Travel Log

Fagen Fghter Museum

The weekend was looking nice so we decided to take my friend Tim's and mines rv-10's for a quick day trip.  We loaded up both planes with 4 people and headed to Granite Falls, MN to check out Fagen Fighters museum.

The planes departed at about 10:30 for the 40 minute flight.  Weather was good and air was smooth.  Landing in Granite Falls, the wind was a bit strong but all went well.  We tied the planes down and heading for our tour.

After a couple of hours spent with some great warbirds, we jumped back in and headed for home.  Had a bit of a tailwind so the flight was only 30 minutes back.

What a way to spend a day, flying, time with friends and a great museum.

Wow is all I can say about this museum.  Definitely one of the best I have visited.  If you get a chance to visit this museum, you will not regret it.

Fagen Fighters Museum Webiste

Click on the images below for all the pics.

In flight pictures

Tim and I decided to go up and do some in flight pictures today.  Great day to fly, little wind and smooth air.  A bit hazy but we can deal with that.

Got some pretty cool pics.  Click on the pictures to see them all.

Valley City Airshow

Was looking for something to do this weekend and saw that Valley City was having their air and car show.

Grabbed my nephew Connor and couple of friends, Tim and Eric and flew my RV-10 to the airshow.

After a quick 30 minute flight, we were on the ground and being escorted to our parking spot in the grass along the runway.  Was a great spot to sit in and watch the airshow next to the airplane.

Spent the day browsing around looking at old cars and quite a few airplanes.

The airshow was very good.  Will definitely be coming back for this one.

Gathering of Airplanes - Beck Fly-In

It was once again time for the Gathering of Airplanes. A tribute to the late Gerry Beck.  This was the 8th Annual event held at the Battle Lake, Minnesota airport.

The forecast was to be a great day.  However, upon awaking that morning the sky was completely blocked with a low lying cloud layer.  Ceiling not getting much more than 900 feet.

Spent most of the morning sitting around waiting for the weather to clear with no luck.  So Mckenna and I decided that since the ceiling was high enough, we could just jump in the plane and run over there.

Turned out to be a great event with lots of spectators and more planes that I had expected would come due to the weather. Spent a few hours and then headed for home.

Turned out to be a great day after all.

Quick flight with Tim around Wahpeton

Tim and I took our two RV-10's up this morning for a quick ride to enjoy the nice morning weather.  Took off and headed south.  Had  a few low lying clouds so we found a hole and shot up on top.  Great ride with some smooth air.  Tim took a few more pics than I did, Thanks Tim.

Couple of pics for ya.


Airventure 2014

After years of building my RV-10, I finally got to take one more thing of my bucket list.  And that is to take my own airplane, that I built, and fly it into the biggest airshow event know as Airventure in Oshkosh, WI.

The trip included myself along with a my nephew Connor and good friend Ellis (who soon will also be able to fly into Airventure as he gets his private license and fly in our RV-12 that we are in the process of building).

We decided that since this was the first fly in that we better do the whole experience and plan to set up camp right next to the airplane.  Have not camped in 15 years so knew this was going to be quite the experience sleeping in a tent for 5 nights.

Our original plan was to leave on Sunday morning but the weather was not in our favor so decided to leave a day early to stay ahead of the weather.  So Saturday morning got all our our gear loaded up and took off for Oshkosh.  There were a few clouds that we had to maneuver around but soon the skies cleared and it was smooth sailing for the rest of the trip.

Upon arriving at Oshkosh the nerves were getting a bit high as I was not sure what to expect with the traffic and the unusual arrival route.  However as we flew the arrival with all eyes looking for other aircraft, it was much easier than had been anticipated.  We flew right in with no issues and made a landing on the yellow dot on runway 36, taxied to the HBC campground and set up camp.

We spend the next days walking around the grounds, which are quite enormous, and took in all the activities and attractions that Airventure has to offer.  Taking in many of the vendors, looking at some cool home built aircraft, visiting the museum and catching a couple of the airshows was enough to fulfill our need.

Thursday morning came quite quickly and it was time to pack up and get ready to head out for home.  As we started out taxi to the runway, there was a plane crash that closed the airport and we had a few our delay.  The tower did finally open up one of the runways so we decided to give it another try.  We spent over 2 hours in line for departure and the takeoff was uneventful, as was the rest of the trip home.

