Home > VansAirForceForums

-Advertise in here!
- Today's Posts | Insert Pics

Keep VAF Going
Donate methods

Point your
camera app here
to donate fast.

Go Back   VAF Forums > Main > RV General Discussion/News
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-15-2016, 02:31 PM
Bugsy's Avatar
Bugsy Bugsy is offline
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Waukesha, Wisconsin
Posts: 554
Default Send me a bill. Bill

I sent Bill an email to let us know how much food was left over so we can chip in.

Solid IFR in Milwaukee. Ceilings just got high enough 1200, but Kathy said we'll catch it next year.
Paul 'Bugsy' Gardetto, Col, USAF (ret)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Timmerman Field)
N377KG - Flying (250 hrs)
RV-7A, Aerosport O-360, WW200RV
Advanced Flight 5400
Avidyne IFD440
Paint by
Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2016, 05:52 PM
RV6_flyer's Avatar
RV6_flyer RV6_flyer is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: NC25
Posts: 3,763

Originally Posted by Bugsy View Post
I sent Bill an email to let us know how much food was left over so we can chip in.

Solid IFR in Milwaukee. Ceilings just got high enough 1200, but Kathy said we'll catch it next year.
I sent "Slats" an iMessage saying I also will chip in to keep him from going in the hole.
Gary A. Sobek
NC25 RV-6
3,400+ hours
Where is N157GS
Building RV-8 S/N: 80012

To most people, the sky is the limit.
To those who love aviation, the sky is home.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2016, 09:36 AM
N363RV's Avatar
N363RV N363RV is offline
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Arlington, tx
Posts: 206
Default Let us know

Bill... Send out an email that gives folks an idea of how much we can donate to help you guys from going upside down on this fly in. I think most of us feel bad the weather held us back.
Builders: John & Amanda
Model: RV 6A
Based - KJWY
Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2016, 05:53 PM
jfrank71 jfrank71 is offline
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Cotulla, TX
Posts: 185

Just let me know how much to send. Want to make sure this great fly in makes the VAF calendar for next year.
Frank Leone
RV-10 Purchased
Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2016, 08:37 PM
sprucemoose's Avatar
sprucemoose sprucemoose is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: MKE
Posts: 1,532

+1. A lot of us cancelled due to wx but would still like to support the event.
Jeff Point
RV-6, RLU-1 built & flying
ATP, CFI, Tech Counselor, Flight Advisor & President- EAA Chapter 18
Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2016, 11:43 PM
BillSchlatterer BillSchlatterer is offline
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 601
Default Petit Jean 2016 .... what an AMAZING group of RV Pilots

Stunning Sunday Departure Pictures by Dan Valovich: .....

It's amazing to me when folks like something so much they offer to pay for it ...even when they got none of it Wow.... you just have to think about that a little bit! Thanks to everyone for the offers and we'll let you know how it goes when the dust settles but more important, here is a short story about the weekend. This is the short one but know that there are lots of short and long stories about the journey and new friends found in odd places

Petit Jean Airport and Campground was in better shape than it has ever been. Lots more grass parking on really solid (when dry) ground. Great menus, fun stuff, the waterfalls were spectacular ... and so on. But then Friday happened. Forecasts were for rain Thursday night, blowing through and VFR mid morning. Not a big deal ....and they blew through all right but it left a lot of moisture in the air. All around the mountain, we had pretty good marginal VFR if there is such a thing with 1,000 -1,400 OVC viz 6+ but the trees on the airport are at 1,1,00 MSL and that meant KPMJ was like 300 ovc with vis obsured in the morning. It was supposed to lift after lunch and occasionally hinted at it but nothing really changed for more than minutes at a time.

By late Friday afternoon, we had a total of 3 new arrivals when we were looking for something like 85 to 90 before dinner. The amazing thing was that most pilots & crew that started out came as far as they could VFR and stopped, some flew the approaches, missed and just went to the closest place they could find...... and then they drove it. That's right, we had a Fly & Ride & Drive instead of the usual Fly & Hike. There must be something special about getting to the RV Mountain! There were RVs at airports all over a 100 mile radius of Petit Jean. There were airplanes at Russelville, Conway, Pine Bluff, Mountain Home, Clinton, Batesville, Branson, Fayetteville .... literally everywhere. ATC from Memphis called Air Boss Bob to tell him they were really trying hard to get folks into MPJ on instrument approaches, but they were all going missed. Bob relayed that he could hear them, almost see them, but no one was getting in. Ceilings were indeterminate, rarely MVFR, mostly not. The promised stable VFR never arrived.... and neither did the airplanes.

