Canada’s national airline flew its first transcontinental flight in 1939. Seventy-five years later, Arcadia and I will fly that route again: Montreal to Vancouver via Ottawa, North Bay, Kapuskasing, Winnipeg, Regina, and Lethbridge.

IMG_0108This is our country: a thin strip of civilization along the southern border.

October 1, 2014

Mission 2014 is now complete, at least in the execution. Arcadia and I set out from Vancouver in pouring rain on Monday, September 29. After two weeks away, I just wanted to get home. Wednesday afternoon at 1700 hours Arcadia was tucked away in her hangar at Lachute, Quebec and I was on my way home, dead tired.

Three days, four stops enroute, five legs (CYVR-CYQL-CYQR-CYHD-CYTS-CSE4), 13:25 air time, 14:39 block to block. Two approaches to 400 feet (Regina and Timmins). Most of the time we were in cloud or between layers. We didn't see much of the country on our way back.

Am I glad I did it? You bet. There are many more stories here that will be written - stand by.

Posted on this 2014 by


Routine Stuff

Arcadia and I take off  a week tomorrow to fly Mission 2014. Suddenly there is more to do.

I have already planned each leg and filed the route and altitude with All that’s left to do there is click the file this box the night before, approved and perhaps adjust the departure time or the fuel. I have mapped out a rough schedule, but of course nature is more powerful than I am, so there may be adjustments to make. That makes hotels and rental cars more problematic. What I’ll do is research names and phone numbers and reserve 24 hours or so ahead.

I still have to write and print the Flight Logs.

Flight Logs? For each flight leg there is a new 8 1/2 x 11 sheet on my clipboard. It has all the information I will need to fly the leg: filed route, leg distances and bearings, frequencies, and airport elevations, with spaces to write operating times, ETA’s, and clearances. I don’t want to have to dig or turn pages for any of that while flying in cloud with my left hand.

Then there are the lists: before departure tasks, aircraft equipment checklist, things to buy. It feels good when I can draw a line through something and the list gets a little smaller.

New Stuff

Then there’s the new stuff – particularly the kids. I am looking forward to going to schools or having the kids come to the airport. I just bought the parts to make a gadget they can hold in their hands and experience how a gyroscope works. I figure they will remember the gadget more than they remember me or what I say, and perhaps the memory will make them curious to learn more.

And of course I will have to account for myself if (as I hope) the media are curious. This is a new skill for me to learn. Why am I doing this? What do I hope to accomplish?

I want to be able to answer briefly and clearly, without babbling or droning on. Will I be able to?

Over the Falls

Linda, my dear wife of 46 years, gave me the answer the other night. She said, Hey, your on your way. You’re going over the falls. Enjoy it!