After lunch and a rest break, an easy 2 hour flight would be easy. Weather was clear the rest of the way, and the Harley shop was open until 7pm. We didn’t have a car or room reservations, but we’d have options if we needed them.

Picking up my IFR clearance via the GCO worked from the ramp, but didn’t work from the departure end of the runway. It was VFR, so we departed toward Gainesville and picked up the clearance in the air. Full speed ahead.

Climbing out I could tell that the performance I’d been used to in the cold air had abated in the warmer and more humid air. We slowly accelerated on the ruway and then slowly built up to a respectable 1200 fpm climb rate. The last leg to KVDF – Tampa Executive – was an additional 2 hours.

Preparing to land at Tampa Exec, I cancelled IFR and dropped below the Class B airspace of Tampa International. I fell in line with the other two in the pattern, and used a right pattern for RW18.

Ted and I tied up, and the staff at Tampa Exec helped me cover the airplane. I secured it and refueled the mains and Auxes only. The nacelle tanks were half full, and I left them that way. At the time, I was planning on a fuel stop for a better fuel price at Elizabeth City, NC.

The shuttle we had arranged from the shop had fallen through, so we called the Duck-Man…. a unique cab driver from the area. He got us over to the shop.


By fdorrin

Fully retired now, unless something interesting comes along. I’ve enjoyed a lucrative career as an Electrical Engineer, Certified Software Solutions Developer, and Project Manager. An excellent and fun career that I’m very proud of. I began flying commercially in Dash-8 aircraft for Piedmont Airlines, and moved on to instruct in the Gulfstream 280; WestWind; and Astra jet aircraft. I’ve also been blessed with a type rating in the B-25 bomber in a fortunate turn of events. My wife, Beverly, and I currently own and operate a beautifully restored PA30 Twin Comanche, which we use to explore the CONUS.