Yes! A sunny day and no new snow!!

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com Finally, a great afternoon to fly in Indiana!  Check out the pictures Boyd shot as I departed Mt. Comfort Airport, refueled at Shelbyville  (thank you Darrell), flew around Geist Lake and shot touch and go’s at MQJ.  It was clear, smooth, beautiful and a mild 25 degrees. Departing MQJ. Cold outside but warm in the Champ, at least on my left foot. Southbound for the 18 mile hop to visit Sherry and Darrell at KGEZ I slicked it on,…. really!! Judy with  Darrell, who I had to convince to pose with me Hanging with the big boy Over Geist Lake Not wasting the sunshine at MQJ...

Judy’s Fun Flying with Family & Friends

  Judy & Jessica (mom & kido) By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com You just can’t get up on a beautiful and warm (for November 27) Saturday morning and not fly to breakfast.  No matter how many eggs you’ve got in your refrigerator or how many boxes of Jiffy pancake mix, you’ve just got to fly to breakfast!  So after taking a quick peek out the window and seeing a very blue, sunny sky we decided to call the kids and head for the airport.  Since we’re only lucky enough to have one taildragger in the family and a back up Mooney for the hubby to fly, we divided up and headed to Columbus Airport, Columbus, Indiana for that breakfast.  I don’t care how far you have to fly, if you’ve not been there it’s worth the trip for a hearty breakfast or home cooked lunch. Jessica ready for take off! Craig & Justin took some great shots of us in Champ N7569E …as they zoomed by and Boyd tried his best to hang close by You gotta love that blue sky! The whole family; Boyd, Craig, Judy & Jessica on the ramp at KGEZ Since Shelbyville Indiana’s airport prices their fuel about $1.00 less a gallon than where we’re based, it’s also a frequent local stop for refueling.  What luck to bump into Charlie Laird and his latest project, a 1943 Gull Wing Stinson. We finally get Justin in a picture instead of behind the camera! (far right) Two Champs, twice as much fun! Meet Charlie Laird’s 1943 Gull Wing Stinson Jessica & Judy happy to pose with Charlie and his gorgeous Stinson...

Lorrie Penner doing some Stearman & J4 Flying!!

Here are a couple of pictures my recent taildragger experiences for Ladies Love Taildraggers! At our last IAC34 meeting Gordon and I flew the Stearman.  It was one of those beautiful fall days. Air temperature was about 60, so the open cockpit was not too chilly.  Gordon had me take the controls for about half of the flight. We did a couple of rolls and then worked our way back closer to the ground to look at the farms we flew by.  I was delightfully pleased to find the Stearman very easy on the controls – didn’t have to exert a lot of muscle to fly it. Loved the big radial engine on the front. Really makes you feel like you are flying SOMETHING. Yesterday we went out in the J4 of a friend of ours.   Was a different sensation to fly a stick with my left hand and throttle with the right.  Got in three wobbly landings, then we flew over to Middletown, Oh and walked across the street to Frisch’s for lunch – our first $100 hamburger!  I’m currently working on getting up to 200 hours so I can get my commercial glider license. (they give you credit for power hours for the commercial glider.)...

Eastern Tennessee Fly-In in a Cubcrafters Sport Cub S2

Diana Votaw is based at KSAR, Sparta Airport in MO and sent these pictures from her  flight to the East Tennessee Fall Fly-In.   “The weather was pretty good and had great flying in and around Elizabethton, TN.” Trip to TN was fantastic. Weather on Monday was great for the flight down. No trouble. I met my Mom and we had a great day. Then Tuesday was rainy and I spent the day taking care of “honeydos” around the house. Tuesday night Dave surprised me with a drive down to stay and fly a couple of days. Wednesday we did a great hike by a waterfall that my Mom likes (she also likes the out of doors – but gets all kinds of motion sickness so no flying). Then we went flying in the afternoon. I was contacted by a local guy (Brett) that I met last year for some tailwheel instruction!! YEA!! I got to write the trip off on my taxes!! Thursday another guy coming to the flyin came and we flew to a couple of grass strips! Great fun. My first 600 foot grass strip uphill at full gross (Dave was in the back). Saturday was again kinda rainy so we did home stuff until late when we went flying again!  Flight back on Sunday was met with low ceilings in the morning and waiting for them to clear. I left about 10:30 or so, and had to scud run up Cumberland pass to break out in the clear. Visibility was quite good, ceilings just a bit low for hopping over the mountains....

Who’s faster – a Rans or a Champ?

