Saturday, October 6, 2012
Nope. The plane is fine. Spent an extra 2 weeks in Washington getting my prop overhauled and one blade replaced. While this work was underway, Path’s annual was done. This involved major repairs to the exhaust system, new ELT battery, and brake pads. The total check was over $5,000. Thus, I am Grounded. I’ve got a perfectly good airplane and no spare money for fuel. AOPA has a program underway to increase General Aviation flying and get more people to start flying. They ask current pilots what can be done. I’ve got one good answer. GET FUEL AFFORDABLE!
Since new flying adventures will not be on the agenda until November, I’ll relate stories of past flights.
San Carlos Apache P13
During my quick trip back to AZ at the end of June, my neighbor, Keith was spending some time at his AZ home, so we decided to visit an airport I’d had on my list of “places to fly to”. The direct route would lead me over Phoenix Sky Harbor International so I pointed Path SE, still in Class B space, but to the south of South Mountains and thus well out of Heavy (commercial jets) traffic.
The airport is located on the Apache reservation about 8 nm SE of the town of Globe, Bésh Baa Gowąh – “place of metal” in the Apache language. The town is just another small town from the air, but the Blue Ball copper mine is impressive. Mine and tailings ponds cover a lot of acreage.
Here are Keith and Thorn, who thoroughly enjoyed our explorations on the ground.
Upon landing, I taxied over to a tie down area near what appeared to be a part-time FBO of sorts. The airport was very quiet and had an air of abandonment. Wanting to stretch our legs we walked west following the boundary fence and about mid-field came across a large parking area with vault toilets and a handy gate to the casino across the road. It was our opinion that a flight for a meal at the casino would be an outing to consider in future. The flight is under one hour, the temperature 10 or more degrees cooler than Buckeye. Some appealing hills across the runway called for hiking exploration.