Aerobility Touring trip to Wales by Brian Jupp
On 13th May we set off from Blackbushe for our halfway stop at Shobdon, Nathan flying Yankee Yankee with Toby in the right hand seat and me in the back, while Barry flew the PA 32 with Damian. After a change of crews and a leisurely lunch we set off for Llanbedr. Llanbedr is an ex RAF base with VERY long runways and the field is now run by Fly Llanbedr, a fledgling flying school and club which has only been in existence for a couple of years. I had had previous contact with them and they very generously waived the landing fees for us.
We arrived at our hotel, Min Y Mor, right on the front at Barmouth and after finding our room and unpacking, met up in the bar for pre dinner drinks. I had heard that drinking alcohol through a straw made you drunk more easily, tell that to Nathan! I've not seen vodka disappear at that rate of knots since my navy days.
The following morning, Brian Macdonald ( a wildlife expert and local historian ) collected us from the hotel for a trip into the foothills of the Rhynog mountain range in his 4 x 4.
In the afternoon, Damian and Toby took the 28 for some mountain flying lessons and Barry and I shared the 32, with Nathan as passenger flying up the Menai Strait to the Great Orme swapping control from left hand seat to right and flying up the Llanberis pass and round Snowdon – twice! The weather was great and the views awesome.
We had had a request from The Douglas Bader foundation, who sponsored Nathan getting his PPL, to ask if we could do a Dambusters type flypast over the Llyn Brianne dam at midday on Sunday. On our journey we encounterd a lot of turbulence and trying to keep the 28 in sight was not easy, but with Barrys' timing we arrived at Llyn Brianne bang on time. Dropping down into the valley over the reservoir the turbulence got worse but we managed to fly over the dam to the delight of the crowd of cyclists gathered there, doing a charity cycle ride for the Douglas Bader foundation.
A slight hiccup on the way back when the engine in the 32 made some noise it shouldn't have done, I said to Barry “Are playing with the levers again” to which he informed that we had run out of fuel in the tank we were on. Swiftly changing tanks, we carried on our merry way.
It was a very good trip with a lot of laughs. Here's to the next one.