Scottish Adventure 2020 Part 5 – Stornoway and Kirkwall

We flew from Inverness to Kirkwall via Stornoway in the Cessna 182, flying some more unusual instrument approaches. Stornoway has many commercial flights each day but is one of the few commercial UK airports without a precision instrument approach. Pilots don’t get a glideslope and have to interpret that based on the DME distance from the runway. Adding a little further complexity, there are two DMEs – one on the

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Scottish Adventure 2020 Part 1 – Inverness

With quarantines being imposed at short notice, holidays in the UK seem to be a popular option at the moment. Some may think it best to stay at home while others want to support the hospitality industry within government guidelines. My own plan this week was to combine a trip to Scotland with some flight instruction away from base. It takes most of a full day to get there and

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Le Touquet is back on the menu

Regulations in both UK and France are constantly changing and already differ from the date of this flight, so please check the current status before you plan to fly. Relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions now permit international travel, with no requirement for self-isolation on return from over 50 countries. Private pilots can once again fly to and from European countries for daytrips or longer excursions. I believe that the main limitation

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Peace Bridge, Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland

Next stop on my daytrip to Ireland was on the north coast. Derry was the first in the UK to be awarded European City of Culture in 2013, and continues to attract many tourists. It has a large natural harbour and has in the past been a strategic and busy shipping port for centuries. Admin Crossing an international boundary requires a flight plan (for which VFR using SkyDemon was very

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Kortrijk, Belgium

The original plan for the weekend was to fly up to Aberdeen with my family to visit relatives. I’d planned to fly to Duxford to pickup my daughters and take them there in the TB20. What both I and my family have learnt is that with small aircraft, weather can often disrupt good intentions and you have to have a Plan B (and maybe also Plan C, D and E).

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BAC European Tour 2019 – Part 3 of 3 – Friedrichshafen to Gloucester

Yet another flight plan required for the second international flight of the day, from Friedrichshafen in Germany to Troyes in France. No PPR required though. Again, I drew up what I thought was a reasonable route and filed through SkyDemon. A few minutes later I got a call from the German air traffic regional centre, advising me that I really should have a couple more reporting waypoints than I’d put

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IFR Airways Gloucester to Ostend

I had originally booked the TB20 G-CORB booked for the weekend to visit relatives, but plans changed and we ended up enjoying a weekend away in Brugge, Belgium. I filed IFR airways Gloucester to Ostend both ways using Autorouter intending to return after hours. Gloucester closes at 6pm local at weekends due to ATC staff shortages, so we obtained permission to land VFR before sunset on indemnity. GAR forms were

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Hazy visibility into Cambridge

A daytrip to Cambridge takes either 3 hours by road or 45 minutes in the TB20 from Gloucester – it should be an easy choice. But add in time to drive to the airport (1 hour), move the aircraft out of the hangar, fuel and pre-flight (30 minutes), lockdown and paperwork on arrival, and transport into the city (30 minutes), and it all starts to look a bit more marginal.

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Pembrey

Today’s flight was opportunistic. The TB20 had been booked by my co-owners who aren’t IMC rated and who didn’t want to fly in today’s weather (cloudbase 4000 feet at Gloucester but elsewhere around 2000 feet). Although cold (hence a low freezing level), the cloud layer was thin and I thought quite feasible to fly above it otherwise remain close to base. This was confirmed by pilots at the club who

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Glensforsa

Glenforsa

Planning Ahead I’d booked our TB20 G-CORB for the long bank holiday weekend, blocking off Friday through Monday for a trip with my wife up to Aberdeen to see my relatives. We wanted to stop off somewhere for Friday night so I took the opportunity to visit somewhere that’s been on my bucket list for a while. Glenforsa is a grass airstrip on the Scottish island of Mull with a

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