We arrived back in Wahpeton that afternoon, spent some time unloading and cleaning up, then sat back and enjoyed a beer as we reminisced about our trip.

Was a great trip and already starting to think about next years trip to Airventure.

Click on the images below to see the full array of pics.

Wings of Freedom

The Wings of Freedom tour was in Fargo a few weeks ago but due to being out of town, I was not able to make it to the show.  However, they were also making a stop in Minneapolis at Anoka County Airport this last weekend so there was another chance.

The day was looking pretty good except for some strong wings so decided to make a trip down.  My daughter Mckenna and I headed off to the airport and make the 50 minute flight to Minneapolis. 

Flight was pretty good, few bumps down low and very few clouds.  Had a nice tailwind of 36 kts on the way down so went quite quick.  Unfortunately had the same coming home, now only a headwind, then landing winds of 26 gusting to 34 at home.

Spend a couple hours checking out the warbirds, B-17, B24 and the P-51c, grabs some snacks and headed for home.

The whole trip was only about 4 hours but was a great day to spend with Mckenna. 

Trip To Denver to Look at other RV-10's

Over the last year or so a few of my good friends decided that after watching me build and fly airplanes that maybe this is something that they would also enjoy.  So each took the step and started their taking lessons for their private pilots license.

All three are getting very close to finishing up and would assume that each will be completed and a licensed pilot by the end of the summer.

One of these friends has been contemplating purchasing his own aircraft and immediately began looking.  During the last months he about had his mind made up on getting a Mooney.  However, after many conversations he thought that maybe he should also include looking at some RV-10's.  Why not, he is already familiar with how they are built and how they fly.

So anyway, we happened to come across a couple of RV-10's that were in the Denver area and decided to jump in my plane and go take a closer look at them.  The two of us departed from the Wahpeton airport about 6:30am and headed for Front Range, Colorado, arriving after a perfect 3 hour and 3o minute flight.

One we arrived we did find out that both aircraft were actually hangared at the same airport.  After spending several hours looking over each of the aircraft and doing a little flying in them, we decided to grab a quick bite and head for home.

The trip home was full of conversation on the two aircraft.  Discussing different options, what would need to be changed, added and removed.  Also talked in depth about the cost differences in not only the purchase of airplane compared to a Mooney, but also the operating costs.  Even with him not being able to do the condition inspection since he is not the original builder.  This discussion pretty much made up his mind on which aircraft would be the best fit for his use as it was perfect as is.  There were no major changes that he preferred and the minor ones are very minor.

The trip home was again another great flight, weather and ride was perfect.  After flying for 3 hours and about 5 minutes, we were once again back on our home turf, arriving at 6:30 pm.  What a very fullfilled 12 hours.

The next week was filled with many conversations about the airplane amongst us and the seller.  Did not take long and purchasing negotiations were underway.  A few days pass and we had flight arrangements with the airlines to go and pick up this new bird.

Three of us flew down and spent the day doing the inspection of the aircraft, build logs and aircraft logs.  Deal was signed and celebrated over some dinner.  The next day we arrived at the airport, said our farewells to the now old owner of this beautiful RV-10 and off for home we went.  We decided to stop in North Platte, NE for a quick lunch, talk about the next leg or our flight and I decided it was time to put the new owner in the left seat so he could be the one bringing her into her new home.  We arrived back in Wahpeton about 4:30pm to a group of friends and family to welcome us back.  It was a great day.

There was that famous RV grin as he had his first flight in his new RV-10.

Click on Images for more pics

EAA Hops & Props 2014

Over the last couple of months have only made a few small local trips and was needing a reason to get out of the neighborhood.  So last week when on the EAA site I saw that they were holding an event called Hops and Props.

The Hops & Props is a food and beverage tasting event.  The event is held in the EAA museum in Oshkosh, WI, which means you can be in the presence of very cool aircraft and drink various styles of beers.  What else more could a person want.

During the event you can sample over 250 different beers that are provided by micro-brewries,  learn about their brewing process and history. 