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com already knew the answer before heading out on this very loose formation flying weekend but who knew they would fly circles around us?!! Sure enough, the Rans S7-S LSA did just that – there they were, down low, up high, up front, way behind and all the while powering way back to stay with our Champ 7EC/FC. Now don’t get me wrong – I have no interest in giving up my beautiful blue and white, way fun, happy little Champ but I CAN see the attraction with all that airspeed! Our trip:  MQJ, GEZ, MQJ, KY8, 1M9, FRH & MQJ Boyd and I just spent a great flying weekend with Wayne & Kathy Norris of Norris Field, Liberty, Indiana.  We met up at the Ramp Rats Chili Fest in Shelbyville, IN and were ready to depart with full bellies until we realized “oh no, forgot the swim suits!”  A quick 18 mile flight back north, a 15 knot direct crosswind landing, a “please don’t let a cop catch me” fast drive home, a train (of course) over the track heading back, another crosswind departure and then finally – yes, we’re really on the way now!  We formed up with Rans N13NF near Columbus, IN and were happy to find we had a really nice tailwind pushing us along. Check out the pictures below but in a nutshell – coming from the north we flew south down Lake Barkley to the inlet where Barkley Lodge resides then to the Lake Barkley State Park Airport (1M9).  Beautiful lodge overlooking the lake, free transportation by the Park Service to the lodge, lots of good hiking trails, pool & hot tub, nice restaurant – it’s just got it all.  Day 2 was a flight back north up the lake, some fun flying over the Ohio River between Evansville & Owensboro and a stop at French Lick, Indiana.  Now this is an beautiful destination for anyone loving amazing architecture, history, historic hotels and shiny new casinos.  The resorts picks you up a the airport (free) delivers you to where ever you want to go.   They also run shuttles between the West Baden Inn, the Casino and the French Lick Resort but if its a nice day and you have time there’s a 1.25 mile paved trail that connects everything.  It’s a must see stop if you’re ever in southern Indiana.  I lost track of the time but roundtrip I’m thinking 6.5 hours logable time!...

Two sisters and a Champ

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com Champ N7569E pilot, Judy, and willing adventure seeker (& sister), Karen, want to share a few pictures we snapped. We spent  2 fun days together flying what seems like “all over” Indiana, Illinois and even a little Missouri .  We tallied up 10 hours 35 minutes of flight time visiting 7 airports,  zipping along at speeds as low as 63 mph all the way to a not too shabby 106 mph.  The goal was “don’t rush, just fly and have fun” and we sure did. FYI, we’ve got a ladies flyout coming up soon.  Check out the link and send an email if you’d like to join us – only requirement, you’re a lady with a taildragger!!...

Flight Around Michigan

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com Since I love an adventure, and my husband is willing to join me in anything that involves flying in an airplane, we decided to take 3 days and try to fly the shoreline all the way around the state of Michigan.  We made the trip this past weekend, trading the pilot seat back and forth, but had to cut some corners to get back home before the thunderstorms moved in.  We accomplished our goal, albeit with a modified flight plan and incredible headwinds most of the time.  Here’s just a few pictures of our trip around the “mitten” with overnights in Alpena on the Lake Huron side and Traverse City on the Lake Michigan side....

Judy’s 4th of July 2009 Blog

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com These are of few of my 4th of July Weekend pictures. The crappy weather didn’t keep us from getting some flying in and having a little fun....

Midwest Aeronca Festival, Kewanee, IL 2009

By Judy Birchler, host of LadiesLoveTaildraggers.com Champ N7569E flew from Indianapolis to Kewanee, IL Saturday morning against a strong headwind and over a broken layer a short part of the way.  I snapped a few pictures and thought I’d share with anyone interested in Aeroncas, slow flight and a good time. Flight time to Kewanee on Saturday was 3 hours 40 minutes which was slow, but fine with me because I love to fly her, even at 63 mph!  Luckily that headwind turned into a tailwind the next morning which got us home in 2 hours, 20 minutes.  My husband loved flying that leg of the trip because it’s not often you see 126 mph on the GPS. We met some nice folks at Kewanee including fun & helpful FBO owners Dale & Debra Lindstrom, pilots Sarah & Dave Allen, aviation photographer extraordinaire David Frye, and 7AC Champ pilot/owner Dave Griffith. Also got reacquainted with event organizer and brand new daddy, Jody Wittmeyer. Sorry to say the weather didn’t cooperate on Sunday morning.  With rain and thunderstorms moving in we decided to pass on the fly out breakfast and get on the way while we still could.  Thanks, Jody, for organizing your event, putting on a spread of food, providing cars and making it all possible!...

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