Distance: 47 NM
Flight Conditions: Clear below 12,000, visibility unlimited, OAT 70 degrees F,winds light and variable, altimeter 30.06.
Today was gorgeous. Air temperature was about 70 degrees with winds light and variable. Dave and Devon flew with me up to Williston for a hearty breakfast and cheap gas. After departing Leesburg, Dave flew most of the way up, including the GPS RW 05 approach I set up in the Garmin 430.
I set this up so that he could see how critical flying IFR by the numbers is. A few miles SW of Williston is a tower that rises to 1440′ MSL, and lines up nearly perfectly with the final approach course of 049 degrees into the airport. This procedure is not authorized at night because the final approach course is so close to the tower.
The approach plate calls for 2000′ until ICIVO waypoint where you descent to 900′. In visual conditions you can easily see that the top of the tower is just 560 feet below your right wingtip, so adherance to published altitudes is critical to flight safety.
Traffic picked up on the way back. We saw a flight of 2 Aircoupes land at Williston as they returned from a fly-in in Thomasville, GA. Aircoupes are cool little 2 place VFR aircraft built in the 1940’s. One was polished to a chrome-like finish, and the other was painted in USAF colors. Aircoupes have twin vertical stabilizers and rudders, but no rudder pedals. The rudders are interconnected with the yoke, supposedly spin-proofing the aircraft.
Frequency chatter definitely got busier as we made our way into the Leesburg arrival area, and several were in the pattern as we touched down.