Long Day, Good Day!

Sunrise over the Nevada desert.

Making a trip in one day from the Lake Tahoe area to AirVenture can be a bit challenging. Our airport doesn’t have lights, occasionally does have wild horses on it, and the moon is waxing, so I felt it prudent to wait for morning twilight to lift off. As I was flying our Van’s RV-3B, Tsamsiyu, I had to limit flight legs to less than three hours. That’s fine, my bladder has a similar capacity (especially in the morning) and there isn’t really adequate room in the tiny cockpit to make a “flying” pit stop.

First surprise of the day was the vast amount of water in our part of the “desert”. It had been a very wet winter and spring. Note to self: our usual emergency landing sites on dry lakes aren’t available this year!
Flying up a corridor within a MOA but between two Restricted airspaces.

There are pilots who vehemently argue that you should never fly through an active MOA but you won’t fly much in much of the western U.S. if you lived under that restriction. While we stay out of the Fallon restricted airspace, there are fortunately narrow corridors to lessen the inconvenience so my first deviation was to thread the needle between two restricted airspaces.

The winds were favorable so I climbed high. To ensure that my now “elderly” body was handling the altitude okay, I put on my portable oximeter to occasionally check my blood oxygen level.

The winter’s snow lingers on the higher peaks in eastern Nevada. There was a bit of haze across the entire route. Perhaps from Canadian fires?
Waiting at Y51.

My third (and last) fuel stop was about 4 pm CDT at Y51 (Viroqua, Wisconsin), where I found a gaggle of four RVs and a Rocket and associated pilot and passengers hanging out. We all realized that taking off immediately towards Oshkosh would just get us there in time for the Cessna mass arrival. No sense rushing in so we all chilled for about an hour. That strategy worked well as I was able to seamlessly slot in at the Green Lake Transition and come straight in. Fifty-six minutes after departing Y51, I was shutting down in Homebuilt Parking. Just under eight hours of flying plus a total one hour on the ground made for a long, but very good, day.

Taxing in at AirVenture at the close of a long day. A storm to the north of the airport made for a bit of added time stress at the end of the trip.


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