A Little Plane Ride

I went for a little plane ride yesterday. And by “little,” I mean that the airplane was a small one…that can fly upside down.

My wife is friends with a commercial airline pilot who happens to own a Pitts S-2C aerobatic biplane. A year or so ago, he invited us down to a pancake breakfast put on at a local airfield by the Young Eagles of EAA Chapter 1229. That first time, he took our family up in a Mooney 4-seater (model unknown to me) that he “borrowed” from a pilot friend of his. The second time we went to the breakfast, he had his Pitts available and took other members of my family for rides in it, one at a time. My dad posted some videos clips of the aerobatic ride Bill provided him. Unfortunately, we ran out of time that day and I missed the opportunity for a ride of my own.

Bill made sure that I didn’t miss the opportunity at yesterday’s pancake breakfast. After getting our fill of blueberry pancakes, eggs, and sausage (should I have eaten first???), Bill took me up for an amazing ride!

I too captured some video clips and photos. I also fired up Google My Tracks on my android phone to capture the route of our flight. I’ve tried to blend the three into a integrated view of the outing using Google’s My Maps:

In case that doesn’t work so well in your browser, I included links to the pictures and video here as well.

Thank you Bill for the amusement park ride in the sky.

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area (Baldwin Lake)

The confluence of the Mississippi and St. Croix rivers with Prescott, WI to the right. Notice contrast of the muddy Mississippi and the clear St. Croix.

We discovered this unexpected gem of a corn field carving, a Thank You to the troops.

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One Response to A Little Plane Ride

  1. Bob Easton says:

    Great pics and videos. Thanks for posting them.

    Bill has a lot of fun with his Pitts, and is very generous with offering rides. This is his relaxation. Day job is flying top of the line “heavies” for Delta/NW.

    Bill’s use of a canvas aviator “helmet” is a great way to both give a nostalgic look and house the headset. Very neat. Where’s your silk scarf?

    People who pay close attention might notice the approach to landing is done with the left wing tip down about 10 degrees and the plane skewed to the right about the same amount. With the nose in the air, this is the only way the pilot (in the aft seat) can see enough to line up with the runway. He brings it straight and level only a few seconds above the tarmac.

    Very neat tribute to the troops!


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