Aimee and I took the opportunity this year to bring Charlie to visit with some other Stinsons (and their caretakers) a the 2022 Stinson Summit in Quincy, Il. After a quick flight over from 35D to KBTL to finish up a checkride, we set out toward a stopping point in Pontiac, IL for a gas stop and a stretch of the legs.
The flight from KBTL to KPNT and then on beyond to KUIN was directly into the sun. I couldn’t help but feel like an idiot when it took me about 2 hours of flying directly into the western sun in 85 degrees with the windows open to realize I had a hat on the back seat that would shield my eyes from the brightness!
Slightly bump all the way, the flight was a great time for Aimee and I to hang out together on what was within a few days of our 5 year anniversary of both being married, and of buying Charlie.
A pretty cool way to spend the time and commemorate a few years that have gone by if you ask me.
Charlie seemed to agree and purred along the way nicely as we travelled over the scenic landscape of corn in Illinois that was only a few weeks from being cut and feeding our next year of people, livestock, and all the products that come from such a wide expanse of farmland.
A quick stop for a bathroom and a refuel and we were headed from KPNT to our destination of KUIN a little less than an 2 more hours away.
A stretch of the legs was pretty darn welcome when we bot there. While I love riding along in Charlie, my sixth hour in a plane that day was happily my last.
Off to the hotel we went for some dinner and a good night’s sleep before attending the Stinson Summit the next day.
I can’t say enough how good of an idea it is for an aircraft owner to attend type club events and gatherings. The things you learn as an owner cannot be learned on your own without the help of the communities that surround aircraft. The International Stinson Club (https://stinsonowners.org/) is no different, and arguably one of the best owner communities around.
After a day and half of gathering, Aimee and I headed home to beat some expected strong winds the next day and for a checkride I had scheduled on the next day.
With a nice tailwind, we might have actually been able to make it all the way home without a stop pretty easily, if I hadn’t drank as much coffee for breakfast.
So, we make a fuel and de-coffee stop in Michigan City (KMGC). Winds were definitely picking up by the time we left KMGC and I was happy to be on the way, although expecting a challenging crosswind landing back at Allegan. An expectation that didn’t disappoint.
The last leg from KMKG to 35D (Allegan) went by quickly and gave us a beautiful view of Lake Michigan along our left side as we traveled into well-familiar grounds that Charlie and I travel regularly.
The whole round trip was a great fall adventure, one that I hope I get to have the opportunity to do again to next year’s Stinson Summit wherever it is held.
Charlie deserves more adventures like this on a regular basis. Well, at least a couple of times a year.
Home in her hangar, it was time for Charlie to rest, and probably time for me to start thinking about her next oil change and the winter flying season ahead.