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  #91  
Old 04-22-2017, 07:56 AM
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Default 4/20 - Off to Grenada (2)

Time to turn around.




And back the other way.


Time to cross over the island at a low point.


Just a 2 mile open water trip to Nevis.


After a whopping 15 minutes on the hobbs to the fuel stop.




Thanks Omel for getting us in and out so fast. If you're in the area, she will take great care of you.


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  #92  
Old 04-22-2017, 07:58 AM
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Default 4/20 - Off to Grenada (3)

Fuel up, load 'em up, and head out. Charlie flight pulled up to the pumps just as Bravo vacated.




South coast of Nevis.


Bravo 2 doing a great job.



After Nevis we started ticking off the islands as we headed southbound in an arc to stay a little closer to land. Most of the controllers wanted reports of either abeam the airport or calls for abeam the north and south coasts of their island. It isn't a difficult request, but sometimes the speed of speech with the thick accents makes it tough. It often takes Scott and I listening intently to understanding it a all. By the way Rosie, the french controllers were nice! Going through their airspace is actually easier than most because they speak mostly in french, so I don't even have to try and comprehend the radio calls.

The flight was easy with just one significant deviation around some heavy rain as we approached Grenada - standard island flying, make a turn and go around. Sorry Jimmy, we tried for what we are calling Umbrella Island, but it was covered up by the rain. We'll have to see about outbound but are a bit more fuel limited. Our three ship was given a 5 mile left base entry and cleared to land about 10 miles out.



Welcome to Maurice Bishop International.


Onto the ramp to be greeted by airport operations and FBO personnel. They would have preferred we arranged ahead for ramp space for our 9 airplanes, but we chatted a bit and found a solution. After we demonstrated we could pack the planes in like sardines, they headed back to work with island smiles. The fuel truck came around to top off the tanks, and they showed up johhny on the spot for Charlie flight after we told them they'd want fuel when they landed.



Cab to the hotel, check in, find food, and work away the rest of the day telling stories at the pool with the waves crashing behind us.

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  #93  
Old 04-23-2017, 03:54 PM
Larry Parham Larry Parham is offline
 
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Default Rosie & Tuppergal’s Caribbean Trip

Looked at 2013 and 2015 and could not find answer, and was wondering if ALL are flying VFR or IFR or a combination?

Just curious
thanks
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  #94  
Old 04-23-2017, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Parham View Post
Looked at 2013 and 2015 and could not find answer, and was wondering if ALL are flying VFR or IFR or a combination?

Just curious
thanks
ALL VFR always. "Technically" speaking. I sure am enjoying having a flight where every wingman has an instrument ticket though.
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Last edited by scard : 04-23-2017 at 04:25 PM.
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  #95  
Old 04-23-2017, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Parham View Post
Looked at 2013 and 2015 and could not find answer, and was wondering if ALL are flying VFR or IFR or a combination?

Just curious
thanks
On all the trips I have been on we have all flown VFR except for the Cayman Islands where a IFR flight was required over Cuba.
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  #96  
Old 04-23-2017, 04:20 PM
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Default Jack - pt1

So, there I was on the island of Grenada with a monkey on my back. His name was Jack… (No, Jack’s first name wasn’t Capt., it was Jack dummy! Nor was his last name Daniels.)

I’m sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself. Friday was to be a day for a grand tour of Grenada via ground transport. Sharkbait did the organization under the cover of darkness the evening that we arrived on this Great island while many of us sat around the pool telling stories and marveling at the 125’ sailing yacht anchored just off shore in front of our resort. It’s two masts illuminated all of its grandeur in the ink well of darkness.

Andrew had contacted the taxi driver that provided service from the airport who assured Andrew (Sharkbait) that he would acquire a properly sized “bus” for our touring crew of 14 sweaty travelers. We were set for a 9am departure with the intention of a 3pm return so that those going on the night dive could make their 5:45 hack for diving. With a much needed nights sleep, the bus arrived right on time. Even Rosie commented very quietly, “Uh, are we all going to fit in that?”

Sure enough, it was a bit like loading the Ark, except there would be no two-by-two this time. Just one sardine at a time. Noah must have said, “Get on the bus dammit, for there is a grand adventure ahead and you don’t want to be left behind.” And so they did. Our LITTLE Ark pulled out of dock right on time and Rosie wasted no time telling our Captain “Jeff”, “Jeff, I gotta’ go pottie…”, shortly followed by the expected question from the back of the bus “Are we having FUN!?” To which all of the travelers aboard proclaimed in unison “YES!”. And we were on our way in this little rickety 10 person van with 14 people stuffed in it. Oh, I mean bus / Ark, …. Oh, what ever.





Our general path of travel was a clockwise traversal of about ¾ of the circumference of the approx. 130 square miles of the island. All of the roads are full of potholes and are very narrow. The pedestrians are just as fearless as the drivers squeezing by each other at speed, 20mph most of the time, with barely a wing skin worth of thickness between them. The first 15min of the trip was a real trust builder that our driver wasn’t going to flatten one of the many pedestrians that we would pass during the day or scrape half of the bus off on a passing vehicle going the other way during the rest of our eight hour adventure. I’ll pause for you to do a little quick math…

This is a pretty rugged island with some steep elevation changes on narrow roads that provide some pretty amazing landscapes. Jeff seemed particularly proud of their land fill and pointed it out as we went buy. It is true that many of these islands simply don’t have an organized place or plan for refuse disposal.



