“Touring Texas,” Greg’s January, 2014 column


DowntownFortWorthSundanceSquareAloft_0413-EditeSmw1200Best milkshakes this side of the Pecos

This year’s AOPA Summit had long marked my calendar. I’d never been to Fort Worth, unless you count in pilot parlance, “I’ve flown over it.” And just two states from Arizona, it initially appeared within reasonable Flying Carpet range.

I was soon reminded, however, of how big those states really are — we faced an 11-hour round trip. Then Jean was invited to a San Antonio meeting the week after Summit. I phoned Texas pilot friend Sergio Schaar asking where to relax over the intervening weekend.

“Consider Fredericksburg, in the Texas Hill Country,” he said. “It’s known for wine and German cuisine, and you could stay at the Hangar Hotel right there on the airport. While there, partake of the incredible $1 avgas promotion at nearby San Marcos Airport, though I’ve heard there’s a two-hour wait.” Landing at San Marcos would also allow me to tour Redbird Skyport‘s touted “aviation laboratory.” Each additional destination made the long journey more attractive.

We fled Flagstaff ahead of a huge storm system rolling in from the west. (Snow there the following day made national news.) Although turbulent, powerful tailwinds urged us along ahead of the approaching cold front.

“Poof!” Jogged by a bump, Jean’s elbow popped the passenger window some 60 miles out.

Read the whole story in this month’s Flying Carpet column, Touring Texas. (Please allow a moment for the article to load.)

Photo: Downtown Fort Worth’s Sundance Square, glimpsed through a hole in the clouds. See more photos here. This month I’ve included some of the “Well, I’ll Be!” ground photos I always enjoy taking at our destinations. Let me know what you think!

(This column first appeared in the January, 2014 AOPA Flight Training magazine.)

©2013 Gregory N.Brown

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