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July 24, 2024


Big World of Flight Spring 2012

Contributed by Marilyn Emery
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The story

One mile visibility and clear of clouds equals class G weather minimums.  I decided that while legal to fly in this rain storm, it was not something I wanted to do again.  Finger on map, checking the pink  line on the iPad and keeping a sharp eye on engine instruments and the two planes in front of me, kept me pretty busy.  My co-pilot, Steve Carkeek, made sure that we did not lose the other two planes in the mist.  Tom and Nancy Jensen’s white/red Cessna 180’s wings stood out in the greyness, but Mike Latta’s red and black Cessna 180, with Hal Bryan as co-pilot, would sometimes disappear from my view.  Steve never lost sight of either plane.  So far, so good, and we were almost over the mountains and into the Okanogan Valley, where the ceilings were higher and there was less rain.  The second leg of Big World Flight 2012 was almost done.

The first leg had been the day before, when the crew flew from Seattle to Republic.  We spent the night there, and early then next morning went to the airport to prepare for the students who would arrive by bus from school.  The second leg was from Republic to Oroville, the third from Oroville to Tonasket, then from Tonasket to Okanogan.  We flew one leg each day, and did a program for the school in each town.  “If it is Tuesday, this must be Tonasket!”

At each town, we would divide the students into four groups, and run them through four stations.  Each station dealt with several aspects of aviation.  We named the stations “Touch and Goes,” “Preflight of an aircraft,” “Airport Tour” and “Preflight Planning.”

This year the Big World Flight crew of Tom and Nancy Jensen, Mike Latta, Hal Bryan, Steve Carkeek and Marilyn Emery, presented the programs. The weather cooperated the rest of the time, and the flight was a huge success.