Our land Ark and its cargo bounced through the mountain roads with excitement around every sharp corner for about an hour before reaching its first intended destination. A nutmeg factory.

We pulled into the town of Gouyav with anticipation to experience one of the process that produces a spice product that this island is known for. The bus wasted no time unloading the uncomfortable and hot seats. We took a tour of the factory which I guess totaled about 3500 square feet in size. The only piece of automation was a quite primitive centrifugal nut cracker. The rest was manual labor for sorting and cleaning. This island isn’t the biggest producer of nutmeg, but prides itself on the best quality in the world. The education and tour took about twenty minutes with a stop in the gift shop to purchase some samples to take home, which we did.





Back on the bus, one-by-one, the breath of life of our Ark was loaded once again. There is an evil twist to this transport. The cargo hold has but one exit handle on the Outside of the bus! The interior exit mechanism was… INOP.

It was a relatively short drive through the mountain roads to the chocolate factory. I think everybody enjoyed this stop very much. Who doesn’t love chocolate!? Mmmm, I sense some cookies in my future. Er, screw it, gimme that chocolate bar!. We were greeted by our tour guide and general proprietor inside. She was great and took us straight out to a cocoa tree in the light drizzle of the rain forest. Under the cover of the tree, we all stood while she picked a fresh pod and cracked it open on a rock, handing out its sweet fruit for us to enjoy while she explained this great plant. That was a very neat experience, standing in the rain forest with a light rain falling, not getting wet, under a coca tree talking about this iconic plant.





We got the full processing tour that included a visit to the biggest praying mantis that you’ve ever seen.


Back in the guest center, Tanya and Chappy procured a chocolate smoothie which was amazing. A sip of that almost made my head pop off. Many of us bought pounds of this great chocolate which I am enjoying as I write this, listening to the waves crash onto the beach. I saw Sharkbait hauling off with a two pound block with a particular swagger of pride.



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  #97  
Old 04-23-2017, 04:21 PM
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Default Jack - pt2

How can you possibly top an island chocolate factory? By going to a Rrrummmm factory of course! "Arrrr, our caravan of pirates have turned the northern shore of the island matey and we are in search of Rrrrummmm to bolster our soul and sore butts!” We pulled into the Rum factory with high expectations and in search of food. We weren’t disappointed. While we toured the facility, the onsite restaurant prepared a simple buffet special for our group as we were the only ones there. This place has been here since the late 1700s and some of the original equipment was still in use, including the primary power for the process from a large 25’ water wheel brought over by the British. The amount of sugar cane they go through is amazing. Then it was time for a taste. This is 75% alcohol. I’m not an expert, but a thimble full tells me that this is nearly off the “proof” scale. If burned in a Lycoming, my taste buds say that you should be prepared to lose a cylinder on takeoff. I don’t think we had any souls brave enough for a second taste. We reminisced about the day so far over lunch overlooking the gardens around the cane fields. Simply beautiful.











Back on the bus, we did a quick flyby of Grand Etang Lake which is the source of water for the island then onto the next major attraction, Annandale Falls. I told you it was a grand tour. It was starting to get a little late in the day, but we weren’t quite done yet. Our sea legs were fully developed by now and each step off of the bus took a little readjusting. Our ship bounced back down the mountain with its crew becoming a little more quiet than earlier in the day. We made landfall at the falls. As usual, I leapt from the front seat to release the captive crew. It is here that we were greeted by Jack. I don’t know what it was about Jack, but he was calm and kind to these weary travelers. I’m not much of one for monkeys on my back, but he whispered something sweet in my ear. Something to the effect of “I know you’ve been on a bus touring my great island all day, but don’t forget that you are on island time mon’.” The falls were … I was tired. That is all I remember after my refreshing conversation with Jack. He sent us direct back home which was another half hour on the bus.

Here is my buddy Jack and I posing for a selfie.







We pulled back in at about 5pm. Just in time for those doing the night dive at 5:45pm to disembark and sprint to the dive shop. Crazy people they are! That is exactly what the locals have been calling all of us when we tell them the story about how we came from the USA in little airplanes that we built in our garage. Some truly don’t believe us until they make a trip to the airport to see the little airplanes on the ramp.
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Last edited by scard : 04-23-2017 at 08:58 PM.
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  #98  
Old 04-23-2017, 09:01 PM
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The picture backlog continues to pile up but it is time to move on. Good night from Grenada! We all depart tomorrow (Monday) morning for St. Croix for the next leg of this adventure.
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  #99  
Old 04-24-2017, 06:55 AM
NYTOM NYTOM is offline
 
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Talking Wish I was there

Outstanding coverage of your adventure Scott. I would imagine a lot of RVer's are dreaming they were along on this one. Fly safe
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  #100  
Old 04-24-2017, 03:19 PM
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All travelers landed safe. Rosie is on the ramp with the hood open again. Might want to start that gofundme. Internet is definitely more spotty here.

Never bad being greeted with rum punch.

It was a very easy (weather wise) flight for all. Quite welcome day. Time to go see what's what before Alpha flight gets to the resort.
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Last edited by scard : 04-25-2017 at 10:23 AM.
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