Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Day Two!

Today we were able to make it all the way to Brookings, Nebraska! Our day began with a 5am alarm waking us up to head over to the airport. We were up in the air and flying by 7am towards Rawlings, Wyoming. We were fortunate to get in before the winds really picked up. After a quick snack and visit with our friends we met at the FBO, we headed out to Spearfish, South Dakota. Coming in hot over the Black Hills of South Dakota, we landed in Spearfish and spent a couple hours on the ground reviewing weather and stretching our legs (or more like our stomaches). There were quite a few teams resting inside and cooling off inside the airport FBO. We had the chance to relax and eat with our Daytona team as well as a team that we first encountered at this airport on our way up to Pasco last week (Classic 38). Eventually, our rest time had to come to an end and we made our way to the plane to get up and over to Brookings, South Dakota. With plenty of time left before sunset, we landed and decided to call it a day, as there are some pretty big storms brewing around us. We also decided to hangar the airplane... just in case. Food, a shower and bed are the only priorities we have tonight. Tomorrow we will be up and at it again trucking through the last half of this crazy race!

Updates- Day 1 of the Race!

Hi everyone!

We apologize for the delay in our updates- it has been crazy! We were able to see a lot of awesome people before our actual race start! On Saturday, Kristine, who raced last year, flew to Pasco with her husband, Robby. It was great seeing them! We showed them around the great sites of Pasco and of course took some pictures. Thank you for coming out and seeing us, Kristine! We miss you!

On Sunday, June 17th, we had our pre-race banquet in Pasco, Washington. We had a great group of supporters join us- a special thanks to Marlene, who also raced last year, Jerry Kidrick, and Frank and Debbie Ayers for coming out. We felt so great knowing that you would be cheering us on. We also had the privilege of meeting Elaine McCalley- the newest pilot to be presented the Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award. Qualifications of this award require 50 years of flight experience! We were a little star struck.

Monday was race start! We woke up bright and early at 0530 only to open our windows and see a low cloud ceiling and lots of rain. We made our way over to the final briefing (just to make sure we knew how to turn on our trackers...) and headed to the airport. The airplane was wiped down from the morning rain, the preflight completed, all of our stuff was loaded and we were ready to say goodbye when we got news that we were on hold for 30mins. We proceeded to the FBO to wait to be released, when the ceilings just kept getting lower, and the rain kept coming. Our original departure time of 0800 was then pushed back to 1100, then to 1300, and finally at 1500... At this time, we found out that the race start had been moved from Pasco, WA to Mountain Home, ID where our first flyby would take place. In the blink of an eye, we saw a mad dash to the ramp. We waited just a bit to plan out our route, and know exactly where we had to go. We were able to remain VFR, stopped at a nearby airport to grab some fuel, and we were off! Our goal was to make it to Logan, Utah and spend the night there as Pasco was forecast to have even worse weather the next day. Because of the delay, we arrived at Logan just an hour or so prior to the official stop time of the day, but we were happy to make it and catch some sleep.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Day 4- June 11, 2013

Hey everyone!

Today we're departing from Logan, Utah! We have a short day of flying planned, only 2 legs, so we let ourselves sleep in a little (until 0800!) and were off to the airport. We checked the weather and decided a straight shot to Mountain Home, Idaho was not in the cards. We had thunderstorms and a lot of convective activity going on along that route with reports of moderate turbulence. We decided to plan IFR, head south towards the Great Salt Lake and to the west of all the storms. As we were walking out to the airplane, we finally caught up with Classic 38 and got to meet them! We have since kind of adopted each other. They're racing for the first time too! After a preflight and holding short for the fire truck doing a water hose demonstration to kids running around crazy (just kidding- they were in a nice close group and we were far, far away), we were off!

The Great Salt Lake

Some rain in Idaho


We landed in Mountain Home, Idaho and met the FBO manager there and a pilot who builds experimental aircraft. He let us check out his hangar.

This airport didn't have a fuel truck either, so we got to self serve fuel the airplane for the first time! We had some help to pull the airplane up to the pump.

After Mountain Home we worked our way to Pasco, Washington! We passed Oregon on the way up and saw some awesome terrain.

We're so happy to be in Pasco and are excited for all of our race activities to begin!

Day 3- June 11, 2013

Hi everyone!

