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  #41  
Old 07-26-2014, 10:15 PM
rockwoodrv9 rockwoodrv9 is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Meridian ID, Aspen CO, Okemos MI
Posts: 2,699
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If you were going to land on those glaciers, you would have needed to borrow my Anti Splat device for the front wheel! HA!
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Williamston MI
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  #42  
Old 07-27-2014, 06:53 AM
Vlad's Avatar
Vlad Vlad is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Utah
Posts: 8,251
Talking Getting bushier

I flew over couple landing sites. What do they mean by "gravel not to FAA standards"?




This one looks legit. Dry Bay AK3. Long runway you can land a space shuttle there.







I was never so cautious on landing. Brought her in nice and slow almost like a helicopter. I was planning a short field but it was the longest one I ever made if calculated from touchdown to full stop. Used all 3,600 feet. Why? Piles of fist sized rocks were all over the strip and I couldn't drop the nose wheel. Tap the brakes, swerve a bit, add some rpm, jump a pile, then another one... Now it's time to stop there is no more room for a go around.






When I stopped I sat for a minute in the cockpit analyzing what's just happened. It looks like I am leaning to the left. Flat tire? I got tubes. Busted brake lines? I got means to fix but no brake fluid... dented prop?.... enough fantasies let's get out take a P and take a look. You grizzly better stay in those woods if you want to be alive.
















After all formalities were done and airframe inspected I walked the runway. I am closing my eyes on takeoff get me outta here baby.












That was the only sunny hour in Alaska for my weeklong trip there will be no more. Back on track to Yakutat there is fuel, food and booze.







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Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 06:55 AM.
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  #43  
Old 07-27-2014, 07:38 AM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Location: Utah
Posts: 8,251
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Yakutat! Finally a civilization!





Great visibility moderately long runways.






Plenty of parking and fuel.











If you plan multiple fueling from pumps like this you better bring some sort of filter with you. A seasoned AK driver told me about that long ago and I forgot.
There was a minor incident a day later when I sampled and fuel kept running from the drain. By the time I accessed my tools it stopped. A piece of debris was caught between O-ring. Didn't bring neither spare o-ring nor drain nor plug lesson learned.




I didn't stay long at Yakutat. Checked local weather, answered couple emails, found out if free lodge is available in case I return in 5 hours. Had a cup of tasty barley soup and launched toward Cordova.







The cruise ship won the race and was already on the way back. I decided to cross Yakutat Bay and kept a close eye on the ship.








Ceilings are lowering again.







Let's see how it looks on top. Oxygen in...






Nah. Cold and icy. Getting under again...


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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.
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  #44  
Old 07-27-2014, 07:39 AM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Location: Utah
Posts: 8,251
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Couple iceberg fields on the way to Cordova.










More and more birds mostly seagulls.







Passing Kayak island.











Entering Orcas Inlet. Strong telephone signal appeared it means a good size village is nearby.







Here it is Cordova AK.






The joy of seeing a human settlement was immediately replaced by bird scare. Hundreds of seagulls from the surface to 2,000 feet I've never seen that many. They were like mosquitos everywhere. That little gravel strip is Cordova Municipal Airport CKU and I couldn't get to it. Meat bombs at every quadrant.







So I flew the gorge out and landed at Mudhole, a monster airport couple miles east of Cordova. No fuel no services. I asked a native how people land at that air carrier? The man was smart, smiled and told me wait till a seaplane goes there and follow him. "Or slow you rocket as much as you can and try it alone couple times. Birds can get annoyed and give you the right of way". Yeah, nice advice...



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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 03:33 PM.
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  #45  
Old 07-27-2014, 07:39 AM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Try #2. I did exactly as old man advised slowed it down to Piper Cub speed, dodged couple meat bombs and successfully touched down.






There is a paved road between parking and runway. You can taxi all the way to downtown I guess.















I grabbed my flight bag with essentials and went to town. I had a list of hotels-shmotels but couldn't call my ATT Go phone was not working there. So I walked to at least three joints and all were booked. At forth place a not so sober individual started asking some provocative questions and I didn't like it. I went back to the airport and sent an email to the Trip Headquarters. An urgent request for intel with key words like this; RV builder maybe RV10 Utah or Wyoming might be in Cordova now, name is associated with Uncle Sam Postal Service". In a Virginia bunker my intelligence adviser Glen was trying to piece these words into a credible asset. He personally knows Mr Google himself he can do it. No response was received within 30 minutes I returned to the plane, jumped in the cockpit and was ready to wroom out of this picturesque place back to Yakutat where I had a lodge reserved.



This Seagull Mob couldn't even suspect their leader will lose its head in 20 minutes.







Now the funniest stuff on the planet. I am heading out of that pest infested place flipping frequencies and arranging myself for a long flight. No word from Intelligence Advisor and I am loosing phone signal. I am about 20 miles out of Cordova just punched their advisory frequency last time by curiosity... what do I hear? "Hey RV9 where are you? Can you hear me RV?" Sure yes who are you? I am Bruce Stamper an RV builder I have a place for you to stay come back..." What a great surprise it looks like I am missing all that aerial fighting with approaching squall like. Little I knew how much work and communications were behind that call. Maybe Glen or Bruce will share details...