While we had no planes to speak of, the most amazing thing was that the pilots didn't go home! They landed and drove it in rented cars, appropriated airport cars, and shared rides. The PJ group ran shuttles, and a 14 pass van to pick folks up. We hauled luggage and camping gear and the occasional Spotted Cow We delayed dinner at the Rockefeller Center from 6:30 to 7:30 to let everyone get in.

Even the big boys got grounded, Adam Burch and Sterling from Vans in the factory RV14 were picked up in Clinton, Arkansas by Ron Moring. Ron was stuck in Batesville, rented an SUV that was big enough to be "Spotted Cow Capable" and headed to PJ. While driving(?) he or Kathy picked up "stranded RV" locations off the FaceBook feed and the VAF forums and decided to do shuttle service as well. He was heading to Searcy to pick up Jesse Bentley but then Jesse diverted to Branson. Having been almost there, Ron was close to the Vans boys at Clinton and picked them up on the way in. We had 8 RVs at Russelville, just 30 miles away with MFVR but that didn't get you up on the Mountain. Long story short ... at 5:00 PM Friday, we only had 6 planes on the ramp but at the RCC dinner, we still had 70+ faces looking at each other across the tables, laughing and swapping stories about Petit Jean.... the best DRIVE-IN FLY-IN ever ! You just got to love this RV Community!

Saturday dawned(not) and it looked like the promised 12:00 noon'ish VFR was not going to happen as well. Still looking like 300-500 ovc at the airport with the rare hole teasing us but it slowly started to rise. At 11:00, we heard a couple of RVs overhead and then about 11:15 one finally made the turn to final and the Fearless 1 landed. (Fearless 1 = new call sign) People were starting to post on FB and VAF about it clearing and then it was like an RV swarm on the Mountain. By Air Boss Bob records, we landed 48 more aircraft in the next 90 minutes. That set an all time high activity record for RV Mountain. Now the Sun was shining and the Gathering was on for real! Vic Syracuse and others ran a much faster airborne shuttle service to take all the Ride-Ins back to their airplanes and they were back on the ground at Petit Jean just after lunch. I am told the air-taxi guys were almost offended when someone offered them gas money for the trips... that's just being part of the RV Community

The rest is history! We were expecting 120+ on the overnight ramp and a projected in and out total over 150. Turned out we had 6 on the ramp Friday night, 68 on the ramp Saturday night, and a total of 94 in and out. Considering the weather, it was a huge effort on everyones part to be on the Mountain, one way or the other. Most pushed their limits but safely, stopped where they needed to and came when the time was right! We had a great time Saturday afternoon and Saturday night, lots of pictures to tell the stories. The volunteers scrambled to adjust to the wet parking, the spontaneous shuttle demands, and the schedule that just got tossed out the window..... and they did it very well. Everyone said there was more laughing, horsing around, visiting, and just plane'ole RV socializing than ever before. Maybe it's just me but I think that the challenge of shared adversity brings us all together and makes our lives just a little more crisp. Today, that shared adversity was the very unique experience of making a safe arrival at Petit Jean. New friends were made, not only on the Mountain but also at the airports surrounding it. Shared adversity has a special way of bonding friendships and this year on the Mountain will be a special memory for a lot of our Petit Jean RV friends.

We have had a very active FaceBook Group page associated with the Fly-In. There are already hundreds of pictures posted there and it takes me a long time to get normal pictures to a shared site and posted to our website The easiest way to get to fun iPhone pictures and iPhone videos is to click on this link and join the group Make it a Liked Favorite and once you have been approved, you can comment, post pictures directly from your phone, discuss, or do whatever you like that is Petit Jean related. We'll have a lot more pictures posting on the VAF later this week.

This may not have been the biggest Petit Jean Gathering but when you look back at the adversity overcome and the friendships that happened because of it ...... I'm not sure we won't remember it as one of the very best!

On behalf of all the PJ Volunteers, including the RV pilot volunteers, EAA165 North Little Rock, EAA Hot Springs, EAA Conway ..... thanks for coming and thanks for your generous support .... we hope to see you next year on the Mountain.

Here is a link to some absolutely stunning Sunday morning departure pictures taken by Dan Valovich. Dan will frame, modify, or do anything you want to with these. They are lots of "wall hangers" in this run. Also hundreds of pictures on the FB page now.

Picture Link:
Bill S
Got the Grin :-)
7a Ark KORK
Dues Paid 5/26/21

Last edited by BillSchlatterer : 10-17-2016 at 07:41 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2016, 12:15 AM
Whitman Whitman is offline
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Allentown PA
Posts: 271

Originally Posted by crabandy View Post
From a ghostly lit campsite at PJ......