Leaving Spearfish today we saw we had company- Classic Racer 38! This is the first team we have seen along our route and left them a little note wishing them well (Hi Cathy and Mary!). After our pre-flight and without Shelby's water bottle, which was left in the courtesy car the day before (we'll be back for it!), we were off to Rawlins, Wyoming. The flight here was pretty miserable because of the 35 knot headwind we had the whole route. Rawlins was also pretty tricky to spot from a distance and the landing was fun due to the wind. We heard Classic Racer 38 on the radios and were excited to make our first contact with them! At Rawlins, we met the FBO owners/operators who were also really nice and took the courtesy car for some lunch. Afterwards, we stayed and chatted with them for a bit, met their pet dog, Ozone, got some free Chapstick and fortune cookies for good luck, and departed for Logan, Utah.

Bear Lake

This is going to be our trickiest leg because Logan is located in the Cache Valley, on the western slopes of the Bear River Mountains in the Wasatch Range. The airport elevation here is 9,700ft and is really busy! We did a couple of practice flights around the area to become familiar with the terrain and called it a night. We found Classic Racer 38 again, got the courtesy car for our hotel, ate some dinner, and went to bed early. Tomorrow is our last day, as we'll make it to the race start in Pasco, Washington!

Day 2- June 10, 2013

Hello! Today we began our journey from Holdrege, Nebraska! Since we arrived here last night when it was a little dark out, we didn't really get to see very much of the environment. Leaving our hotel, we saw lots of farms and wildlife. It didn't smell too great here, either. We made it to the airport, returned the courtesy car and double checked our next route... We were surprised! Our next destination, Brookings, South Dakota was low IFR! We were shocked. We looked at the TAF and called flight service for a briefing with reassurances that Brookings would be VFR by the time we got there, but decided we would wait an hour or so. In the meantime, we got our airplane fueled and met a local crop dusting pilot.

Before we left, we checked the weather yet again, this time with Brookings 100% VFR and headed out. Nebraska was beautiful from the air.

Around the Nebraska-South Dakota border we saw the weather that delayed our departure, but all was well! We made a quick stop in Brookings for fuel and said hello to South Dakota State University.
And we were off yet again, this time our sites were set on our final stop of the day in Spearfish, South Dakota! South Dakota was also really pretty from the air- way different than Prescott!

Once we started seeing the terrain in the picture above, we knew we were getting close! The whole 'Black Hills' of South Dakota thing was very apparent. There was so much green! We landed in Spearfish and couldn't waste the great photo opportunity.

We got settled into our hotel and had some spare time, so we decided to make the drive to Mount Rushmore!

We ran into a little bit of courtesy car trouble on the way out... Luckily it was nothing serious. Thanks to Robb Webb, an awesome park ranger, who was able to help us out. We're looking forward to our journey tomorrow!

Our Journey to Pasco; Day 1- June 9, 2013

Hi everyone! We finally have the blog username/password figured out (thanks, Kristine!) and are ready to fill you in!

Shelby and I departed Arizona on Sunday, June 9th with a great send off crew. Thanks to John Tracy, Sean Moreau, Ryan Albrecht, and Dr. Ayers for coming out and seeing us off! Our first stop was to Double Eagle, New Mexico where we stopped for a quick top off and a bathroom break.

After that, we made it to La Junta, Colorado! We were literally the only thing there and the weather was similar to Arizona- hot. The FBO supervisor was very nice and waited for us to land to welcome us! 

We met up with Shelby's parents and went to lunch/dinner where we ran into an ERAU Prescott student. After re-fueling the airplane and ourselves with something other than granola bars and dried fruit, we decided we had just enough time to make it to our final stop for the day of Holdrege, Nebraska. 

Meet the 2013 ERAU- Prescott Air Race Team!

Hi everyone!

Welcome to the 2013 ERAU-Prescott Air Race blog and thank you for your continued support! We'd like to take this opportunity to introduce ourselves.

On the left is the team's pilot, Shelby King. Shelby is a junior at ERAU-Prescott with her commercial single and multi-engine land ratings. She is from Broomfield, Colorado and anticipates to graduate from ERAU-Prescott in May 2014 with a B.S. in Aeronautical Science and a minor in aviation business administration. Shelby hopes to become a flight instructor for ERAU and fly corporate in the future.

On the right is the team's co-pilot, Anna Chrzanowski. Anna is from Fountain Hills, AZ and is an alumna from ERAU-Prescott, having graduated magna cum laude in Aeronautical Science with a minor in weather in December 2011. She is currently a flight instructor at ERAU-Prescott with her CFI/CFII/MEI/AGI/IGI ratings and a graduate student in the Safety Science program. In the future, she hopes to fly for a regional, then commercial airline.

This year's race begins in Pasco, WA and runs from June 18th-June 21st. Below is our route.
We are so excited to have been selected to represent our university and community!