicopters. The

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Stornoway

I was keen to depart Glasgow promptly before the military activity NOTAM’d to start at 1315z began. Although we would not be flying in a Danger Area, it seemed prudent to have landed (or be about to land) before the action started. We climbed aboard at 1200z and took off at 1215z for our planned one hour flight. I had filed IFR for this leg even though almost all of

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Glasgow Airport

With lockdown restrictions easing and hotels reopening, I was keen to plan a longer trip. Foreign travel bans remain for nearby countries but within the UK, Scotland beckoned. My wife and I agreed in March to take a week’s holiday mid May by which time restaurants and hotels should have reopened. Our itinerary was a few nights in Stornoway in the Outer Hebrides followed by a few nights in Mull,

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Easing back into the saddle

Lockdown restrictions eased on 29th March to allow solo flights and subsequently on12th April to allow flight training. From 17th May passengers could be flown who are not in our family bubbles. Following the success of the vaccination program and lockdown measures, the GA industry is winding up towards what might be quite a busy summer season. For some there has been relatively little downtime – commercial training schools have

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Blackpool Tower Flypast

Lockdown restrictions have eased, removing the “Stay at Home” order and allowing private leisure flights within England to resume. Instruction awaits the next stage of relaxation, and many flying clubs and airfields remain closed until then. Some, such as Kemble, have already indicated they won’t accept visitors for a couple of weeks after that, to allow enough time for residents and club members to regain currency (both legal and practical)

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Pilotedge for GA pilots

Unlike VATSIM, IVAO and similar online aviation networks, Pilotedge is very much more aimed at GA pilot training within US airspace. It employs qualified controllers who man all the of the positions at towered airports in Western USA, avoiding the problem of sparse or intermittent coverage. Structured training and hour building programs encourage you to expand your knowledge and familiarisation of the US VFR and IFR procedures. Sometimes it does

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VATSIM for UK GA pilots

Lockdown has encouraged us all to explore new ways of doing things. I’ve spent a lot of time refining and tinkering with my X-plane flight simulator over the past year, and more recently investigated using various online multi-player networks to add realism. VATSIM is by far the most popular and this article shares my personal views on what to expect and how best to use it. What is VATSIM? You’ll

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