Fun flight for sure, but the mountain was not to be had late afternoon. Prior to going missed at MPJ I was informed there was a group of fellow RV'ers on the ground at my plan B (KRUE) and a bus was on the way and I was sold. Plan C was the VFRish Fayetville and Branson area, plan D was fly back home.

The LPV approach at KRUE was slowly dropping, 1st RV (I heard) reported bases at 1600' and second RV reported 1500'. We broke out just under 1400' and met some old and new friends for a bus ride to a great dinner.

I really am proud to be a part of THIS safety culture. Reading online and talking to pilots it was very evident that preflight planning, personal minimums and good decision making made safety the number 1 priority. The safety culture was reinforced over the radio as the controllers and pilots worked together:

"I'm relaying a base report and IFR Cancellation for N%#*+"

"I need a vector and more time to setup for the approach you just cleared me for"

"Wx isn't looking good I'm diverting to KXXX"

"Numerous aircraft have missed approach at MPJ, I'll have a current base report from another aircraft shortly"

I look forward to seeing more of you guys after a morning of hiking the trails!

Just before the IAF into MPJ I noticed one of those rainbow thingies surrounding a perfect silhouette of my RV reflecting off a cloud. I marveled at it for a minute before I thought about snapping a pic, the iPhone camera doesn't do it justice.

Beautiful shot! What you saw is called a broken spectre. Check it out on Wikipedia.
RV-4, #audiaviator

"Poise under pressure is the single most valuable thing you can have as a pilot. Make mistakes, take corrective action as quickly and calmly as possible and press on."
Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2016, 09:03 AM
DanH's Avatar
DanH DanH is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: 08A
Posts: 10,357

Friday weather was mostly decent everywhere but Arkansas.

Going home midday Sunday, Patti and I were semi-amused to find the only place in the southeast with lousy weather was Montgomery!

Dan Horton
Barrett IO-390
Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2016, 10:26 AM
MikeyDale's Avatar
MikeyDale MikeyDale is offline
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Garden City Texas
Posts: 919

PJ 2016 was a great "weather" learning experience my lovely Co-pilot and I! We flew from our farm in West Texas 300 miles to Sherman. The first half of that leg was MVFR but lifting all the way. Stopped for some gas in Sherman, Tx and checked the weather again for PJ and central and North Arkansas but we already knew from looking at Mr Dynon on the first leg, it was not lifting there like the forecast predicted. At 5:30, we declared a "No Go". But, we spent the night with my son and his family who live near Sherman. 3 little grandkids were sure surprised so that made up for the disappointment. But, I was sure thinking about that dinner spread at the lodge waiting for us! As soon as we saw some breaks in the clouds in Sherman next morning we headed to the airport but waited till 10:00am to take off because clouds just wasn't lifting over those mountains between us an PJ very fast! We still flip flopped from on top of clouds to beneath the clouds most the way and diverted a little north to follow the Arkansas River east for the last twenty miles before landing at PJ amidst a swarm of RV's at about 11:30 am!....We have been flying with our new ADSB weather for 18 months now and it takes the cake!.....

This is such a great fly in and Bill and Co does so much work to put it on! It has done so much for Nancy and I to meet new friends with airplanes and put names and faces with people I have been talking to for years on this site! And by the way, the Facebook Page was a great idea! Now we can get to know everyone a little easier!

BTW, if anyone ever tells you, "that baggage compartment sure is small", don't let it rattle you! This is 98 lbs of stuff we carried to PJ in our 7 including camping equipment all packed under the Tonneau cover! And yes, that guitar came out of there too!

Mike Hillger
Garden City, Texas
First Flight
Dues Paid

Last edited by MikeyDale : 10-17-2016 at 10:30 AM.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-2016, 10:28 AM
dweyant dweyant is offline
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: 07TS
Posts: 514

Karen and I flew up Friday with a supposed arrival in time for lunch.

We shot the approach into Petit Jean, and it wasn't even close. Wound up as one of the group at Russelville and got the Van ride over in time for dinner.

Bill and all of the other folks worked there butt's off to make this a great weekend for everyone. I was amazed at the amount of effort and planning that obviously had gone into making this a great event.

These guys did an incredible job, and never once did I see them get upset, or let the bad weather have a negative impact on doing everything they could to make sure everyone had a good time.

Karen and I had just a great weekend, and we will be back next year!

It was great meeting a lot of new RV folks, and we even got in a hike to the waterfall!

What could have easily been a bust of a weekend, turned out to be a great time, with some great stories, and new friends.

Thanks again Bill and all of the Petit Jean volunteers!

Dan Weyant
Done and Flying 4/30/2015
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:00 AM.

The VAFForums come to you courtesy Delta Romeo, LLC. By viewing and participating in them you agree to build your plane using standardized methods and practices and to fly it safely and in accordance with the laws governing the country you are located in.