Morning Glory Cloud

Morning Glory Cloud
Morning Glory over Massacre Inlet (photo: Diane Davey)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Headwinds and Jerry Cans

I made it to Charleville today. I had a 10 to 15 knot headwind most of the way here. I had anticipated having to land at Blackall to top up out of the jerry can, but things were looking good so I cut the corner and headed for Charleville. All up, it took me about 3.5hrs so it was a pretty slow trip, which seemed even slower when I started thinking about all the water I had been drinking.
I’ve been wanting to tell you about my jerry can story. It goes back to when I was planning and getting ready for the trip. Most of the legs that I planned had a fuel stop in case I needed to top up. The fuel stop for the Longreach to Charleville leg was Blackall. The only problem with this plan was that they no longer have fuel at Blackall. I wasn’t comfortable with the fuel margin on this leg should I encounter strong headwinds or need to divert due to weather so I needed a plan.  The simple solution was to bring along a jerry can full of avgas. It would also be handy for any other fuel situation I might encounter.
Geoff (FLK’s owner) had also mentioned to me that it was advisable to tape up the airbrakes overnight should there be a chance of rain as the airbrake boxes are made of wood (in fact, much of the plane is made of wood) and can be affected by water sitting in them for extended periods.
So off I went to Bunnings. Now, if you’re like me, as soon as you walk into that place, you forget what you went there for and end up wandering the aisles aimlessly, buy stuff you didn’t go there to buy and forget to buy what you went there for in the first place.  To overcome this issue, I’ve started the practice of pausing at the entrance and asking the attendant where I can find what I went there for.  In this instance, I did this with reasonable sense of purpose. It took me a while to realise why the attendant looked so distraught when I asked: “where are the jerry cans? and where will I find the electrical tape?” I was still laughing when I got to the register – and paid cash! ha!
When I told my husband when I got home, he suggested I should have also asked where they keep the fertiliser. Wonder what they would have done? “oh, it’s just for the plane...”
I got into the observatory tour for tonight so looking forward to being humbled once again by the wonders of nature and the world around me.
Departing Longreach. The two ends of the runway have different postcodes.

A gliding friend of mine would say: "Power pilots call it turburlence":  500 feet per minute climb, (variometer just in frame at the bottom) passing 4600 feet - engine at idle. Not a cloud in the sky. Magic.

Bypassing Blackall - again.

Paddocks! Haven't seen those for a while.

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