Boy did we have a great time at the 2002 Central Texas Fly-In in Waco Texas.
This is a real grass roots kinda event. A beautiful grass strip, that really only rv's
can safely get in and out of by the hundred. We left as a flight of three, with Danny (left) and Greg (right ).
The trip was just great, we passed through Alabama with tall vertical white cumulo clouds
and we just buzzed around them. Once in Mississippi, they turned into a scattered layer
and we just trucked along.
Even with the GPS coordinates, finding the field was not easy. The temporary tower control
(thanks who ever you were) was extremely efficient. Is that a deer stand. Oh right, we are in Texas.
Once we arrived, the fun began. No vendors, lots of RV's, and the best little mesquite trees
you ever saw to hide people and planes under to escape the heat. Thanks to whomever
ordered the trees.
The hospitality was, well lets just say top shelf even for Texans. We got a ride into town
for a fine meal with more lie swapping and just plain plane talk. Even the kids had fun.
We caught another ride to the Best Western, oh there are 2 we found out in Waco, and settled in
for a well deserved nights sleep. The the real run began.
We had front row seats for all the Saturday morning arrivals. We looked real official in our
matching shirts. We immediately started scoring the landings. And we did not give em
away either. Some low scorers would shake their heads as they taxied by , shaking their
heads as we gave em a 3......they had the "rats" look on their faces knowing they only got
one shot to impress us. If only they one more chance to show us a better landing.
Those that scored high, got cheers from the crowd. Best scores went to the tail draggers
with greaser wheel landings. They were so pretty. We knew it, so did they as they taxied by ,
we gave em 10's, they gave us a , "Whew! Thumbs up" look as they had snagged a great
landing on the only chance they got. A great job to all. And fun fun fun for the impromptu
judges from Atlanta and Kansas City.
Planes planes, planes, all tucked into these perfect little trees. From the air it was difficult
to see the planes. Around 10 am, as the arrivals really got hot, you could count 15 planes
buzzing around at once with 4 on final at any one time.
One of the highlights for me was the formation arrival of Stu's Falcon Flight of four. THey
gave us several passes in different formations. Precision, disipline, attitude, tight... are just a
few of the words that came to mind as they flew, landed, and shut down.
Lunch was texas style BBQ with the trimmings. Perfect for dining under those great
mesquite trees. Here too is "Barefoot Billy", a good friend from atlanta who never,
I mean never, wears shoes, even in this tough grass with red ants.
Another treat for me was giving an afternoon ride to a builder newbee who is into the wings
on a RV-7. Can you believe he had never even sat in an RV. Well I fixed that. Afterwards he ran
right home, rejuvinated after his ride. And yes I got him upside down.
Another part of the trip was a scheduled check ride for formation certification. He we are walking
through the planned maneuvers.
On the way to the airport for our check ride. We are lookin good here.
I received my Flight Lead Certification, Paul Greg and Danny got their wingman cert.
We decided afterward that we were only a couple of hundred miles from Grandma,
a short hop in the rv so off we went. Grandma had not seen the plane completed,
she would not get in in it either. We had a great sunset on the way to grandma's
Sunday morning we left for the 1000+ mile trip home. Michelle had not seen the Mississippi
before. We got down low for some pictures.
All in all, it was a perfect trip. To all those volunteers at Waco, food, car rides, tower, helpers,
setteruppers... Thanks so much for showing us such a great time. We will be back next year.
All my pics here 23mb. D/l these if you want all the originals in high res form.