Tuesday, August 24, 2010

San Antonio to Albuquerque

Actually we flew to Moriarty, famous gliderport full of go-for-it glider pilots who log more mileage in the OLC than anyone. Out west, the convective band goes pretty high, so to cruise in comfort through smooth air, you have to fly high. And that is the MO of the Phoenix (dba U2 Spyplane).

We did most of the trip from 12,000 to 15,000', enjoying the cloud tops once again.

Here is another shot of the panel so you can see performance numbers. (Click on any photo to blow it up). Dennis is flying (as usual- Hey Dennis, How About I Fly For A While?). We were not in a hurry today, so we cruised at 5000rpm.
We are showing 90kts indicated at 12,500', so the true airspeed is around 114kts. The GPS is showing 121kts, so we must have got lucky and picked up a little tailwind too. Always nice when going westbound.

Dennis made the right call installing the oxygen before we left Florida.

Almost time to start the descent into Moriarty from 20 miles out.
When we entered the pattern, it was blowing 20mph straight cross. With experience, the Phoenix can be landed in these conditions no problem, with the steerable tailwheel. I would never want to try that with a castering tailwheel equipped plane, however.
Flight Stats:
4.4 hours flight time
113kts average speed
19 gallons burned for 4.3gph

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