"What are you doing this weekend?"...said John
"Not a lot" was my reply.
OK then...what if we go to Sligo to visit John's uncle Luke, then pop down to Birr to see John's brother (Paul)?
We could stay overnight in Kilkenny and come back Saturday morning.
Sounds like a plan!
Our actual route...BPK-DAV-HON-SWB-CAE-GMN to Sligo
then direct to Abbeyshrule as Paul & Geraldine were sailing up the Shannon to Athlone
Then home via Weston (refuel) routing GMN-WAL-HON-DTY
A beautiful Friday morning as we climbed past Luton enroute HON
notice our new 'wing-cam'?.....John with his arm and camera out the window!
Heading now toward Caernarfon, the cloud building up over the mountains...we climbed to FL85
Descent using the NDB/DME procedure at Sligo to 11.....lots of turbulence and gusting.
The angle of approach due to gusting conditions...but a lovely landing at the end.
Coffee, a long wait for a cab and a return trip to town before setting off for Abbeyshrule
Parked overnight after another crosswind landing on 28.
The owner organised a lift for us to the Rustic Inn where we contacted Paul.
Paul & Geraldine hadn't made the progress they had hoped sailing up the Shannon,
so we took a taxi and met them at Shannon Bridge.
The Village Local.
After a few beers and a great meal at the Old Fort restaurant (crabs claws and local fillet steak),
we tried to get some accommodation....nothing doin...all those folk with Gin Palaces were staying in B&Bs!
So Paul and Geraldine offered us shelter in their boat.
Very cosy accommodation on board.
View both sides of Shannon Bridge next morning.
7am and time to cast off if we are going to make Athlone by 9.30am
The Skipper at the helm and Crew preparing breakfast.
The Sun still rising and the clouds not sure what to do....Nice pic though John.
We used the outboard motor as the wind was against us,
but we were running short of fuel as we approached Athlone.
(and few boats we waived down used petrol)
Luckily we came across some fisherman, who were happy to give us half of their spare tank.
2nd pic - approaching the LOCK at Athlone.
After mooring, we said our goodbyes and took the taxi back to Abbeyshrule.
We filed the flightplan over the phone and departed for Weston.
After Lunch at Weston (& refuel) we wandered back to the plane.
This is what Dee wants...a Grumman Goose...only about £250-300Kish...but what a beast!
Another iconic airplane at Weston with nice artwork.
We departed Weston and were routed to GMN, then LIFFY before crossing back to England.
A great couple of days flying and a lovely boat ride up the Shannon.
Thanks to Paul and Geraldine for their hospitality.