Quick turn and here I am back at the deck of an air carrier. On the rollout the Seagull Mob was still sitting at the middle of the runway fat and ignorant and I ran straight into it. Couldn't help myself the biggest mobster lost its head.





(Mods feel free to chop the pics if it against the rules)







Nice clean cut as a professional butcher at a poultry farm. My 4th confirmed kill.


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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 04:17 PM.
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  #46  
Old 07-27-2014, 07:40 AM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Here comes Bruce my savior. He and his family will be entertaining me for two days. The weather became so bad with squalls 50+ knots even seasoned fishermen didn't go to work. A local pilot joked it's because the Russian came, killed our magic seagull and made weather gods angry.





Bruce built a very nice house by a lagoon.




He has a Cub on floats parked by his house he uses it to spot fish.






He spots fish he relays coordinates to other fishermen. If he is not spotting he goes fishing in his own boat. Look at this Aluminum Mistress. Custom built like an RV.






Here is an RV Hotel. Upstairs where all his nets are there is a cozy den with a queen size bed. Super comfy.







Couple years ago there was a massive avalanche it wiped out a lot of trees. Missed Bruce property by a quarter mile or so.






Bruce gave me a tour of a fish processing plant. He brings his loot here on regular basis.






This man could separate fillet from a salmon in couple seconds. The demonstration followed...






Then Bruce dispatched some frozen salmon by Alaska airline to his customers and showed me a box (bottom left 75 pounder) he is keeping for an RV Fish-Fry-Fly-in he plans to host sometime in the fall in Wyoming at his airport. Stay tuned.


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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 07:58 PM.
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  #47  
Old 07-27-2014, 10:42 AM
stamper stamper is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: alaska
Posts: 309
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Your almost to my house Vlad. Keep going and don't turn back.
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  #48  
Old 07-27-2014, 08:00 PM
Vlad's Avatar
Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Location: Utah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stamper View Post
Your almost to my house Vlad. Keep going and don't turn back.

Bruce I don't have enough words to express my gratitude for everything you've done for me. Thanks a lot keep up good work. I will be back in two years



... We had a lot of fun during weather gods sabbath... No flying of course and no boating just trucking. We visited downtown Cordova multiple times.







We got a sneak peek on a new airboat under construction and watched how torn nets are repaired.











Checked on a whale bone.







Visited Swell Dancer.






Toured a harbor boardwalk in a truck. Lots of pests.









That vessel is one of the Deadliest Catch sloops. Forgot the name.





And of course we ate a lot. All home cooked stuff all healthy all good. The hurricane was still raging. Bruce told me a couple of not so experienced foreign captains reportedly run their ships aground...



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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 08:29 PM.
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  #49  
Old 07-27-2014, 08:01 PM
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Vlad Vlad is offline
 
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Location: Utah
Posts: 8,251
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Next day we were still in an entertainment mode. I won a dance contest on a Cossaks song. Bruce won a reggie...









And we ate again...






Somebody called from the airport my elevator stops were missing. We grabbed couple giant wood clamps, run to the field and fixed the issue. The stops were simple round moving pads joined by a zip tie. Zip ties were sheared the gales were so strong. Thanks good people for watching my plane.






The day after next we went to SEE THE WEATHER. We drove out of the gorge to Mudhole airport to take a look what's going on there. The forecast was showing better visibility over the shore.





Ha! Do you see people flying? Good sign.





Several hours later Bruce topped me off at wholesale price. There is an affordable 100LL in Alaska you have to know right people...







Then he drove his truck clearing the runway for me. What stupid creatures are those seagulls.







My Plan A and Plan B were scrapped and Plan C became effective. Which means I am turning back. That bird strike I mentioned earlier was the decision making point. Sometimes enough is enough. Bruce said if I get into a weather I am not comfortable with I can always come back and spend as much time with them as I want. I made a CANPASS call and the other side gave me confirmation number right away. "Be careful buddy and welcome to CanaDA"


On one of intermediate stops I asked the big guy if there is any ice in sky. He said no but it tops at 15. I had oxygen left for 2 hours more then enough to jump over the layers. XXX Radio RV requesting SVFR to the east will report clear of the surface...





I will spare you the details how I got here where RV can not climb anymore even at WOT.






Now there is a point of no return to Bruce. Greg Arehart, an RV9 builder, is waiting for me in Atlin, BC. The weather at his side is CAVU and he has fresh oil for my RV. I still have an hour and thirty minutes leg to get to him...


To be continued...
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Where is N666BK?

Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.

Last edited by Vlad : 07-27-2014 at 09:43 PM.
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  #50  
Old 07-27-2014, 08:16 PM
humptybump humptybump is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: USA
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Bruce - you are a life saver! Sweet boat too! I owe you. Will configure Devastator for long range bombing run to Wyoming when you transmit the "all clear" message!

For the curious, Vlad's communication was brief -
"looking for local. stop."
"Building rv-10. stop."
"Fisherman. stop."
"Can you contact? stop."
Not much to go on. I wasn't overly optimisting ...

Google search was "site:vansairforce.com rv-10 alaska fisherman"

but first result of first attempt was gold! The rest was phone calls and emails. Bruce was brilient to jump to the radio. Alaska really teaches fast thinking!

The internet gods were generous that night.

Last edited by humptybump : 07-27-2014 at 08:21 PM.
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