The Fun Of Real World Flying

I have had some rare openings in my calendar this week and have been able to take advantage of them to get in nearly 10 hours of cross-country instrument time. Flights included a round-robin Albert Whitted to Daytona to Melbourne back to Whitted, a hop up to Perry, FL for a $100 hamburger, and today a flight from Whitted to Pahokee, FL (on the shores of Lake Okeechobee), then to Naples for lunch at a German deli, then back to Whitted. All this leaves me less than 10 hours short of my cross country and instrument hours requirements. With any luck the check ride will be in September.

Note that much of what has made flying this week interesting has been weather planning, in particular avoiding the afternoon cumulous and cumulonimbus buildup typical of Florida this time of year. But perhaps the most fun thing about this week has been its fulfillment of one of the reasons people love to fly: the ability to see things and go places. While we didn’t stop in Daytona, flying the missed approach next to the track was great for its views, as was the flight down the Space Coast past Cape Canaveral to Melbourne

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, as was the routing over the top of Tampa and KTPA on the way back. The hop to Perry yesterday was great because it was a chance to borrow the crew car, see a neat little north-Florida town, and have a great burger at a local haunt — without the seven-hour round-trip drive. Today we saw the large agricultural districts of central Florida, the still wild areas around Lake Okeechobee, and the always-exciting and beautiful view of the Skyway Bridge with St. Pete and Tampa in the distance. Flying to travel new places is really, really, cool, and I’m excited to explore many new places in the years to come. Here are some snaps of these flights over the past few days.

Daytona, Home Of The Daytona 500
Downtown Tampa, FL
Raymond James Stadium, Home Of The Tampa Bay Buccanneers
KTPA While Flying The Bridge Transition, Which Goes Right Down The Middle Of Runway 27
A Huge T-Storm Over The Gulf

, Topping Out Over 40,000 Feet

The Great Little Perry Airport, Where Only Three Planes Were On The Ramp
Three Nelsons, Home Of A Great Burger And Great Ice Cream (Perry, FL)
A Stunning Live Oak In Perry, FL (Outside Three Nelsons)
Some Clouds You Fly Through, Others You Go Around. This One You Go Around.
The Mouth Of Tampa Bay And The Skyway Bridge

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