The forecast was for a perfect weekend so thought this would be a great reason to get away for a night so arranged for my wife and I along with some friends to head out for the event.  Saturday morning headed out to the hangar and did a once over on the plane to make sure it was ready for the flight.  Just as I was finishing Stacey called and said she was not feeling well and thought she came down with a case of the flu.  This would be here first ride in this plane and I think it was more nerves than the flu.

Was not real happy about it but decided that the girls would stay home and Tim and I would go and enjoy the event without them.

Flight to Oshkosh was perfect, weather was mostly sunny and had a nice tail wind of 32 knots.  Arrived in Oshkosh around 5:00 pm, checked into the hotel and off to the EAA Museum.  The Hops & Props event was very cool.  Got to sample a variety assortment of beers (some were not so good) and gawk at aircraft while the bands played in the background.

The next morning came, the sun was shinning bright and looked be be another beautiful day.  Took our time getting ready and enjoyed a simple breakfast then off to the airport.  The plane was stored in a heated hangar for the night so had it pulled out, filled with fuel and we were off for the trip home.

The fight home was very good just like the previous days but only this time we had a 52 knot headwind.  Needless to say it took a bit longer to get home.  But that was ok, just enjoyed the smooth flight and some great scenery.

Only been home for a short time, and already to take that next trip.  Pretty sure I can come up with something.

Click on images for more pics of the trip.

Bear Lodge - Jan 2014

This last weekend a few friends and myself decided to take this new RV10 on its first real cross country trip to Wyoming.  One of the main motivations in building this airplane was to use it to travel to Wyoming.  I do spend a lot of time there in the winter.  Driving by vehicle it takes almost 12 hours, flying takes under 3.  Hmm, wonder which I would rather do?

So anyway, Friday morning at 6:30 am we jumped in and headed west for Sheridan, WY.  With a pretty hefty head wind, out time en-route was shown to be 3 hours and 4 minutes. The morning weather was a bit hazy and the runway a bit slick from an overnight freezing drizzle.  We then climbed to 8500 ft and set the autopilot so we could sit back and enjoy the overhead stars.

About 45 minutes into the flight it started to cloud up and almost immediately started to snow.  Visibility was still good and ground easily visible.  After about 10 minutes of flight into the snow I could see that we were getting closer to the clouds so decided to drop down to 6500 feet to stay clear.  This worked out well and within another 30 minutes we were back in the clear.  For the rest of the trip out, the winds were more favorable up high so we cruised at 10500 for the rest of trip.

On arrival to Sheridan, weather was very good with a scattered layer at 20,000 and winds 4 knots right down the runway.  I did the RNAV approach to Rwy 32 into Sheridan and before long we were on the ground.  

We had a very good friend who drove out the day before with our snowmobiles and gear so he came to the airport to pick us up.  He was already waiting as we taxied into the local FBO.  Once stopped, we unloaded, the FBO took the plane to a nice hangar to rest for the next couple of days, and off we went to the top of the Big Horn Mountains.

The next couple of days were filled with great snowmobiling out of Bear Lodge Resort.  Had pretty good weather and found some great snow.  

Sunday morning we awoke, took some time to chat, packed our gear, and off to the airport for the trip home.  Once again the weather in Sheridan was pretty good.  A scattered layer at 8500 and a broken layer at 12,000.  The surface winds were forecast to be 25 -32 knots which did not sit real good with me but at time of departure, they were only 12 gusting to 18.  After a getting the tanks topped off we taxied out to Rwy 32 and off we went.  During the first 20 minutes of flight we had those overhead clouds then it turned perfectly clear and smooth for the rest of the flight.  Had some great tailwinds helping us along.  Our ground speed read 216 knots and time en-route ended up being 2 hours and 15 minutes to touchdown in Wahpeton.

This was a great first trip and look forward to many more

Minot Volleyball Tournament

Now that the plane has been flying a while and have the Phase I complete.  It is time to take some friends and family up for a flight.  I have a step niece who's volleyball team made it to the state championship in Minot, ND.  Why wouldn't we take a trip up to watch the game, only about an hour and 15 min flight.  So, with a friend, another niece and my mother, off we went.  

Overall trip was good with great weather besides it being a little cold.

This was a great opportunity to take a short cross country flight to really see how it will handle.

Sorry, not pics.  Can'e believe I forgot the camera. Oh, well.